Every now and then something comes along to add spice and extra-rich texture to the make-up of our community and that kind of energy is both welcome and contagious. If you’re familiar with the group that calls itself DTG, the Dental Technicians Guild, you know what I mean. It has an edgy cool that exudes energy and also draws it in. Its goal is to celebrate a passion for restorations that mimic natural dentition in both form and function.
Social media plays a large role in keeping members of the group active and engaged 24/7. DTG members share photos of their work on the Guild’s members-only...
A successful model-free process requires a reliable material, a highly skilled technician, excellent software and an outstanding mill. Here’s Bob Williams’ step-by-step technique for a recent case.
Jeff Smith, CDT, offers a step-by-step look at how to fabricate esthetic, monolithic restorations in a single press sequence with subsequent glazing using Ivoclar Vivadent’s new IPS e.max Press Multi.
LMT taps into the expertise of 20 laboratory owners and managers from all size labs who’ve successfully incorporated digital technology into their operations, offering real-life experiences and tips on what we all wish we would have known before taking the plunge.
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Laboratory Owner Michael Suris has recently started using Strategy Milling©’s services to mill full contour gold crowns and bridges for Dental Professional Labs, Inc. in Merrillville, IN. He offers a step-by-step look at fabricating a milled gold posterior crown.
Once she arrived in Arizona last fall, LMT Publisher Judy Fishman visited Scott Atkin, Owner of Creative Milling Dental Laboratory and CEO of Dental Lab Milling Supplies, LLC, in Scottdale, AZ, just as Bentley, Atkin’s massive Bernese Mountain Dog, was headed out for a walk with one of the staff members. Atkin “struck gold” in 2007 by adding a retail component to his business model to stay ahead of what’s trending and increase his revenue base.
“The focus for labs these days needs to be on creating win-win opportunities for themselves and their clients,” says...
After watching technicians drop one too many crowns and losing productivity, Ceramist Tom Greggs invented Stabiliner, which reduces the risk of slippage of milled restorations during contouring/finishing procedures.
LMT’s 2014 Fee Survey respondents offer a mixed picture of their sales and profitability. On one hand, laboratory sales seem to be slowly improving. Profits, though, seem to be lagging behind.
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A 2014 Fee Survey participant from the Midwest—who prefers to remain anonymous—offers a thoughtful take on how the rampant price competition on full contour zirconia restorations is negatively affecting the bottom line of many laboratories. Here’s what he had to say:
In the early 1980s, the price of gold skyrocketed and non-precious alloy showed up on the scene. Since it was a cheap metal, most labs didn’t even add the cost of the metal into the crown fee. However, they weren’t thinking about the revenue they had been making on gold alloys—or about the...
The challenging aspect of this case was that one of the implants was improperly placed between #7 and #8. Steve Lee explains how he made a screw-retained zirconia framework with pink gingiva tissue to recreate the lost gingiva and then cemented on four single crowns made from IPS e.max to the framework.
Nearly three quarters of respondents to LMT’s exclusive 2014 Wage Survey have taken cost-cutting measures related to personnel in the last two years, citing unpredictable workflows, pricing pressure from dentists and other low-cost labs, and an increase in business costs.
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Tra’ Chambers had no actual laboratory experience when he opened Express Dental Laboratory in Norman, OK in December 2012. Harnessing the efficiency of CAD/CAM technology, the lab touts a two- to three-day turnaround (or same-day for its mobile service) and generated over $300,000 in revenue during its first full year in business. Now, with a staff of seven, the lab serves 118 clients and 45% of its work is completely digital. Here’s more about the lab’s growth strategies:
LMT: What made you decide to open Express Dental Laboratory without any prior laboratory experience?
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“The dental industry is rapidly changing,” said Robert Ganley, CEO of Ivoclar Vivadent, during the company’s Experience Innovation event on Friday night in Chicago. “We believe these changes will point the dental industry in a more digital direction with an emphasis on consistent high-quality materials, processes and results. With collaborative partnership and strong leadership, we can connect to the heartbeat of innovation and see improved efficiencies and growth throughout our profession.”
Highlighting the event was the worldwide launch of the new Wieland Zenotec®...
