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ERC Case Studies

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Reverse Engineering A 50 Year Old Part From Scratch

The Problem
 

A large manufacturing company in the service industry contacted the Engineering Resource Center with the request to re-create a historic part that was still in production after 50 years. The existing mold had become damaged and no original CAD files ever existed. The manufacturer was challenged with fulfilling orders for a part that could no longer be made with the existing mold and did not know if an exact re-design would be possible.

Our Strategy

Our project engineers knew they would have to reverse engineer the mold. With no design prints and only the part to go off of, our team was essentially re-creating a production part from nothing. As part of the reverse engineering process, CT scanning of the part offered the necessary insight to create a CAD design that was used to re-create the mold. This fast, and nondestructive approach also helped identify design issues and ensured highly accurate measurements. 

Results

Without the original mold or designs to reference during the process, it was unknown how many design iterations would be needed to get the part to properly fit the engine. Much to the surprise of the manufacturer, the ERC got it right on the very first try and parts were sent approved for production in 4 weeks.

Long-Term Impact

Without our reverse engineering services, this manufacturer would have likely experienced a longer design and production process, higher development costs and a possible shortage of parts. The ERC’s experienced design engineers used the latest processes and state of the art equipment to provide the manufacturer with a fast and cost-effective solution that kept the part in production with no product delays.