A faulty prototype can cost a designer significantly in both time and money. Even the smallest of changes within a mould or production method could prove costly. One of the biggest advantages of using 3D printing to create your model or prototype is that it can save you a huge amount of money when it comes to tooling costs.
Tooling refers to the process of designing and engineering the tools that are necessary to manufacture parts or components of your model in. Ensuring high-quality tooling can become expensive, especially considering that every design could require different tools.
3D printing can save businesses thousands in tooling costs because it simply doesn’t require any. This manufacturing process requires no moulds or specific tools, instead, you only need the most generic ones that can be used over and over again.
In 3D printing, components are constructed one layer at a time. Due to this, design requirements such as draft angles, undercuts and tool access do not apply, when designing parts to be 3D printed.
Using 3D printing also means that you can spot errors at much earlier stages in the manufacturing process before the initial investment is made. Using the latest in CAD design software, errors can be seen much more easily and multiple versions of designs can be tested at a much lower cost. An increase in prototype testing results in far fewer manufacturing errors.
Due to the layered printing process, you can see the stages of the 3D print as it comes to life. Whether a large-scale print or a detailed SLA print, if your prototype doesn’t look the way you envisioned a few layers in, you can stop the process and restart without too much cost. This means you don’t have to wait until the manufacturing process is complete to find faults with your design.
With a 3D-printed prototype, it is very easy to identify whether the model correctly reflects the specifications you require and if it doesn’t, you can change it with a simple adjustment in a drawing. This can create a new prototype quickly rather than building up an excessive and expensive set of tooling costs.
3D printing can, therefore, save businesses thousands in tooling costs and manufacturing errors by providing a quick and easy solution to the issue. For more information about how 3D printing can bring your designs to life and a lower cost, contact our team on 0333 335 0150. We can offer expert advice on which method of 3D printing is perfect for your project and even help with the design stages.