Concept or Designed
Whether your project is ‘all in your head’ or fully detailed on paper we will be able to understand and add value. You will be able to see your thoughts or sketches take shape as the ‘Two Dimensional’ world meets the Third. Your designer will create ‘Three Dimensional’ components or assemblies of components allowing you the ability to move, rotate, zoom, section and measure your components in 3D space.
As with all elements of the manufacturing process communication is key, we work closely with the client showing ‘real time’ progress using free to download 3D viewer software this allows the client to oversee all work as it happens. Parts are shown with textures and colours applied giving a realistic appearance to your components on your computer in the office or at home.
Working with all industries including automotive, farming, domestic appliances, lighting, nuclear and petrochemicals our designers have a vast wealth of experience which they draw upon to build flesh to the bones of your ideas and concepts.
Once complete 3D files such as IGES, STEP and Parasolid can be used to create solid model prototypes, tool designs, cutter paths for tooling, detailed drawings used for consistency in manufacture and quality control. The 3D file gives the toolmaker our ‘exact requirement’ meaning they can manufacture tooling without error. Errors are usually associated with 2D drawings due to the potential for interpretation of a drawing, if the interpretation is wrong the parts produced from the tooling may not fit together correctly or display a cosmetic appearance not in keeping with the design. Our 3D files speak directly to the CNC machine that cuts the tool, 3D keeps all values set, if it’s there in the 3D it’s there in the tool if it’s not in the 3D it’s not in the tool. With 3D comes automation allowing a significant amount of manual labour to be removed from the toolmaking process.
Well worth it
Your designer will save you money by designing each component to do as much as possible, why use five components where three can do the same job better! Efficient design will considerably reduce tooling costs and often a designer can save the client far more than the design cost at the tooling stage.
There are many options when it comes to prototyping we provide the following services with two day turn around:-
SLS-Selective Laser Sintering
This process uses a powder which is selectively sintered (heated and bonded) by a laser. The 3D file is sectioned by the computer to give layers, the powder is then subjected to laser played over its surface in the profile of this sectioned layer. The process is repeated to build the part layer by layer at a 0.1mm thickness.
This process uses a liquid cured by ultraviolet light. The 3D file is sectioned by the computer to give layers, the liquid is then subjected to UV light played over its surface in the profile of this sectioned layer. The process is repeated to build the part layer by layer. This process has a 0.1mm accuracy.
FDM-Fused Deposition Modelling
A small injection nozzle driven by CNC (Computer Numerically Controlled) deposits material. The 3D file is sectioned by the computer to give layers, the nozzle is then guided by the profile of this sectioned layer to deposit material to build that layer. The process is repeated to build the part layer by layer. This process has a 0.127mm – 0.254mm accuracy.
DIMM-Design Intent Material Machining
This process uses the design intent material in a solid block format, a CNC milling machine will then cut away the unwanted material to create the finished part. The component will then perform just as the injection moulded component would do in relation to its mechanical properties.
Using any of the above processes will give you a solid model good enough to use as a master to make a silicone mould from. This silicone tool can be used to make between 10 and 20 functional parts.
The specifics of your project will determine which process is best suited, our project manager will outline your options at this prototype stage.