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The Dental Team
Georg Walcher, MDT, has been a zirconia and CAD/CAM expert at Dental Laboratory Steger in Bruneck, Italy since 2007. His education includes diplomas in Dental Technology and Dental Technical Assistant from the Istituto Professionale per l’Industria e L’Artigianato in Bolzano, Italy. He earned his master’s certificate in Baden, Vienna in 2000.
Fernando Rojas-Vizcaya, DDS, MS, Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Prosthodontics, University of North Carolina and Director of Mediterranean Prosthodontic Institute, Castellón, Spain
Homayoun H. Zadeh, DDS,...
- December 2013
Market Update: Digital Technology
LMT attends the DLOAC CAD/CAM Expo and Symposium to bring you the latest developments in digital dentistry
Celebrating its 10th year, the Dental Laboratory Owners’ Association of California’s (DLOAC) CAD/CAM Expo and Symposium—held in November in Garden Grove, CA—showcased the latest digital products, services and trends. The theme? Automation continues to streamline, simplify and improve laboratory processes and manufacturers are working overtime to offer new material choices, easier-to-use software, more affordable hardware and innovative...
Read More 5 minute read
- August 2013
What I love most about LMT’s Buyer’s Guide is that it is truly comprehensive. We do not require participants to pay a single cent to be included in this annual directory. (Of course, some do choose to enhance their listing visibility with advertising options.)
This year’s Guide includes 373 manufacturers and suppliers,...
- April 2013
At the show, Zimmer formally announced its partnership with Zfx GmbH. Zimmer now distributes Zfx products, including Zfx CAD software and scanners, and offers CAD/CAM services—including crown and bridge components, bars, and titanium and zirconia abutments—through its new Zfx milling center in Carlsbad, CA.
For more information,...
- March 2013
Restoring the smile of a dentist's relative can be particularly challenging. Here, Luke Kahng shares how he transformed the smile of a client's mother-in-law with two PFM bridges and one PFM crown.
The patient, a 63-year-old female, wanted to replace an old partial and denture in her maxillary arch with an implant-retained bridge. Since she resides in Florida, she had the implants and a temporary denture placed there, but then traveled to Chicago for two weeks so her daughter-in-law, Dr. Linda Arrich, could complete the work for her.
The patient, clinician and Luke Kahng, Owner of LSK121...
- January 2013
Imagine the ability to fabricate a restoration before the patient's tooth is even prepped. Thanks to a new system in development from B&D, you may soon be able to do just that.
The company previewed its new Digital Prep Guide, currently in beta testing, at the Dental Laboratory Owners' Association of California's (DLOAC) CAD/CAM Expo and Symposium in November in Garden Grove, CA. Here's how it works: at the patient's first visit, if the dentist doesn't have an intraoral scanner, he takes a conventional impression then sends it to the lab where the technician fabricates a model, scans...
Read More 6 minute read
- November 2012
From a family of educators, Julian Infante, CDT, has both a love of learning and a gift for teaching.
He earned his Associate's degree from Bates Technical College and eventually joined Modern Dental Lab—then called Northwest Labs—in Bellevue, WA in 2006. Since then, he has earned his CDT in crown and bridge, helped develop the...
NewsWatch: Datron Dynamics Partners With Exocad, Imetric and Sescoi to Provide Turnkey CAD/CAM Solution
Open system providers Datron Dynamics, exocad, Imetric and Sescoi have formed a partnership to provide a comprehensive, turnkey CAD/CAM solution, including the Imetric scanner line, exocad design software, WorkNC® CAM software and the Datron D5 milling machine. The solution can be used for all C&B restorations but, because of its precision,...
- June 2012
Jeff Walker, London Bridge Dental Lab, Amity, OR
Years in industry: 9
Lab opened: 2010
As a television news photographer, Jeff Walker had an exciting career covering the happenings across his state and even traveling on assignment to areas of conflict, like Kuwait and Bosnia. At first, he loved the adventure and creativity of his job and the satisfaction of telling a story through his pictures. However, after more than 10 years in the field and winning numerous awards for his work, Walker made the life-changing decision to leave it behind.
