5 Things You Need To Know Before Prototype Making
Prototype making is not just reserved for early in the product development cycle, at the same time, it’s also for better testing and perfecting investments ideas before mass production, thus to optimize products and make them can be brought into the market in advance.
If you’re not building multiple prototypes before mass production, you might will spend more time and costs in the long runs. To help you perfect your design and save on costs, we will share 5 things you need to know before prototype making. By this learn, you will have more information about the prototype making.
Below is several steps from concept, design to prototype making
What’s product concept?
If you have a clearly know for your idea or develop a sales model. In general, this will occurs early in the product development lifecycle, and the purpose to build one or several samples to testing the functions and applications of the parts. By this stage, you will have a general ideas for the price, production time and machining processing of the parts.
How to proof the concept and Ideas?
We mentioned earlier that we need to have a product concept before prototype making, then we need to create a model, and the aim is to demonstrate core functionality and prove that the design is workable as intended. Of course, in this phase, it doesn’t necessary to match the aesthetics of the finished products, usually we will use off-the-shelf components to test them for saving costs.
At present, 3D printing, vacuum casting and CNC machining is a popular choices for prototype making. Certainly, 3D printing is also one of the most cost-effective the prototype making. It not only can accurate create sample models, but also save the whole production time.
Is it suitable for industrial design?
Except to validate the aesthetics, ergonomics and scale of a product. We also need to use the prototype simulates the final products, and it mainly purpose is to analyze for the best usability and over ease of use. Typically, for better prove above this, we often use similar materials to build the final products for testing the end of consumer requirements. Such as: metal materials: Aluminum, Stainless steel, Copper, Aluminum alloy etc; plastic materials: ABS, POM, PEEK, Nylon, PE, PC etc.
What’s function of the product?
To see if an idea will actually work. Firstly, we need to build one sample to testing its potential applications and functions: mechanical performance, mechanical properties and thermal performance etc. For this phase of testing, it is crucial to designer or investments, because of it can reduce the risk of the mass production and longer manufacturing runs.
The importance of pre-manufacturing research
For better optimize a product for volume manufacturing, a pre-manufacturing research is necessary. When this prototype looks and the function similar to a finished product and you also can find the similar parts on the marketing. At this time, we only need to exam and consider this part design- how to make some slight modifications or changes on this, and it will not any affects for the end-user, but it can have big impact on cost- especially at high volumes.
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