RE: [rp-ml] Fwd: Jet Wax Materials for Solidscape 3D Systems

From: Steven Adler \(A3DM \) <>
Date: Mon Jan 19 2009 - 20:03:04 EET

At the risk of opening Jet Wax materials up for public debate, I would like
to offer my point of view on the offering.

 As most of you know, I am a long time user of the Sanders/Solidscape
technology going back nearly 15 years now. Over the years I have applauded
and provided support for technology advancements being made in my field from
a variety of companies and welcome that innovation. It has always been my
hope that Solidscape would be able offer a wider range of materials for
applications outside the realm of investment casting. Unfortunately, Jet Wax
materials do not fit that description but seek merely to replace the role of
the existing materials in the current application. I would have hoped that
this debate would have been over a less opportunistic material development
perhaps in the ceramic or metallic arena. Nonetheless, I will endeavor here
to leave questions of business ethics and free markets to the consumer or
law school professors and try to concentrate solely on the scientific
aspects of the debate.

There are many factors that go into a successful build process and they
require the developer to have a complete understanding of the proprietary
aspects. In the Jet-Wax assertions of universal solubility and compatibility
with all Solidscape machines they demonstrate a lack of understanding in
that complete process.


There have been more than 8 different machines created that use the
Sanders/Solidscape process. The system evolution, developed over more than a
decade, required in excess of 150 database configurations. These
configurations define line types and/or dot pitch specific to operating
temperatures, viscosity, and cooling rate. As the Solidscape materials
changed over time, the configurations also changed to adapt to the new
material properties. It has been documented that the evolution of these
materials has not provided for backward compatibility with older machine

In order to confirm compatibility with all platforms, Jet Wax developers
would have needed to test all of the machine types using a variety of
configurations on each machine, and have measured each line type using the
prescribed operating temperatures. In particular, the matrix fill line types
of both build and support materials are particularly vulnerable to changes
in viscosity and need to be recalculated to provide sufficient material for
close-off. It is naive to think that if Jet Wax materials were combined with
other materials in any ratio, it would provide precise properties for all of
the exact same line types. As well, it is unlikely that Jet Wax material by
itself could produce the same line types as all Solidscape materials because
those materials each have different properties when compared with each
other. Further, the process cooling times prior to milling are hard coded on
Solidscape machines based on the material and configuration database. Any
recommended changes in operating temperature for Jet Wax material would need
to be accommodated by an appropriate increase or decrease in cooling time in
the configuration database

Another concern I note is that there is a narrow range of thermal expansion
which must be maintained between the build and support materials. This
factor is important for two aspects of the process. During the support
removal phase, if the support material expands too quickly in advance of the
build material, small delicate features can be dislodged and thin walled
features can fracture. We also pay particular attention to hygroscopic and
thermal expansion in the investment and burnout stages of investment
casting. We have performed several studies where material expansion has been
shown to cause fractures and inclusions in the metal by-product. Solidscape
materials have been tested and compared to all other RP materials and found
to be the closest CTE to injection wax.


In a recent reply to this RPML thread, Jet Wax developers state "there are
no intrinsic problems of self-compatibility between Solidscape materials". I
can assure users that there are dozens of Solidscape users who would dispute
this assertion. I know of many who tried to jump from ProtoBuild to
InduraCast and experienced a chemical reaction which clogged the entire
material delivery system. Anyone who has operated a Sanders/Solidscape
system also knows that the build materials in particular are subject to
out-gassing and a persistent crystalline precipitation, indicative of the
instability of minority compounds to remain in solution. In the real world,
there are degrees of solubility and a visual hot plate test method, in my
opinion, would be insufficient to prove the assertion of consistent
universal solubility. Lastly, to suggest that Solidscape has a lucrative
fear campaign to extort thousands of dollars from its loyal clients is just
ridiculous. Conversions include considerably more than one hour of work and
a replacement filter. It is a complete review of the systems with
replacements made of any components that do not meet specifications. The
upgrade also includes a new configuration software database that is designed
for the new material properties which both improve quality and decrease
build times.


Jet-Wax is an unproven commodity across the Solidscape platform. Users who
anticipate converting to this gray market material will do so at the risk of
performance at best and of significant damage at worst to their material
deliver systems. The developers do not appear to provide a value added
benefit to the end user for new applications but instead seek to act as a
parasite on an already successful process. My council to the principals at
Jet-Wax is that they should consider this material for their own internal
use and refocus their marketing efforts on new materials for applications
outside investment casting. In this endeavor they would have my full support
in development and testing.

Read Today's Blog at

Steven Adler

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf
Sent: Saturday, January 17, 2009 4:02 AM
Subject: RE: [rp-ml] Fwd: Jet Wax Materials for Solidscape 3D Systems

Hi Steve and RP-ML members,

Regarding recent discussions on Jet-Wax materials and their compatibility
with Solidscape waxes I draw your attention to some photos of binary
mixtures between Jet-Cast, InduraCast, BlueCast2, and ProtoBuild; and also
Jet-Fill, InduraFill and ProtoSupport. These pictures are located at:

The photographed mixtures are all 50%-50% combinations by weight.

These experiments can be performed by anyone with a hotplate and a
thimble-sized quantity of the materials. It can be found that there are no
intrinsic problems in mixing Jet-Wax materials with any of their respective
Solidscape wax counterparts.

Also note that there are no intrinsic problems of "self-compatibility"
between Solidscape materials. For example, adding InduraCast to ProtoBuild
or BlueCast2 won't turn into cement or destroy your jets. Solidscape
"converts" machines to InduraCast for a few thousand dollars each. They
drain the tanks (so that the new color dominates) and change some
inexpensive filters in a 1-hour job at most. It is unnecessary, but
lucrative, and supported by a fear campaign.

You correctly identified issues in using InduraFill with ProtoBuild. This is
because ProtoBuild is quite brittle, curls, and has poor adhesion to
InduraFill. You could fix this by, for example, adding around 20% BlueCast2
to the ProtoBuild. Regarding ProtoBuild and InduraCast, I have jetted
mixtures of the two (~25% InduraCast content) without a problem.

Jet-Wax materials have been extensively tested and build models as good as
Solidscape technology is capable of. If anyone wants some free sample
satchels for performing their own material compatibility experiments then
please email us.


Kind regards,

The Jet-Wax Laboratories Team.


Jet-Wax Laboratories

Received on Mon Jan 19 20:08:08 2009

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