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In this increasingly competitive business world, there is a growing pressure on a company to come up with new product designs to compete better in the market. But having a new design is not the end. You should also figure out how to put the design to production and then launch the end product to the market faster.
This is where rapid prototype manufacturing comes in.
Prototyping is an absolutely critical stage in the whole product development cycle. Prototypes are the first samples created and proof the design. A new product development project is hard to achieve success without fist creating prototypes. And to do this efficiently, you need to work with the right factory that can perfectly handle your prototyping requirements. Today, the demand for good prototyping companies is at an all-time high.
Selecting the right prototyping partner may, at first, seem a straightforward decision. But looking beyond the primary factors of cost, speed, and quality, there are still many additional factors that should be considered seriously in the decision making stakes.
There are so many rapid prototyping companies in China. Then, choosing the right prototyping partner can be mission-critical to the new product development stage.
To help you make the right decision, in this article, we list some important points you should consider.
1. Relevance to Your Industry
The best rapid prototyping companies have enough experience and knowledge in the rapid prototyping of products related to your industry. They know the benefits and limitations of different materials and prototyping techniques. And they have the expertise to support you through the prototyping process.
Working with a prototyping factory relevant to your industry makes the communication between both sides easier. And when you have doubts and uncertainties in decision making, such as which material to choose from, your partner can provide professional advice to help you make the right choice.
2. Prototyping Capabilities
You should consider the rapid prototyping manufacturing strength of the companies. Whether they have all the necessary capabilities? It is of great importance, especially when your project requires multiple prototyping technologies, such as SLS printing, SLA printing, CNC machining, or injection molding. You don’t want to source every part of the prototype from multiple companies, which is time-consuming. As such, a company the can handle all your requirements is essential.
In addition, these processes require professional machinery and highly-skilled workers. The more investment your prototyping partner is making in new machines, the faster they are able to complete your order. Thus, the facility can also be an assess point.
There is an extensive range of materials that rapid prototyping companies can work with. They include, but not restricted to, plastics and metals. Some companies may specialize in certain material types. So it is necessary to know not just what materials the companies can work with, but what materials they are good at. And a reliable prototype manufacturer should understand all material variants and alternatives. In this way, when you find that the cost of your desired materials is out of the budget, your rapid prototype manufacturing partner can recommend alternatives that could save on both timing and costs.
The services the prototyping company can provide can offer many benefits at all stages of your product development process. Whether they are able to provide the breadth of technology or knowledge that can help you make informed decisions, which can save you from making costly mistakes prior to production?
Besides, the response time to your quote requests also matters. If you send your inquiry to rapid prototyping companies and do not receive any response within 24 hours, how do they ensure the on-time delivery and prompt after-sales service?
Fast response is the basis of service. If they even fail to do it right, it is very likely that they perform poorly in the rest.
5. Delivery Time
In the new product development, time is important. The faster you launch the new product, the greater the opportunity to seize the market share. The delay of your prototypes manufacturing is likely to impact the schedule of your product development.
Delivery time is another key consideration when choosing a prototype manufacturer. You should choose the one that can meet your tight project timescale and that always deliver on promises.
Actions speak louder than words. Many companies make grand promises about delivery and turnaround times. But do they actually do that? You could check the comments on their social media pages and whether they have a compensation policy of delivery delay.
There are often many design changes that can occur throughout the development process. The company you hire should be flexible to adapt to these changes in real-time. It is essential to keep the process of prototyping moving ahead quickly.
Most often, your rapid prototype manufacturing partner needs to maintain your intellectual property. Raising this issue and discussing the need for maintenance of intellectual property accumulated throughout the design process, which may be a key factor down the road in production.
Prototyping, especially CNC machining and vacuum casting, is an area where experience matters. The experience of the rapid prototyping company's employees should be one of the major considerations. An experienced team can deliver professional advice and technical support to you. It also means fine craftsmanship of your prototypes.
Working with a company with many years of experience and expertise is the way to get considerable benefits and avoid future costly mistakes.
Creating high-quality prototypes in the new product development stage is necessary and vital. Prototyping is a great way to designers and organizations to get better design and final products. There are more and more companies now providing multiple prototyping services. The challenge of locating a suitable and capable prototyping partner you are faced with will be more notable.
The best prototyping factories are specialists and offer a one-stop solution for all prototyping needs: 3D printing, CNC machining, injection molding. They will have full awareness of all the above considerations and do well in these aspects and continue to improve.
Choosing the right prototyping factory is a critical element for your product launch success. I hope this article can help you select the most appropriate rapid prototype manufacturing partner.