3D printing spare parts for assets with a High Life Cycle Cost

How you can leverage 3D printing to reduce your assets’ life cycle costs

What is life cycle cost?

Life cycle cost is the sum of recurring and one-time costs incurred over the lifespan of a good, structure or system. This includes its purchase price, installation cost, operating costs, maintenance and upgrade costs, and remaining (residual or salvage) value at the end of its useful life.

What's the challenge?

Purchasing spare parts for goods with a high life cycle cost poses a complex trade-off. On the one hand, stocking spare parts immobilizes working capital and may result in material waste. On the other, not securing a part replacement can mean higher operating costs or lost production costs due to asset unavailability. Equipment downtimes are caused 15% of the time by spare part supply issues. In some cases, a spare part cannot be secured and the company must resort to buying an entirely new asset in order to guarantee resource utilization.

Less working capital for spare parts procurement

How can DiManEx help?

We help you respond to ad hoc challenges and solve immediate spare parts issues through our supply platform, which connects you to a network of Additive Manufacturing partners. We also enable you to take a more proactive approach by analyzing supply chain data to understand when it makes sense to secure a part replacement through 3D printing in order to optimize costs of supply.

To get started, we ask you to provide Basic SKU Data, including:

  • An overview of legacy parts
  • Parts in service life time with low demand and long lead times
  • Parts with demand out of SLT
  • Parts for which you need to replace an entire unit instead of the relevant component
  • How the Dutch Army secured a part replacement for a camera used in its vehicles

    The Dutch Army needed to secure a replacement for a support used to hold cameras in place at the back of Fennek vehicles. A part replacement was not available through the supplier, meaning they would have to purchase an entirely new camera. They worked with DiManEx to produce the part to specification on-demand as part of a pilot. Producing the part through 3D printing was more effective from both a cost and lead time perspective. The experiment showed that the Army could avoid the high cost of a camera replacement while increasing the availability of its vehicle on the field.