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Knowledge and Insight into 3D Printing AT 3D-SQUARED provides a strategic consulting and support service for organisations involved with 3D printing and additive manufacturing (AM) technologies. Following the company’s success in winning the Best 3D Printing Strategic Consultancy 2017 – UK award, we interviewed the owner, Andrew Allshorn, to discover more about AT 3D-SQUARED’s respected work. AT 3D-SQUARED was established in 2007 by Andrew Allshorn and offers strategic consulting services and advice for organisations that have adopted or want to adopt 3D printing and additive manufacturing technologies. Owner, Andrew Allshorn provides a fascinating introduction to the company’s award-winning work, as the interview kicks off. “AT 3D-SQUARED was founded based on the premise of offering real knowledge and insight into 3D printing and AM. These technologies are truly amazing and offer companies large and small new opportunities that have not been available before. However, the key to unlocking their potential comes from understanding their limitations as well as their original capabilities. The combined AT 3D-SQUARED workforce offers a unique breadth and depth of knowledge of the software, hardware and materials aspects that must be combined to generate best practice and results with additive manufacturing (AM) technologies.” “Lots of organisations jump into this technology and end up purchasing the wrong machine for their requirements, simply because they do not understand the capabilities of the different 3D printing systems and just

follow the hype. We are able to analyse companies’ R&D and manufacturing processes and help them choose the correct process for their specific applications, implement them and keep the machines running at optimum levels. Educating our customers and the public about how to utilise this technology is a core part of what we do.” Indeed, Andrew’s company scooped the ‘Clogau Gold Growth through Innovation’ award, at the Daily Post Achievement Wales 2011 Awards, which followed local success at the Flintshire Business Awards in the same year. With unprecedented access to numerous industrial sectors, including automotive and aerospace, his experience and expertise have also seen him invited to participate in various global events and summits. In 2016, his distinguished work in the AM sector was further recognised by the prestigious Additive Manufacturer’s Users Group (AMUG), when he was awarded the exclusive Distinguished INnovator Operator (DINO) award. Then, earlier this year, Andrew was appointed as a European Ambassador for AMUG, in recognition of his tireless work in raising global awareness of AM in various roles across more than three decades. Andrew reveals that it is a great honour to be named Best 3D

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Printing Strategic Consultancy 2017 – UK award by Corporate Vision. He goes on to explain the company’s overall mission and how it integrates innovation into every aspect of the work, as well as what sets the company apart. “I truly consider it a privilege and honour to receive this accolade on behalf of AT 3D-SQUARED. The recognition of the work we do is gratifying in many ways, not least in highlighting the progression of the advanced manufacturing sector as a whole. Working in this sector every day is exciting and rewarding on its own, but an award like this is a great compliment.” “I think one of the things that really drives us is that we are not tied to a specific machine manufacturer, so we can offer an impartial opinion regarding the best 3D printer for any application. This is the key to everything, and by ensuring that companies invest in the right technology for them is very important to us. In this way, companies are more likely to meet their expectations of the technology, which in turn increases adoption rates and avoids the disappointment that can result from the hype about this technology.” Andrew then directs our thoughts to the wider industry in the UK today and how the company stays ahead of any emerging developments. He also provides

a flavour of the company’s internal culture. “There has been a great deal of hype around 3D printing and AM in recent years — across mainstream media and social media. Once people learn that 3D printing is just another tool in the designers’/engineers’ tool box, it tends to be used correctly. Don’t use it just for the sake of using it.” “As an artist and product designer, I am always aware that things must change to keep up with the fast pace of today’s technologies. I have always try to think ‘outside the box’ and am most challenged when I’m told that something can’t be done. Sometimes there is no straight forward answer and finding a solution can take many years, but it’s very rewarding when you find the right result.” “Training both staff and customers is very important to me, so as a company we are very open about these technologies and prefer to work closely with those we serve to build up a lasting partnership. Loyalty is also an important part of the business, so that both parties can grow and develop together.” “I also strive to engage in educational activities, getting involved with the local high school, where I donated a 3D printer back in 2012; and

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CV Magazine August 2017  

CV Magazine August 2017