Kastaplast uses 3D printing to break into disc golf

Kastaplast

In late July 2013, the PDGA approved a disc from a company based in Sweden. This announcement was the first time we learned about Kastaplast and their new Rask disc. We reached out to owner Jonas Lindberg soon after the announcement and have remained in touch ever since. Kastaplast has even used 3D printing in their development process.

Over the previous months, we’ve been able to learn a lot about what goes on when you’re starting a disc golf company. There were some delays in production and some retooling, but they soon had a full production run of the Rask.

The thing that stands out about the Rask is a small lip on the bottom of the flight plate. There is certainly no missing it. To learn more about how the company got started and the Rask, we went straight to Lindberg to get the details.

All Things Disc Golf: When and how did Kastaplast begin as a disc golf company?

Jonas Lindberg: Kastaplast started in 2013 when I realized our work with prototypes would lead into a real product. Although I’m currently the only person working in the company itself, I usually prefer saying ‘we’ because many other people are involved in the work. With Kastaplast we want to develop high end products for disc golf, based on own ideas, inventions and designs. We’ll make innovative discs as well as somewhat conventional discs. No Roc-alikes.

Kastaplast RaskAll Things Disc Golf: How long has the Rask been in development?

Jonas Lindberg: From the first sketches to final product; 2,5 years. I don’t know if any other disc has gone through that kind of process, with as many prototypes being made. But seeing people’s faces when they get Rask in their hands for the first time and go “what the…” makes it worth all the work. In the process we wanted to verify that the invention works the way we say it does, so we did computer flight simulations, took aerodynamic consulting and of course did tons of field testing. Time flew.

All Things Disc Golf: You used 3D printing for your initial prototypes, right? What was that process like?

Jonas Lindberg: 3D printing was a really useful method, especially because the design of Rask involves new features with new ergonomic aspects. With the printed prototypes we could get an idea of what the disc would feel like, and of course, what it would fly like. After being printed, we altered the geometry of the printed discs by adding and removing material manually to tune in the flight characteristics. Also the density needed to be altered a bit to make them similar to production discs. For the final prototypes we moved over to injection molding to get the proper characteristics of the production plastic.

All Things Disc Golf: You use typical injection molding for the actual discs now, correct?

Jonas Lindberg: That’s correct. Since we don’t do the molding ourselves we’re fortunate to have found a really great manufacturing company to work with here in Sweden. When it comes to quality and finish we understand each other and they work very hard to achieve a perfect result. They are also highly involved in the design process.

All Things Disc Golf: The most notable thing about the Rask is the edge on the bottom of the flight plate. Why add this feature and what does it do to the flight of the disc?

Jonas Lindberg: That edge or lip is there to decrease drag from the inner side of the rim, making the disc more streamlined. We’re certainly not the first manufacturer trying out ways to decrease this drag, but perhaps our solution is more drastic than what have been seen on any other disc. With this type of design we’re able to make faster discs, without very wide rims. This should suit people who would like to be able to throw high-speed drivers but don’t appreciate the widest rims.

All Things Disc Golf: What has the initial feedback been about the Rask and that bottom edge?

Jonas Lindberg: Very mixed! Most people who have thrown the Rask are surprised about how much of a challenge it is, and I must admit it came out a bit more overstable than anticipated. Because of that we are glad when people still come back with a positive impression of the disc. It’s quite clear that it’s not a disc for everyone. Most of the throwers who do enjoy the disc have one thing in common; a big arm. All in all, people seem curious about new design ideas, which is very inspiring for me as a designer.

All Things Disc Golf: Are there other discs in the works for Kastaplast?

Jonas Lindberg: Absolutely, we are working on two new discs, but not drivers this time. These are based on a more conventional type of design. I think they will fill a spot on the market and I really look forward to releasing them this summer. I can’t say more than that at this point.

All Things Disc Golf: Is there anything specific you want to cover?

Jonas Lindberg: I’m glad about the opportunity to be on your site and I appreciate all the effort you put into All Things Disc Golf. Good talking to you!

A big thank you to Lindberg for working with us this whole time. Learn more about Kastaplast online and Like them on Facebook.

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