At PI Castings we can manufacture high quality cast metal rapid prototypes. In order to produce rapid prototype investment castings we need certain information. The rapid prototype design information that we require is as follows:

The required component must be designed as a 3D solid or surface representation. All of the required design features such as corner radii and machining allowances must be included in the CAD design, as they will be faithfully reproduced on the model. It is essential to discuss technical and design details with our engineers at an early stage to ensure that the component features are suitable for the casting process.

rapid prototype design information - aerospace castings produced from aluminium by precision investment castings


P. I. Castings have made cast metal rapid prototypes with dimensions up to 660mm. Dimensional tolerances depend on the configuration of the part and would be wider than normal investment casting tolerances produced from conventional tooling. Depending on the process used, the models may not have as fine a surface as a normal investment casting, but it is possible to smooth the models to give a generally acceptable surface finish.

rapid prototype design information - aluminium medical castings manufactured through investment casting


Parts can be cast in our very wide range of investment casting materials, including Low Alloy Steels, Stainless Steels, Nickel and Cobalt based alloys, Carbon Steels, Magnetic Irons, Aluminium, Zinc, Brass and Bronze.

rapid prototype design information - aluminuim optical castings manufactured by investment casting


The cost of making models will depend on size, configuration, quantity and the technique used. The height of the model particularly affects the model build-up time and cost. In the casting operations, the largest influence on price is the quantity required as well as the complexity and the material.


For producing the Rapid Prototype models, an STL file of the solid 3D CAD data is required. If you do not have an STL facility, then please send an IGES solid model file and we will convert it. Any STL files should be set at the finest definition; it is important that the chord height needs to be at 0.01mm to minimise any flats on curved surfaces.

Get in touch

If you have any questions about our Investment Casting services, Machining services, Rapid Prototyping services or Low Cost Sourcing services, please make contact with one of our capable engineers and they will provide you with more information