I've been thinking about using the service Ponoko.com to get my own designs lasercut as a way to produce molds of my own design. Has anyone else attempted this? Advice/suggestions would be appreciated!
Would you be really laser cutting or using 3d printer services? It's getting easier but after you factor your time in I'm not sure its still cost effective. For a one off perhaps but trying to rebuild your normal polycarbonate collection through the process would be very labor intense in the design process and then a lot of printing resource time.
As a geek I'm tracking 3d printers and they are coming along quite nicely. Another 5 years and I think many of us will have inhouse printers doing some crazy stuff.
I was thinking of using it for bars more than praline fill-able type molds. I was thinking laser cutting, with layers and different thicknesses to get imprinted patterns. I need to do more research on getting custom molds made but I don't have the finances to do the multiple thousand dollars for a custom mold (and I don't have any polycarbonate molds yet but plan to get some soon, I just have some ideas for custom shapes I want to test out... cost effectively) . I was also thinking I could lasercut and then get food grade silicone putty to make molds. The goal would be smaller quantities, mostly for experimenting.
I've seen a you tube video (somewhere!) on how to make your own moulds, try googling??