Your masterclass in product design and development

 

Protolabs’ Insight video series

Our Insight video series will help you master digital manufacturing.

Every Friday we’ll post a new video – each one giving you a deeper Insight into how to design better parts. We’ll cover specific topics such as choosing the right 3D printing material, optimising your design for CNC machining, surface finishes for moulded parts, and much more besides.

So join us and don’t miss out.


CPD Accredited Videos

Insight: Choosing A Manufacturing Source

 

This can be one of the most important decisions you make on a project, and can easily make the difference between glowing success and not-so-glowing failure. You’ll need to be certain the option you pick fits your needs exactly, whether you want someone to handle your project as a one-off or plan to develop a long-term production relationship with them.


Insight: Bridging The Gap Between Prototyping And Production

Speed to market is key in most businesses. When prototyping a new product, you want to ensure you make it to market before your competitor. This video looks at the concept of bridge tooling and how it can support you in your transition from prototyping to production.

Most Recent Insight Videos

Recently added!

Insight: Supply Chain Management

Successful supply chain management can provide a number of safeguards along the product life cycle process. In this video we discuss a number of those safeguards to help prevent potential disruptions and help ensure you achieve your product delivery targets. These start from the quoting process, and how online quoting software can advise on manufacturability; also, prototyping for testing, and how 3D printing can cut down lead times allowing for more iterations; finally, support for a pilot production or ‘soft launch’ where a few thousand units can be manufactured for the purpose of market testing while preparations are being made for later mass production.


Recently added!

Insight: IM Gates

Gates are a completely and utterly vital part to the injection moulding process as they are used to get liquid resin from the moulding press into the mould – essentially, where we do the injecting part of injection moulding. However, they do tend to leave their mark on parts, in the form of blemishes and dimples on the surface. In this video we look at different places to locate the gate and the best sort of gate to use, covering tab gates, hot tip gates, and pin gates.

 

Insight: IM Gates

Gates are a completely and utterly vital part to the injection moulding process as they are used to get liquid resin from the moulding press into the mould – essentially, where we do the injecting part of injection moulding. However, they do tend to leave their mark on parts, in the form of blemishes and dimples on the surface. In this video we look at different places to locate the gate and the best sort of gate to use, covering tab gates, hot tip gates, and pin gates.

 


Insight: IM Considerations

Injection moulding is, in many ways, one of the simpler manufacturing processes. There are no lasers and no machining – just filling up a cavity with liquid plastic. However, just because it’s easy to understand, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t ways for it to trip you up. In this week’s video we go through mistakes that can slow down the process and cause parts to fail. We’ve compiled a list of eight of the most common issues and how to avoid them, covering: non-uniform wall thickness, sharp transitions from thick to thin areas, c-shaper parts, CAD file format, radii, parting lines, undercuts, and cosmetic finishes.

 

Insight: CNC Mistakes

Over the years Protolabs have dealt with thousands of CADs for CNC and most, after a little bit of tweaking, are great. There are, however, some common mistakes that if avoided will save time and therefore production cost. In this video we go through six common mistakes to help you get faster deliveries and lower production costs. We look at unnecessary machine cutting, avoiding small or raised text, avoiding tall thin walls, draft, holes that can’t be threaded, considering how the part will be manufactured.


Insight: Nylon 3D Printing

One of the great plus points of 3D printing is that you can design pretty much any shape or geometry that you want, and Nylon is a great general-purpose material to use. It’s true that you have more freedom to do what you want when you are designing your 3D printed parts, but in there are also some key considerations to keep in mind when designing nylon parts to make sure you get the parts you want. In this video we talk through these considerations, looking at minimum feature size for plastic 3D printed parts, minimising part warpage and differential shrink, designing to remove powder, and the orientation of your parts during production.

Insight: TPU MJF

Multi Jet Fusion (MJF) is a new industrial grade 3D printing technology that has certain advantages over other additive manufacturing processes. Recently, a new material has become available for MJF 3D printing, Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU). In this week’s video we start with a recap on why you would choose MJF rather than other 3D printing technologies and explore TPU, looking at the advantages of the material and how it can be used.


Insight: SLS Materials

There are a number of different 3D printing technologies and which one you choose depends on what you want to achieve. In this video we explore Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) materials and their suitability for functional parts that require greater toughness and higher impact strength. We cover a range of materials including: PA12 white, PA11 black, PA 12 40% glass filled, polypropylene, PA 12 flex black, PA12 carbon filled, and TPU 88A black; assessing what each one can bring to your project.

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