I noticed your questions posted to the RP-ML list. Our experience may be
of interest to you.
We are making form tooling for .025 gage aluminum automotive trim parts.
These are interior pieces which are decorated and then formed. Typical
parts are door pull covers, dashboard bezels, console surrounds. They
have finishes such as wood grain, geometric patterns or brushed
aluminum. Many have openings formed with secondary punches. The wipes
and draws are large on many of the parts.
These dies are made from a combination of Ciba-Geigy RP 6470 and Ren
Shape 5166. Our customer has been extremely pleased with the performance
of the materials. These are prototype dies but show the ability to
produce short production runs. I don't have much information on total
life or what lubricant should be used.
Our shops success with these materials took some development and past
urethane casting experience. The 6470 is very moisture sensitive. It
also will shrink or deform if cast solid. To avoid the foaming from
moisture we use Ciba's 178-62 accelerator at about .35% by weight. We
work as dry as possible (air condition in summer, dry the molds, etc.).
To avoid shrink, we cast in a 'lightner' made from 5166 or other
tooling board so the cast material is about 1/2" thick surrounding the
The original model for the tools to be cast from can be almost anything.
They can be RP models, existing parts, CNC cut Ren board, wood, clay or
even old airplane components. :)
When working with CAD data the best thing to do is usually CNC machine
the die components directly into the Ren Shape 5166 tooling board.
Sometimes machining some of the components and then casting the others
is better. This would be true for a deep contoured draw. The machined
punch can be sheet waxed and then the wipe ring cast with 6470.
The 6470 with accelerator makes a good patch material as well.
If I can be of more help, please let me know.
-- Accurate Pattern & Model, Inc Brookfield, WI (414)781-5558 voice (414)781-8538 fax http://www.execpc.com/~apminc/ "The professional link between concept, design and finished product"
For more information about the rp-ml, see http://ltk.hut.fi/rp-ml/
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