Frequently Asked Questions
What is the advantage of working with ProtoXYZ versus another manufacturing company?
ProtoXYZ is a manufacturing & software company. We use powerful software to enable instant quotes for advanced manufacturing processes, saving time for both parties. We are committed to giving instant quotes for all our current and future services.
How can I order from ProtoXYZ?
Simply upload a part to our instant quotation engine to receive immediate pricing. We accept STL, OBJ, SLDPRT, STEP, STP, PRT, 3DM and F3D file formats, if you don’t have a part you can still test our quotation engine with our provided sample part.
How are prices calculated?
We don’t take any shortcuts. For example, our 3D Printing service takes into consideration your part’s volume, surface area, orientation, support material volume, material(s), print time, and quantity. Using advanced algorithms, we are able to calculate the exact price of your part without taking shortcuts, this way you know you are getting the best possible price.
What is the minimum order quantity/value?
We don’t have a minimum order quantity or value. So, if you would like one small part printed, we would be happy to help you out.
Where are my parts made?
All parts are manufactured at ProtoXYZ’s manufacturing facility in New Bedford, Massachusetts.
What kinds of 3D printing technology do you offer?
Currently, we offer Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM), Continuous Fiber Reinforcement (CFR), and Stereolithography (SLA). For FDM we offer Nylon and Nylon/Carbon Fiber composite materials. These composites give rise to properties such as increased strength, flame resistance, and electrostatic dissipation.
Our CFR service offers Carbon Fiber, Kevlar, Fiberglass, and HSHT Fiberglass. These fibers are used in conjunction with any of our FDM materials; when doing so, your 3D printed parts can be as strong as aluminum.
SLA 3D printing is recommended for prototyping parts with tight dimensional tolerances. Our SLA printers can print with a layer height of 25 μm and a x/y tolerance of ± 30 μm. That’s smaller than the diameter of a human hair!
How do I design a part for 3D Printing?
Unlike subtractive manufacturing techniques, cost isn’t necessarily linked to a part’s geometric complexity. Cost is more related to total material volume, the less material the better. Additionally, 3D printing typically requires support material which will result in a slightly rougher surface finish on where the support material contacts the part. Fortunately, we show you exactly where support material will be placed when printing your part.
What is Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM)? What are its advantages?
FDM is a process where filament is pushed into a hot extruder. The filament is heated first and then deposited, through the nozzle, onto a build platform in a layer-by-layer process to form a solid part. This process results in parts with excellent x/y tolerances and allows for unique material properties.
What is Continuous Fiber Reinforcement (CFR)? What are its advantages?
CFR process starts with FDM 3D printing, which forms the outer shell and infill of the part using a nylon composite, typically a thermoplastic filled with short-strand chopped carbon fibers. A secondary nozzle is then used to lay long-strand continuous fibers to reinforce the part, similar to rebar in concrete. This process results in the strongest 3D printed parts known to date.
What is layer height?
A 3D printed part’s layer height or in other words the thickness of each layer can also be thought of as the part’s z-resolution. When we decrease the layer height of any 3D printing process, we are allowing more layers to be printed in a given part. This allows parts to have a better surface finish, but at the cost of an increase in printing time
What are ProtoXYZ’s CNC machining capabilities?
ProtoXYZ offers CNC Milling and Turning of various metals, plastics, and plastic composites. CNC Machining can be used to create custom prototypes and end-use production parts. We offer 3 and 4 axis CNC Milling, CNC Turning, flexible production, and shipping options.
What is unique about the ProtoXYZ process?
ProtoXYZ offers flexible, affordable, and instant quoting options that allow engineers, designers, and creators to build faster. ProtoXYZ offers fast and accurate lead times and quality parts using the power of automation and machine learning to give our customers the parts they need.
What is the typical cost of a machined part at ProtoXYZ?
Machined parts typical range from hundreds to thousands of dollars depending on the part size, complexity, material, post processing, and overall quantity. At ProtoXYZ we try to get our customers the most affordable options at an accelerated pace compared to our competitors and work with our customers to set them up for success.
How does the quoting process work?
Navigate to our Quotation Platform by clicking the "Instant Quote" button. Choose from one of our available manufacturing processes. Upload the CAD model of your part, we accept the following formats: .SLDPRT, .STEP, .STP, .PRT, .3DM, .F3D, .IPT, .X_T, & .X_B. Select the material, the finish, the tolerance/resolution, and the quantity and any associated drawing, and a price will auto refresh with every change. Once your order is placed you can track your order’s production status, reorder parts, and manage your order history in your customer dashboard.
What are ProtoXYZ’s stocked materials for machining?
We offer a wide range of materials for CNC Machining, including metals, plastics, and plastic composites.
What are ProtoXYZ’s machining capabilities? What size can my part be?
ProtoXYZ offers 3-4 axis CNC milling and Turning with a max build volume of 13" x 8" x 6" (330.2 x 203.2 x 152.4 mm). Our standard tolerance is +/- 0.05 mm (+/- 0.002") for metals and +/- 0.1 mm (+/- 0.004") for plastics, tighter tolerance available upon manual request. ProtoXYZ offer standard finishes as well as bead blast. Standard Lead times are 2-3 days.
Why should I have my part machined rather than 3D printed?
While 3d Printing is a new and emerging technology that we offer and advocate for. There are some parts that make more sense for CNC Machining. These are parts that require tighter dimensional accuracy and parts that need an excellent surface finish.
Working with ProtoXYZ
Where is your office located?
Our office adress is: 128 Union Sreet, New Bedford, MA 02740
How can I contact ProtoXYZ?
Are you hiring?
Unfortunately, we are not currently hiring. But if you would like to, feel free to send us your resume and we will take a look.