3D printing in the production of professional Furch guitars
Today, 3D printers are helping in many industries, with the exception of 3D printing in the production of guitars. Among the major customers who use 3D printers from the company MCAE Systems also belongs to the world – renowned guitar manufacturer, Furch Guitars founded in 1981. It has gradually developed into one of the world’s leading manufacturers of all-wood acoustic guitars.
The company’s headquarters and production area are located in Velké Němčice, where 60 top toolmakers work. In its work, Furch successfully combines many years of know-how in the field of manual production with state-of-the-art production processes, technologies and its own innovations, thanks to which it creates premium instruments with excellent acoustic and design properties.
The company annually produces approximately 8,000 guitars, which it then sells in 32 countries around the world. Its customers include, for example, Al di Meola, Suzanne Vega, Per Gessle, David Koller, Vlasta Redl, Zdeněk Bína and Thom Artway.
Furch Guitars has been using the printer for less than a year. This is for the production of the ergonomic Bevel Duo element, which they apply to selected models of their acoustic guitars. This element consists of two types of chamfered tool edges – front forearm and back rib. Their combination provides players with up to several times more comfort during the game and at the same time enhances the exclusive appearance of the guitar.
Until now, the Bevel Duo ergonomic element at Furch Guitars was made by hand from wood. This is a very laborious and time consuming process, where precision is important. For this reason, it has so far been applied only to the most expensive models and custom manufacturing. However, its great popularity gradually led to the search for new innovative ways to place it on more affordable models and thus offer its benefits to a wider range of players. 3D printing has proven to be an ideal solution here.
According to Peter Furch, CEO of Furch Guitars, the 3D printer has met quality, price and productivity requirements from the beginning.
At Furch Guitars, they chose 3D printing technology mainly because of its accuracy and flexibility. With the help of PolyJet technology, which applies individual layers in which it simultaneously cures the UV active fluid into the desired shape with an accuracy of up to 15 thousandths of a millimeter. If necessary, the selected shape can be freely adapted by reprogramming and in the future it will be easier to use it for other body shapes of their guitars. 3D printing thus represents a significant advantage over conventional molds, which need to be remanufactured.