3D printing was not new to Liang Weixiong. “The first time I worked with a 3D printer was about 2016. It was a project related to Smart Lock technology, which somehow got me involved with 3D printing. We designed a gearbox, and used a 3D printer to print a shell.”
Liang, CEO of New He Yi Industrial co., Ltd. makes Servo Motors, and his customers are mainly toys or home appliances manufacturers.
Nowadays, Liang’s customers were seeing “Smart” features as necessities to meet the market demands as overall technology advanced. Most of the products were in need of Servo Motors as the centerpiece to provide the intelligent touch on the products that were previously viewed as “dumb”. Liang has seen more demands for his products and business was growing.
So was the competition. Clients were pushing for faster deployment as the market demands changed frequently. Since New He Yi was only a part of the full product development cycle, it needed to be the leader of the wave.
A recent project required Liang to design a complex cluster gear. The customer was very demanding with a limited budget and a very tight schedule. Part of the development was to make a prototype to verify the design. Due to the nature of the project, the prototype was needed to be of high accuracy and, in order to be close to the real testing environment, of high strength.
Realizing the budget, time, and quality were three basic requirements for this project, Liang went searching for the solution. He tried many different technologies with various customization, and finally, Liang thought about 3D printing.
“3D printing can produce physical models from design schemes fast, reduce the cost, and shorten the whole development time.” It was Liang’s first impression for 3D printing from the Smart Lock project. “However, it was too rough.” 3D printing could take care of the first 2 requirements, budget and time, could it make the prototype in good quality? Liang talked to Tiertime.
New He Yi was one of Tiertime’s suppliers for Tiertime’s 3D printers’ components. Liang had a long discussion with Tiertime’s Lead Engineer, Fu Tengfei, for the requirement for this 3d printing project: high accuracy, high strength, and high quality within time and budget. In the end, they came up with a solution: using UP BOX+, 0.2mm nozzle, and 0.1mm slicing, with high strength Tiertime ABS.
The reason behind was obvious. UP BOX+ had big build volume, and it can make multiple gears at the same time. Time can be saved. 0.2mm nozzle can make parts with very fine detail, which was required by this project. 0.1mm slicing could make the high resolution possible. High strength ABS could guarantee the strength in the printed parts meet the project demands.
The project did not go through uneventful, but the final result was very satisfactory to Liang’ client. The prototype produced by Tiertime was better than the ones made by the other companies.
Liang was relieved, “The 3D printing solution reduced lots of cost for our early-stage development, and it did deliver the results very fast. In turn, saved a lot of time for our customers in the product deployment. “
In the end, Liang did not forget to express his wishes for the future, “I do hope 3d printing can be more accurate.”
Well, we do share the same goal and have been doing our best.