We always encourage prototyping of products in order to realise design aspects which can not be fully appreciated through computer rendered models. Prototypes are valuable for gaining an insight into how the product will perform and what its limitations and weaknesses may be. Understanding problems from a prototype allows the design to be easily be amended well in advance of tool production.
There are many available prototyping methods. We can machine plastics, wood or metal and where possible we will always work in the same materials as the intended final production version. In recent projects we have out sourced prototyping to a Stereo Lithographer who is able to ‘print’ a 3D version of a CAD model as supplied by our designers.
Ensuring that the functional and stylistic aspects of the prototype are acurate to the production version is of optimum importance.
We transmit CAD information from files supplied by our designers, directly into our HERCO CNC milling machine allowing us to work on prototypes very quickly and accurately.
There are certain types of product where we will use Vacuum Forming instead of the traditional milling from a solid process. The process is most commonly used to produce product packaging using a material such as HIPS High Impact Polystyrene but is also very effective for many types of prototypes.