Re: Metal Rapid Prototypes

From: Nick Osborn (
Date: Tue Jul 04 2000 - 13:29:38 EEST

Dear Artur

How complex is the geometry of the part in question?

This is a major factor in advising you of the best route to follow, and hence what delivery time you can expect. Size of part is another factor.

Also, are you looking to troubleshoot the eventual production method for the part? If so then it pays to stick as closely to the production method as cost will allow.

If the part lends itself to machining, then CNC'ing 2 off from billets of suitable Al is likely to be an appropriate solution - for 15 off the economies obviously lean towards one of the other avenues you mentioned.

Possible process chains are:

LOM > Sand casting > Al
SLA > Precision Silicone Tooling > Vacuum cast Waxes > Investment Casting > Al
Sanders > Inv Cast > Al

The timing for all the above processes is typically 2 - 3 weeks - if you are lucky and there are no queues then 7 - 10 days is physically possible.

For your info., we are currently developing a Type C grade of our Swiftool material, which is specifically designed to withstand the rigours of high pressure die-casting for pre-production quantities of Al, Zn and Mg alloys. This should enable the manufacture of pressure die-cast tooling for complex parts in a matter of days, not many weeks. As soon as this is commercially available we will be sure to let you know.

I hope this helps with your enquiry.



Nick Osborn
Managing Director
Tel: +44 (0) 1354 650 789

"Real Parts Real Quick - Because Time is Money"

>>> Artur Mateus <> 04/07/00 10:02:15 >>>
Hello List,

What is the best process to produce Rapid Metal (Aluminium) Prototypes:
- Shell Casting
- Investment casting
- Plaster mould
- Ceramic mould
Other process?

The superficial and internal (microporosity must be very low) quality is
very important.
 I want to know times to produce:
- 2 aluminium prototypes;
- 15 aluminium prototypes.

Thanks in advance,

 Artur Mateus
 Moliporex, Lda.
 P.O. BOX 199
 Estrada de Leiria, nš 208 Embra
 2431-967 Marinha Grande - Portugal
 Phone: +351 244 573000
 Fax:+351 244 57 3001

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