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Old 09-16-2010, 12:26 AM
Visions Visions is offline
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Replicating parts

#1) Find a local 3D Laser Scanning Company
#2) Have it scanned
#3) It will be in a 3D Cad program and they can easily reverse it.
#4) Take the Cad design to a milling company and have it milled in Styrofoam. You'll be given options of the types of foams. The harder it is , the better your finish will be. The 3D Scanning company will know of somewhere in your area to have this done if you can't find them.
#5) Perfectly finish the foam
#6) Make a mold...for the best molding products use "Smooth-On " rubbers... Silicone mold rubbers are the best but you can use RTV that can be used many times and when finished you melt them down and start over... Quite simply to make the mold you seal the item,,,use a mold release... brush/spray/pour rubber over it,,, put a cast around it for supporting the rubber,,,called a mother mold... then cast your fiberglass resin/mesh into the mold.. put in each layer and roll it out to release air.. get your thickness you want (predetermine the amount of layers ) let completely cure and you are done... Again,, Silicone rubbers are the best for resins as the resin will not stick to the silicone and a release agent won't be needed. You can confirm this at Smooth-On

Note,,, do not finish the foam by adding layers of fiberglass mesh as the resulting part will be thicker then the original.. you only want to remove all voids in the foam to make it completely and perfectly smooth.. this is also why you want the foam to be very hard so that your sanding won't easily change the shape of the foam.

Anyone wanting to manufacture small parts,,, search 3D Laser Scanning and Rapid Prototyping,, you'll be amazed how they can make parts with a laser etc,, like laser printing of prototype parts.

If you like to tinker around and make things.. you can make your own scanner and have it import the data into a Cad program... Just search the web and you'll find info on how to do it... Of course you could buy a scanner but they aren't cheap... but would be perfect for someone making replica parts and well worth it.

If it turns out to be to expensive,,,think Alibaba dot com
Good luck

Last edited by Visions; 09-16-2010 at 12:51 AM.
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