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A Brief Guide to Prototyping in Product Development

Introduction to Prototyping:

prototype machining, cnc machining,

In any product design project, creating prototypes is a very crucial step. Now a day’s prototyping is a very popular technology it can decrease the development cast and can increase the life of project. Prototyping allow you to collect user feedback before launch, and finally result in a better end product.

A prototype will almost every time result in design changes, so it’s best to get to this step of product development as early as possible. Lot of potential issues can be bypass through good design, but you can’t be satisfied just how a product will look or function until a prime quality functional prototype is achieved.

In very early steps in the product development cycle, try to spot products or parts related to what you are trying to create. If there is something present which is similar to project, think about modifying it by make little changes to create an early prototype of your product. It won’t be ideal, but it will be much faster and economical than a custom made prototype. By creating this you’ll also learn a lot about your future product, and create any modification to your product design plan as early as possible.

Selection of right prototype method is very important. The prototype should be very close to production part, so it is very essential to knowing which manufacturing technique will be used for full production run. By keep these things in mid from start you can save your lot of time, money and rework in designing products. So always have a solid plan in place.

When it’s time to create a suitable prototype machining of your product, all you need is selection of right strategy. If you aren’t sure which is right choice for your product , consider consulting s product design professional.

CNC Machining:

With the CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machining, a machine which is controlled by computer cuts away unnecessary part of material and leaves the desired part. The machine could be a mill or lathe, both have various kind of varieties. To over simplify, milling machines make rectangular parts with straight sides (prismatic parts), and lathes makes cylindrical parts.

This machine tool needs careful setup; the work to be cut must be held securely, the tool used must be selected. This setup work goes into each new part desing, whether 1, 10, 50 or 1000 parts are made.

CNC machining is mostly used in production, but can be used in to prototype individual parts. The result can be very exact with great surface finish quality. Mechanical parts can be arranged and experienced just like the final product. If a part is to be CNC machined in production, a CNC machine prototype is an obvious choice.

CNC Machining can produce accurate prototypes in a wide range of materials.  Nearly any material can be machined like aluminum, steel, or bronze. Other options include plastic, wood, foam, carbon fiber, and even ceramics.

For some complex parts mill-turn center might be necessary. These large, luxurious machines are able to rotate the part and allow tools to access areas of the part on angles or sides without taking many setups. Not all machine shops have these machines, so a good design team will avoid part design that require this type of equipment, always keeping a design very  simple to save money and time in development and manufacturing.

For CNC prototype machining, some shops worked directly with 3D model. It adds time to the prototype process, but if drawing can be reused by editing for later production, it will have been a worthwhile investment.

Designing a part to be CNC machined properly requires as much knowledge and experience in the industry as machining the part. If you need a professional result, you’ll save significant time and money hiring an engineer or product designer to do it right the first time, just like the savings from hiring a machine shop to create the prototype. A full service firm will design the part to work well, prototype it quickly and accurately, and ensure the part can be easily manufactured.


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