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Breaking the Mold of Mold Production for Composite Materials

Breaking the Mold of Mold Production for Composite Materials

A well-known adage says that “time waits for no person”, and these words have never been truer than in today’s rapidly evolving and innovation-driven marketplace. Small and large businesses around the world invest vast sums of money every year in efforts to save time and improve overall efficiency. This is especially true for such fast-paced and labor-intensive industries as composite materials, where production capacity is strictly limited to the number of actual molds being used to create the product.

What would you say if we told you that you create composite molds in days, not weeks? You can create 75 parts, from 6 molds, in only 30 days!

Leveraging a robust portfolio of more than 50 active patent assets, our visionaries and engineers have brought our newest additive manufacturing system to life – the Massivit 10000, featuring the patented Cast-In-Motion (CIM) technology which aims to entirely disrupt all previous notions of workflow for tooling and mold production.

Digitalizing composites mold production – Massivit 10000 microfactory.

Cast-In-Motion: A Unique Blend of Sciences

The genius of this newest innovation in industrial grade, large-scale 3D printers lies in its seamless integration of pioneering hardware, software, and chemistry technologies to develop a novel method for mold production, called Cast-In-Motion (CIM) technology. The end result, compared with traditional legacy methods of mold-forming, is a drastic reduction in the number of steps in the process – the same product that once took nineteen independent stages to achieve is now possible in just 4 simple steps! The digital heart and soul of the Massivit 10000 enables composite manufacturers to automate and simplify their molding workflow while also facilitating complex geometries at the click of a finger. This shift in paradigm for molding means a significant reduction of necessary high-skilled labor as well as decreasing labor-associated costs.

At its core, the revolutionary Cast-In-Motion technology achieves its remarkable results by using two different heads – a printing head and a casting head – to simultaneously create both the production mold and its “sacrificial” outer shell. The printing head leads the way, deploying an advanced formulation of rapid-curing, thermoset photopolymer material to create a water-breakable outer shell – essentially a template of the mold to be formed. Following closely on its heels, the casting head employs the groundbreaking CIM technology to fill our advanced isotropic composite casting material into the cavity between the outer shells, forming what will eventually be the mold itself.

Cast-In-Motion technology. Printing head and casting head on Massivit 10000 – Automated tooling

Upon completion of the rapid curing process with the use of UV rays, the entire print – the shell and its internal mold – is then dipped into a bath of plain, clean water, which causes the sacrificial outer shell to crumble, revealing the formed mold inside.

Unattended shell removal. Water breakable sacrificial shell crumbling in plain water

 

All that remains is for the mold itself to be oven cured, cleaned, and polished before it is ready to enter the production chain. The availability of groundbreaking polymers enables the Massivit 10000 to produce molds that possess enhanced mechanical properties such as heat and chemical-resistance, high strength and resilience, and a Coefficient of Thermal Expansion (CTE) similar  to aluminum! 

Saving Resources and Increasing Output

 

As if an 80% reduction in the amount of time required to produce industrial grade composite molds weren’t enough – days instead of weeks! – the Massivit 10000 is also much friendlier to both the bank account and the environment. Its unique capabilities can lead to a 90% reduction in labor costs and an overall cost reduction of approximately 50%, making it a game changer for composites manufacturers and mold makers alike. Thanks to an impressively high throughput and the lack of need to produce a separate, external support structure, material waste is greatly reduced compared with traditional methods, resulting in lower expenditures while helping to safeguard the planet and its resources for future generations.

Thus, nineteen painstaking and time-consuming steps requiring a plethora of materials and technical experts, have been streamlined down to just four simple steps. It is also worth noting that no sacrifices or compromises of quality or scope have been made and the Massivit 10000 capable of yielding individual components with dimensions up to 4.65 x 3.6 x 4.9 feet (1420 x 1110 x 1500 mm)!

 

What Can the Massivit 10000 Do For You?

 

The implications of our highly disruptive combination of innovative technologies will undoubtedly have a resounding domino effect on the entire composites production chain across the gamut of industries, ultimately trickling down to affect individual consumers around the world. Such a significant reduction in the time and material resources required to produce industrial-grade FRP molds means that manufacturers can avail themselves of numerous unique design and prototype options.

For example, yacht-builders can offer a wider range of custom dashboards, radar wings, and other components that can be created ultra fast from molds 3D printed with optimized thermoset materials on the 10000. Airplane manufacturers can redesign cabin interiors to be more modular and efficient, increasing comfort while also reducing weight. Automotive companies can allow their customers to personalize their vehicles, while at the same time almost eliminating the need for bulky and expensive inventories. 

Of course, these are just a few examples. The implementation of this new technology across a wide range of industries and applications means significant improvements can be made in products that touch everyone. Production for consumer recreation, building and infrastructure, energy, transportation, health care, and even the defense industry will be changed forever. The Massivit 10000 is ultra-fast while producing very little material waste, yielding lightweight and strong molds, and saving serious amounts of extremely valuable resources in the process. It’s no surprise that new and existing customers alike are clamoring for Massivit 3D’s newest and most innovative model yet, cementing its place as one of the most advanced AM tooling systems on the market.

 

Want to hear more about how we can help your business? Contact us today!

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