Prototype Steps to getting your First Product
Having a prototype made is one of the many steps in creating a new design. Prototypes have many benefits such as helping you test your design and make any needed changes to your future product before production.
It may also help you in getting a patent for your product since it shows that you have thoroghly thought out and tested your ideas.
Conceptualize Your Product
Drafting your ideas on paper can be a great aid in designing your project. Figuring out the general form, fit, and function of your product and writing it down can help hone in on what the critical aspects of your product are. The next step would be to draft some basic sketches. This will serve as a basic foundation in helping desig the engineer files.
Prototype Steps: Engineer Drawings
Now you should be ready to have engineer drawings made. Depending on the complexity of the project, it may be necessary to have both 2D PDF drawings and 3D STEP files made. Contact an engineer who will have access to the software necessary to create these files. 3D STEP files will help manufacturers pinpoint hard to see dimensions and help answer questions they may have before.
Making a Prototype
Once you have engineer files drafted, you are ready to take them to prototype manufacturers to get them produced. Having a physical prototype produced will allow you to test it and identify anything wrong with the designs. It is best to have another prototype made , to save money, If there are any major changes needing to be made to the design. It’s much cheaper to have several prototypes made than to be stuck with a bad shipment of parts due to a faulty design.
Find a Manufacturer
Next it is important to figure out what kind of manufacturer you are going to source from. For small orders, it may be cheaper to order domestically. For higher volume orders, it can be very lucrative to look overseas, such as China. Lower labor and material costs make outsourcing an ideal choice for many types of products.