Guide to The Basic Concepts of a Physical Prototype
A physical prototype comes from abstract design. It is the beginning of the progress of any product design. This is an important step in the making of new technology or product. System analysts use the physical prototype to test and assess the design.
Physical prototypes vary from a simple handmade device to a complex fully operating machine. Clients use them to find out how their conceptual design would operate in real-life states. To feed this demand, Creatingway has adopted several rapid prototyping techniques to make such prototypes. The methods we use are both cost-effective and time-saving. Here is further insight into the different types of physical prototypes and some of its benefits.
What’re The Types of Physical Prototypes?
A functional prototype shares some similarities with a working prototype. However, it uses a different method and scale when compared to the original design.
A visual prototype shows the shape, appearance, and dimensions of the conceptual design. Therefore, the main role of this type of prototype is not to showcase functionality.
User Experience Prototype
A user experience prototype functions to provide enough information to system analysts for research. They allow for any errors found to be corrected thus enhancing the design.
A working prototype has all the features of the conceptual design. It is fully functional to allow for correct analysis in real-life conditions.
Benefits of Physical Prototypes
A physical prototype assists in determining factors related to the future product. Factors such as cost, product sale, and product evaluation are important in product development. Below is a highlight of how prototypes assist manufacturers.
It is wise to patent your new design or product. Especially if you plan to avoid future lawsuits from other manufacturers. A physical prototype comes in handy for this process. An attorney can fill the patent with ease once you can explain the features of your product using a prototype. It allows you to identify patentable parts of your design. Additionally, you could even edit certain parts of the product to suit your patent.
Production Cost and Issues Determination
Physical prototypes allow manufactures early access to the actual product. Thus, they can fix any problem before the actual production of the product. It allows for easier editing and removal of manufacturing operations. Manufactures can pick the optimal method for making their product. Therefore, it makes production cost low.
Customers prefer a physical prototype more than a design. They get to discover the features and appreciate some of its beauty. Additionally, you get to easily describe your product using a prototype when compared to design. Hence, forecast sales of the product are doable before making the product.
Product Analysis and Testing
Manufacturers face the problem now knowing how a conceptual design may turn out. It may differ greatly from the actual product. One solution is by first making a physical prototype using the various rapid prototype methods. This will allow for testing of the conceptual design using real-world conditions.
What Is the Difference Between an Actual Product and A Prototype?
Our engineers at Creatingway try to maintain the features between the prototype and actual product. However, they generally differ in material use, machining method, and appearance. Here is a further explanation of these aspects.
We look into the cost and fabrication capabilities of the material. The actual product uses an expensive material while the prototype uses the cheaper version. Also, in some cases, the desired material is not available and we have no option but to use an alternate material. These differences influence how the prototype will appear and finish when compared to the final product.
We often produce the final product in large volumes. The process used is usually cost-effective and time-saving. Additionally, it is complex to achieve the desirable features of the client. However, for prototypes, the process differs since the material is also different. It is also generally a simple processing method. This thus leads to a different appearance between the prototype and the final product.
This step is important for every product or prototype made. Since the final product’s final destination is the market, it goes through rigorous quality inspection. However, a porotype’s inspection is only to check if it meets the minimum needs for testing.
Prototyping Processing Methods
At Creatingway, we have adopted the use of time-saving and cost-effective rapid prototyping methods. Among the methods employed include 3D printing. In this method, a CAD file is vital for model data. The second important method is the use of CNC machines. It is highly effective in making metal prototypes when required. A physical prototype is both important and effective in securing the sales of your product in modern industries.
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