Polyurethanes are rapid setting for RP

A wide variety of polyurethane parts produced by rapid prototyping systems range from large automotive parts to smaller parts for medical equipment and washing machines.

For the last seven years, 3D Product Development (3DPD), based in Bangalore, India, has also been offering specialist vacuum casting services to clients, using Huntsman Advanced Materials’ versatile RenPIM VG range of rapid setting polyurethanes 3DPD offers SLA, FDM, SLS and 3D rapid prototyping services to customers across India, in the automotive, consumer white goods and electronics industries as well as producing concept and functional models for design companies.

Managing director of 3DPD, Dr Mukesh Agarwala, said that the company produces thousands of automotive and consumer white goods parts using RenPIM materials.

He said: "These include large automotive parts such as dashboards, door panels and HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) components to smaller parts for medical equipment, refrigerators and washing machines".

Huntsman materials used by 3DPD include the RenPIM VG grades 2185, 2121 and 2122.

They provide a comprehensive range of product characteristics suitable for all stages of prototyping and part production, said Huntsman.

* Car dashboard – 3DPD used RenPIM 2185 to make a full size car dashboard in a single part.

Using CAD data from the customer, 3DPD produced a master model of the dashboard and from this made a silicone rubber mould.

The mould was then used to produce the finished part in a single shot using RenPIM 2185.

RenPIM Vacuum Grade is a fast curing, two-component polyurethane casting system that can simulate the appearance and physical properties of a wide range of thermoplastics used in rapid prototyping, such as ABS, HDPE, PP and rubber.

They can be used for the rapid production of high quality functional prototypes for form, fit and function testing.

Parts are produced in minutes without the use of high cost steel moulds.

They are highly accurate and dimensional stable and able to reproduce fine details and surface textures, said Huntsman.

Dr Agarwala commented: "RenPIM VG materials deliver a range of benefits for us, the mechanical and physical properties of the parts are excellent, including tensile strength, elongation and impact strength".

He added: "The good surface finish and paintability of the parts are also important factors for us – and the rapid production cycle, of course as our customer deadlines can be as little as three days".

Dr Agarwala concluded: "Once finished, the parts have to be able to withstand real-life working conditions – high temperature, vibration, electrical, mechanical and thermal shocks as well as stress fatigue.

The RenPIM parts meet all these demanding criteria for us and our customers."

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