At Leggero Forte we pride ourselves on delivering unsurpassed expertise and workmanship in the design and manufacturing of Composite and Metallic tools.
Why Choose Leggero Forte?
As one of the leading names in our field we’ve garnered a wealth of skills and experience over many years, providing bespoke engineering solutions in Composites and Metallics across a variety of industry sectors, such as:
- The Automotive Industry
With composite materials playing such a large, and ever increasing role in engineering we ensure that our research, design and manufacturing remains at the cutting edge of our industry, bringing innovation, professionalism and the highest level of quality to every project.
Our approach is flexible so that we can tailor the service to meet exactly what you require.
If you need an engineering partner to oversee and manage an entire project then we would be more than happy to do so. Working with you to establish the exact brief and specifications we’re able to undertake the entire project from:
DESIGN -> PROTOTYPE -> MANUFACTURE -> FULL PRODUCTION
These projects can be taken on independently and in-house or in conjunction with your own engineering team.
Alternatively, if you’re looking for expertise or consultation in one specific part of your project or to add our skills to part of your team on a short-term basis, again we’re happy to be of service.
Leading the Way
As the materials we use become more advanced, allowing us ever greater performance, so the processes can grow more complex. This is why we ensure that we remain at the forefront of our industry, using our skills and experience while constantly adding to our knowledge.
Working with Leggero Forte means you are working with industry leading professionals. No matter if it’s a new Formula One racing car, an aircraft or wind turbine – whatever the project and objective we’ll ensure that we work with the most appropriate materials in the most effective fashion for the very best results.
Composite Tooling Design
Composite materials are playing an ever more important part in engineering, whether it’s in defence, motor vehicles, wind turbines, aircraft or any other project looking for light, strong construction materials. Adaptable in both their manufacture and results, composites are at the cutting edge of everything from Boeing airliners to racing cars.
As more advanced composites are developed, composite manufacturing processes can achieve more than ever before. But this means that they are also becoming more complex. More options means more information to balance and more factors to take into account. You need someone who can help you through this process, with the skills, flexibility and project experience to ensure that you get exactly the parts you need, in a way that suits you.
Tool Design for Composites
Tools, the moulds on which composites are shaped, are the cornerstone of composite production. Providing not only the rough shape of the parts but also the detail of surface texture and design, they can make all the difference between a successful build and a pile of scrap.
Composite tools can be made from almost any material. Hard tooling, using ceramic and metal tools, is more expensive but potentially superior in its results. Hard tools can withstand higher heat and take more wear and tear, lasting thousands of uses without becoming damaged. This means that they are suitable for moulding a wider range of composites, provide more reliable and accurate results, and will last through far more production cycles. If you are planning to make thousands of parts off a single tool then such endurance is critical.
Soft tooling, in which the tools themselves are made of composites, results in a less sturdy but less costly tool. These are easier to produce but less hard wearing, more suited to prototypes than to mass production or projects that need extremely accurate results. But they have one other advantage over most hard tools. Their coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) is often closer to that of the materials being shaped, meaning that they expand and contract in a way that more closely matches the products they are shaping. This reduces problems arising from a mismatch between the CTE of the tool and the material, and so can create more reliable results.
This one example – choosing between tooling materials – shows just what a complex job composites tooling can be. There are many factors to be balanced, and while there may not be a perfect choice there will be a choice that is best for you.
Why come to Leggero Forte?
The tools will be the foundation of your project, and so getting the composite tooling right is vital. Whether you’ll be working with hard or soft tools you need them to be well designed. Investing in expert input will save you grief on the assembly line and ensure that your products meet your customers’ needs.
Our specialist input is particularly useful when designing the more accurate and durable metal tools. These are not only created using expert knowledge of design principles but may need to be worked with specialist equipment. We have the skills to do that right.
By using our expertise you can be sure that your tools will provide great results whatever the rigours of your manufacturing process.
What is involved with Composite Tooling Design?
Composite tooling design is a matter of careful calculation, balancing costs and benefits.
Choosing the right tooling material is crucial. You might be making carbon fibre components, but that doesn’t mean a carbon fibre tool is out of the question. On the other hand, manufacturing processes with higher rates of production might require aluminium or steel. For those needing both endurance and a good CTE match you might want a high price alloy such as Invar. It’s a complicated choice, balancing cost, endurance, CTE and the resources at your disposal.
We will help make those calculations, advising on the benefits of different materials, finding the best fit for your specific job.
Choosing the material is only pa?rt of the process. Shaping the tool is the other key part, making sure that you will get the results you want. We can produce the right tool for your product, taking into account tooling material, shape and circumstances of manufacture. We will ensure that your tool is one that your team can use.
Not just technical skills
Making a tool isn’t just about the hard engineering skills of tool design. It’s also about making sure that the project runs smoothly, and that’s where we bring something more to the composite tooling market.
Our knowledge isn’t just about materials and manufacturing processes. We also have the project management experience to see your tooling through from beginning to end without a hitch.
Fast working and flexible, we can provide independent support or work as part of your team on your premises, giving a short term injection of specialist knowledge.
Whatever your needs, whatever your materials, we can provide the right composite tooling design for you.?
- Composite Tooling Design
- Machined Component Design and Processing.
- Mechanical Design and Assemblies.
- Composite Design.
- Composite Pattern and Tooling Solutions.
- Composite Processing for Manufacture.
- Jigs and Fixtures.
- Fabrication Design.
- Project Management.