3D Printing - Manufacturing-Tooling Solution - Modular Fixtures
A modular fixturing system is a versatile alternative to a single–purpose, dedicated fixture. Constructed from a kit of interchangeable components, the modular fixture is easily reconfigured for any work-holding application. When not in use, the fixture can be dismantled for convenient storage. Modular systems are ideal for intermittent or one–time use. They are commonly used to stage parts for CMM inspections, hold work pieces during machining, position parts when bonding or assembling. For these applications, the modular system saves time and reduces cost.
While the majority of the modular fixture is constructed from standard components, the interface is custom made with FDM technology on a Fortus 3D Production System. At each support point, an FDM contact element acts as the transition from the part’s surface to the fixture’s grid plate, pillar or beam. These contact elements can be manually designed in CAD, but this design effort may take more time than that to construct the FDM elements.
How it works
The Process of Creating a Modular Fixturing System
Option A - Use CAD program
Option B - Use Materialise RapidFit
1. Import the STL file of the part to be fixtured into Magics RapidFit. Also, import or create the files for the modular components of the fixture.
2. Begin the design by positioning the part, grid plate, pillars and beams in the desired configuration.
3. To create the custom contact elements, select the fixture support points and specify the type of contact to use and the direction to the grid plate. The RapidFit software will automatically create the contact elements and label each with a location and part name. RapidFit also documents the assembly plan.
Manufacture Fixture Components:
Import the STLs of the contact elements into Insight and prepare them for building. All Fortus materials and build styles may be used. However, ABS–M30, PC, PC-ABS with soluble supports and a solid fill are recommended. When the build is complete, simply remove the support structures and proceed to assembly.
Gather the grid plate, pillars, beams and FDM components. Following the assembly instructions, place the FDM components on the beams and pillars, and connect the beams to the grid plate. The modular fixture is now ready for its inspection or manufacturing application.
The Proto3000 Advantage
Modular systems are ideal for intermittent or one–time use. They are commonly used to stage parts for CMM inspections, hold work pieces during machining, position parts when bonding or assembling. For these applications, the modular system saves time and reduces cost. Our manufacturing facility is equipped with the latest and most precise 3D printers to create the best solutions for your rapid prototyping, concept modeling and display part finishing projects. Contact the Proto3000 Services Team for further information on how we can help you with this solution. If you want to speak to a LIVE PERSON - CALL 1-888-88-PROTO (77686).
The Technology Used for Creating 3D Printed Concept Models
Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) Technology
Using FDM technology allows affordability and durability by printing concept models with production-grade thermoplastics.
FDM 3D Printers are office friendly and they produce small models in hours and large models in days. The FDM printed models can be drilled, sanded and painted according to your preference to create a perfect finishing of your prototype.
PolyJet 3D Printing Technology
As a 3D printing process, this technology produces amazingly realistic models. The printing technology builds accurate models by incorporating multiple materials into one automated part to create prototypes that look and feel like finished products. With fine details, smooth surfaces, rigid housings, soft-touch buttons, lettering, rubberlike seals and even clear components, your models can look the part at a trade show, a presentation or even during a sales pitch.