A singular 3D-printing software is taking part in a pivotal function in serving to a spring ring producer to shave weeks off lead instances and ship vastly elevated product volumes to fulfill rising buyer demand.Final 12 months, West Yorkshire-based Cirteq made round 700 million circlips and retaining rings, exporting them throughout the globe to greater than 500 prospects spanning the aerospace, automotive, rail and sustainable vitality sectors.
Utilized in engine development to cease one thing popping out of a bore or to maintain one thing on a shaft, Cirteq’s three,800 product variants are made to the exacting specs of OEMs together with Jaguar Land Rover, Volvo, Honda, GKN, Bosch, Siemens and Mitsubishi.
To allow the enterprise to proceed to ship high quality elements in such excessive numbers, it recognized 3D printing as an assistive know-how – and it has now grow to be an integral a part of its ongoing success.
Cirteq Buyer High quality Liaison Supervisor Theo Speller stated: “We had been attempting to hyperlink processes and gear in a manufacturing cell through ancillary gear that actually moved merchandise from A to B, and it wanted to get them there in a minimal time and in addition add some worth.
“What we’ve printed are rails that not solely ship the elements to the following course of, however in some phases can truly oil the elements as they’re transferring, say from a sorting bowl to an oiling station, or from an oiling station to a packing station.
“We’ve taken away a stage that required a variety of guide labour. One particular person can now do the job that it historically took 4 folks to do, and we’ve decreased the footfall from strolling throughout the manufacturing unit to getting the completed element in a fraction of the time and a fraction of the associated fee.”
Cirteq makes use of a Stratasys Objet350 Connex3 machine, provided by Stratasys UK platinum accomplice SYS Methods.
The primary system on the planet to concurrently 3D-print a number of colors and supplies, the Connex3 permits customers to create fashions with the look, really feel and properties of actual manufacturing elements, in addition to rapidly and simply print off customized jigs, meeting fixtures and tooling with ultra-fine accuracy and with none main post-processing necessities.
A number of supplies may be loaded at one time, enabling the printing of elements that require a variety of mechanical, optical or thermal properties like non-slip grips, clear home windows or versatile hinges. Mr Speller added: “With the ability to print to an actual design signifies that when that plastic print is completed it matches into the precise area it was designed for.
“You possibly can principally press the beginning button after which simply stroll away, and while you come again that completed element has been in-built a fraction of the time it as soon as took to construct and with none direct labour, leaving the person who programmed it free to work on different growth tasks.
“After two years we’ve seen no important put on on these assortment rails and we’ve handed actually tens of millions of spring metal rings over them in that point. That’s come by way of specialist data from SYS Methods to advise us on the proper plastic for the appliance that we required.
“I can see that this print system may very well be utilized to a variety of industries and has two quick advantages – one, it should prevent time in getting your elements from A to B and two, it should give you better accuracy if you happen to can take a CAD mannequin of one thing and print that actual CAD mannequin.
“You then’ve obtained an correct resolution.”
Video of the method is offered right here.
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