Why KAIAO is so loved and trusted by customers?

Founded in 1995, KAIAO Rapid Manufacturing Co., Limited is one of the leading rapid prototyping supplier in China, who’s dedicated to provide final solutions for design phase verification of new products, trial production and low volume production of plastic parts etc. What KAIAO is always keep trying to do is to shorten the trial cycle and save development cost for customers.

Over the past 20 years, the company has served numerous customers, and are always praised by customers and wins the trust. So, why KAIAO is so loved and trusted by customers?

“Every mutual cooperation with customers, KAIAO regards it as a self-improvement. We will seriously summarize customers’ needs in every cooperation and optimize our equipment.  We are not only running for the target of improving two to five times of production efficiency or saving 10% to 30% of investment cost, but also provide customers with the best service in every prototype developing. KAIAO’s core talents and masters will participate in the whole developing so as to provide the best plan. In this way, prototypes from KAIAO is laudable whether in economic or production speed.” said Mr. Wood, CEO of KAIAO Rapid Manufacturing Co., Limited, which also explains why KAIAO is loved and trusted by customers.

KAIAO’s Advantages

What rapid prototyping companies usually do is to create the model first and show it to the customers to feel the advantages of the product as well as the product functions and structure. As the leading rapid prototyping manufacture in China, KAIAO is able to provide customers one-step service to impress customers. And KAIAO’s advices, recommendations and suggestions always make customers feel reliable, which somewhat speed up the product production for sale.

We have SLS and DLP from German, SLA rapid prototyping equipment from United States, 3D printer from Stratasys, United States, ten Taiwan imported CNC machining center, vacuum complex, low pressure perfusion. And we are able to do 3D printing, plastic prototypes, metal prototypes, function prototypes, transparent prototypes, high temperature prototypes, auto parts prototypes, kitchen appliances prototypes. Prototype appearance can be painted, electroplated, drawn, silk screen etc.


Types of Prototypes

Handwork and Numerical Control Prototype

According to the means of manufacturing, prototypes are divided into the below two categories:

1.Handwork prototypes: Main workload is finished by hand
2.Numerical control prototypes: prototypes are mainly made by numerical control machine tool and can be divided in to SLA prototyping (rapid prototyping) and CNC prototyping according to the equipment used.

A.SLA Prototyping: Mainly produced by laser rapid prototyping technology.
B.CNC prototyping: Mainly produced by CNC processing center

SLA and CNC Prototype

SLA Rapid Prototyping and CNC Prototyping each has its advantages over the other. SLA rapid prototyping’s advantages are embodied in its rapidity. However, due to the accumulation molding, SLA rapid prototypes are relatively rough. So, you can produce parts if the product has certain requirements on wall thickness.

The advantages of the CNC prototyping are reflected in its very accurate reflection of the information expressed in the drawings, and surface quality of CNC prototypes is high, especially after a complete surface coating and silk screen. Sometimes it is more colored and dazzling than the final product. Therefore, CNC prototype manufacturing becomes the mainstream in the prototype manufacturing industry.

Plastic, Silicone, Metal and Clay figurine prototype

According to the material used in prototyping, there are plastic prototype, silica gel prototype, metal prototype and clay figurine prototype.

1. Plastic Prototype: Its raw materials are plastic, and mainly for plastic products, such as televisions, monitors, telephones and so on.

2. Silicone Prototype: Its raw material is the silicone and is mainly to show the shape of the product design, such as car prototypes, mobile phones, toy prototypes, handicrafts, daily necessities, and so on.

3. Metal Prototype: Mainly use aluminum or magnesium alloy and other metal materials for some high-end products, such as notebook computers, advanced player, MP3 players, CD machines and so on.

4. Clay figurine prototype: mainly for product design and development but was replaced by freeform.

Appearance, Structure and Function Prototype

According to the implementation result, there are appearance prototypes, structure prototypes and function prototypes.

1.Appearance prototypes: to test product design. It requires fine appearance and accurate color. The internal processing is not quite matter.

2.Structure prototypes: to test the rationality of product structure, and has strict requirements for size. Relatively low demand for appearance.

3. Function prototypes: requires the prototype to be the same with real product in appearance, structure and function and can be understood as unlisted products with highest requirements.

