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Substantiating Quality With CMM

Substantiating Quality With CMM

Here’s how ZEISS coordinate measuring machine has brought mechanical component manufacturer, Karl Reim Werkzeugbau GmbH production steps back under its own control. 

Karl Reim Werkzeugbau GmbH is well known for the exceptional quality of its mechanical components. Located in Kirchheim unter Teck at the foot of the Swabian Jura, things were getting tight. The facility’s available space was occupied entirely by metalworking benches and machines. 

“Every time we purchased a new machine, we had to take an old one out of service to make room for it,” says Stefan Reim, who, together with his brother Andreas and his father Dieter, is the third generation to run the company. In 2019 the company completed a facility expansion which provided additional floor space not only for production, but also for a metrology room. 

Proven Quality

Karl Reim Werkzeugbau GmbH‘s components have always been of exceptional quality. “But we were unable to substantiate this with data,” says Andreas Reim. 

With ZEISS CONTURA this is no longer an issue: the coordinate measuring machine clearly shows how large workpiece measurement deviations really are, and whether or not they lie within specified tolerances.

For some of Reim‘s individual parts and small-series production components, the tolerances are extremely narrow. This is the case with preset adapters, used by tooling machine operators to visually gauge their tools, which must be inspected in terms of their perpendicularity down to just a few arc seconds. Performing measurements with the CMM helps to further reduce the already very low rejection rate. And since the quality inspection is integrated early on in the manufacturing process, delivery times can be reduced by several days. 

The plan to purchase a CMM first entered the minds of the company’s two managing directors two years ago. A customer had informed them that ZEISS was looking for pilot users to work closely with them to test the latest ZEISS CONTURA, to provide initial feedback and to help develop the newly constructed machine into an optimal solution. The collaboration proved beneficial for both parties: Andreas and Stefan Reim provided ZEISS with valuable feedback about the device, and ZEISS in turn ensured that Reim received exceptional levels of support in the months following commissioning of the machine.

Small Space Requirements Paired With a Large Measuring Volume 

The fifth generation of ZEISS CONTURA machines was made for operations like Reim Werkzeugbau. The machine was redesigned from the ground up and is now so compact that it provides a 30 percent larger measurement volume when installed in an area of the same size and with a noticeably reduced device height. The managing directors at Reim were given an introduction to the new machine over the course of three days. “This device offers so many possibilities — for first-time users this is astonishing at first,” says Andreas Reim. But thanks to the on-site training provided by ZEISS, the two CMM newcomers were able to quickly learn how to operate the device.

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Precise Measurement Technology Directly On The Shop Floor

Precise Measurement Technology Directly On The Shop Floor

When specialists work together: Klostermann fulfills several requirements at once—precision in measurement, integration in production and convincing price-performance ratio—with the help of WENZEL. 

The new measuring machine from CNC-Technik Heil GmbH is located in the middle of production—exactly what it was developed for. The SF 87 CNC coordinate measuring machine from WENZEL needs neither its own room nor a compressed air connection due to its intelligent machine concept. At the same time, it offers a high measuring volume and efficient measuring technology. 

“Our customer was looking for a flexible solution that allows not only reliable measurement results but also their documentation,” says Christian Klostermann. He assisted Thorsten Heil in the acquisition of his first own 3D measuring machine.

As an experienced sales company for 3D coordinate measuring technology, Klostermann GmbH works as a factory representative for leading companies. With more than 900 measuring machines already sold and a wide range of services and training, Klostermann GmbH sees itself as a competence center for quality assurance and measuring technology. 

For CNC-Technik Heil GmbH, Christian Klostermann recommended a measuring concept from the manufacturer WENZEL. In addition to the sale of measuring machines, the Remscheid-based specialist offers turnkey quality solutions for individual requirements and its core tasks include the project planning of measuring rooms and the assembly of clamping systems for component mounting.

Wide Range of Applications

The SF 87 is a 3D coordinate measuring machine for measuring small to medium-sized production parts. Its compact design is a solution especially in the metal cutting and forming industry, when precise measuring results are to be achieved. For Torsten Heil’s, the device offers the possibility to be retrofitted with additional sensor technology. For example, touch trigger probes or optical laser line sensors can be easily retrofitted. This means that the SF 87 offers a wide range of future-proof applications.

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Addressing CMM Challenges With Automated Quality Control

Addressing CMM Challenges With Automated Quality Control

Creaform introduces a different approach to quality control—automated 3D scanning solutions, which eliminates the limitations of traditional CMM. 

In today’s hypercompetitive market, manufacturing companies face a multitude of challenges on their production lines. Many of those are connected to the quality control process, which aims to ensure the quality of the products being manufactured and sent out to the clients. 

A solution often brought forward to tackle this task is the use of a coordinate measurement machine (CMM). However, traditional CMMs come with their own set of issues such as delays in productivity, difficulties in recruitment and challenges in measuring complex parts, to name a few. And in such a high-speed environment, the smallest productivity slowdowns, added expenses or simple mistakes can take its financial toll on a business, and can translate into loss of contracts and customers’ trust. 

