Innovations in 3D technology
- Technological consulting
- 3D scanning
- Point cloud processing
- 3D modelling
- Preparation of 2D technical drawings
- Reverse engineering
- Quality control
- 3D printing
- Rapid tooling
- Rapid prototyping
- Direct manufacturing
- Clash detection
Application of 3D technologies in mechanical engineering
The spread of 3D visualization, modelling and printing technologies is evident from product design through manufacturing procedures to quality control. In the product design phase 3D technologies offer effective support from the elaboration of conceptual plans to the realization of technical product development:
- Digital product plans and interim product samples
Objects can be scanned, even if they are handmade and the data can be transformed into a 3D model to serve as a basis for designing a new product (reverse engineering). Based on the product, design samples can be printed with a 30 printer (rapid prototyping}, either for the concept model or for demonstration and market research.
- Technical product development
3D technologies can make the development process shorter and cheaper, from technical product development through prototyping and testing to the preparation of manufacturing documentation. Within the production procedures, beyond its application in the supplemental procedures, technology is playing a more and more important role in the additive preparation of end products.
- Quality control of products
For geometric quality control and improvement, the scanned product can be compared to the original 3D plans.
- Rapid tooling
Effective for replacing tools, when the typical task, instead of making the tools themselves, is to make tools for casting or other manufacturing procedures.
- Direct manufacturing
Application of the additive manufacturing (3D printer) to make short life-cycle products in small series, instead of traditional manufacturing methods (cutting, casting, etc.).
- Maintenance and repair
For repairing worn or damaged parts, especially when purchasing original parts is time-consuming or too expensive.
3D technology solutions
3D scanning, 3D digitalizing
3D scanning is essentially converting physical objects (like products or instruments in mechanical engineering) into digital data files. Scanners map the entire surface of the geometrical shape into a point cloud or polygon cloud without touching the object itself at all. Special software available with the equipment should be used to process the resulting data file and to prepare it for further tasks (such as reverse engineering or quality control).
Reverse engineering of the digital data file as a result of 3D scanning creates a true geometrical CAD-model of the object. As a further step, it is possible to modify or develop the model, to produce technical documentations, and even to reproduce the object with CAM software and a CNC milling machine.
Product quality control
For free form, irregular objects, traditional measuring technologies might be time consuming and expensive in terms of controlling the product’s dimensions, form and fitting. This is where comparison and verification of the 3D scanned model and the original CAD data may help. The comparison report includes a colour-mapped visualization, which shows all points of deviation compared to the plan. Apart from the ability to define whether the produced part or product is defective or not, it is also possible to define where modifications should be applied. This enables a continuous control and enhancement of the product’s geometrical quality, and the adjustment of production machinery settings.
3D printing (Additive manufacturing)
The additive manufacturing method necessitates the availability of an existing 3D CAD model, which can be prepared by 3D scanning and reverse engineering. When printing, the equipment reads the data on the model and prepares subsequent layers from a liquid, powder, plastic fibre or sheets, thus building the model in segments. In mechanical engineering, additive manufacturing can be applied for various purposes:
- Rapid Tooling
Based on the CAD model, 3D printing can be used to create tools or tools for casting and manufacturing procedures (casting moulds, drilling shapes for sand molding or precision casting as well as other necessary accessories).
- Rapid Prototyping
The objective is not to prepare the end product but individual pieces or a series of a maximum of 50-150 copies. Low quantity product series can be used for ergonomic testing and equally as well as for replacing worn or damaged parts.
- Direct Manufacturing
3D printing technologies facilitate the creation of low quantity series for direct sale. This makes it possible to fulfil individual manufacturing needs at short notice. Furthermore, it gives an economic alternative to traditional manufacturing methods, which are optimized for large series production (cutting, casting, etc.).
Our service advantages
- Compared to traditional measuring methods, quality control is faster ans saves time.
- No need to purchase expensive equipment for scanning and processing tasks.
- We use equipment from market leading companies, which are best suited to the specific tasks.
- We work with experianced, trained personnel.
Advantages of 3D technology
- Time and production development costs are cut significantly.
- Possibly to prepare and print models for inspection at an early phase of product development.
- Preparation of the model necessary in traditional technologies becomes unnecessary.
- The model enables immediate functional and ergonomic testing.
- Necessary alterations can be carried out more quickly and cheaply.
- The 3D CAD model of the product can be prepared at any time.
- Quality control of the product might partly be automated.
- Thanks to the colour map visualization, faults can be corrected more quickly.
- Support for traditional manufacturing methods (such as casting moulds and shapes).
- Rapid manufacturing of parts and tools that cannot be produced in any other way.
- Fulfilling individual and small series orders quickly and economically.
- Low volume of material wastage in the process of printing, compared to traditional manufacturing methods.