SOC3D Print to Cast
For low to medium volume production runs.
Out of Production Parts
A customer brought us an OEM part that is no longer made and asked to have a low volume production run created of 1-10 pieces per week. The parts are low value and low demand so the capital involved in injection molding even for limited use tooling was greater than the available budget.
Additive Manufacturing solution
Our initial solution was to use 3D printed parts to meet the low capital cost and low per part prices. We measured the part and modeled out a custom version to use for printing. Once complete we printed several test prints and revised the model through 4 revisions to get a working final product.
Once we had a working visual prototype the remaining scope was drafted out. The parts require Flexural strength, UV and Weather Resistance, and the ability to have holes tapped. This brought the final per piece print cost up to 4-5x the budget!
Our next available solution was to use the printed parts in a traditional silicone mold to create urethane based reproductions of the parts.
Designing the mold:
Modeling the mold box for printing
Print to Cast is not a universal solution by any means, it is a viable option for many situations where large/low volume runs are needed and 3D Printing is not feasible.