I don’t have the money right know to go back to school for ID. I am trying to get a job that will give me some experience or training in a beneficial area while I save some money. I recently applied for a job, as a mold-maker for a product design / engineering company. I think they work with the medical and toy industries,
There is two positions available:
working in the rapid prototyping department, with sls, sla parts and casting them in small production runs, ect.
working with in the mold-making department machine shop with cnc tooling mainly for dies and injection molds, ect.
Which do you think would be more useful in gaining ID related skills?
Definitely #2. I’ve met a lot of designers who don’t understand how to design plastic parts because they don’t understand the tooling involved in producing the parts. Plastic design is a black art that requires a bit of production background. Otherwise you get to watch the engineers redesign your part…
The prototyping phase is interesting, but the tooling background can be leveraged in the design business to a greater extent.
Go for #2. My time working at a manufacturer of injection-molded products has helped me immensely in my career development. Only spent 2.5 years there, but I walked away with intimate knowledge of how the tools worked (slides, gas-assist, etc.) This has given me huge confidence when designing products and also forced me to be creative with my designs. Knowing how the tools work gives you the ability to keep the design intent true, and the result will always be better than if you just hand it off to some engineers. The knowledge also gives you more respect when working with engineers and thus, marketing.
Modeling is great to know, but I see that as more of a service than actual design work.
There is a class distinction. I don’t want to sound snobby but at the end of the day the model maker is just making what was designed by the designer nothing more. While I understand that the model makers knowledge is important, its not as important as the designers design.
Again I dont want to sound snobby but thats how a lot of designers see it including me.