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Toto is a major Japanese designer and manufacturer of sanitary equipment and plumbing products.

To support their design program, Toto used a Roland PNC-300 to produce their prototypes in-house. The design staff at Toto found the Roland PNC-300 gave good results, was easy to use and improved their design skills. However when the quantity and size of prototypes began to exceed its capacity, Toto looked for an additional prototyping machine to support the PNC-300.

Their review of prototyping products encompassed stereo lithography, paper lamination, NC and CNC machines. In the end they selected a Roland MDX-500 for its ease of use, ease to set-up and high capacity.

  MDX-500 with safety cover

Method of use

3D tap model in CAD

Tap ready to cut

Final model from MDX-500

Toto develop their new product designs in 3D CAD software (Alias Studio).


The 3D computer model is exported as a stereo lithography (STL) file into Roland's Modela Player software. File is prepared for cutting.


The prototype is cut on the
MDX-500 (or PNC-300) by Toto's designers or prototyping staff.

Advantages of the Roland MDX-500

Toto has recognised a number of advantages to having the MDX-500 as a part of their design process

1. The capacity of in-house prototyping has increased as the MDX-500 can be set to run automatically overnight and designers can make prototypes themselves

2. Designers can have 3D models in a short time to assist with their design development, giving them more time to focus on design development and producing better designs.

3. Total design time is reduced through a shorter development cycle and more rapid decision making within the company when a 3D model is presented.