PTZ Prototypenzentrum GmbH in Dresden has been producing prototypes in metal and plastic for the most diverse industries for over 20 years. PTZ has a lot of experience with various additive manufacturing processes. For particularly demanding applications, no solution was found – until the components could be manufactured additively on the Metal X.

This tool cooler was originally manufactured from aluminium by machining. The cooler greatly simplifies the handling of the shrinking process when installing and removing the cutting tool. This is a characteristic component of high precision milling tools. The more conductive the cooler is, the faster the tool can be reconfigured. The aluminum cooler was easy to manufacture, but could not achieve the desired cycle times of PTZ due to thermal performance.

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Initially, the team attempted to use selective laser melting technology to produce a more powerful design from an AlSi10Mg alloy. They achieved better performance thanks to the complex internal cooling channels, but the new design did not withstand the coolant and the process was quite expensive and difficult to implement.

Markforged’s copper was the perfect solution to the PTZ problem. Their new design included conformal cooling channels that would make the tool cooler extremely efficient. However, this design could not be manufactured conventionally. With this design, PTZ was in an excellent position to implement the idea in high conductivity copper on the Metal X.

The new tool cooler withstands the coolant and cools 38% faster than previous designs. With approximately 40 tool changes per day on two CNC machines, it also saved 111 hours per year. Given the average hourly rate of the machine, this means that PTZ saves around €7,000 a year on machine time alone. Using the most cost effective and high performance materials, Markforged technology was the only logical choice for the tool cooler. The team plans to work with Markforged Copper to develop electrical engineering parts for the automotive industry.

What are the advantages of copper 3D printing?

✅ Very high conductivities
✅ Quickly first prototypes
✅ Significant freedom of design

Learn more about applications with metal 3D printing!

For which applications is the Metal X suitable? How do I design correctly for metal 3D printing? What do users say and where can I find more information? – This is the right place for you! We listed some information leading you directly to the matching answers.

Design Guide

DfAM – How do you design your part best for metal 3D printing? In this guide you will find valuable tips on design, material selection and post-processing.

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Problemes to solve

In this white paper, we take a look at three benefits of metal additive manufacturing and three problems the technology is perfectly suited to solve.

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Metal X part


An application engineer from Markforged explains the Metal X system and which materials are available. He also shows a complete run from printing to the finished part.

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