Top 10 things you need to know to get great rapid prototyping.
- All parts are sprayed with a sealer to assist in finishing and adding strength to the part.
- All surfaces will show the layers of the build and a light sanding with 320 grit papers would remove most lines. There are several ways to finish the part after sanding; painting is the referred in most cases.
- Although we cannot print multiple colours in one piece, each component can be printed in a colour of your choice.
- If the part does not need to be solid through and through, make the part hollow to use less material and less build time.
- When you are designing your part, remember that pockets and angled walls require added support which costs more time and money.
- Make sure there is enough material around your holes to sustain fasteners.
- Check that you have made your holes drill size so they can be tapped.
- Make sure your walls are at least 0.02 thick.
- Optimize your CAD data for the best settings for the STL file. This prevents flats on spherical surfaces. In Solidworks the deviation tolerance is 0.4 and Angle tolerance is 7.75. - Make an STL file.
- Make sure you have a 3D CAD part in solid and that all surfaces are complete.
Colourful RAPID PROTOTYPES in ABS, ABSplus, Urethane Rubber, and Silicone Rubber:
Our 3D printer offers the new stronger ABSplus material. This material is used to make real working parts in runs up to 1000 without the need for tooling or moulds. This is called "MICRO MACHINING" or "Direct Digital Manufacturing".
Rapid Prototyping is now being used in industries such as aerospace, automotive, consumer products, electronics, toys, power tools, industrial goods, durable goods, the medical and dental fields, architecture, and jewelry.
Whether creating or modifying an existing product, we can greatly reduce your research and development time as well as money spent on other prototyping methods.
An Explanation of FUSED DEPOSITION MODELING (FDM)
- Create real parts or prototypes inexpensively without tooling
- Check for fit and function (tap, drill, assemble, snap fit)
- Rapidly produce one or multiple versions with precision & accuracy during any stage of product development ( Think hours not weeks.)
- Discover potential design and manufacturing errors in the earliest stages of development which may not be apparent on paper or on the computer screen
- Easily correct mistakes and incorporate changes throughout the evolution of the product
- Display 3-D models for initial sales presentations or tradeshow initiatives prior to market place entry
- Increase manufacturing speed & efficiency with accurate ABS and ABS PLUS prototypes
- Quickly and inexpensively test for correct durometers (strengths) and fit with rapid prototyped urethane and silicone rubber parts in your assemblies
- Urethane and Silicone Rubber is available in different durometers (from 10 to 90) and endless colours. The durometer functions by analyzing a given substance, and then assigning it a number to denote the level of harness and durability. A lower number would indicate a softer nature for the substance, while a higher number would indicate the product is harder and less susceptible to bending or cracking.
- Fabrication and assembly tools include jigs and fixtures.
- Create tooling for the molding, casting or forming of products
- Using direct digital manufacturing reduces fixture production costs by up to 65 % resulting in substantial savings.
The FDM process forms three-dimensional plastic models and objects from CAD generated 3D solid or 3D surface models. These files are saved as STL files.
The 3-D drawing is then 'sliced' by custom software into horizontal layers .010" thick. Support is automatically or custom generated based on the position and geometry of the part. Tool-paths are then created; path data is reviewed, changed if necessary and then downloaded to the FDM machine.
A temperature-controlled head extrudes ABS plastic or ABSplus with soluble support material, layer by layer. It draws the prototype one layer at a time, similar to how a hot glue gun extrudes melted beads of glue. The designed object emerges as a solid three-dimensional part without the need for tooling. The soluble support, which dissolves away in the cleaning machine, enables the object to have fine detail and working mechanisms molded into the prototype.
NOTE: We work with the most popular formats in the industy such us : IGES, SAT, DXF, STEP, PAR, STL