"During my career, things in TV news changed...
Eric Redd, Bedrock Ceramic Studio, Summerville, SC
Years in industry: 21
Lab opened: 2007
A small lab owner is required to wear many hats and, here, Eric Redd illustrates that point — literally. For his laboratory Christmas card, a photographer friend worked magic to show three Redds juggling three tasks at once in his C&B lab. "My clients loved it! One of them even said 'I didn't know you hired other technicians'," says Redd with a laugh. "I guess she needed to take a second look!"
Owner of Summerville, South Carolina's Bedrock Ceramic Studio — named after the cartoon...
From financial benefits to more family time, home-based laboratory owners are singing the praises of not having a commute.
"Very satisfied" is how three-quarters of home-based lab owners feel about their decision to work from home, according to LMT's Small Lab Survey. The financial benefits include lower overhead, no commuting costs and tax advantages. But more importantly for many respondents is the enhanced quality of life: more family time, flexible hours, more relaxed atmosphere and the ability to balance work/home demands more easily.
"I have been a working mother who was always home...
- May 2012
Eleven years after purchasing and successfully operating Choate Ceramic Laboratory in Conroe, TX, the Co-Owners Jimmy Durham, David Fitch, CDT, and Alton Trotter, CDT, moved out of their ceramic comfort zone and added a removable department in January 2010.
They knew the demand for removable prosthetics was growing and saw going full service as a way to keep the 19-person laboratory as profitable as possible. Also, as a result of the economy, new technology, a dramatic increase in precious alloy prices and overseas competition, they projected their C&B workload would decrease and that...
- April 2012
The Harvest Dental Laboratory Products' exhibit table was hopping all weekend thanks to an impressive lineup of master ceramists. Jungo Endo, RDT; Thomas Singh, MDT; Peter Pizzi, MDT; Nondas Vlachopoulos, CDT; Joshua Polansky, MDT; and Richard Pavlak, MDT, gave hands-on demonstrations of the company's newest products, including two launched...
The CAD/CAM software, equipment and materials market continues to flourish and several new players were first-time exhibitors at LAB DAY, including:
Creo Dental System launched the Arum5X Milling Machine. This five-axis wet milling unit is compatible with any scanner and features a nine-unit revolving dispenser, a tool breakage sensor and...
Nearly 100 attendees participated in Star Refining's pedometer promotion at LAB DAY. When attendees stopped by the company's table, they had the opportunity to receive a pedometer and register to compete in a contest to see who walked the farthest during the two-day show. The winner is Pamela Simerman, CDT, Crown and Bridge Manager, Image...
- February 2012
Sixty-year industry veteran Harry Carlisle considers himself extra lucky for stumbling upon on a career in dental technology.
Harry Carlisle joined the Navy in 1952, at age 17, during the Korean War. He wanted to join a construction battalion but was told it would be difficult to get in so, instead, he chose dental technology school. He was sent to Parris Island Marine Base in South Carolina followed by the prosthetics school at the U.S. Navy Training Center, Bainbridge, in Maryland.
After leaving the military, Carlisle found a mentor and friend in Lab Owner Nelson Ingersoll. Carlisle credits...
- January 2012
Valplast enters the CAD/CAM market. 3M ESPE delves into a new material category. Three more manufacturers enter the milling center arena. These are just a few of the highlights from the DLOAC's CAD/CAM Technology Symposium & Expo in November in Pasadena, CA.
While digital technology has been a boon to the C&B market in the past decade, its application to removable labs has been much more limited. One of the latest developments* in the removable arena is Valplast International Corp.'s Precise-Fit™, a system for producing a digitally designed trial baseplate...
