Going From an Idea to Prototyping and Mold Creation for Manufacturing
Have you ever wondered about taking a product invention idea from your imagination to conception? With the advent of 3-D printing, it may be easier to transform your abstract idea into a physical prototype.
Once you have a prototype, you may start producing your product. And mold manufacturing may be an integral part of mass-producing your in-demand product. The following is a high-level discussion of how you may take a product idea through typical steps leading to a product realization.
Documenting Your Idea
One day, you may conjure up an idea. You may feel your idea deserves merit, and you give it thought. You write out a description of what your product design idea may look like, its function, and its features. You also consider what material may be suitable for your design idea. You perform research to see if there may be a market for your product idea and if a similar product exists.
Producing Your Prototype
You may work with a product sketcher to draw a hand sketch of your idea. You may work with a product designer to render a three-dimensional digital model from the sketch and product description using 3D CAD software. You may take this digital rendering to a prototype maker to make a preliminary prototype using a 3D printer. The prototype maker uses the source code from your 3D CAD rendering to program a 3D printer to create a physical product prototype for you. After going through a few prototype iterations where you may make adjustments and improvements, you may settle on a final prototype that you feel is ready to market.
Promoting Your Product
Now, you may try to promote and market your product idea using this prototype to see if you may find prospects who may invest in creating your product. You may use crowdfunding to receive broad support from prospective consumers and investors who feel your product may be beneficial.
Manufacturing Your Product
Once ready to proceed, you may submit your prototype to a factory for building an injection mold. After you receive and approve of the mold, production on your product may begin. The manufacturing process is known as injection molding. Material is sent to a heated barrel, mixed, and melted. Then, the material is injected into your mold, cooled, and ejected. Finally, finishing is performed, and your product is inspected for quality and specification accuracy.
If your product may not succeed on your initial attempt, you still have learned the process, and you may repeat your efforts to make a more desirable product next time.