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Precision Rapid Prototyping and Production for
Plastics, Urethanes and Metals

Precision Rapid Prototyping and Production for Plastics, Urethanes and Metals

Precision Rapid Prototyping 
and Production for Plastics, 
Urethanes and Metals

The Importance of Product Prototyping 

On August 30, 2021 | By APM
The Importance of Product Prototyping 

In the world of manufacturing, prototypes are commonly used in both the design and development of physical objects, particularly when large system building construction or manufacturing is involved. Advanced Prototype Molding has over 40 years of experience in building reliable, high-quality prototypes. Here, we will discuss the importance of product prototyping as well as its processes, materials, and benefits. 

What is Product Prototyping?

Prototyping is a process in which a sample product is created that can then be tested in a “real world” environment similar to the one the final product will be used in. It gives you a chance to test quality and identify issues in a relatively low-stakes environment before mass production begins. A prototype serves as a "throwaway" model that is made to understand the requirements of a project prior to the design and coding phases.

Rapid prototyping is an accelerated version of prototyping that employs both 3D CAD software and 3D printing technology. With a rapid prototype, customized products no longer need to be created from scratch - thus improving product development significantly.

For projects that require revision and end-user feedback, prototyping is a must. It's far easier and less expensive to implement significant changes on a prototype than it is once a product has entered full-scale production. By creating a prototype, you can actually physically interact with a proposed product and see which elements of it are working and, more importantly, which ones need refining.

Prototype Manufacturing Processes & Materials

There are various prototype manufacturing processes to choose from depending on your needs. These include:

  • Stereolithography (SLA). This rapid prototyping process involves the use of a stereolithograph, which is a unique 3D printing machine that uses a computer-controlled laser beam to convert liquid plastic into solid objects based on aCAD file.
  • Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS). DMLS is a type of 3D printing or metal additive manufacturing process that can build completely functional metal prototypes in 7 days or less. It is compatible with a range of metals to suit various application requirements.
  • Selective Laser Sintering (SLS). SLS is similar to DMLS but uses plastic materials rather than metal. It relies on a computer-controlled CO2 laser to fuse micron-sized particles of plastic material one layer at time.
  • Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM). FDM is the most common type of 3D printing. The process uses thermoplastic filaments that have been heated to their melting point and then extruded one layer at a time to create a 3D object.
  • PolyJet Printing. This 3D printing method jets thousands of photopolymer droplets onto the building platform and cures them with UV light. This method can produce thin walls with complex geometries and is compatible with a wide range of materials. 

At Advanced Prototype Molding, we offer these product prototyping methods with a wide range of material options, including:

Plastics:

  • ABS
  • PC
  • ABS and PC blend
  • HDPE
  • PP
  • Nylon (Polyamide)

Rubber:

  • Urethane
  • Elastomeric (Shore A)
  • Rigid (Shore D)
  • Liquid Silicone Rubber (LSR)

Metals:

  • Steel
  • Bronze
  • Aluminum

Misc:

  • Expanding Foam
  • Epoxy

Advanced Prototype Molding can help you select the best prototyping method and materials for your specific application.

Benefits of Prototype Manufacturing

Prototype manufacturing brings with it a wide range of benefits. One of its main advantages is its ability to reduce time and costs. Prototyping allows you to address small problems now before they have a chance to become much bigger ones later on in the manufacturing process, thus increasing the speed at which you're able to get your products to market.

Not only that, but the prototyping process allows you to better test product features, manufacturing methods, user experiences, and more before you enter full-scale production. Product prototyping also leads to better visualization of the final product as well as improved and increased user involvement.

Product Prototyping Services at Advanced Prototype Molding

Product prototyping offers a host of advantages that make it an extremely important manufacturing process for various industries. By being able to test and visualize the product, you can make the necessary adjustments and improvements before final production, saving both time and money. 

At Advanced Prototype Molding, we offer a broad selection of rapid prototyping and 3D printing services for various industries, including:

  • Aerospace & Defense
  • Automotive
  • Consumer Goods & Electronics
  • Manufacturing & Construction
  • Medical and Dental
  • Oil and Gas
  • Transportation

If you'd like to find out more information about the benefits of product prototyping, or for more information about our services, please contact Advanced Prototype Molding today. You can also fill out a request for quote to get started on your next rapid prototyping project.

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Fax: 847-202-4270
sales@advancedprototype.com

Certified Logo with ACG

ADVANCED PROTOTYPE MOLDING
263 North Woodwork Lane, Palatine (Chicago), IL 60067
Tel: 847-202-4200
Fax: 847-202-4270
sales@advancedprototype.com

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