The Value of R&D Plating – Validate Your Product Concept

 In Education

Improve designs, reduce costs, & know before you go

One of the most valuable services we offer to customers is the metal plating of prototype, R&D, and pre-production polymer samples. These samples are invaluable to product development because they confirm design strengths and expose needed improvements – permitting relatively inexpensive changes or modifications before requirements are set in stone. Our successful customers treat this up-front investment as an essential step in the development of a product.

Injection Molded Peek Copper Silver Gold

While not all polymers are equally plateable, SAT’s plating technology allows engineers to explore the metallization of a much broader array of composites, many of which were previously considered either impossible or too hard to plate at high volumes. This flexibility frequently enables designers and engineers to use plastics better suited to the product’s designed purpose and performance. That being said, in some cases, the desired polymer and desired metal are not compatible for plating because of low adhesion, substrate porosity, or delamination of polymer layers with additive manufactured parts.

For more details on the complexity of plating non-traditional plastics read Plating Engineered Plastics – Avoid All The Headaches

The time, effort, and materials applied by our experienced platers to even the smallest sample orders are significant. Typically, we receive test coupons or injection-molded examples of a chosen polymer, but increasingly we are asked to metalize complex 3D printed parts made with a variety of techniques and polymers. Many times, SAT is asked to run only a handful of parts. For other clients, we perform large, in-depth “Design of Experiments” on intricate polymer structures with a variety of functional and appearance plating finishes.

Learn more on why our customers consider us partners and collaborators in their product development and design process by contacting us today.


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