PVA Med, formerly Create Orthotics & Prosthetics, is a division of Cohoes-based Precision Valve & Automation (PVA). It manufactures and sells an integrated printing solution featuring hardware, software, and support that allows O&P clinics to 3D print custom check sockets and other prosthetic devices more cost-efficiently.
Create O&P needed support to address some design challenges that were resulting in significant downtimes for their 3D printers, which were housed at individual practitioners’ offices. The company also wanted to find a contract manufacturer in New York State, after having quality control issues with manufacturers in China and California.
The Shipley Center for Innovation at Clarkson University, which had been working with Create O&P since a meeting at a Point Positive angel investors pitch event, applied for a 2018 FuzeHub Manufacturing Grant and received $49,200. The funding enabled Create O&P’s engineers and students in the machine shop at Clarkson to work together to redesign the printer, which later became known as the Create 6000. Although the agreement originally called for the development of two smaller units as well, customer feedback made it clear that the larger 6000 was in much higher demand. Resources shifted to the 6000, resulting in the development of a demonstration model designed and manufactured in New York by PVA.
Having a demonstration model to take to trade shows and other events helped Create O&P increase sales and improve profitability. The arrangement with PVA also brought the manufacturing of the printer to New York, creating jobs and enabling Create O&P to have a higher level of control over the quality of the product. It also led to PVA acquiring Create O&P in October of 2019.
“The success of this project goes to the core of FuzeHub’s mission to support NYS manufacturing. Not only did this project facilitate the redesign of Create O&P’s flagship product, but it also helped to increase their profit margins and, most importantly, it brought manufacturing jobs to New York State that had previously been housed in China and California.”
– Jamey Hoose, Clarkson University Shipley Center for Innovation