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Models and Prototypes

07 2013

The development of Models and/or Prototypes is normally the first stage of the Tooling Process due to the similarity of the design software that is essential in generating both models/prototypes and the tooling required to manufacture the product. The design engineer can learn a great deal from a detailed prototype that will save time and cost in the design of the tooling. The resultant model or prototype is usually the first step in determining the proof of design. Producing several versions of models and prototypes will most definitely increase the time to completion and the cost of the product development process. GID utilizes the latest state-of-the-art design software with a complete suite of the IBM/Dassault Systemes PLM (Product Life Cycle Management) Solutions which incorporates CATIA V5, the leading 3-D Virtual Product Development software. Models of the product's conceptual design can be completely developed, evaluated and analyzed in the virtual world before resources are committed for the fabrication of models and/or prototypes. Depending on the nature of the new product, 3-D models can be hand crafted in our model shop or at times more cost effectively created directly from the electronic design files utilizing the stereo lithography process (SLA) to create dimensionally and detail correct models that permit the inventor and designer to evaluate by touch and feel the fruits of the collaborative effort to date. When the on-going collaborative effeort between the client and the designer results in the client's approval to continue, the development process will proceed to the manufacture of functional prototype(s) that can be put through performance testing sometimes including market evaluation. The prototype(s) will also be used to validate the tooling requirements and the manufacturing process to more accurately determine the manufactured cost.