Doosan Lynx 235The Doosan Lynx 235 in action.
Star Prototype has proven the benefit of its technology investment initiative, after a new piece of machinery secured it a first-time contract from Primary Fluids - Canada's leading metering pump accessories manufacturer.
The China-based British-owned rapid prototyper invested £35,000 in a Doosan Lynx 235 CNC lathe in September 2012 and quickly saw it starting to pay for itself when Primary Fluids placed an order for three different styles of parts for a new pump accessory currently being developed in its Canadian headquarters.
Turned around in just ten days, the job had a number of challenges. There was a long tapered hole down the centre of the component and a series of wavy grooves to be 3D machined on the outside. A specialised boring bar was used to bore the taper, and a 2mm ball-nose cutter used to form the grooves.
Robert Maxemiuk, a buyer for Primary Fluids, said: "Star delivered these parts quickly and professionally. The prototypes met the high standard I demand from any supplier and are currently being fine-tuned before the applications for patent are submitted."
Computer Numerical Control (CNC) is a process that enables the automated production of products and prototypes from CAD and CAM computer programmes. Because the creation of such products often requires various tools, CNC machines feature a single cell that incorporates everything from drills to saws.
The flexibility of Star's Doosan Lynx lathe is such that it can be used with a wide range of materials, including plastics, aluminium, steel, stainless steel, titanium, brass and copper.
Gordon Styles, managing director of Star Prototype, said: "My aim for Star is to position it at the forefront of technological development in the rapid prototyping industry.
"This process has already seen us invest well over £1 million in new machinery and technology during the last two years and will certainly see us invest considerably more during in the near future."
Star Prototype is a full service rapid prototyping company based in the Guangdong Province of China. Opened in 2005 by Gordon Styles, the former owner of British-based Styles RPD, the company has created a niche for itself by offering western quality at Chinese prices.