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Functional Prototyping

As the name suggests, these are prototypes that not only look like the intended product but also function like it. Sometimes the product is created with the color and texture as the finished part. Sometimes they are plated or painted to look like the final product. Sometimes they are printed with special chemically resistant materials, temperature-resistant materials, static dissipative materials, or other final product-required materials. They are developed after the concept model and help in testing and refining the product’s functionality. This stage will help identify any design flaws, potential manufacturing issues, and other issues that may not be apparent from a purely visual model.

3D Printing Functional Prototypes - Prototyping Solutions

3D Printing for Prototyping

  • Creates prototypes quickly
  • Variety of sizes
  • Great for form, fit and feel testing
  • Standard, engineering and performance materials
  • Full-color modeling
  • Pantone validate capabilities
  • Include sensory, functional and tactile materials such as the Rubber-like, High Impact (D-ABS), UltraClearS (glass like), VeroUltra™
  • Creates multiple prototypes at one time
  • Variety of materials
  • Large in scale printing
  • High precision printing
  • Smooth surface finish
  • High resolution printing
  • Variety of materials
  • Large volume production
  • Large variety of materials
  • Small in scale printing
  • Low volume production
  • Light weight printing
  • Variety of materials
  • Small to large volume production
  • Great for spare or replacement parts

Prototyping 3D Printing Examples

How can this be done?

  • FDM printers, Standard, Engineering, and Performance Materials. Can create small, medium and large prototypes quickly.  great for Form, Fit and Feel testing.  
  • Polyjet Printers:  Outstanding visual full-color modeling extends the model printing experience to include sensory, functional and tactile materials such as the Rubber-like, High Impact (D-ABS), UltraClearS (glass like), VeroUltra™ materials together with the full-color Pantone validate capabilities.
  • Origin1 P3; Uses Material based on requirements. Can print several prototypes at one time . 
  • Stereolithography printer, materials based on requirements.
  • Caracol Robotics printer:  Used when you need large prototypes and can use any one of a large assortment of materials.
  • SLS Metal; Technology is used for low numbers of light weight small metal parts and can use several different materials.
  • Wire-Laser technology: for near net shapre metal parts printed as inexspensively as plastic poarts.  

Questions? Talk to a 3D printing expert!

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