Imagine you are trying to transcribe an architectural design from blueprints on a computer into watercolor. The bleeding and blending of the paint would surely turn a mathematically sound plan into something completely unusable for construction. In order to evolve from a plan into something finished there must be flawless accuracy with all the steps in between.
Exact Modeling is the idea of following instructions to a T when turning a CAD design into a prototype. The thing is, to make sure a prototype accurately represents an end product it cannot be different in any way whatsoever. This is where efficient and precise prototyping come into play.
Rapid Manufacturers, aka prototypers, implement a variety of techniques to help companies along a developmental path. Some of their techniques produce full-scale models that function as representations, meaning they lack structural integrity, moving parts, or even color and finishes. These have their place, as they are quick and cheep to produce, but getting that perfect fit is an entirely different process: this is where watercolor doesn’t cut it.
CNC Milling is the process of carving away excess material from a starting block with extremely advanced technology. This process could recreate the world’s most famous statues or most intricate machines with only a dedicated team of engineers and a gigantic block of the desired material. These machines can reach total accuracy, that which will eventually be achieved through tooled production lines, before the tooling of such manufacturing is completed.
What This Means
This CNC milling will get finished products into the hands of testers and marketers before final products hit the market, thus giving significant advantage to marketing and sales teams. This preemptive strike can be the difference between a flop and the next best thing. When a product’s success is on the line, CNC milling can often be the little nudge needed to get to the finish line.