Main Classification Of Prototype

Main classification of prototype

A prototype is a functional sample made according to the product’s appearance or structural drawings without the use of molds, used to check the appearance or structural rationality. Prototype is also known as the first board in different places.


According to the production method, the prototype can be divided into manual prototype and CNC prototype:

(1) Manual prototype: Its main workload is completed by hand. Manual prototypes are divided into ABS prototypes and clay prototypes

(2) CNC prototype: Its main workload is completed using CNC machine tools, and depending on the equipment used, it can be divided into laser rapid prototyping (SLA) prototype, machining center (CNC) prototype, and RP prototype (3D printing).


A: An RP prototype is typically created by means of 3D printing technology. Laser rapid prototyping – commonly referred to as SLA prototyping – is another form of 3D printing and should not be confused with being solely an “RP” prototype.

B: CNC Prototype: This term generally refers to any prototype produced using CNC Machining Center technology.


Comparable to CNC prototype, RP prototype offers several distinct advantages:

RP prototypes’ primary advantage lies in their speed; however, since they primarily rely on stacking technology to produce them. As a result, these RP prototypes tend to be relatively rough, and there may be specific wall thickness requirements which must be met – for instance if their wall thickness falls too thin it cannot be produced.


The advantage of CNC prototype is that it can accurately reflect the information expressed in the drawings, and the surface quality of CNC prototype is high, especially after it is finished with surface coating and silk screen printing, which is even more dazzling than the product produced after mold opening. Therefore, CNC prototype manufacturing is increasingly becoming the mainstream of prototype manufacturing.

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