Carbon Fiber Parts with
3D Printed Molds & Patterns

Replace high-cost CNC milling with agile, cost-saving solutions for low volume production

You can't wait to find out, how you could use 3D printed molds and patterns in your production?

SAVE TIME 

Drastically reduce lead times and speed up design iterations

5x CHEAPER

3D printing molds costs a fraction of the price of CNC milling aluminum

AGILE ITERATION

Adapt, test, and produce parts in-house with ease

Large-scale patterns and molds are expensive, slow to produce, and complex shapes may not be feasible. Typical CNC milling of patterns wastes material and design iterations are expensive and time-consuming. Therefore, Additive Manufacturing can play a huge role in producing high-quality carbon fiber parts while reducing costs and lead times. BigRep machines deliver cost-saving solutions to produce large-scale carbon fiber molds.

How to Make Carbon Fiber Parts with Additive Manufacturing 

Airflight uses prepreg carbon fiber parts to build their human-sized drones. See how they use BigRep machines to produce 3D printed molds for fastercheaper carbon fiber fabrication

Carbon Fiber Mold Making with 3D Printed Molds

Two Methods of 3D Printing for Carbon Fiber Molding

Method 1:
3D Print the Mold

If the part design still needs iterations, the part is intended for small batch production, or the carbon fiber prepreg requires lower temperature / pressure resistance, then 3D printing the mold is recommended.

The mold is 3D-printed and post-processed to required surface quality. If needed, the mold can be designed with inlets to pour in reinforcement filler so the mold can withstand pressure in the autoclave. Carbon fiber prepreg is laid into the mold, placed in a vacuum bag, and cured in an autoclave at the required temperature and pressure settings.

cfrp-3d-print-mold-example

Step 1

cfrp-3d-print-mold-step-1-print-mold

3D Print the mold

Step 2

cfrp-3d-print-mold-step-2-post-process-mold

Post-process the mold

Step 3

cfrp-3d-print-mold-step-3-produce-cfrp-part-from-mold

Use mold to create CF part

Step 4

cfrp-3d-print-mold-step-4-cfrp-part-post-process

Post-process the CF part

Recommended Products

Method 2:
3D Print the Pattern

If the part design is finalized, the part is intended for series production, or the carbon fiber prepreg requires higher temperature / pressure resistance, then 3D printing the pattern is recommended.

The pattern is 3D-printed and post-processed to required surface quality. Then a mold is produced from the pattern, typically using glass fiber or high temperature epoxy molding paste. Carbon fiber prepreg is laid into the mold, placed in a vacuum bag, and cured in an autoclave at the required temperature and pressure settings.

cfrp-3d-print-pattern-example

Step 1

cfrp-make-pattern-step-1-3d-print-pattern

3D Print the pattern

Step 2

cfrp-make-pattern-step-2-post-process-3d-printed-pattern

Post-process the pattern

Step 3

cfrp-make-pattern-step-3-create-mold-from-pattern

Create mold from pattern

Step 4

cfrp-make-pattern-step-4-produce-cfrp-part-from-mold

Use mold to create CF part

Step 5

cfrp-make-pattern-step-5-cfrp-part-post-process

Post-process the CF part

Recommended Products

"BigRep allowed us to iterate large-scale carbon fiber parts
5x times cheaper than with standard CNC milling.
With one machine we can produce prototypes, molds, jigs, and fixtures."

Mikkel Kærsgaard Sørensen, Technical Director and Co-Founder of Airflight

airflight-logo-cfrp-drones

"Previously we needed expensive mold tooling to see the design in real life.
Our Bigrep printer has transformed how
we develop and paid for itself many times over."

Andrew Slorance, CEO of Phoenix Instinct

airflight-logo-cfrp-drones

Talk to an Expert

We have a team of experts ready to answer all your questions. Do not hesitate to reach out to us to get more information about Additive Manufacturing, best materials for your application, and how to implement it in your business!

You THINK BIG, we'll help you get there!

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