RPC Design has invested £220,000 in new equipment – including 3D printing technology – to further enhance its new packaging development services.
The new Connex 3 Objet 500 liquid polymer printer can print items – including a container with a label – in up to 5L in size and with a 0.8mm wall, enabling the early creation of physical designs for assessment and further adjustments, explained the company.
In addition, the Connex is able to print prototype tooling for injection molding, blow molding and vacuum forming, from which a series of packs can be produced in the relevant polymer (around 100 blow molded, 35 injection molded and 10 vacuum formed) for compatibility and line testing.
"Speed-to-market is a vital factor in any design project," explained RPC Design Manager Brian Lodge. "Our 3D printer means creative concepts can very quickly be turned into physical items, allowing important decisions to be taken earlier in order to move the project to the next stage. This greatly speeds up the process of successfully getting the pack into production and on-shelf."
RPC Design has also installed a Faro 3D scanning arm, which is able to accurately measure existing packs and convert this data into a CAD file. This allows adjustments and enhancements to an original design to be carried out more easily.