Taking your part to market, fast

Proto Labs is the world's fastest source for custom prototype and low to mid-volume parts. Their 3D printing, CNC machining and injection moulding services, combined with their speed and versatility lets you take your parts from the very early stages of prototyping through to short-run production of 10,000+ parts.

In the current marketplace, speed is essential during the development of a product, it is crucial for an idea to move quickly and confidently from concept to prototype to production. A challenge that developers are increasingly facing is how to accommodate time for design iterations, but keep their product on the critical path to market launch - and get there before the competition. This is where Proto Labs can help.

As an idea evolves into one, or multiple, 3D CAD models, Proto Labs’ website allows all designs to be uploaded simultaneously — at any time of day — with an interactive quote, manufacturability analysis and real-time pricing, all developed within 24 hours.

Within the quote, the number of cavities, surface finish, type of resin and delivery schedule can be adjusted, this will all update in real time. Proto Labs manufacturability analysis reveals any potential design advisories, such as walls that are too thick or too thin, or features that need draft applied.These modifications can be made before any production begins.

Once a customer-approved 3D CAD model is ready to be manufactured, Proto Labs initiates a few more time-saving steps. One of the benefits of being a technology-based company is that automated tool pathing instructions are sent to high-speed CNC machines to either mill a mould out of an advanced aluminium alloy, or machine parts from blocks of engineering-grade thermoplastics or metals. The advantage of this automation is production speed, in both machined and moulded parts. With injection moulding, for example, Proto Labs typically cut the manufacturing time for initial parts to one-third of conventional methods.

Speed is at the foundation of Proto Labs; it’s what they excel at. So with the ability to receive quick-turn parts in days, engineers and designers can develop a quality product and get it to market really fast.