An invention prototype is, in fact, a physical proof of your new, unique and non-obvious idea. It tells whether your idea is workable or not.
The model is also an evidence of the problems it resolves and/or the benefits it offers.
There exist a number of phases and a two-fold purpose to build a prototype.
The chief purpose is to giving evidence to yourself that your invention does work, whereas the research and development (R&D) is the phase that finally brings about a final “pre-production” model of your invention.
You produce your invention prototype to create a working model that’s patent-worthy and possibly worthwhile.
You can make use of it to do testing of its functionality and improvements if you want to include before progressing. This is one of the most critical phases of patent process.
If you get your invention patented before giving final touch to your prototype, you might have missed the improvements that it required or you are bent upon claiming for that no longer exist as a part of your invention.
You might build several prototypes before deciding on the finalization of your product.
Being assured of your invention ensures whether you are able to build a prototype yourself or you should get it done by a professional for you.
If you are having connections/access to materials – you can yourself make a prototype, or if not, you may have to arrange to get it built for you.
You would have to create schematics, drawings or/and diagrams of your product and its functions.
This process must give instructions on how your product would be built- which will ensure the manufacturing costs.
– Secondary –
The secondary objective of your prototype is to assure someone else that your invention does work.
In the course of this phase, you may have to address problems associated with financing, licensing and patenting your invention or setting up a business to do so.
This is when you get a final prototype, which can be used to ensure licensees or/and investors of the profitability of your invention.
Building a fully-functional invention prototype could not only be time-consuming but expensive, as well; however modern technology has simplified and reduced the cost of this process.
The schematics, drawings or/and diagrams of your invention idea prototype could be three-dimensionally built with computer software that’s incorporated and programmed with machinery.
This machinery is then capable of making “all” or “parts of” your invention by making use of the necessary materials in variety of molding processes.
This technology is called CAD/CAM (computer aided design/computer aided manufacturing) and the prototyping process is known as “rapid prototyping” or “rapid application development”.
Companies that are involved in this kind of work have specialization in varied fields of manufacturing.
All these companies are available to find through a local university from where you can decide on any of the prototype builder.
If you choose to make use of a prototype maker, you must make sure their references before availing of their prototype making services.
You must also get the required agreements singed and accomplished to give protection to yourself.
The majority of famous prototype builders charge on the basis of their reputation and establishment.
They are very specific about their time and costs for the work they do. You might wish to lay down a budget or “price cap” on the work.
This precludes “padding”, which means they might charge much more than the warranted hours.