Task Objectives

Airframe Designs was engaged by a global defence prime to produce a mock-up of a large torpedo style weapon (store), within a very short time frame.

The project required the artifact to not only serve as a physical representation but also to facilitate the evaluation of its integration onto a new delivery platform.

The goal was to assess various critical aspects such as feasibility, accessibility, the potential difficulties, and safety considerations associated with the weapon’s deployment.

Design for Additive Manufacturing

The 2.7m long mock-up was designed for additive manufacturing (DfAM) by highly experienced engineers to meet the customer requirements, ensuring the optimal solution was achieved.

The key for the DfAM process was to create a lightweight, robust and stiff structure using low cost material and rapid prototype printers. Devising helical internal stiffeners to the internal profile enabled the mock-up to meet all of the design requirements.

Additive Manufacturing Approach

The manufacturing methodology involved segregating the product into several discrete longitudinal sections, prior to assembly.

Each section was printed on our Stratasys Fortus 450mc industrial aerospace FDM machine using ASA thermoplastic to provide tough and durable parts.


The computer-aided design and manufacturing of the mock-up was completed in just 10 days, exceeding the customer expectations for on-time delivery and product quality.

We thrive on providing bespoke solutions engineered and crafted specifically to help our customers reduce their project lead times and improve their cost-effectiveness.

Providing high quality solutions to complex engineering and manufacturing challenges is what exemplifies AFD.


Head of Weapon System Integration

“This was our first engagement with an external supplier for polymer additive manufacturing and proved to be a very successful route for gaining access to an agile design and build partnership for rapid prototyping and mock-up needs.”

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