Real Time ROI: Whip Mix's Denar Mark 300 series articulators

July 12, 2012

The lab Located in Lakeland, Fla., Al Fillastre and his team at Ceram-O-Arts started providing laboratory work for selected high quality dentists in 1981. Al learned the craft from his father, Dr. Alvin Fillastre, a dentist, and his mother Helga, a gifted lab technician. With an emphasis on high quality, attention to detail is evident in everything they do to deliver the best restorative dentistry possible.

The lab

Located in Lakeland, Fla., Al Fillastre and his team at Ceram-O-Arts started providing laboratory work for selected high quality dentists in 1981. Al learned the craft from his father, Dr. Alvin Fillastre, a dentist, and his mother Helga, a gifted lab technician. With an emphasis on high quality, attention to detail is evident in everything they do to deliver the best restorative dentistry possible.

The product

The Denar Mark 320 Articulator is a semi-adjustable articulator with progressive sideshift fixed at 15° and an adjustable condylar inclination (0° to 60°). The three point magnetic system ensures stability of cases and makes it interchangeable with any Mark 300 Series Articulator as it is accurate to within 20 microns.

Check out this interview with Allie Smith from Whip Mix Corp. about the new Denar 300 Series articulators:

The results

Over the years, the staff at Ceram-O-Arts have used numerous articulators, and until now a variety of models simultaneously to handle the different types of cases coming in. Nothing really got their attention and provided exactly what they were looking for in all respects until they went with the Denar 300 series from Whip Mix.

The 320 model provides great versatility because the articulators are designed to allow model transfer from one to another with accuracy to within 20 microns.

“For the first time we can have a situation where we have one articulator for one technician,” Fillastre said. “So now we have six articulators for the laboratory and all that moves from bench to bench is just the models on the mounting rings.”

The techs can transfer the occlusion, as well as all the other guides including customized guide tables that transfer by virtue of the accuracy of the fit of the incisal pin.

“It also cuts down on having to mail the articulators. As long as the doctor has one, they can test the cases on it,” Fillastre said.

But while the accuracy is key, Fillastre’s staff loves the visibility provided by the Mark 320 along with other useful design features.

“It is nicely open from behind making visualizing of the lingual on full arch cases very easy, which really helps designing the lingual contours and occlusion,” he said.

The design also lends itself well to observing and analyzing anterior cases. The articulator has elbows that lean back at about a 45° angle allowing a technician to step back and look at a case, Fillastre added.

“It really helps in analyzing midline, incisal plane, angulations, etc.,” he said.

When taking pictures of a case, the articulator holds itself in a nice position, and Fillastre added that features such as the mounting platform, the flex track and verification gauges really set this articulator apart from competitors.

“It has a ‘leg’ so to speak on the top bow that you can lift up so when you lay it back the upper is supported. This is really convenient when adjusting lower occlusion,” he said. “It helps us in our productivity for not having the articulator fall all the way back and slam on the table top. In the past we have actually had them break cases doing that. Additionally, it’s got a super strong magnet system. We never have cases that don’t attach well to the articulator.

“The one feature that impressed me the most, however, is the totally unique centric lock system. It is lever operated and is the quickest, most accurate and stable system I have ever seen to lock and unlock centric. This saves so much time when manipulating cases that this feature alone would have swayed me to purchase this articulator.”

The articulator has an accessory called the Denar® Universal Occlusal Stand that takes the anatomically average position of the maxilla, and allows models to be mounted from cases where no facebow was provided to the lab, expanding the number of cases the Mark 320 can be used for reliably.

“That gives us a lot better results in the mouth,” Fillastre said. “As a result of this, the occlusion is better, the function is better and the doctors adjust less.”
There is also a FlexTrack accessory that converts the articulator from open to closed condyle making a tech’s job a lot easier, faster, and more accurate when making guide tables and also when adjusting excursive movements.

“It gives a lot of options to technicians so they can work in a manner that suits their style,” Fillastre said. “It gives you the option of being able to work with it however you want, and I don’t know of another articulator that does that. It’s kind of unique.

“The dimensions are the same on all three models so a case mounted on one is interchangeable between any other model-Mark 310, 320 or 330. So if one technician has a 320 and the other a 330 they’re still interchangeable. If your dentist mounts a case on his Mark 310, but you use a 320 for adjustable condylar guidance, for example, no problem,” Fillastre said.

“They’re also built like the proverbial brick house. We’ve been using these things going on a little over 3 years now, and they have all stayed in calibration.”
Fillastre, who shares his expertise on articulators with webinars, including a two-part series on the Whip Mix website, is a big fan of the Mark 320 because of the versatility, reliability and accuracy.

“It’s just a super nice system. We love this articulator,” he said.