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"Quick" tools development through stereolithography (SLA) for sheet metal forming~An evaluation study
Published June 12, 2000 by Society of Automotive Engineers of Korea in South Korea
Currently, advancements in Rapid Prototyping (RP) technologies have led to considerable amount of research activities and has been playing a major role in the area of tooling development for which Rapid Tooling (RT) term was coined. Rapid prototyping techniques are employed to make prototype tools. While, the basic idea of the rapid tooling is to produce prototype and zero series parts by using prototype tools so the parts truly represent the future production. This paper will present an evaluation of a RP & RT technique in developing tools (punch and dies) for sheet metal forming, which had been manufactured and tested. Both punch and die have been manufactured directly from Stereolithography (SL). The stereolithography technique that had been utilized in developing models for the tools had been built with modeling pattern called QuickCast infiltrated with Aluminum-Filled Epoxy, designated as Quick Tool. The infiltrated material, as a backed-up material, strengthens the durability of the tools to absorb compression force in the sheet metal forming process. This Quick tool has been evaluated in press metal forming (drawing) process of 0.8 mm aluminum sheets. In general, the tool shows a promising performance for forming an aluminum plate so, with minor improvement in tool design; it can be implemented in manufacturing functional sheet metal (drawing) components.