Gillette Files Patent to 3D Print Functional Razor Blades

Gillette was one of the earliest consumer company’s to use 3D printing technology. Unfortunately, 3D printing was incapable of prototyping functional razor cartridges, which would become deformed when exposed to hot water. For that reason, Gillette’s 3D printed prototype razor models could only be used for aesthetic development. However, a new patent indicates that Gillette has found a solution to this problem.

According to the patent filing, Gillette will likely use digital light processing (DLP) to prototype the cartridges: “In a preferred embodiment, the housing is fabricated using an additive manufacturing that uses liquid ultra-violet curable photopolymer resin (UV-curable resin) and an ultra-violet laser to build parts a layer at a time. Ultra-violet light is applied to layers of UV-curable resin at a time to form a solid structure.” To increase the temperature resistance of its cartridges, the company may incorporate a “filler” material, such as aluminium oxide, crystalline silica, or a ceramic material:

“To form a housing with sufficient strength and durability for application in a functional razor, a filler is suspended in the UV-curable resin. In the present invention, the filler is nano-particles of aluminum oxide that are suspended in the UV-curable resin. However, other known fillers may alternatively be used; for example, crystalline silica or a ceramic filler may be used. UV-curable resin with aluminum oxide suspended therein has been found to have sufficient strength and durability to withstand pressure that may be applied to the housing during a normal shaving process. Furthermore, material as described herein that is formed of a filler suspended in UV-curable resin can be subjected to much higher temperatures compared with UV-curable resin without filler such that a housing formed of a filled UV-curable resin can withstand being held under varying degrees of hot water.” … (Read more)


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