Digital manufacturing provider Protolabs announced an expansion of the production capabilities that customers can access within its global CNC machining service. Through Protolabs’ manufacturing partner network at Hubs, product developers and buyers from around the world can leverage advanced machining capabilities designed to lower part costs, improve tolerances, broaden finishing options, and make possible larger and more complex part designs. These expanded capabilities complement the quick-turn CNC machining services already available from Protolabs.
“Constant innovation is at the forefront of everything we do,” said Rob Bodor, President and CEO at Protolabs. “Customers not only have access to the fastest machining service in the marketplace; with this launch, they now have the most comprehensive.”
Users can upload a 3D CAD model for machining on protolabs.com to access the expanded options inside Protolabs’ online quoting platform, which are then fulfilled by Protolabs’ digital factories or one of its digitally enabled manufacturing partners. All of the advanced machining capabilities are now live and available to customers.
With volume pricing options, customers will be able to lower their overall piece-part price as quantity increases—up to thousands of machined parts. Tighter tolerances down to ±0.0008 in. (0.020mm) are now achievable as are complete parts with all features milled, holes tapped, and post-process finishing applied. Regarding finishing options, plating (black oxide, nickel), anodizing (Type II, Type III), and chromate coating in larger quantities are available. And parts as large as 40 in. (1,000mm) to as small as 0.02 in. (0.5mm) are supported.
“This is a step change in what we can offer customers at Protolabs,” said Greg Thompson, the company’s global product director of machining. “As we’ve grown into a more robust prototyping-to-production provider, customers who need parts quickly, with precision, and tailored to their specific design requirements now have a single supplier to accomplish that. It’s a true one-stop-shop for machining.”