Point Me in the Direction? Toy Prototypes

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Orange Man, Feb 11, 2013.

  1. Orange Man
    Orange Man New Member
    A lot of customers want me to make them toy versions of the 3d models I make. Due to the frequency of that request, I want to start "Getting my ducks in a row".

    Last experience; I created a shapeways compatible model, price came out to 108$ for prototype. Well and good. Customer called another company who says they prefer to start with a clay figure and create molds based on that.

    So my million dollar question:

    In extending my 3d services to include toys, which connections should I have? What homework should I be doing right now?
    Obviously shapeways is only a prototyping solution, so I'd like to know what you professionals do.

    Thanks a lot! I love this place :D.
  2. UniverseBecoming
    UniverseBecoming Well-Known Member
    That depends on your bank roll. If you have tens of thousands to spend on tooling up for each toy, then you'd want to consult the Thomas Register for plastic injection manufactures. The Thomas Register has been around for decades and is one of the top resources in the world for finding manufactures and suppliers.

    On the other hand, if you don't have a huge bank roll, there is a step up from Shapeways and a step below the ultra high volume manufactures. Places like, Quickparts for example will tool up for a plastic injection short production run without spending a small fortune.

    Then there is the do it yourself option. Where you use a company like Shapeways to make the molds for you and then use castible resins like those you can obtain from Smooth-on to mass produce your parts.

    This last option is part of the revolution that is happening in manufacturing. A revolution cuz, just a few years ago you would have had to spend thousands of dollars at the least to get your hands on those molds, whereas now, with 3D printing becoming accessible to everyone, you can get those molds for a few hundred dollars or less.

    Good luck with your endeavors. :)
  3. Orange Man
    Orange Man New Member
    A wonderful reply which spares me from mountains of research and speculation. Thanks very much.