Axis offers more prototype material options than almost any other prototype company in North America. Our Rapid Prototype Material Selector Guide ensures the right process and material is chosen no matter what the application or end use of your prototype parts or short run parts made using additive manufacturing process.
It incorporates and compares various prototype material properties and metrics of SLA materials, SLS materials, Objet materials, DMLS materials and FDM rapid prototype materials. The Rapid Prototype Material Selector Guide is an easy to use one page reference for clients to quickly find the right prototype material for your project. And if you can't find what you need there, one of our experts will find just the right specialty or exotic prototyping material for your project.
As in the manufacturing world, there is no one do it all rapid prototype material that can serve all purposes. Equally, there is no one Rapid Prototyping Process that is perfect for all part sizes, part geometries, and part quantities. Our perfect array of rapid prototype materials and processes ensures that we can find the right mix of materials for virtually all applications.
The prototype materials listed below are there to help our clients choose the best prototype material that resemble engineered plastic for almost all applications. Axis RP (Rapid Prototype) material matrix includes prototype materials such as: FAR25.283 aeronautic certified prototype material, smoke flame and toxicity rated prototype materials, self extinguishing prototype materials, medically approved prototype materials, ISO 10.993 certified prototype materials, USP class VI (6) prototype materials, and many more approved prototype materials.
The prototype material selector guide is made to encompass a wide variety of material characteristics from highly flexible prototype materials suitable for plastic buckles or snap fits to extremely rigid prototype materials best for air tunnel tests and prototypes used in wind tunnel tests. Other materials have specific characteristics such as: high impact and high temperature resistance prototype material.
(SL) materials are epoxy based photopolymers. Stereolithography is the oldest RP technology and is still considered the gold standard in rapid prototyping by most industry experts. Today, we can make functional rapid prototype SLA parts, such as waffle balls, lacrosse stick heads, water bottles, car bumpers, durable scale models, the list goes on. Axis uses only the very best SLA materials made by DSM Somos such as, Somos 9120 a polypropylene like material, Somos 11122 a clear prototype material, Somos 18420 an all purpose rapid prototype material, and the new Somos NeXT an impact resistant ABS like photopolymer.
DSM Somos 9120
This polypropylene prototype material exhibits properties very close to actual polyproylene. It is quite flexible making it an ideal choice for a prototype part with snap fits or assembled parts. It is also quite fast in terms of build time required. Consequently, large parts can be built and delivered quickly. This material is also useful in creating parts for applications where durability and robustness are critical requirements (e.g., automobile components, electronic housings, medical products, large panels and snap-fit parts).
DSM Somos Watershed® XC 11122
Watershed 11122 is arguably the world's clearest SLA material and is virtually colorless at any thickness. It is a prototype material that looks like polycarbonate and is ideal for many applications in the automotive, medical and consumer electronics markets which require clear prototype parts including: Prototype Lenses, Packaging, Water flow analysis, RTV patterns, Silicon Mold Patterns, Durable Concept Models, Wind Tunnel Testing models, Quickcast patterns and Investment Casting patterns.
This clear prototype material is also great for clients who want to see wire or circuit board interference and interaction inside assemblies once the outer shells are assembled. Somos 11122 has been formulated with DSM Somos Oxetane Advantage giving it outstanding water resistance and high dimensional stability.
DSM Somos 18420
Protogen 18420 is an all purpose ABS like Rapid Prototyping material. Its formulation is based upon DSM Somos Oxetane chemistry which offers superior chemical resistance and industry leading low humidity absorption. Heat Treated Somos 18420 raises Rapid Prototype parts resistance to heat to nearly 100 degrees Celsius making it an ideal choice for parts needing to be used in high heat or high humidity environments.
DSM Somos NeXT
This "next" generation material really does own up to its name. It combines stiffness and impact resistance which brings it closer than ever before to an injection molded thermoplastic than virtually any other SLA material. Applications include short run manufacturing, functional end use performance prototypes such as snap-fit designs, impellers, duct work, connectors, electronic covers, automotive housings, dashboard assemblies, packaging and sporting goods.
ALM RM650 - Nylon 12
SLS Nylon 12 is our most popular LS material when it comes to rapid manufacturing. It is white in color and combines strength, durability and chemical resistance. Essentially producing strong, durable , end use prototype parts. SL parts are superior to FDM (Fused Deposition Modeling) parts in that they are less porous, more precise and have less noticeable build lines. LS systems build in .004-.006 inch layers while FDM layer thickness is between .007-.013 inches.
ALM FR106 - Nylon 11
This Rapid Prototyping nylon material has certain additives in the raw material that allows it to pass aeronautic standard FAR25.853 smoke, flame, and toxicity tests. This material is ideal for Aeronautic applications and any other application that needs self extinguishing properties for rapid prototype parts or V0 flammability ratings.
3D systems A6 tool steel
A6 tool steel is ideal for rapid tooling applications and for clients who need metal prototype parts at a competitive rate. This rapid prototype metal material is actually a blend of stainless steel and bronze. A6 is great for producing rapid tooling inserts quickly and inexpensively. Typical lead times are between 4 and 8 days. Depending on the tolerances required, post machining may be needed. If this is the case then machining stock should be added the CAD drawings.
3D systems Castform
Castform is a wax infiltrated polystyrene prototype material used to fabricate master patterns made of wax for foundries. Prototype aluminum castings are the most popular for this material. Larger bulkier parts with complex geometry work best for this method of 3D printing using wax.
Objet Digital Materials
Digital Materials™ is an Objet Geometries Trademark and refers to the mixing of different materials at varying ratios to obtain desired part properties when producing Objet prototypes.
Tango and Vero DM (Digital Material)
The most popular digital materials are Vero White Plus and Tango Black plus which let you dial the shore hardness, from 27A to 95A, of parts. This technology also allows parts to have a multitude of durometers allowing clients to simulate over molded prototype parts without having to do any post assembly.
By combining RGD515 and RGD 535, the Objet Connex machine is able to build 3D printed parts with characteristics similar to engineered plastics. Heat resistant prototype parts and impact resistant prototype parts are the two prime benefits of Connex printed parts using RGD5160-DM.
ABS Plus ABS plus rapid prototyping material can be run in almost any Stratasys FDM machine. Build layers range from .007 - .010 inches. ABS Plus is a new and improved version of FDM straight ABS. ABS Plus FDM material comes in a variety of colors allowing you to build color rapid prototypes. However, colors cannot be mixed in the same build. For multi color parts, each part has to be built on a separate FDM machine and assembled post build. ABS Plus has water soluble supports which makes clean up easy.
PPSF PPSF (polyphenylsulfone) offers the greatest strength, heat and chemical resistance of any FDM material. It is ideal for Aerospace, Automotive, and Medical prototypes. It is Tan in color and builds in layers of .010". PPSF material needs special support material which can sometimes be tricky to break off the FDM parts.
Stainless steel - PH1 (AKA ss316) This Stainless steel prototyping material is incredibly tough and resistant to heat and oxidization. It is used in medical applications and for complex tooling inserts such as tooling inserts with conformal cooling channels. PH1 can be tempered for even greater part properties.
Marging Steel - MS1 Marging steel is slightly more cost effective than PH1 and will deliver a much higher precision metal prototype that the SLS A6 tooling steel material. This means greater cost and time savings when it comes to the final step of machining the tooling insert or prototype if needed.