How To Explore Four Metal Rapid Prototyping Methods
A prototype resembles a sample made to confirm a new project. We validate the design in the early processing stage. At Creatingway, we use metal prototyping in the making of:
- Medical devices
The prototyping process deals with the basis of evaluation and finalization of a new concept.
What is a Metal Rapid Prototyping?
A metal prototype is a sample of a new model or product. By making such, designers and manufacturers can formulate ideas. Later, we then use the prototype in the product development for testing purposes.
The methods we use can make up a metal prototype. Such strategies include 3D printing, casting, CNC machining, and sheet metal prototyping. Also, we make the prototypes from different materials such as:
- Carbon steel
- Sheet metal
The Application and Function of Metal Prototypes
- Construction industries can build models of bridges or new buildings. If it’s in the automotive field, car or trucks samples are built. Further, we can use liquid metal to create test models in the manufacturing process. Such prototypes may include new fasteners, tools, electronic devices, and household items.
- Manufacturers also use the prototyping process in refining and testing new tools. This test is essential before settling for a full-scale fabrication and manufacturing process. Additionally, a metal prototype has many forms depending on the designers’ wants.
- Some prototypes function the same as the proposed object. In such a case, it helps the designer know the strength and weaknesses. Metal prototypes do offer benefits to designers and manufacturers. Such benefits may include testing designs and understanding the potential of a product.
Why Choose Making Metal Prototypes?
Some metals carry unique properties in them necessary for durability. Such a trait improves the lifespan of the prototype, making it essential. Titanium, aluminum, stainless steel, and magnesium alloys are great examples of durable metals. Metals are better off than plastics if the prototypes get exposed to extreme conditions. Such conditions may involve intense heat, wind, or cold.
Plastic counterparts are likely to wear out and be replaced soon. As for metals, the case may be different. Their structures are strong. Thus, metals are more durable in any extreme condition. Hence, making metals more cost-effective than plastics.
Reliable Metallic Surface
For a better surface finish, the metal sample is the way to go. We can achieve a metallic, smooth, brighter surface finish for your product. Also, metal prototypes are corrosion-resistant if anodized appropriately. The extra layer is nonreactive to the air.
The design structure in metals makes it flexible to any design. Such a distinction makes it applicable for functional and aesthetic purposes.
What are The Four Methods of Metal Prototyping?
CNC Machining Metal prototypes
CNC machining is a computerized process applying software programs aiding production movement. Materials best suited for CNC machining are different kinds of alloy:
CNC machines have a unique way of working. Some can only work on X and Y planes. Others work on three-dimensional planes of X, Y, and Z.
3D Printing Metal Prototypes
Additive manufacturing is also known as metal 3D printing. The method creates physical models by printing layers of adhesive materials. Depending on the aim, layers may be in metal or plastic powder form. Then, we use digital model files during the entire process. The importance of 3D printing is:
- To reduce the weight of a product.
- To increase the complexity of one-off pieces in a short life cycle.
Metal Casting Prototypes
Metal casting involves the formation of rigid metal cast parts. A mold gets filled with molten metal and left to cool. Upon cooling, we remove the metal part from the mold. The final product usually resembles the mold.
An investment casting is an expensive way of manufacturing volumes with complex designs and shapes. In terms of size and weight, metal casting isn’t limited to either. Thus, metal casting is appropriate for the mass production of prototypes.
Sheet Metal Prototypes
A sheet metal sample is usually thin in standard thickness. We first place the sheet is on a desk. Then a laser cuts it into the desired pattern during the process. Lastly, the various forming processes shape the sheet. However, this factor depends on the specific wants. Such processes include:
From sheet metal prototypes, we obtain quality end products. Such a trait arises from its quick turn-around time.
Key Considerations for Metal Prototyping
When prototyping a metal, it is important to consider two properties. Such properties are mechanical and physical aspects. The strength of metals varies in their kind.
The ability to cut and shape metals using machine tools is known as machinability. Besides, such a trait makes metals to be easily formed into the desired state.
To produce a metal prototype, we use a special tool. The tooling may be expensive, making one consider its expenses.
In conclusion, in the product development process, metal prototypes are important. Such a move enables Creatingway to test your design and make considerable changes. Also, we offer advice that helps you in saving money and time. Therefore, choose Creatingway while dealing with various types of prototypes.
Creatingway concentrates on CNC machining manufacturing, prototype machining, low-volume manufacturing, metal fabrication, and parts finishing services, providing you with the best support and services. ask us one inquire now.
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