There were several new companies exhibiting at LAB DAY this year, almost all of them in the digital solutions arena:
3DRPD USA is printing chrome-cobalt partial denture frameworks at its new facility in Rouses Point, NY. The company is working with laboratory customers only; you send an .stl file of a designed framework and the turnaround time starts at three days. For more details, call 855-373-6458, email info@3DRPDUSA.com or visit www.3DRPDUSA.com.
DOF, Inc. (Degree of Freedom) specializes in open architecture CAD/CAM applications for the dental industry. Headquartered in Seoul, Korea,...
Harvest Dental introduced a new polychromatic cross-linked acrylate polymer for producing natural-looking, long-term provisional restorations in the anterior region. Composed of a nano-hybrid composite structure, ZCAD Temp Esthetic is a multi-layered machinable block that harmoniously distributes light, opalescence and fluorescence. For details on the material, call 714-674-7400 or visit www.harvestdental.com.
Argen Digital introduced its High Noble SLM substructures built from their popular Argedent Euro alloy containing 40% Au, 40% Pd and available in up to six units. “We are the only company in the world to offer High Noble, Noble and Non-Precious substructures fabricated with Selective Laser Melting Technology,” said Ashley Skitt, Marketing Manager.
The company also introduced ArgenPMMA Temps available in 16 Classic VITA shades, one bleach shade and five transitional shades. Precision milled from the lab’s supplied .stl file, these full contour temporaries are available in single...
Jensen Dental announced two enhancements to the Preciso Digital Dentistry Solution:
All Preciso configurations with Preciso CAD Software now have the ability to export .stl files.
Using a patent-pending fixture, users of the Preciso M200 mill can easily switch from milling frameworks in the traditional 3M™ ESPE™ Lava™ material form to milling 98-mm pucks. Customers who purchase an M200 Frame Mill—the frame version of the Preciso M200—also have the option to upgrade to a puck fixture at any time.
“As digital dentistry continues to evolve, our goal is to empower...
GC America introduced a new addition to the GC Initial portfolio: GC Initial Zirconia Disks. The disks are cold isostatic pressed for optimized physical properties and available in two types: Standard Translucency (ST) ideal for veneering; and High Translucency (HT) ideal for full contour, monolithic restorations. For more information, call 800-323-3386 or visit www.gcamerica.com.
VITA Suprinity, a zirconia-reinforced lithium silicate ceramic, was displayed for the first time in the U.S. at Vident’s LAB DAY exhibit. The new-generation glass ceramic has a zirconium dioxide content around 10 times that of traditional CAD/CAM glass ceramic in combination with a fine-grained and homogeneous structure. Indicated for anterior and posterior crowns, implant restorations as well as veneers, inlays and onlays, the material will be available in the U.S. later this year for the CEREC/inLab MC XL, Amann Girrbach Ceramill Motion 2 and the KaVo Arctica 2 milling systems. Call 800-828-3839 or visit vident.com.
To help serve a growing population of edentulous patients, Straumann introduced CARES Screw-Retained Bars & Bridges for the Straumann bone-level and mixed tissue-level implant platforms. Homogenous and milled from one block at a Straumann centralized milling facility, the bars and bridges feature a direct connection to the implant; no additional abutment is required. They are available in grade 4 titanium or coron® cobalt-chromium alloy.
The bars can be used for restorations from two to 10 implants and are available for several popular bar styles. The bridges can be used for restorations...
Preat Corp.’s PRISM Design and Printing Center offers a new restorative solution for hybrid and fixed detachable restorations: PRISM’s Angled Access Screw Channels that allow the dental team to move screw access holes up to 24° in any direction. This solution offers flexibility, esthetics and expands restorative options while solving common problems such as buccal access holes and reduced space in the posterior. These screw channels use the Dynamic Screw and Driver system and are compatible with all major implant systems. For more information, call 800-232-7732 or www.preat.com.
Zahn Dental introduced seven new products to its Zirlux line:
Zirlux ST1 is an esthetic, strong, high-translucency zirconia that can be milled for full contour anterior and posterior crowns, bridges, frameworks and inlays; it’s available in multiple sizes and thicknesses.
Zirlux Temp Multi is multi-layered PMMA material for milling esthetic temporary restorations.
Zirlux Temp is a pre-colored PMMA material for milling esthetic temporary crowns and bridges; it’s...