Welcome to The BRIDGE, an online network from LMT dedicated exclusively for members of the Dental Laboratory community.
- Craig Robertson
- Andrew Brandstetter
- Rebecca Winemiller
- Yong Kim
- D S Williams
- Christian Lalario
- Bob Fox
- David De Wet, RDT
- Lab Ho
- Eric Kim
- James Bradshaw, CDT
- Leonidas (Leo) Olivares
- Pamela Santillo, CDT
- Armen Zohrabian
- Fatbardh Vokrri, CDT
- Amr Sabry
- Janet Andersen
- Hae Ri Kim
- Shabab Rahman
- Arquimedes Santana
- Heba Elrakhawy
At LMT's LAB DAY 2012--the largest international gathering of the dental laboratory community in North America--about 1,140 manufacturer and supplier representatives greeted over 3,100 attendees from 47...See more states and 49 countries. LAB DAY has become the place for product launches and breaking news. On the following pages, LMT Editors bring you the full scoop straight from the show floor and various industry events around Chicago. But first, here's an overview of the hot topics that inspired dialogue and debate during our profession's biggest weekend of the year: BUSINESS GETTING BETTER. If the mood among laboratory owners and managers could be summed up in two words, it would be "cautiously optimistic." Some, encouraged by a recent upswing in business--however slight--were hopeful we had turned an economic corner. In fact, during live polling at a Vident/Nobel Biocare panel discussion, 73% of attendees expected sales to be "up markedly" or "up slightly" in 2012: there's the optimism. For the "cautious" part of the equation, laboratory owners are wary of rising gas and metal prices, as well as how the economy will respond to this election year. DIGITAL DENTISTRY DOMINATES. This year, nearly one third of Lab Day exhibits and more than 50 clinics were dedicated to digital dentistry, including scanners, milling machines, software, rapid prototyping systems, wax printers and services. Laboratory owners relished the chance to hear about new capabilities, meet new players in the market and research just-right solutions for staying on top of this trend. In addition to the opportunity to use new materials, the need to increase efficiency continues to be the driving force behind the digital trend; in fact, some laboratory owners say the more they can automate, the better. "Over the next several years, we will probably see a shift in many of our manufacturing processes to automated processes," said Richard Harrell, Vice President, Dental Services Group, at the Vident/Nobel Biocare program. "We need a solution to the evolving shortage of skilled technicians--which I promise you will continue to become more pronounced as experienced technicians age out of the workforce." FULL CONTOUR AT FULL SPEED. "Full Z" was discussed at nearly every major event in Chicago, from Lab Day clinics to Jensen Education Day and Cal-Lab's Annual Meeting. "Full contour is growing at a faster rate than any other product in dentistry," Don Cornell told attendees at Jensen's program. He pointed out that it appeals to dentists because it's a low-cost solution patients are looking for; plus, it's relatively "bullet proof," the esthetics are sufficient for posteriors, and the digital process ensures better fits and fewer remakes. REMOVABLES ROCK. Are removables more recession-proof than fixed? That idea has found plenty of supporters over the last few years and the word in Chicago was no different: removables are the go-to treatment for many patients in this price-pressured market. One LAB DAY attendee told LMT, "I've owned a denture-only lab for over six years and gross sales have grown every year so far. Luckily, the recession hasn't impacted me," said David Reed, Cirrus Prosthetics, Shawnee, KS. Growth also continues to be driven by both demographics and the popularity of implants. "For the next 20 years, 10,000 people will reach the age of 65 on a daily basis," said Max Sturm, President of Candulor, during a press conference at LAB DAY. "In addition, 12% of all dentures are now implant supported and we expect to see 6.5% growth in this area next year." More good news for this specialty: digital solutions continue to come its way, like the new 3Shape Dental System™ 2013 software--which allows users to digitally design, print or mill gingiva, and then place traditional denture teeth--and Valplast's Precise-Fit™ for digitally designed trial baseplates. IMPLANTS ARE UBIQUITOUS. Because they have become the standard of care in many cases, implants are holding their own in this market too. "Even in uncertain times, implants remain a growth area," Chris Clark, Dentsply's President and COO, told members of the Cal-Lab Group. Clark pointed out that, historically, even just a slight improvement in unemployment rates has coincided with noted growth in implants. Especially strong areas include custom abutments--nearly three-quarters of laboratories now offer this service--and small-diameter implants, which Dr. Gordon Christensen reported (at the Lab Summit) to be "booming." GET OVER OVERSPECIALIZING. Another common theme in Chicago was diversification; presenters at several different programs warned laboratories of the danger of having too narrow a focus when it comes to product offerings. "There was a time when we could be very specific about the types of products we wanted to specialize in, but I'm not sure in this economic environment we can afford to be that selective," said Cornell. That sentiment was echoed at the Vident/Nobel Biocare program, where panelists advised attendees to look for alternative revenue streams. "Within your market, there are alternative markets you can serve--there's an awful lot you don't do that someone else does," said Harrell. "This may require that you outsource the product, but outsourcing can be the solution to capture more of the available dollars."