Read More 6 minute read
- September 2011
Part 1 Introduction
Not a month goes by where one or more dental technology publications write about the state of education or more precisely the decline or inadequacy of our educational system. Historically, dental laboratory technology education has been, for the most part, over-the-shoulder apprentice type of training. As we now know, the development of dentistry has evolved in a non-systematic path since before recorded history. Those who have been in the profession for over 30 years remember the "good old days" where education, training and development were kept secret and not readily shared...
Read More 22 minute read
- April 2011
Technology in our industry is advancing at warp speed, and a new generation of tech-savvy technicians is embracing the change. Unlike baby boomer lab owners to whom the digital movement isn't second nature, these technicians grew up in the digital age where computers are a way of life. They're excited about how new technologies are changing the process—making fabrication faster, and the results more precise and esthetic—and reshaping the role of the technician.
Here, members of this new e-generation—all of whom are second generation technicians—share how they think...
In 1998, Prowest Dental Laboratory was growing, but like most laboratory owners, Chang Kim was faced with the challenge of finding skilled technicians to do the work.
Instead of simply lamenting the problem, he took a proactive approach to increasing the pool of qualified technicians in his region: he started the Prowest Dental Training Institute, a one-year program that has since graduated 22 students from Canada, the United States and Korea.
The program's philosophy is to train students to be able to handle real-world cases without additional training as soon as they finish the program....
Average wages nationwide, 2008 vs. 2006
Average wages by region (crown and bridge)
Average wages by region (model and die, removables and orthodontics)
Benefits offered by laboratory size
How laboratories pay
Laboratory training strategies
Dental technicians' wages have increased only 3% overall during the last two years, according to a comparison of LMT's 2008 and 2006 Wage Surveys. Here's what the data tells us:
1. New technicians see the most growth. The wages for entry level technicians—those with less than one year of experience—have increased...
Read More 5 minute read
Tapping into the marketing opportunities of the internet, almost 40% of laboratory owners now have websites for their businesses. While not everyone sees their sites as a new-business generator, many owners are taking a "build it and they will come" approach and viewing their sites as an important complement to their total marketing package and an effective way to expand their marketing outreach.
"Currently my website is under-utilized by my clients, but I feel as my lab grows it will benefit potential clients. My site has online prescription forms, along with information on the types...
Read More 4 minute read
CAD/CAM in the Lab: Up 40% in Five Years)
Types of Restorations Sent Offshore
The Global Marketplace: Offshore Outsourcing
Average Number of Clients by Lab Size
Top Sources of Continuing Education
Breakdown of the Average Client Base
Laboratory Service Across the Board
C&B Caseloads: Metal-Based vs. Metal-Free
How's Business in 2009 Compared to 2008?
Continuing Education: Attending Courses with Dentist-Clients
CLOSE UP: Restorative Options
Average Breakdown of Metal-Free Caseloads/Average Breakdown of Metal-Based Caseloads
A 30 Year Look at Lab Marketing Strategies
Read More 11 minute read
Profit is the driving force behind any business. It isn't just what is left over at the end of the month or the end of the year; profit is something for which you must plan. "If you aren't making a profit or don't know where you stand, there is no satisfaction in running a business. That's when laboratory owners tend to get resentful about the industry," says Dennis Carreon, CDT, owner, Naturalistic Ceramics, a five-person laboratory in Long Beach, CA.
Many lab owners pay all their bills and then consider what's left as profit. This is not a systematic approach. "Every laboratory owner should...
Read More 8 minute read
Dan O'Rourke was chugging along with his successful, 20-year-old lab in Dublin, New Hampshire and attending advanced education programs to continually enhance his craft. Then, in 2004, a dentist made a suggestion that changed the course of his business and reignited his passion for dental technology.
The suggestion? Bioesthetic dentistry. This approach to treatment considers not only a patient's teeth, but his jaw joints and head and neck muscles, and maintains that problems—such as TMJ pain, chronic headaches or damage to teeth—occur when these components aren't working in biological...