I met up with David Darbyshire, who has graciously volunteered to introduce me to the Detroit area. David, along with his brother, is the owner of DASI Solutions, one of the Midwests’s top SolidWorks reseller. As such, he gets invited to SolidWorks’ President’s Club meetings, which take place in bucket list places – like his last one in Costa Rica.
In the midst of recessions, and in one of the places most hardest hit, DASI is doing well. I meet David in his latest office in Lake Orion, about 30 miles north of downtown Detroit center. This will house his latest business, selling 3D prototyping services.
David has not two RP machines. He is most excited about his latest, an Objet Connex 500. Don’t confuse this with the 3D printers every one is talking about, some of which can fit on your desk. If you want to get a Connex 500 in your house, you better have a cargo door.
What do you get with an Objet Connex 500 that you won’t get with lesser RP machines, much less the lowly 3D printers?
Accuracy, for one thing, says Dave. Parts could be accurate to 0.004”. He also shows me many parts made with two materials, made in one pass, no assembly required. Also, materials can be those not normally associated with RP, for example a very clear plastic and also a rubbery material. Also, some of the parts are bigger, the size of footballs. By contrast, parts displayed at the recent Maker Fair for entry level 3D printers are the size of your finger.
Clearly, we are not in the minor leagues.