We also realise technical finishing treatments for prototypes by request, especially for plastic material versions. Surface finishes can confer an exceptional appeal to the look of prototypes, which is most useful when displayed at exhibitions, show cases for designs etc. The prototypes in semi-transparent materials can be treated to achieve completely transparent finishes which are ideal for lenticular parts or assembly shells that allow viewing of the internal components.
|Semi-transparent yellow amber resin as per the 3D construction||Addition of sandblasting and sanding up to P240, transparent lacquer||Addition of sandblasting and sanding up to P400, transparent lacquer|
Sandblasting or micro shot blasting are the most simple aesthetic finishes applicable to prototypes. This procedure is implemented by machines that use a controlled process to shoot ultra-fine granules of glass and steel microspheres which aim to polish the rough areas of the prototypes. The final result is an even aesthetic appearance of all sides of the object and an overall reduction in rough surfaces.
Painting is actually a combination of mechanical and physical procedures used to eliminate or cover prototype finishes. The mechanical processes used are usually surface preparation operations, more specifically sanding or sandblasting. These phases are usually followed by the actual covering process, i.e. stucco work and painting.
The different degrees of painting finishes are as follows:
Technical finish: sandblasting or shot blasting and coats of acrylic paint (the texture of the constructional layers are still visible but the aesthetic appearance is evened out and finished for presentation to technicians).
Aesthetic finish: Sanding, stucco work and coats of primer and paint (the texture is almost completely concealed and is only visible from close up, less than 60 cm for an expert operator).
High standard aesthetic finish: Sanding and stucco work are repeated 2 or 3 times, followed by coats of primer, paint and a cost of transparent lacquer (the texture is invisible, the object is smooth and finished off, and has a higher colour depth and gloss). This type of finish can take a number of days to complete and is only practical on sleeker surfaces without too much carving or machining, given that the stucco work and sanding in such areas is extremely difficult.
Polishing or brushing are the most popular finishing procedures for metal parts using machines fitted with fabric and pumice stone pads that smoothen and polish all reachable surfaces. Here are some examples of polished objects. N.B.: polishing can soften sharp edges and "fine" details of the components.