3D PRINTING FOR THE MANUFACTURE OF MOLDS

Additive manufacturing has revolutionized molding techniques by saving considerable time and reducing costs for small series.

Whether for injection molding for thermoplastics, thermo-blow molding, or thermoforming applications, the industrial tooling industry is one of the pioneers in the use and integration of additive manufacturing.

3D PRINTERS AND MATERIALS FOR THE MANUFACTURE OF MOLDS

Prodways 3D printing technologies allow you to quickly design and produce plastic parts for small and medium series by eliminating the traditional tooling steps and the costs associated with those steps.

3D PRINTING MOLDS FOR INJECTION

The production of metal injection molds is often time-consuming and costly, and no longer meets the current challenges of the industry. Indeed, manufacturers must accelerate the launch of new products and minimize time-to-market to remain competitive, thus R&D departments need to produce their prototypes or small series more and more quickly for functional tests, directly and with the right material.

In addition, metal molds are expensive – sometimes tens of thousands of dollars – which significantly increases production costs for small series. The challenge for manufacturers is to be able to break free of the traditional tooling by producing molds with additive manufacturing technologies, reduce the costs of the prototypes or small series, and to accelerate the necessary iterations to finalize the design of the products.

With MOVINGLight® technology, developed by Prodways, combined with our Rigid 10500 material, it is possible to print molds with key benefits:

  • with very high precision with native pixels of 42 microns for precise and high-quality injected parts
  • in a few hours, versus several weeks for aluminum molds, to meet the deadlines imposed by the market while allowing for review of the design of parts as necessary

MOVINGLight® technology differs from other additive manufacturing technologies:

 

Injection-molding

  • MOVINGLight® technology allows for a much faster printing speed than conventional stereolithography or multijet nthrough the polymerization of the manufacturing surface by a moving DLP®. The savings in production time increase even more as the molds are large or require the polymerization of a large amount of material.
  • Our PLASTCure Rigid 10500 has optimal rigidity, which makes it possible to produce molds that are easy to polish and adjust and more resistant to pressure, therefore allowing you to inject more parts than with multijet technology.
  • The ceramic load in the PLASTCure Rigid 10500 material gives it better temperature resistance than the digital materials used by the multijet technology, limiting the thermal aging effects of the printed molds
  • Quality and precision of printed parts is maximized thanks to the very high resolution of the moving DLP® of MOVINGLight®, capable of producing thin walls and sharps corners without shelving.

The molds printed with Prodways MOVINGLight® technology allow the injection of very high-precision parts – up to several hundred parts, depending on the geometries of the parts and the material used – in order to test your prototypes and get your new products to market faster.

Injection molding case

MOLDS 3D PRINTING FOR BLOW INJECTION OR BLOW EXTRUSION

Injection blow molding or extrusion blow molding techniques are the most widely used in bottling or in the production of bottle prototypes.

The 3D printing of molds for bottles reduces production costs and saves considerable time for the functional validation of your prototypes; for example, to test the resistance of bottles in different packaging before commercialization.

The MOVINGLight® technology developed by Prodways enables the printing of highly accurate and resistant molds for the manufacture of prototypes or small series.

The quality of the molds 3D printed with PLASTCure Rigid 10500 allows manufacturers to blow several dozens of parts at optimized costs, thus allowing them to carry out the necessary iterations on the design of the parts without slowing down the time-to-market.

3D PRINTING MOLDS FOR THERMOFORMING TECHNOLOGY

Thermoforming is widely used in the industry for the manufacture of disposable plastic glasses, blister packs, plastic containers, bins, etc. for the food, medical and consumer products sectors.

3D-printed molds allow ultra-personalization and an unmatched quality combined with a low cost of the final part for small and medium series.

MOVINGLight® technology offers unprecedented levels of resolution to advantageously replace a traditional thermoforming mold with a high-precision and resistant 3D mold, thanks to the rigidity of PLASTCure Rigid 10500.

PART DESIGN & PRODUCTION

INITIAL is the product development, additive manufacturing, and production center of Prodways Group.

With one of the most important assemblage of installed additive manufacturing systems in Europe, consisting of various plastic and metal technologies such as FDM®, SLS ®, SLA®, MOVINGLight®, Polyjet®, DMLS®, EBM®, Initial is able to provide the best advice on the choice of technologies and materials to best manage your on-demand parts 3D printing projects with high-quality service.