Silicone Mold in Rapid Prototyping

When we are doing a small batches of rapid prototypes, around 20-30, we generally use silicone rubber mold and reactive polyurethane materials. Silicone mold can be used for quick, easy and inexpensive low volume production of various plastic parts and paraffin models under negative pressure pouring in room temperature, especially in aerospace, automotive, home appliances, toys prototypes and medical equipment and other fields.

Silicone rubber mould is a relatively popular rapid tooling manufacturing process and is widely used in the rapid manufacturing industry due to its good toughness to make prototypes with complicated structure, fine pattern, no mold inclination and even pouring angle. It has the following advantages:

Easy to demould

In conventional metal molding, it is usually necessary to set the draft angle so that the part can be smoothly removed after forming, especially for parts with deep grooves. In silicone rubber moulding, due to its good flexibility and elasticity, work pieces with complex structure, fine pattern, no draft angle and even deep groove, can be demoulded directly after the casting without additional draft angle, which simplifies mold design as much as possible.

Short production cycle

It only takes a few days or so to do the silicone rubber moulding as requested if the 3D CAD files for the parts are provides, thus use silicone rubber mold to pour out polyurethane plastic prototypes. It saves you 90% of time if compared with the steel moulding for injection prototyping, which takes around 30 to 90 days.

Good replicability

Room temperature vulcanized silicone rubber has excellent simulation and very low shrinkage and can be a good reproduction of the prototype parts on the fine features, and will almost not lose the dimensional accuracy of parts, thus is an excellent mold material.

ABS-The Most Commonly Used Material in Rapid Prototyping

ABS is the most commonly used material in rapid prototyping, which occupies around 80% of the world’s rapid prototyping manufacturing. So, what is ABS and why it is so widely used? What is advantages of ABS prototypes?

What is ABS and Why it is so widely used?

Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene copolymers, referred to as ABS, is a thermoplastic polymer that is high strength, high toughness, easy processing and molding. And just because of those advantages of, it is often used to manufacture the plastic casing. ABS prototypes are usually slightly yellow and black, have a certain toughness, the density is about 1.04 ~ 1.06g / cm3.

ABS is relatively strong in corrosion resistance for acid, alkali and salt, but also, to a certain extent, tolerance to dissolution by organic solvents. ABS resin can perform normally under the environment of -25 ℃ ~ 60 ℃, and easy molding. The ABS prototypes has smooth surfaces and are easy to dye and electroplate. So it can be used for household appliances, toy prototypes and other daily necessities. The common Lego building blocks are ABS products.

In particular, 90% of the materials used in CNC machining is ABS, which can be free to open for processing and strength will not be greatly affected after bonding. This is believed to be one of the big reasons why ABS is so widely used in rapid prototyping.

Advantages of ABS Prototypes

ABS prototypes are easy to glue, polish and convenient in post-processing and painting, laser carving and electroplating are allowed. The detailed advantages of ABS prototypes are as follows:

1. Good impact resistance: ductile deformation only even after a sudden attack.
2. High working pressure: 1.0Mpa in room temperature 20 ℃
3. Good chemical stability, non-toxic, tasteless. Full in line with the health and safety requirements in pharmaceutical, food and other industries.
4. Can be used in a wide range of temperature from -20 ℃ to 70 ℃.
5. Light weight and cost saving. ABS is only 1/7 of steel and thus reduces the weight and labor intensity as well as the consumption of raw materials and saves cost.
6. Long service life: ABS prototypes can be used over 50 years inside and the service life can be longer if buried in the ground or water without significant corrosion.

Factors that cause the deformation of the vacuum casting prototypes

Vacuum casting is to use SLA laser rapid prototyping or CNC machining as the prototype, and then use silica gel to do the mold, and use PU material for casting in vacuum, and thus clone a copy as the same as the original prototype. Due to the fast speed and low cost, vacuum casting greatly reduces the product development costs, cycle and risk. And vacuum casting works almost the same way as steel mold but they are in different use and technology.

Silicone molding materials are: domestic and imported silicone, transparent silicone and special silicone.

