The Craft of Product Model Making at JH May

Product model making is an indispensable aspect of the design and development process, bringing concepts to life and bridging the gap between imagination and reality. It is a complex and intricate craft that demands a combination of artistic vision and technical expertise. At JH May, a renowned name in the industry, we have perfected the art of product model making. With a skilled team of model makers, we create hyper-realistic product models that capture the essence of a design. This article will delve into the craftsmanship, techniques, and benefits that JH May brings to the table, offering a comprehensive look at the world of product model making.

The Craftsmanship of Product Model Making

At the heart of JH May’s success is a dedicated team of highly skilled and experienced model makers. Our workers possess a deep understanding of design concepts and an unwavering attention to detail. With their expertise, they can transform complex ideas into tangible realities.

Techniques and Methods:

  • Rapid Prototyping: JH May utilises rapid prototyping techniques to create models with precision and speed. We work with a range of materials, including Nylon and PMMA, offering durability and a quick turnaround. The use of SLA resins further enhances the level of detail and accuracy in our prototypes. This technology allows us to create intricate shapes and geometries with unparalleled complexity.
  • CNC Machining: Our model makers excel in CNC milling, employing high-density and low-density foams to craft initial space models and design concepts. This process ensures accuracy and consistency in reproducing complex shapes. The versatility of CNC machining allows us to work with a variety of materials, always achieving precise results.
  • Traditional Hand Finishing:The art of hand finishing is integral to our process. Our model makers apply their skills and craftsmanship to perfect each model. Through sanding, painting, and intricate detailing, they bring a human touch to every creation, ensuring a level of quality that exceeds expectations. This blend of traditional techniques with modern technology sets JH May apart, delivering exceptional product models.

Evolution of Model Making Techniques


JH May has always been at the forefront of innovation, and this is evident in our early adoption of rapid prototyping technology. Over 12 years ago, we invested in our first FDM (Fused Deposition Modelling) machine, revolutionising our model-making process. This technology allowed us to create complex product models directly from 3D CAD data, reducing production time and offering unprecedented design flexibility.

We now utilise SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) nylon, a process that creates durable and intricate models with a high level of detail. VX PMMA, another advanced material, offers unique benefits for product model making, including exceptional clarity and surface finish.

These advanced materials and processes have expanded our capabilities, allowing us to create models with complex geometries, fine features, and smooth surfaces. The benefits are particularly notable in the early stages of design, where rapid prototyping with these materials provides meaningful feedback and facilitates faster, more informed decision-making. JH May continues to embrace technological advancements, ensuring we deliver the highest quality models to our clients.

The Process of Creating Product Models

Initial Space and Design Concept Models:

In the early stages of design, rapid prototyping and CNC milling play a crucial role. These techniques allow our team to create initial space models and design concepts quickly and cost-effectively. The speed and affordability of these processes enable designers to visualise their ideas in three-dimensional form, facilitating faster decision-making and providing a solid foundation for further development.

High-Standard Models:

For final product models or those intended for focus group evaluation, advertising, and presentation purposes, we employ higher-grade materials and advanced finishing techniques. Our model makers utilise a combination of rapid prototyping and CNC machining, along with traditional hand craftsmanship, to create models that match production-standard products in terms of finish, feel, and overall appearance.

To achieve the desired level of quality, we apply a range of specialised finishing techniques, including silk screen printing for precise graphics, vinyl decals for intricate detailing, and unique finishes such as sparked or rubberised/soft feel to match the intended product experience. This meticulous process ensures that our product models are not just visually appealing but also functionally accurate.

Applications of Product Models


Focus Group Evaluation:

Product models are invaluable tools for gathering feedback during the design process. By creating realistic representations of the final product, focus groups can provide meaningful insights on design, functionality, and overall user experience. This feedback loop helps designers make informed decisions and refine their creations before market release, ensuring a product that truly meets customer needs and expectations.

Advertising Photography:

High-quality product models are essential in creating visually appealing marketing and promotional materials. With their precise dimensions and flawless finishes, these models shine in front of the camera, showcasing the product’s best features and unique selling points. Professional photography of these models helps build anticipation, generates buzz, and ultimately drives sales by creating a strong visual connection with the target audience.

Exhibitions and Presentations:

Product models are powerful tools for showcasing concepts and final products to investors and decision-makers. In exhibitions and presentations, a physical model can make a lasting impression, conveying a product’s potential and impact in a way that digital representations often cannot. These models serve as a tangible representation of an idea, fostering confidence and buy-in from key stakeholders.

The Importance of Precision and Quality

Accuracy in Dimensions and Finish:

In the world of product modelling, precision is paramount. Even the slightest deviation from the intended design can impact the functionality and overall success of the final product. Our models are crafted with meticulous attention to detail, ensuring that dimensions and finishes are accurate down to the smallest detail. This level of precision is essential, as it not only ensures the model’s functionality but also influences the visual and tactile quality, both of which are key factors in a product’s market success.

Time Management:

The product development process is often a race against time, and meeting tight deadlines is a constant challenge. At JH May, we understand the critical nature of timely deliveries. By integrating rapid prototyping, CNC machining, and innovative finishing techniques under one roof, we streamline the model-making process. Our efficient workflow, coupled with our experienced team, enables us to deliver high-quality models quickly, ensuring our clients can stay on schedule.

The art of product model making is a delicate balance between traditional craftsmanship and cutting-edge technology. JH May has seamlessly integrated these two worlds, utilising the latest innovations while honouring the importance of skilled artisanship. By adopting rapid prototyping, CNC machining, and advanced finishing techniques, JH May has elevated the standard of product model making. Their contributions have had a profound impact on the field, enabling designers and innovators to bring their visions to life with unparalleled precision and speed.