Benchtop Editor: The top 4 dental lab products of 2013

January 13, 2014
Tom Zaleske

Issue 12

When I was asked to submit an Editor’s Choice list for 2013, I wanted to select products or services that not only improved my outcomes, but also warranted mention because of the commitment each company makes to providing excellent service and technical support.

When I was asked to submit an Editor’s Choice list for 2013, I wanted to select products or services that not only improved my outcomes, but also warranted mention because of the commitment each company makes to providing excellent service and technical support.

Fig 1. (at top): Two Preat Prism Design and Manufacturing Center products: laser additive technology with Pearl texture (left); milled CNC technology (right).

My first choice is Preat, a company I have used for more than 27 years for several different services and products. Even after all this time, Preat continues to stay on the leading edge of dental technology and technical support, offering a variety of implant borne attachments, E-Fiber, Perma Mesh E-Glass reinforcement and digital solutions through their Prism design and manufacturing center.

The center offers Selective Laser Melting (additive manufacturing) and the accuracy of 5-axis CNC milling for all of your implant bars, bridges and removable partial denture frameworks.

The service and technical support I have experienced for the last 27 years remains the cornerstone of Preat, and gives me confidence in recommending them as an “Editor’s Choice” to any lab looking for a source that provides digital, or attachment technology products or services.

Fig. 2 Features compliance to the fire codes, creates environmentally friendly work area, and controls wax properties by not overheating. 

My second choice, the Waxlectric II digital waxing unit from Renfert, comes with “must have” ergonomic features like cork handles and a unique heating element design that keep the whole instrument cool to the touch and the temperature consistent.

The anti-kinking cables, three preset temps per handpiece and simple but well-placed holders are icing on the cake. When used with the Waxprofi, their digital temperature controlled waxpot, a consistently maintained bulk of wax at its optimal temperature for wax transfer and base veneering can be expected.

The large pot design allows for melting full sheets of baseplate wax and provides a larger than usual target to remove wax from. Renfert also cinches the deal for me with outstanding technical support provided on their website in the form of downloadable “how-to” manuals and videos.

Fig. 3: I buy 15 minutes every time I box this way over the conventional method. Box 4 impressions, gain an additional hour a day. 

Recommending products doesn’t always involve the most expensive or sophisticated. My next choice is a product that saves 75 percent of my labor time in constructing boxed and beaded models by reducing fabrication time from 20 minutes to 5 minutes.

Dental Creations, a small company near Waco, Texas that produces a variety of specialty products enhancing model work makes my next choice, the Wonderfill system. It consists of the Wonderform, a ring former, and water soluble boxing putty, Wonderfill.

The system is simple, yet extremely efficient in reducing the time to provide a necessary service, producing master models that reflect clinical time to replicate denture borders molded by hand. Like all the choices in this article, it’s a great product backed by service and technical support. I also appreciate the liberal sampling policy Dental Creations provides.

Fig. 4: Optimal flexural strength, color matched shades regardless of curing options, and can be used with subsurface or surface colorization.

The backbone of any dental laboratory producing dentures is the acrylic they use. Outstanding strength, both in flexibility and impact, color stability, several curing options, and a wide range of shades are only a few of the reasons my next “Editor’s Choice” is the GC AmericaNaturecryl family of denture base acrylics.

Naturecryl possesses all of the features I was looking for and a few bonuses. Because polymer technology is ever changing I decided to take a closer look at the curing options other acrylics in the Naturecryl line offer.

Naturecryl MC, the microwave version of this acrylic family, offers huge time savings with the benefit of heat curing. Time hogging fabrications using cold cure or pour resins have been replaced with the MC version.

A three minute “molecular level” cure cycle, low startup cost, no real change in conventional pack pressing technique and shade match to other products in the line, confirms my choice is a sound one. The strength of my recommendation is again fortified by GC America’s well-known level of customer support.