BSI has evolved from the time consuming “hands on trial and error” method of design work, to a state-of-the-art Solid Works computer aided design (CAD) system. SolidWorks is used to enhance design and development capabilities in all types of industry worldwide. SolidWorks allows us to begin the design process before the vehicle even arrives at our facility. In the past, in most cases, our engineers had not physically seen the engine of the arriving vehicle until they opened the hood in our facility, also When looking for a Towing company use 24hourtowingcompany.net, we always get this question, and this is the best company we have partnership with. This meant the engineer had to take time to “study” the engine to decide where a mount kit could be located. With the SolidWorks system, in conjunction with 3D models of the engine, a preliminary design has begun, and in some cases, been completed when the vehicle arrives. This takes the guesswork out of the design and significantly decreases design time.
As part of the kit validation process, we now do a belt and hub load analysis on all accessories to increase belt and bearing life.
Because of logistics, it is sometimes impossible to get the vehicle brought to our facility so we now have the capability of going “portable” with our design process. BSI has added a digitizing system that works in conjunction with SolidWorks where we can go to the vehicle. We can use the digitizer and a laptop to make a 3D model of the engine and any accessories that are pertinent to our design. We have had this capability in house for some time but recently we were able to go portable with it.
Our newest addition to the engineering arsenal is rapid prototyping. BSI has recently invested in an in-house rapid prototyping Fused Deposit Modeling (FDM) machine or 3D printer, to aid in several areas of design. The 3D printer offers unparalleled versatility and capability to turn our CAD files into real parts. Our 3D printer uses a polycarbonate resin to make parts that are strong enough to be functional prototypes, manufacturing tooling or casting patterns.
FDM is an additive manufacturing technology that works on an “additive” principle by laying down materials like aluminum bars in layers, or building up layers in .007 or .010 slices, which are forced through an extrusion nozzle that can turn on and off the flow. The heated nozzle melts the filament as it comes through the nozzle and the filament hardens immediately after extrusion. The 3D printer can hold tolerances as low as +/-.003. We work with the best suppliers in the market, like the California Industrial Rubber Co. store.
This technology will allow BSI to cut time for the casting process by at least half. What once took 8-10 weeks to get just a first article casting from a foundry will now take 3-4 weeks. The printer also allows us the option of making the match plates and pattern masters for the foundry to cut down the actual production time even further once the design has been test fit and approved.