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3 Option for Short Run Production

Prototype is used to restore the most direct means of user experience, a prototype can tap can not only detect the availability of products, also can maximize the save time, reduce resource consumption authority case shows that the prototype design for product logic accurately reproduce, avoid the product after the release of about 25% of the bug at the same time, the design of the prototype is largely to ensure the visual design is practical, can make visual fundamentally meet the experience of which no doubt is a prototype design. Therefore, short run production is very important, which can shorten the whole product cycle.

According to this article, we will help you how to correctly plan new products and short-term processing so that your custom manufacturing and short run production projects are completed on time and seamlessly.

How to Choose the Right Process for Short Run Production?

3D Printing-SLA

SLA is the abbreviation of “Lithography Apparatus”. It is a Rapid Prototyping (RP) technology that first appeared in the world and realized commercialization. It is also one of the most deeply studied and widely applied Rapid Prototyping technologies. The process is based on the principle of photopoly merization of liquid photosensitive resin, which is translated as “stereoscopic photocuring”.

  1. Design 3d solid model through CAD, slice the model with discrete program, design scanning path, and the generated data will accurately control the movement of laser scanner and lifting platform;
  2. The laser beam irradiate to the surface of liquid photosensitive resin according to the designed scanning path through the scanner controlled by numerical control device, so that after curing a layer of resin in a specific area on the surface, when a layer of resin is processed, a section of the part will be generated;
  3. The lifting platform drops a certain distance, and the curing layer is covered with another layer of liquid resin, and then the second layer is scanned.
  4. After the prototype is taken out of the resin, the product is finally cured, and the required product is obtained after polishing, electroplating, painting or coloring.

SLA has fast processing speed, high accuracy, easy prototyping and loyalty to final design, which means that you can identify design defects, collisions and potential short run production obstacles before production starts. It can also adapt well to short-term production mode.

Vacuum Casting

Three simple steps for vacuum mold/vacuum injection mechanism:

1, Master

Before making the silicon mold, the prototype master needs to be made.Prototype can be used more common ABS material, CNC processing.

2. Silicone mold

Once the prototype was ready, the silicone mold was made.After eight hours of drying, the silicone mold was cut open and the prototype removed.The silicone mold is ready.

3, Type

The liquid gum material is injected into the silicone mold and dried.The service life of transparent silicone mold is about 20 times.

Step 1: make a prototype with CNC, SLA or clay carving
Step 2: surround the prototype with a board to prepare the mold
Step 3: pour the vacuum liquid silica gel into the mold and cover the product
Step 4: put the mold into the oven to bake, so that the silicone mold can accelerate the curing
Step 5: remove the prototype from the mold
Step 6: according to the material required by the product, vacuum the material and duplicate the finished product.

Vacuum casting is a kind of silicone gel mould made by using product prototype under vacuum condition. The casting parts with the same material as product prototype can be made by casting (like PU Rubber, transparent PU, similar engineering plastics POM and ABS .etc.) under vacuum casting, which can reach the strength and hardness of ABS and other materials, and can also be matched according to customer’s needs. Set the color to duplicate together. Because of its high speed and low cost, it has solved the cycle and cost of new product development.

Only by using the right equipment, materials and processes, we can get the most stable product quality at the least cost. Vacuum casting is aimed at short run production of plastic products, which has the advantage of low cost and short delivery time.

CNC Machining

In the CNC machine tool processing parts, mainly depends on the processing process, it is different from the ordinary machine tool, do not have to change a lot of molds, jig, do not need to re-adjust the machine tool often. Therefore, CNC machine tool is suitable for the processing of parts frequently changed occasions, that is, suitable for single, small batch product production and the development of new products, thus shortening the production preparation cycle, save a lot of process equipment costs.And artificial labor, save labor costs, improve production efficiency. Processing the same batch of parts, in the same machine tool, under the same processing conditions, the use of the same tool and processing procedures, the tool path is exactly the same, the consistency of the parts, stable quality, suitable for mass production.

  1. It has a wide range of application and high flexibility, and can process parts of different types and batches;
  2. Through the automation of parts processing can achieve high efficiency parts processing;3, high precision, CNC technology processing is according to the pre-programmed procedures for processing, can ensure the accuracy of processing;4, good stability, the rigidity of the CNC machine tool itself is very good, and has a high precision, so can ensure long-term stable processing.

CNC processing short run production processing mainly has two purposes, one is the product itself customized demand is lower. The other is the small batch trial production before mass production, which can avoid the economic loss in mass production caused by flow design mistakes and product design problems. No matter what kind of product you have, choose the right manufacturer and determine the quantity of production in advance before small batch production.

In addition, also pay attention to the quality of the product, generally these early production products will not be put on the market, mainly as a test article, to investigate the actual production of products and design expectations are consistent. If the difference is relatively large, it is necessary to change the original design, or even overturn the whole design and re-plan. So in small batch trial production must not be trouble, the use of materials are best in the actual production will be used.