Sometimes designers also use rapid prototype plastic parts to replace metal prototype in order to save the production cost. We would like to introduce some common plastic materials which are often used in prototype making:
ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene) is a general-purpose thermoplastic polymer, ABS performance characteristics: good rigidity, high impact strength, heat resistance, low temperature resistance, chemical resistance, mechanical strength and electrical performance, ease of processing, processing and dimensional stability Good sexual and surface gloss, easy coating, coloring, but also for spraying metal, plating, welding and bonding secondary processing properties. Because of its combination of ABS characteristics of the three components, it has excellent overall performance, as electrical components, home appliances, computers and instrumentation, one of the preferred plastic. It’s the most common engineering material in Plastic Prototype production.
It is a kind of “tough, hard and rigid” material with easy availability, comprehensive performance, low price and wide range of uses. ABS plastic in the mechanical, electrical, textile, automotive, aircraft, shipping and other manufacturing industries and chemical obtained a wide range of applications.
PC (Polycarbonate) is an amorphous thermoplastic resin with excellent properties, excellent electrical insulation, extensibility, dimensional stability and chemical resistance, high strength, heat resistance and cold resistance. Manufacture of various gear, rack, worm, bearings, cams, bolts, levers, crankshafts, ratchet, but also for some mechanical equipment shell, cover and frame parts, etc. As a transparent part, its strength to be higher than PMMA. PMMA is easy to be broken, but PC is strong enough. For plastic prototype manufacturer, PC has to be high polished and vapour polished to become clear.
PP (Polypropylene) is a low density, is the lightest common plastic, usually translucent colorless solid, odorless and non-toxic. Due to the structural regularity and high degree of crystallization, so the melting point can be as high as 167 ℃. Heat-resistant, corrosion-resistant, steam sterilization of products available is its outstanding advantages, lower heat distortion temperature (100 ℃), low transparency, low gloss, low rigidity, but stronger impact strength, suitable for making general Mechanical parts, corrosion-resistant parts and insulation parts.
PA (polyamide) has high mechanical strength, high softening point, heat resistance, low coefficient of friction, wear resistance, self-lubricating, shock absorption and silencers, oil, weak acid, alkali and general solvents, electrical insulation Good, self-extinguishing, non-toxic, odorless, good weatherability, easy to dye. Excellent mechanical properties, high mechanical strength, good toughness. Widely used in machinery, electrical appliances, textile equipment, chemical equipment, aviation and other fields. Become an indispensable material in all walks of life. In plastic prototype process, PA can not be splitted. That means it has to be made as a single one piece.
POM (Polyoxymethylene) is a white or black plastic particle with high hardness, high rigidity and high wear resistance. POM strength, high stiffness, good elasticity, wear resistance and wear good. Its mechanical properties are excellent, the specific strength of up to 50.5MPa, the specific stiffness of up to 2650MPa, very close to the metal. Mainly used for gears, bearings, auto parts, machine tools, instrumentation, toys and other products from the skeleton role, Most non-ferrous metals, automobiles, machine tools, instrumentation, bearings, fasteners, gears, springs, pipes, conveyor belt accessories, electric kettles, pump shells and so on..
PA+GF (Glass Fiber): The mechanical properties of blends such as glass fiber, toughening agent were added to PA. The results showed that with the increase of glass fiber content, the tensile strength and flexural strength of the material increased greatly, while the impact strength was more complex. The toughening agent increased, the material toughness added significantly. Add 25% ~ 30% of glass fiber in the PA, mechanical properties, dimensional stability, heat resistance, anti-aging properties have significantly improved resistance Fatigue strength is not enhanced 2.5 times. Improve the heat resistance, dimensional stability, stiffness, tensile strength and flexural strength of nylon, especially the obvious improvement of mechanical properties, as a good performance engineering plastics.
Sometimes you don’t need a million parts. With rapid manufacturing, you can create limited runs high-quality end-use parts from plastic rapid prototype or metal. This is great for iterating prototypes and creating limited-run products either for testing or for selective distribution. With the finishing options available to you from our expert manufacturing firms, you can ready for the marketplace in just a matter of days.
Through by 3D printing and rapid prototyping technologies, you can create several iterations of cost-effective models to see what works best. Don’t wait until you’ve started moulding before you have something to show your customers. Share and talk with them directly, right from the start. Demonstrate your design and communicate the marketability of your product in a way they can feel and touch. With high resolution rapid prototyping in a variety of colors and materials, you can build a market for your product before starting running production. Rapid Prototype technologies like SLA and CNC allow for extremely detailed and fine surface finishes, meaning you are able to create beautiful models with little to no post-processing.