During the prototyping phase of a product, the decision in choosing between CNC machining and 3D printing can be daunting especially when you are new to the industry. To make it easy to decide between the two, many factors need to consider. For one, additive manufacturing is preferred more when the geometry of the product is more complex and more expensive when you use traditional techniques. You can also choose 3D printing when you need prototypes faster because it can deliver quicker prototyping services in just a matter of days.
The most important factor when choosing between 3D printing and the CNC machining prototyping services is the quantity of the production needed. Additive manufacturing like 3D printing is the best use when you need prototypes in a small amount and want them at an affordable price. CNC machining prototyping services, meanwhile, can be used for slightly more significant volumes but still at an affordable price. There is also another option that you can use if the part or prototype you need is more than 100 units. You can use investment casting or injection molding.
When CNC Machining Prototyping Services is Your Best Option
CNC machining prototyping services are the best technique when you need prototypes that must be functional and must undergo a lot of strain and stress. This method of prototyping offers more dimensional accuracy. It also used materials that have more mechanical properties compared to using 3D printing.
The only hiccup with CNC machining prototyping services is that it can be more expensive. When making the decision, you need to weigh your options between quality and cost. Another factor that would affect your choice is when you need to customize the design, and your parts are not identical. In this case, you can go to 3D printing as your manufacturing technique to use.
In summary, when you need to make prototypes in small quantity at a low cost and the design is complicated and must be customized, you can use 3D printing. CNC machining prototyping services, on the other hand, is your method when having a higher quantity of prototypes to produce. It offers exact replicates, very accurate and has a better surface finish.
When you need rapid prototyping services and can decide between the 3D printing and CNC machining, you can talk to a firm like LT Century. They have an expert team of engineers who can help you navigate which of the two manufacturing techniques to use in producing your design.