Design / Rapid Prototyping (Additive Manufacturing)
Paper to pattern to casting for rapid prototyping
Early in the design process, getting prototypes that approach the finished product can dramatically reduce cost and time to market. Using techniques like stereolithography (SLA) and 3-D printing, MetalTek brings the capability to take your development design and create a quick-turnaround pattern to produce low volume or development parts. The design engineers may then use an actual casting for preliminary testing and assembly evaluation. In addition to cost and time advantages, it also allows for the assessment of a component that is much closer to the final product, both in the product’s physical properties and manufacturing process used to create it.
An important application of rapid prototyping is in the use of net-shaped centrifugals. This can be very effective when the design calls for complex shapes or hybrid processes like MetalTek’s proprietary blending of Centrifugal and Investment casting. The combined benefits of the detailed features of investment casting, the product integrity of a centrifugal, and the speed and flexibility of SLA's can be a powerful product development tool.