3D Printed End of Arm Tooling

Additive Manufacturing is changing the way manufacturers design and create end of arm tooling for industrial robots. 


Since 1959 when the first industrial robot was installed at a GM diecasting plant in Trenton, New Jersey there has been a never ending race to improve the productivity of these robots through the advancement of end of arm tool design. Couple this with the advent of 3D printers in the mid 2000’s that were able to produce high quality, strong, and cost effective part, and the end result has been the opening of a whole new frontier of design possibilities for 3D printed end of arm tooling for industrial robots.

At Forerunner 3D Printing we are uniquely positioned to leverage 3D printing for our clients end of arm tooling needs:

3d-printed-parts-3d-printed-materials HP Multi-jet, 3D printed end of arm tooling


3D printed end of arm tooling can be as simple or complex as needed, which gives Designers the freedom to create tooling solely for its specific function. For example, 3D printed end of arm tooling can have integrated vacuum channels, assemblies can be consolidated down into a single part, or organic shapes that conform to the object being manipulated by the robot. This design flexibility provides a unique opportunity to optimize robot performance and with a 3D printed EOAT design complexity doesn’t increase cost.

Regardless of if you are just looking for someone to print the custom grippers or part nests deigned by your engineering team or if you need a company to quote the design, 3D Printing, Machining, and build of your end of arm tool, Forerunner 3D Printing is here to help with your 3D Printed end effector project today!


3D Printed End of Arm Tooling Example:



Material Specifications of 3D Printed Nylon:


HP 3D High Reusability PA-12 Nylon

PA-12 Nylon is an engineering grade thermoplastic that produces high-density parts with extreme dimensional accuracy and fine detail for functional 3D Printed EOAT applications. When PA-12 Multi Jet Fusion Materials are used in conjunction with the MJF process it produces more consistent mechanical properties in each direction of the printed parts geometry—far more so than other powder-based printers—a factor that’s especially desirable with multi-faceted, complex designs where strength and reliability is required everywhere throughout the part. The heat deflection temperatures shown in the table below gives a good indication of the temperatures that these parts can withstand, keeping in mind that these values are measured when the entire plastic sample is saturated at the tested temperature. Tensile strength and elongation values help quantify that the material is both strong and to some degree flexible, these are beneficial properties for gripper fingers that have to withstand many cycles and still retain their precision. Strength and flexibility are assets that can be tuned through design, this becomes appropriate when creating rigid nests or fixtures that have to be precise and stable to hold parts in the exact orientation desired. PA-12 Multi Jet Fusion Materials also have excellent chemical resistance to oils, greases, aliphatic hydrocarbons and alkalies.


Click here for a full spec sheet on HP 3D High Reusability PA-12 Nylon


HP 3D High Reusability PA 12 Glass Beads Nylon

This 40% glass bead filled thermoplastic material produces stiff, functional parts. PA 12 GB has both optimal mechanical properties and high reusability, and provides dimensional stability. It’s ideal for functional applications requiring high stiffness like enclosures and housings, fixtures, and tooling across a variety of industries.

Click here for a full spec sheet on HP 3D High Reusability PA 12 Glass Beads Nylon


3D Printed End of Arm Tooling Design Guide:


If you are going to be designing your own 3D printed end of arm tooling details, please take a look at our guide on how to best design parts for manufacturing using the HP multi jet fusion process. We are always happy to look over customers designs and offer ideas and feedback as well as evaluate them for production on a 3D Printer.


Click here to go to the 3D Printing Machines & Materials page

Have questions?

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Sales@Forerunner3d.com – 231.722.1144

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