Fast prototyping and filling commercial pipeline

Speedy prototyping and filling industrial pipeline

Strategies and apparatus provide a implies to rapidly develop and modify fast prototype surface coverings for buyer assessment and approval, and fill the commercial pipeline whilst much more standard production equipment is obtained, installed and tested. The present apparatus to speedy prototype and fill the industrial pipeline contains a digital printing system to print a film and a press for laminating and embossing the printed film to a substrate. The press makes use of an embossing plate or roll, which is made from ebonite or by 3-dimensional printing gear. These plates and rolls can be developed within two or 3 days or much less.

A technique of fast prototyping and manufacture of surface coverings obtaining a substrate, a print layer and a put on layer, the technique comprising: a. making aprototype surface covering making use of a digital printing method to print the print layer and a press to emboss the put on layer, wherein the press comprises an embossing tool chosen from the group consisting of an embossing plate and an embossing roll, theembossing tool created by 3-dimensional printing, and b. using the digital printing method and press to fill the commercial item pipeline.

Building new designs for surface coverings, by creating a prototype to show a potential consumer prior to producing a mass created product accessible, is costly and normally takes 3 months or a lot more. This is mostly due to the expense and timeto create print cylinders and embossing cylinders.

Consumers are demanding shorter and shorter development instances and a lot more input into the final design and style of the item. It would be advantageous to have a means to quickly (inside a matter of days) modify a style, generate a prototype that willfaithfully imitate the final product, and be capable of producing industrial quantities of the final product at a price to meet initial industrial demand.

Current methods of prototyping surface covering are pricey, simply because every single change in style requires the rotogravure printing cylinder and the regular embossing roll to be re-etched or re-engraved. If the surface covering is chemicallyembossed, any alter in the chemical embossing also calls for re-etching or re-engraving of the print cylinder. The approach of remaking the cylinders is pricey and time consuming.

The present invention overcomes this disadvantage by employing digital printing to make fast changes in the print pattern and chemical embossing pattern. The chemical embossing pattern is created by printing a blowing agent modifier, such as ablowing inhibitor or a blowing accelerator.

The present invention also utilizes mechanical embossing tools that can be developed inside two or three days. The embossed plates utilised in a stacker press are less costly and quicker to make than the conventional mechanical embossing rolls utilised in thetypical manufacture of tile and sheet goods. Ebonite embossing cylinders and embossing plates, and cylinders and plates produced by three-dimensional printing gear can also be created inside two or 3 days. For that reason, the rapid prototyping of thesurface covering needed by the present invention is achieved.

Additional, time to market place is considerably shortened by making use of the digital printing system, stacker press, ebonite mechanical embossing cylinders and plates, or mechanical embossing cylinders and plates produced by three-dimensional printing equipmentto fill the industrial item pipeline. Although the pipeline is becoming filled, the classic rotogravure printing cylinders and mechanical embossing rolls can be made, and the much less costly to manufacture production line, which involves the rotogravureprinting cylinders and mechanical embossing rolls, can be set up. As soon as the rotogravure printing and mechanical embossing line is up and running, the digital printing technique and stacker press, ebonite embossing rolls or 3-dimensional printing rollsmay be used to develop an additional new tile or sheet goods.

In a preferred embodiment, the prototypes and industrial product which fills the commercial pipeline uses a digital printing program and an embossing technique in which the embossing tool can be created within two or three days. The digital printingsystem permits speedy and versatile altering of the prototype design.

Whilst the prototyping embossing systems that are envisioned produce tile at a slower price than common tile manufacturing lines and do not use an embossing tool getting a long industrial production lifespan, the tools can be created inside two orthree days and are sturdy enough to make sufficient industrial product to fill the commercial pipeline and permit time to manufacture and install the normal commercial embossing tools.

One purpose of this invention is to enable the user to fast prototype and/or manufacture vinyl tiles T, either the standard residential sort D.I.Y. vinyl tiles or luxury vinyl tiles sheet goods S, like residential and commercialresilient flooring and other surface coverings, especially these that are printed and mechanically embossed. At present, the manufacturing procedure utilized to create and generate vinyl tile and sheet goods can take as lengthy as 90 days. The presentinvention will substantially lessen the cycle-time to create such vinyl tiles and sheet goods to as quick as a single week or significantly less, thereby providing the user a important marketplace benefit.

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(Post from rapid prototyping companies in china blog)

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