Mould making / Rapid manufacturing

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Rapid technology change


Machinery went to visit a one-of-a-kind rapid prototyping/rapid manufacturing facility in the UK and heard how technology change is shaping its future direction more in favour of metal parts production.

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Competitive advances


Faster EDM; faster programming; better tooling; CADCAM developments; the use aluminium instead of steel tools; mould and die makers have many routes to better productivity.

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Beneficial research


Julia Moore, GTMA CEO, explains why the Association is committed to helping members participate in – and benefit from - leading EU-funded research and development projects.

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Toolmakers invest


Its no secret that the UK toolmaking sector has been battered by overseas competition. But for those that have invested, there's business to be had.

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Alive with technology


The growing healthcare industry is providing challenging work in parallel with opportunity for growth to UK sub-contractors. The work demands leading edge technology and for those willing to invest, rewards follow. And ...

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Looking back to the future


Omega Plastics is employing the old 'Master Mouldmaker' model of manufacturing in an effort to compete effectively in the area of UK-made complex mould tools. It is also allied to a Chinese company for more simple work, ...

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Manufacturing or service


Protomold is a mould tool maker and prototype parts moulder. To these two traditional processes it has added novel software to provide a claimed unique service offering. So is it a manufacturer or a service provider?

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Modern mould machining


Newer techniques like high-speed and 5-axis machining can make companies more competitive. At the same time, better machine tools, fitted with faster controllers, using the latest cutters and programmed with modern CAM ...

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A message to you


Newly appointed GTMA president Dr Tony Steels calls for change throughout UK manufacturing, asking engineers to leverage their expertise in new business sectors and in new ways

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The view from Portugal


Although Portugal was the world’s eighth largest mould and die maker in 2004 – production estimated to be worth some €335million – some pundits say that there will not be a mould and die industry there at all in 20 ...

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Rapid manufacturing’s rise


The rapid manufacture of parts by melting metal powder has been possible for years, but in the UK remains a minority pursuit. However, there is a new burst of activity that seems to indicate that we are approaching a ...

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Mould tools on the PDQ


Mould and die manufacture in the UK is tough going. Required to have all the skills, equipment and expertise to create complex 3D forms in mould tools that are expected to produce millions of parts, firms are then ...

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Metal deposition drive


Direct Metal Deposition (DMD) was originally developed to offer repair/modification for mould tools. Using a powerful CO2 laser, a pool of molten material is formed on the damaged area of a component, into which is ...

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Lead times halved


Mould tool makers are taking on board the high-speed machining message and the results can be startling, as Oldham-based MTOOL can attest

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Toolmakers – get ahead


A forthcoming Gauge and Toolmakers’ Association (GTMA) report will say that there is some 20 per cent overcapacity in the UK mould tool making industry and that adjustment will occur over the coming years. How then to ...

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Smart components


According to BAE System’s Dr Neil Calder: “Direct Writing [DW] can be seen as a coming together of the fields of rapid prototyping and thick film electronics and there are aspects of it that are common to both."