Salomon’s Innovative Approach to Revolutionizing Ski Boot Design with 3D Printing
In an era dominated by Industry 4.0, where optimization and sustainability are paramount, companies are turning to cutting-edge technologies to enhance their product offerings. Among these technologies, 3D printing has emerged as a transformative force, addressing the needs of rapid prototyping and end-use part production.
One notable example of 3D printing’s impact comes from Salomon, the renowned French outdoor sports equipment manufacturer. Faced with the challenge of developing high-performance ski boots for professional athletes, Salomon embraced additive manufacturing to optimize its design process. Leveraging SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) technology from Prodways, Salomon revolutionized its product development.
The decision to integrate 3D printing into the design process was a strategic move for Salomon, allowing for rapid prototyping and thorough testing of product features, materials, and overall performance. Prodways’ SLS technology proved to be the ideal solution, offering speed, precision, and high production volume—crucial factors in the demanding realm of professional sports equipment.
Salomon’s new ski boot design journey began with precise digital prototypes created using computer-aided design (CAD) software. The ProMaker P1000x 3D printer from Prodways, featuring a spacious build chamber, played a pivotal role in transforming these digital designs into physical prototypes. Utilizing polypropylene (PP 1200), a BASF-developed material known for its chemical resistance, high elasticity, and recyclability, Salomon’s designers executed rapid and detailed prototyping.
The iterative process facilitated by additive manufacturing allowed Salomon to scrutinize assembly, assess part compatibility, analyze deformations and stiffness, and validate design intricacies like lace hooks and their attachments. This method not only accelerated prototyping and testing but also delivered cost savings by streamlining the journey from CAD validation to mass production.
Salomon’s embrace of 3D printing showcases the technology’s prowess in enhancing product development, particularly in crafting bespoke solutions for elite athletes. By embracing innovation through additive manufacturing, Salomon ensures its products meet the exacting standards of professional athletes, marking a significant stride in the convergence of sports equipment and cutting-edge technology.
You can learn more about Prodways SLS 3D printing HERE.