Rapid Prototyping

Vanguard understands the need of getting products to market quickly and has the expertise and the experience of getting parts right first time. This is why many leading OEM’s put faith in our ability and come back to us time and time again to supply prototype and development projects.

New technology and traditional skills

We incorporate new technologies alongside traditional casting techniques to enable us to cost effectively product castings to drawing in short lead times. New developments in technology such as printed sand molds, printed cores, CAD cut-resin patterns and 3D printing means it is now possible to genuinely produce cost-effective castings with short lead times. This means if required, your CAD drawings can be turned into castings in days rather than weeks.

Depending on the number of castings that may be required a general rule of thumb would be if you think your requirement is a one-off or less than eight castings then economically a tool-less solution could be the way forward for both molds and cores. This solution allows any shape and degree of complexity to be produced very quickly. We have a proven track record of being able to produce parts in any grade of SG Cast Iron or Stainless Steel in a matter of days.

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If the expected requirement is more than eight, up to several thousand, then more conventional tooling would need to be produced. This would still be produced using CAD data to machine patterns from conventional resin block tooling. This would include core boxes produced in the same way. If the customer required very complex cores that would be either very difficult or impossible using conventional tooling then printed cores could be produced giving the best of both worlds. Alternatively for more simple parts which don’t need cores then we could use a 3D printed loose pattern. Typically using these techniques we can produce parts in 2-3 weeks from receipt of order.

If the customer only has an existing casting we have the ability to reverse engineer by having the part 3D scanned and using the subsequent data to produce either conventional tooling or printed moulds and cores. Lead times using this technique is typically 4-5 weeks. To summarise, whatever your prototyping needs are Vanguard have a cost effective solution. Please get in touch with our Sales or Technical staff to learn more.

Process diagram

process diagram graphic

Benefits of the process include;

  • Fast turnaround

  • No need for tooling

  • Design freedom

  • Hybrid moulds and cores possible

  • Cost effective manufacturing from prototypes to production

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We're always happy to answer any queries you might have regarding our work.