Function and Finish: ART Rapid Tooling and Parts
ART’s SL and Polyjet™ printing processes allow customers to quickly hold their design in their hands. However, for those customers seeking higher functionality in their prototypes —or even short run production— some requirements may exceed the mechanical capability of Stereolithography and Polyjet™ materials. In this case ART recommends Rapid Tooling with urethane, epoxy, or silicone castings. Our Rapid Tooling process allows us to produce anywhere from one to 100 parts from a material that will meet your requirements. Details such as color, texture and even threaded inserts (to facilitate assembly) can be incorporated using our Rapid Tooling process.
Whether it’s a silicone oxygen mask, a static-dissipating epoxy air nozzle or a high impact urethane industrial machine cover, ART has the materials, experience and superior craftsmanship to give your product precisely what it needs.
Rapid Tooling: Step by Step
- 1) Patterns are fabricated on our Stereolithography (SL) or Polyjet™ equipment.
- 2) ART craftsmen/finishers detail the patterns to a mold quality finish, removing the supports and build lines, then sanding and polishing as necessary.
- 3) The master patterns are then primed, textured (if desired) and handed off to our mold makers.
- 4) If casting urethane or epoxy, silicone rubber molds are created from the master patterns. If casting silicone, a SL or Polyjet™ master pattern set is used as the mold and silicone is cast directly into the master patterns.
- 5) Once the silicone molds have been made, our casters pour or inject urethane/epoxy into them to create copies of the original patterns.
- 6) These copies can be custom pigmented and can have threaded inserts molded-in as required.