Frequently Asked Questions

How quickly can you provide me with a quote?

This usually depends on the type of prototype or model you require. If it is a simple project, we can provide a quote on the same day. But for more complicated projects that require different methods and multiple parts, we may take a little longer to come up with a bespoke solution to your problem.

What file forms can I send my model in?

We prefer STL files for 3D printing / Additive Manufacturing processes; however we can also accept:

  • amf
  • mgx
  • dxf
  • zpr
  • wrl
  • igs
  • .stp

Is the REQUEST A QUOTE form secured?

Yes. We have an FTP site, which means you can transfer data across the internet safely. The site is encoded and password protected

How can I save my file in STL format?

See below how to create STL files from the different programs :

Alibre

# File
# Export
# Save As >STL
# Enter File Name
# Save

AutoCAD

# Your design must be a three-dimensional solid object to output an STL file.
# Make sure the model is in positive space
# Set Facetres to 10
# At the command prompt type STLOUT
# Select Objects
# Choose Y for Binary
# Choose Filename

CadKey / KeyCreator

# Choose Stereo lithography from Export options
# Enter the filename
# Click OK

I-DEAS

# File >Export >Rapid Prototype File >OK
# Select the Part to be Prototyped
# Select Prototype Device >SLA500.dat >OK
# Set absolute facet deviation to 0.000395
# Select Binary >OK

Inventor

# Save Copy As
# Select STL
# Choose Options >Set to High
# Enter File Name
# Save

IronCAD

# Right Click on the part
# Part Properties >Rendering
# Set Facet Surface Smoothing to 150
# File >Export
# Choose .STL

Mechanical Desktop

# Use the AMSTLOUT command to export your STL file.
# The following command line options affect the quality of the STL and should be adjusted to produce an acceptable file.
# Angular Tolerance - This command limits the angle between the normals of adjacent triangles.
# The default setting is 15 degrees. Reducing the angle will increase the resolution of the STL file.
# Aspect Ratio - This setting controls the Height/Width ratio of the facets. A setting of 1 would mean the height of a facet is no greater than its width. The default setting is 0, ignored.
# Surface Tolerance - This setting controls the greatest distance between the edge of a facet and the actual geometry. A setting of 0.0000 causes this option to be ignored.
# Vertex Spacing - This option controls the length of the edge of a facet. The default setting is 0.0000, ignored.

Pro/E

# File >Save a Copy
# Set type to STL
# Set chord height to 0. The field will be replaced by minimum acceptable value.
# Set Angle Control to 1
# Choose File Name
# OK

Rhino

# File >Save As
# Select File Type >STL
# Enter a name for the STL file.
# Save
# Select Binary STL Files

SolidDesigner

# File >External >Save STL
# Select Binary mode
# Select Part
# Enter 0.001mm for Max Deviation Distance # Click OK

SolidEdge

# File >Save As
# Set Save As Type to STL
# Options
# Set Conversion Tolerance to 0.001in or 0.001mm.
# Set Surface Plane Angle to 45.00
# Save

SolidWorks

# File >Save As
# Set Save As Type to STL
# Options >Output As=Binary, Unit = Inches
# Resolution > Custom, Deviation Tolerance = Minimum (Slide bar to right), Angle Tolerance = 5 degrees
# OK
# Save

Think3

# File >Save As
# Set Save As Type to STL
# Save

Unigraphics

# File >Export >Rapid Prototyping
# Set Output type to Binary
# Set Triangle Tolerance to 0.0025
# Set Adjacency Tolerance to 0.12
# Set Auto Normal Gen to On
# Set Normal Display to Off
# Set Triangle Display to On

How do you price parts?

The cost of a part is determined by its volume. This information is used to estimate the time required to build the part. The time is translated to a cost to build the part. The time taken and quality of finish and orientation are also taken in to account on costs.

Is the product green?

Parts are manufactured with an additive process and the result is very little waste. Any excess material is recycled and reused. By rapid prototyping parts we seek to minimize waste of other hazardous materials by eliminating errors at the beginning of the design concept. Using rapid prototyping to validate concepts will limit the amount of time, energy and materials used in later stages of product development.

What is the minimum thickness a part can be printed?

Depending on the technology and the machine setup as follows:

SLS = 0.7 mm or 0.028”

DMLS = 0.2 mm to 0.4 mm or 0.008 “ to 0.016”

SLA = 0.6mm-0.9mm or 0.025" - 0.035"

OBJET = 0.6mm or 0.025”

Z-Corp Technology = 1mm or 0.039”

FDM = 0.6 mm or 0.025”

Where do you ship and how?

Our preferred carrier is Federal Express. However, we can ship using your preferred courier with the exception of Canada Post. Shipping method must be trackable.

Do we do discounts for higher volumes?

When we calculate the price of a model, we take into account the quantity requested, we will look at the volume of material used and the time it takes to print and post process your model and send you a quote. If you want to increase the quantity ordered we will re-calculate the price and in most cases high volume mean lower prices.

We actively encourage 3D printing for production items and will ensure discount prices apply accordingly.

The kind of items we have made for production recently are Printed Circuit board spacers, End of arm tooling components, grippers, camera supports ,Architectural models , brackets, enclosures, Mechanical push arms , UAV landing gear , Promotional items for new product launches ,accessories, awards and artistic statues to name a few.

How do I pay?

We accept Visa and MC. We also use paypal for purchases up to $500.00.

Can you help design my idea?

Depending on the project , we can design in-house or outsource to partners.