Clear Optical Prototypes
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Clear Optical Prototypes

Many applications benefit from using clear machined parts to help view the process or improve aesthetics. Including automotive lighting and lamps, lightpipes and displays all require good optical components characteristics. We focus on the details of the parts and have the knowledge of clear prototype required to machine without blemishes. The final product is clear and free of any marks or scratches.

SPECIALIZED IN OPTICAL SURFACE MACHINING & POLISHING

Machining acrylic or polycarbonate is one of the main services in Wayken, we have full knowledge of clear prototypes without any marks or scratches. During machining, our practical and flexible way of working allows us to fully support clear and optical prototype development projects from mechanical component design reviews & photometric development engineering test to Show Car lamps projects, we are capable and able to support at all levels.

ACRYLIC MANUAL POLISHING

Acrylic is an excellent light transmission material with characters of shatter resistant and Weather resistant with good UV stability, dimensionally stable Good insulation properties Good thermal stability, etc. Acrylic prototype and other engineering plastics can be polished to improve the surface finish and appearance. CNC Acrylic polishing requires the removal of material and it is essential to achieve a good machined finish before polishing to ensure critical dimensions. Manual polishing requires different grades of polishing process used in conjunction with polishing paste which will remove surface material and leave high quality polished finish on CNC acrylic and other plastics. WayKen hires skillful craftsman with many years of experience in this highly specialized process to gain all above effects.

Lighter than glass, Acrylic is a plexiglass rigid material with good UV stability Good rigidity and hardness Consistent tensile strength at temperatures up to 160°F (71°C) continuous use. Acrylic prototype provides a cost-effective and versatile alternative to glass and other heavier plastics. It easily withstands the heat from sunlight, cold weather, and dramatic temperature changes, making it a reliable performer in applications requiring outdoor exposure. With a clear, colorless and transparent surface, acrylic machining provides nearly distortion-free clarity when used in windows, displays, signage and lighting fixtures.

Acrylic dyes can be used to give objects penetrating colors capable of surviving minor scratches. In an appropriately size container, place ample warm water (70 ℃) to cover the part, mix in acrylic dye powder to the desired color and bonding agent in quantities as prescribed; Place the part in the mixture and let it sit until it reaches the desired pigmentation; Remove the part and let it air dry thoroughly to give the part a bright, clear and high-gloss finish.

Acrylic dyes can be used to give objects penetrating colors capable of surviving minor scratches. In an appropriately size container, place ample warm water (70 ℃) to cover the part, mix in acrylic dye powder to the desired color and bonding agent in quantities as prescribed; Place the part in the mixture and let it sit until it reaches the desired pigmentation; Remove the part and let it air dry thoroughly to give the part a bright, clear and high-gloss finish.

POLYCARBONATE VAPOR POLISHING

Polycarbonate polish is the most commonly polished transparent plastic. It is only secondly to acrylic in clarity. Machining Polycarbonate is readily polished via vapor polishing and is typically the method of choice for most applications. Vapor polishing can be used to enhance component features on materials such as polycarbonate or acrylic. Vapor polishing is ideally suited to the polishing polycarbonate of small features and offers improvements to internal and external surface finishes. Minor scratches and other small surface irregularities can be removed from machining polycarbonate parts by vapor polishing. The process is performed with a chemical vapor, which attacks the surface of the plastic and smoothes it. When done properly, vapor polishing can provide optical prototyping good quality finishes.

Methylene chloride vapor is normally used in the process for polycarbonate polish. The vapor is created by heating a container with methylene chloride to the boiling point, then utilizes vapor to flow the surface of the component. The parts are exposed to the methylene chloride vapor for less than three seconds. The whole process must be performed in a closed and well ventilated room, which prevents the operator from coming in to contact with the fumes. After the polishing process, parts must be allowed to dry in order to evaporate the methylene chloride. The polycarbonate polish process requires specialized equipment and handling to achieve the desired results. With precise machining by a skilled plastic machinist, an optical quality component can be achieved. Conversely, if the machining has been done improperly, vapor polishing can actually make the situation worse and the feature takes on an opaque white look.

Dirt particles and all foreign matter, such as oils and greases should be removed from the machining polycarbonate by carefully cleaning and drying before polishing. Finally the parts are gradually heated in an air circulation oven and kept at 120 ºC for one hour to release surface stresses and to evaporate the entrapped methylene chloride. Polycarbonate is a stress sensitive material. While polycarbonate has great impact resistance, such things as simply over tightening screws can cause stress cracking or crazing. For the most stable, stress free component always specify an annealing cycle after machining. Vapor polishing always requires an annealing cycle afterwards otherwise stress cracking will occur in surface.

AUTOMOTIVE LIGHTING PROTOTYPE

WayKen’s focusing on Automotive Lighting Prototype as a complete service has allowed us to expand our knowledge and experience in this area. Creating ways to develop the best automotive light prototyping in the industry ensures us to provide all our clients with the highest level of automotive prototyping services.
Our practical and flexible way of working allows us to fully support automotive lighting prototype development projects. From mechanical component design reviews and photometric development engineering test to Show Car lamps projects, we are capable to support at all levels. We cover all aspects of lighting prototype design from Auto Headlights prototypes and lamp lens prototypes to Fog lamps prototypes to ensure the lamps fit and work always.

Clear Optical Prototypes Gallery