Zhermack's New Dune EcoTech Micro-Sandblasting System Reduces Sand Consumption Lab Day attendees got the first look at Zhermack's new Dune EcoTech Micro-Sandblasting System. The unit's flow shut-off...See more valves and calibrated nozzles immediately interrupt sand flow when the pedal is released, allowing for controlled sand dosage and a dramatic reduction in sand consumption. The sand recirculating function reprocesses the abrasive materials for roughening procedures and lining removals, so the majority of the remaining sand is recycled and reused, resulting in minimum waste. A double connection that's effective from either side of the machine ensures maximum suction performance and operator safety. Equipped with a built-in reserve air tank, EcoTech also has a durable, large-capacity plastic chamber (over 25 liters); ergonomically designed handles and nozzles; and powerful, adjustable LED lighting for visibility. It is available in either a two- or three-tank design and carries a two-year warranty. For details, call 877-819-6206 or visit www.zhermackusa.com.
Vident's VITA® Zyrcomat Can Sinter in 80 Minutes Vident launches its new VITA Zyrcomat 6000 MS sintering furnace which is capable of sintering up to 25 units as well as nine-unit bridges in 80 minutes...See more starting from room temperature. The furnace has been rigorously tested and proven to provide stress-free, gentle cooling to 400°C for white and industrially pre-colored VITA YZ materials. Conventional firing processes are also pre-programmed and the Zyrcomat can handle high-temperature sintering for all framework materials. For details, call 800-828-3839 or visit www.vident.com.
Amann Girrbach offers the new Ceramill Motion 2 milling machine during the company's LAB DAY program The compact hybrid CNC machine combines five-axis milling and grinding technology in both wet and...See more dry applications so laboratories can now dry mill zirconia and wax and wet mill PMMA, temporary materials and composites in-house, as well as wet-grind glass ceramics. The wet grinding option also makes the Ceramill Motion 2 ideal for chairside applications for dental office laboratories. If you missed its debut at LAB DAY, register for a demonstration in your area: visit www.ceramilldemodays.com or call Amann Girrbach at 800-851-3719.
LMT Communications, Inc. · Expo · 1 show
LMT LAB DAY Chicago is the largest international gathering of the dental laboratory community in North America. What began in 1985 with just 31 exhibitors and about 400 attendees has quickly grown to over...See more 200 exhibitors, over 3000 attendees and two days of clinics.
LMT Communications, Inc. · Expo · 1 show
Since its debut in 2000, LAB DAY EAST has become the must-attend event on the East Coast. Held annually in the heart of New York City, LAB DAY EAST has captured the attention of eager audiences who appreciate...See more the central location, educational clinics and busy exhibit hall.
LMT Communications, Inc. · Expo · 1 show
Second only to LAB DAY Chicago, LAB DAY West is the largest laboratory trade show on the west coast. Crowded with busy shoppers and buzzing with industry news and education, LAB DAY West embodies the good...See more vibrations for which Southern California is famous.