How To Get a Prototype Made & Protect Your Design (2024)

What is a prototype?

A prototype is a preliminary version of a product that is used to test and validate its design and functionality before mass production.

Why do I need a prototype?

Having a prototype is crucial for ensuring that your product meets the intended design and function. It allows you to test and refine your ideas before investing in full-scale production.

How to get a prototype made

1. Protect your intellectual property

Before getting a prototype made, it’s important to protect your design and idea. Consider filing for a patent, trademark, or copyright to safeguard your intellectual property.

2. Create a virtual product prototype

Using computer-aided design (CAD) software, you can create a virtual prototype to visualize and test the functionality of your product.

3. Build your physical prototype

Make a DIY prototype

If you have the skills and resources, you can create a do-it-yourself prototype using readily available materials.

Find a prototyping supplier or manufacturer

For more complex prototypes, you may need to partner with a prototyping supplier or manufacturer who can bring your design to life.

Try 3D printing

3D printing technology has made it easier and more affordable to create physical prototypes. Consider using 3D printing for rapid prototyping.

4. Evaluate costs

When getting a prototype made, it’s important to consider the costs involved. Get quotes from different suppliers and manufacturers to find the most cost-effective option.

5. Get feedback

Show your prototype to potential customers, industry experts, and stakeholders to gather feedback on its design and functionality.

6. Test and refine your prototype

Use the feedback you’ve received to make any necessary adjustments to your prototype. Test it rigorously to ensure that it meets your quality standards.

7. Launch a minimum viable product

Once you’re satisfied with your prototype, consider launching a minimum viable product (MVP) to test its market viability and gather more feedback from early adopters.

Start making prototypes today

By following these steps, you can start making prototypes for your product ideas today and move closer to bringing them to market.

How to get a prototype made FAQ

How much does it cost to get a prototype made?

The cost of getting a prototype made can vary depending on the complexity of your design and the materials used. It’s best to get quotes from multiple suppliers to compare costs.

Who can help me create a prototype?

You can seek assistance from prototyping companies, manufacturers, engineers, or product designers who specialize in bringing product ideas to life.

What is the purpose of a prototype?

The purpose of a prototype is to test and validate the design and functionality of a product before investing in full-scale production. It helps to identify and address any issues early on, saving time and money in the long run.