Spectrum Rapid Prototyping - From Possible to Probable
A Spectrum of RP Methods
While other companies may seek to commoditize their rapid prototyping, Spectrum considers RP a core foundational step, with make-or-break potential for your project. As such, almost like RP itself, Spectrum has created a multi-layered approach to provide our customers with the utmost in RP service and product quality. You'll see and feel the difference in our quality.
Using a 3-D CAD-created model, our stereolithography machine and its operator mathematically create a series of cross-sections (layers) to guide the path of an ultraviolet laser, passed across the surface of a vat of photo-curable liquid polymer. Tracing the cross-section, the laser changes the liquid into a solid, forming a new layer. From the newly formed layer, a recoating and leveling system establishes the thickness of the next layer, and successive cross-sections are built, layer by layer, until a three-dimensional part is formed.
LASER SINTERING (LS)
Using a laser to selectively melt heated nylon powder, a three-dimensional part is created, layer by layer. The process is similar to stereolithography, but uses an exchangeable frame rather than a vat of liquid resin to achieve a laser-solidified end-product.
POLYJET - 3D Printing
Also known as multi-jet modeling or 3D printing, PolyJet is a printing process where polymers are jetted onto a build platform. Layer by layer, parts are built up, in increments as small as 16 microns, with 600x600 dpi. PolyJet uses two different materials: one for the actual model, and a gel-like UV resin for support, which is then removed after the build, using pressurized water. Because of its ability to build very thin layers, PolyJet is very accurate and produces a smooth surface, making it ideal for most RTV master patterns.
ROOM TEMPERATURE VULCANIZATION (RTV) MOLDING AND URETHANE CASTING
RTV molding is the fastest, most accurate and least expensive way to create 10 to 100 duplicates of a prototype part, containing all of the small details of the original part. A two-piece rubber mold is created based on an SLA-produced part, which is sometimes purposely oversized to account for resin shrinkage. The SLA part also purposely includes an additional surface to create the parting line for opening the completed mold. Liquid rubber is poured over the SLA part, allowed to solidify, split and removed to create the RTV tool.
PLASTIC TOOLING AND SILICONE CASTING
Our plastic tooling and silicone casting offer superior dimensional accuracy compared with RTV molding, and allow customers to turn their CAD files into real silicone parts, with rapid prototype lead times. Gaskets, bellows, strain reliefs, keypads and more can all be produced in silicone in less than a week.