Rapid Prototyping – What Material Is Suitable for Mirror Polishing?

Mirror polishing is a special post-processing in many post-treatments in rapid prototyping. The mirror effect requires prototypes has transparent surface and can be reflective. Then, what kinds of material is suitable for mirror polishing?

 

In general, transparent materials are preferred. Two transparent raw materials, such as PC and acrylic.

 

However, the PC material itself is not very transparent, it is mixed with purple, and the processed product needs to be smoked by chemical agents to achieve transparency. Acrylic itself is a transparent material, which is comparable to optical glass, with a transmittance over than 91%. From this perspective, acrylic is more suitable for mirror effects.

 

From a process point of view, the PC material is relatively hard, it is more laborious when grinding, it is very difficult to polish corner area, which caused the mirror area of the product is uneven. And the surface is easily to get damaged.

 

The acrylic surface is easy to be polished and will not damage the surface. The products can achieve the transparent effect easily after slight polishing. 

 

Of course, some metals can also be mirror polished in rapid prototyping, like aluminum alloy. The proceed aluminum product is silver with smooth shiny surface. The surface can achieve mirror effect after being polished, but metal cannot have transparent effect.  

 

Therefore, acrylic is the most suitable material for mirror polishing in rapid prototyping. If you need to do mirror effect, be sure to choose the correct material to avoid wasting materials and reduce product development costs. Contact us at [email protected] for the best advice for your product!

Author: Yoyokuo