Factors that cause the deformation of the vacuum casting prototypes

However, in the process of vacuum casting, prototype become deformed due to various reasons, which affects the accuracy of the prototype. Then what factors will lead to deformation of the vacuum casting prototype?

1. Mold silica gel is put into use before it is fully cured. Although the mold can generally be removed within a few hours after casting, but it takes at least a week for the it to be fully cured. If time permits, experienced master usually take out the prototype a month later.

2. The quality of the mold silica used is too poor, or the shrinkage is too high or there is too much filler (to reduce the cost of mold plastic). Shrinkage rate of high-grade silicone molds are within 0.1% and about 3% for the ordinary. Poor ones may go up to 10% or more.

3. Vacuum casting prototype need for high temperature in the injection, and due to the impact of thermal expansion and contraction, silicone liquid may be perfect at that time but may be much smaller than the actual size once it is cooled down and shrinkages.

What’s the difference between CNC Machining and 3D Printing

In the process of product design, after we complete the design drawings, what we want to know most is how the design looks like, whether the appearance and the design ideas are consistent, structural design is reasonable or not, and so on. Generally speaking, prototypes are functional samples made according to the drawings to check the appearance or structural rationality. CNC Machining and 3D Printing are two main ways to do rapid prototyping. We will discuss the difference between 3D printing and CNC machining below.

Features of 3D Printing and CNC Machining

CNC machining is efficient, accurate and economical while 3D printing is able to make prototypes that traditional machining, including CNC machining, is difficult to make or simply can not achieve. 3D Printing is of high degree of freedom.

3D printing technology, such as (SLA, SLS, etc.), needs structural support in the implementation process, if not prototypes can not be manufactured, which is believed to be a big bottleneck for the further development of 3D printing.

Traditional CNC processing industry has been in developing for a long period, and there is already a mature standard in principal axis, cutting tool interface, or control system, however, there is currently no such standards, and it takes really long for the standard to be established.

The result of the difference between the two is that 3D printing allows you to manufacturing a powerful and unconstrained style prototype, while CNC machining has more advantages in large prototypes making and the economy is better.

Major Difference between CNC Machining and 3D Printing

In addition to the above difference between 3D printing and CNC machining, there is another obvious difference: Additive Manufacturing and Subtractive Manufacturing.

3D Printing is additive manufacturing which is to add materials to molds, similar to squeezing toothpaste and finally the prototype is accumulated.

CNC machining is subtractive manufacturing which is to do “subtraction” and cut and remove materials from the whole piece of raw materials continuously until the final model is produced.

Car Mock-ups are Important Basis for the Automobile Industry

In the car production, more than 90% of the parts need to rely on mold forming. For example, the most basic front and rear headlights, bumpers, car trim, etc., are under the help and auxiliary of rapid prototyping.

China’s automobile rapid prototype industry closely follows the development of automobiles, and whether in technology or equipment, should focus on product structure adjustment, and gradually enhance the level of rapid moulding, which is believed to be the prerequisite to occupy the high-end market with complex prototypes with complex structure, high precision and advanced technology.

The basic idea of the development of automobile rapid prototyping model industry and technology highlights the development lifeline and mileage of a business.

Development as the theme and market, reform and technological innovation as the driving force, KAIAO, one of the top rapid prototyping company in automobile moulding industry in China, gradually grows into a strong mold enterprise with international competitiveness. Under the national industry policy, KAIAO vigorously promotes the industry organizational structure optimization and upgrades of industrial structure, accelerate the development of the market much-needed key products.

Discussion on Plastic Toy Prototypes

Plastic Toy Prototype is a kind of prototype model that is difficult to do in the rapid prototyping industry as a lot of customers requires the plastic toy prototype to be operable between the various parts, which is believed to be a high demand and challenge for plastic toy prototype masters. Sometimes masters don’t have to assemble prototypes in accordance with customers’ design ideas if they have better suggestions. Masters in KAIAO, one of the top toy prototype manufacturers are always able to give suggestions because they are all full experienced with practical ability.

There are many toy prototype manufacturers making plastic toy prototypes as well as doll prototypes and a majority of them are in Shenzhen, Guangdong, China. Toys prototypes requires good masters with better skills and so there a few that are able to do professional plastic toy prototypes. In addition to the rapid prototyping masters’ ability and experience, there is one more reason why few toy prototype companies make good toy prototypes, that is PA66, a high strength material, as the toy prototypes are required to achieve a high resistance to extrusion performance.

