In this process, the prototyping most closely resembles actual production. A small piece of steel or aluminum is used and a single cavity is cut for the part. The small mold is then run in a smaller version of the production machine and parts are made with same material that will be used in production.
- Actual parts - Prototypes produced in actual production material
- Complete testing - Prototypes can be tested for form, fit, function, and life-cycle
- Manufacturing process is the same - The manufacturing process is prototyped at the same time which leads to the most efficient and most productive tool design for the production tool
- Ready-to-go-tooling - Custom Rubber Corp. has a common prototype base and 6”x6”x4” cavity blocks that is ready to be machined which significantly cuts down on the lead time (can be as little as 1.5 weeks for tooling.
- Unilimited quanitity - the steel/aluminum tool can be used to produce an almost unlimited quantity of product which can be helpful in the event anything delays the production tool
- Time - The steel or aluminum tool requires machining and this can take 1.5-4 weeks, depending on the complexity and size of the part.
- Cost - the material cost and machining costs associated with steel/aluminum tool are more than the other prototyping options.