All products — big or small — start with an idea. Before you can turn the idea into an actual product, several factors need to be addressed, like its cost, value, complexity, and work-ability. Designers need to test their ideas, so they create working models or prototypes to analyze them.
Designers have several options when choosing the type of prototype for a specific idea. Not only are the prototypes used for testing, but they’re also used to present the concept to an audience in a physical form. With a better understanding of different types of prototypes, you can make an informed decision for your product idea.
What are the Types of Prototypes?
From simple sketches to 3D printing, there are several types of prototypes. Here are the prominent types you need to know.
Diagrams and Sketches
A prototype made out of diagrams and sketches might sound like a concept from the past, but it’s still widely used. It’s the most basic type of prototyping and can be used to prototype a concept anywhere, anytime. You just need paper and pencil to execute it.
Rapid Model: 3D Printing
With the help of computers and 3D printers, designers can quickly create three-dimensional designs of a concept. The 3D prototype helps engineers analyze, test, and adjust any inconsistencies in the original concept.
3D models allow for easy modification after the design is ready. It helps businesses quickly convert their concepts into working products after digitally reprogramming the prototype file. Typically, 3D prototypes are used for complex designs like aircraft parts and engines.
Physical models are used to give a rough idea of the concept. It doesn’t necessarily need to have working parts and is used just for the purpose of scaling before producing a large model. They are used for smaller objects or architectural designs.
A working model is necessary to ensure the product works the way initially intended. Mechanical concepts that need to move in a certain way or function as per the requirements need a working model for testing. Working models are usually created after initial concepts to gauge their workability. They can be modified and adjusted according to the needs of the designer.
With the help of videos, designers can represent their concepts to other designers, business owners, and even the general public. Video simulations and animations help the audience understand and grasp the concept, process, and use of the product. This prototype is used for visualizing complex and large concepts.
Do you have a great concept and want to produce a prototype for its evaluation? At Connekt, LLC, our highly trained experts provide engineering design services and mechanical design services in Auburn. Our innovative design solutions will fit your business needs. We also provide rapid prototyping services and 3D printing services in Auburn. Reach out to us to see how we can help you.