However, PA66 cannot be separated and must overall process, which gives great difficulties to CNC machining and makes some toy prototype manufacturers shrink back in plastic toy prototyping. With strong technical experience, KAIAO is your top choice to make good plastic toy prototypes and the toy prototype cost is relatively low. Feel free to contact KAIAO for a free quote.

Rapid Prototypes for Automobile Exterior Parts

KAIAO Rapid Manufacturing Co.,Limited is the earliest sino-foreign joint venture that applies and promotes RPM technology in China, and is identified as a national rapid prototyping research and application service center and national CAD application engineering demonstration enterprise by State Ministry of Science and Technology in China. Also, KAIAO is CAD technical advisory services center in Shenzhen City and is one of the top automobile rapid prototyping manufacturers and has a wealth of practical experience in prototyping automobile exterior parts.

Rapid Prototypes for Automobile Exterior Parts Preproduction Processing

Preproduction of exterior trimming parts includes front and rear headlights, bumper prototypes etc. The trial process of rapid prototypes for automobile lamps are as follows:

1. Prototype: CNC machining, lamp holder and reflector cup decorative material are ABS or PC sheet, lamp cover material is the P mm A plate.
2. Mold: silicone rubber mold.
3. Molding: vacuum injection molding, lamp holder and reflective cup decoration material are PU resin Hei-cast8150 ; shade material is PU resin AXSON-PX521HT a transparent heat-resistant high-strength material.
4. Post-treatment: paint/vacuum coating.
5. Detection: tooling fixture splicing, 3 coordinate detection.
6. Accuracy control:
Prototype: Main positioning hole ± 0.3 mm, general mounting hole ± 0.5 mm, other size ± 0.8 mm.
Molding Parts: Main positioning hole ± 0.5 mm, 1 year mounting hole ± 0.8 mm, other size ± 1.2 mm.

Practice has proved that RP & M can optimize product design, shorten product development cycle, reduce development costs, thereby enhances the competitiveness of enterprises.

RP & M technology, as an important means, has been widely used in car parts rapid prototyping. RP trial samples can be used for visualization, design evaluation, interference testing, and even some functional tests for CAD digital models. In addition, the prototype can offer an intuitive understanding of the product’s appearance and performance, which has not yet put into mass production, and results in a timely evaluation, so that the factory can timely improve the products based on user needs and market research so as to create favorable conditions and avoid blind production losses.

How is the complex prototype processed?

Mock-up is widely needed to detect if the product design is reasonable when developing new products in the industry, which speeds up the advent of new products. In the past, people did hand-hand prototype and it is relatively simple. With the rapid development of all aspects of the society, mock-ups become more and more complex in structure and shape and hand-made processing is no longer competent. So, How is the complex prototype processed?

How is the complex prototype processed?

There are two main ways to process complex prototypes: CNC machining and 3D printing. With CNC technology, CNC machining is able to processes a lot of complex prototypes, and the accuracy is relatively high. However, if the prototype is too complicated, you need to split pieces for  processing. For the complex plastic prototypes, ABS, PC and acrylic are materials that are generally used for CNC rapid prototyping due to their good viscosity and demolition pieces can easily spliced back with little impact on the intensity. And for the metal prototypes, they are generally welded back after splitting.

3D printing can process a variety of prototypes with complex surfaces and shaped structure, one step molding. What the traditional machining can not be processed can be achieved by 3D printing, even without considering the use sof fixtures. In short, in most people’s view, the traditional prototyping model manufacturing, can only be infinitely close to the product prototype, to verify the product, but there will always be errors, and the use of 3D printing can be directly output products in kind. But there are deficiencies in 3D printing which costs a lot processing large pieces of prototype models, so a lot of complex large prototypes are using CNC machining.

Make the complex prototype for you

As one of the top rapid prototyping companies in China, KAIAO has been in the industry for over a decade and experienced in CNC machining and 3D printing. If you are interested in CNC machining and 3D printing as your next project while the prototype is a bit complex, feel free to contact KAIAO for help. KAIAO is always your top choice.