There are three main processes used in additive manufacturing to fabricate rapid tooling. Axis Proto can help you obtain the results you need for your application by using any of these three processes.The first uses SLS metal prototyping or DMLS metal prototyping to print tools quickly and accurately. While this is the most costly, they are also the only methods that can produce rapid manufactured parts in the tens of thousands before tools starts to degrade.
The top and bottom of the mold are fabricated using metal prototyping and then placed in a die on a plastic injection machine to produce parts.
The second rapid tooling is a soft tooling process called RTV (Room Temperature Vulcanization), also known as silicone molding using prototypes. Silicone molding using 3D printed parts is ideal for parts which have undercuts because the silicone is pliable, unlike metal or a rigid plastic. Silicone molds typically last for 25 parts. Master model prototypes are used to make the master part before the silicone mold is cut in two leaving an empty cavity ready to be filled with a 2 or 3 part vulcanized rubber or urethane.
The third and newest method to produce rapid tooling is to use additive manufacturing technology such as SLA to produce the top and bottom of a mold. This mold will last a very long time but the part to be molded cannot have any undercuts or you will not be able to remove the part once the chemical reaction has taken place and hardened.