How to Detect Assembly Problems Earlier, Reduce Scrap and Down Time

While traditional CMM can be very precise, its complexity of use and limited speed can delay important information-based decisions. As only a few experts and professionals can execute these tasks and the measurements are taken outside the production line, it can create significant delays in applying corrective measures, which can generate scraps and down time. 

A different approach to quality control aims at addressing these specific challenges—automated 3D scanning solutions. 

Is Automation an Option to Increase Productivity?

Over the past few years, global manufacturing industries have come up with increasingly complex parts and assembly designs to address hypercompetitive markets. However, the diversity of such intricate components requires more advanced quality control processes.

What causes bottlenecks?

Too often, quality control inspections are performed in a room isolated from the production floor where temperature and humidity variations and vibrations are limited. Quality control experts must take samples from the production floor to the quality control lab to perform dimensional inspection with a traditional CMM. These part movements have several major negative impacts. For one, it requires a considerable amount of time and effort to move the parts back and forth from the production line to the lab, often creating unmanageable bottlenecks at the various measurement stations and extended delays in decision-making.

Inspection on the production line

To mitigate these issues and along with the increasing implementation of Industry 4.0, manufacturers are requiring that quality control inspections be conducted right on, or very near the production line to maximise efficiency and streamline communication throughout their entire manufacturing processes. 

As a result, there has never been a greater need to perform dimensional inspections within the production cycle using automated near-line or in-line metrology solutions. 

However, if inspections are carried out on production lines, the inspection pace must follow the production pace to avoid affecting productivity. A stop of production due to inspection bottlenecks cost a lot of money. Therefore, the return on investment of an automated quality control solution is very high.

Solution: Automated 3D scanning

Thanks to new technology and advances in science, manufacturers are using next-generation 3D scanning solutions with unprecedented data acquisition speeds of up to 1.5M measurements/second and faster mesh generations. A mix of high-performance cameras and computer components helps to increase data acquisition and processing speeds. In other words, 3D scanning measuring machines provide a solution that can scan parts continuously, faster than ever. Scanners can even adjust their settings during the scan process to optimise surface acquisition according to different textures and colors. This is a major enhancement since we can scan shiny black and matte white surfaces on the same part.

Increasing Automated Inspection Productivity

By using automated 3D scanners, quality control teams can perform more inspections per hour. Problems, defects, and irregularities can be detected earlier for immediate or future actions. In addition, equipment maintenance and corrective measures in the manufacturing process can be identified and planned ahead. With the possibility to be connected directly with production databases, the information can be automatically synchronised to save even more time.

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Hexagon Smart Manufacturing Innovation Centre Opens In Singapore

Hexagon Smart Manufacturing Innovation Centre Opens In Singapore

Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division has opened the doors of its new Smart Manufacturing Innovation Centre in Singapore  – fitted with a wide array of advanced hardware and software technologies aimed at enabling an autonomous future.

Hexagon’s flagship facility in Southeast Asia will showcase an unparalleled portfolio of smart digital manufacturing technologies and autonomous connected ecosystems. This includes Hexagon’s latest advanced Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) solutions for design engineering; Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) software for production applications; precision metrology, superior sensors, automation, Artificial Intelligence (AI), machine learning, data management and analytics solutions.

The centre, currently resourced with more than two dozen people, is committed to strengthening and accelerating the development of smart manufacturing and autonomous solutions by improving design quality and production efficiencies.

Lim Boon Choon, President for Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division, Korea, ASEAN, Pacific, and India said that, “This centre marks our on-going drive to bring Hexagon’s smart solutions into this region for the benefit of businesses here. It offers an environment for innovators, design engineers and manufacturers to test proof their inventions for quality, safety and productivity with access to our latest offerings which are a part of Hexagon’s Smart Solution portfolio.

“We are the only provider in the world with the end-to-end connected capabilities – from design, production, quality assurance, data analysis, digital twin, shop floor connectivity, to Artificial Intelligence and machine learning.

“Hexagon’s Smart Manufacturing Innovation Centre allows us to move closer towards creating an autonomous future where business, industry and humanity sustainably thrive,” enthused Lim.

He hinted at exciting updates on the horizon. “More of Hexagon’s revolutionary smart technologies including the latest advanced non-contact sensors fitted on-machine, on coordinate measuring machines (CMM) as well as on Laser Trackers, to elevate quality and precision to the highest level possible will soon be featured at the centre. This is a pioneering achievement, one that the industry has not seen to-date.”

Meanwhile, Paolo Guglielmini, President of Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division said, “As a global leader of advanced technologies and smart manufacturing, Singapore is a strategic location for Hexagon’s innovation centre in the ASEAN region.”

Industry research points to a shifting tide towards autonomous smart manufacturing in the next five years in Southeast Asia, especially with many industries and governments pushing for digitalisation.

The region has also seen the rapid rise of new innovations and start-ups and unfolding of 5G technologies which are expected to spur the growth of many industries from electronics to semiconductors, medical technology, eMobility, clean energy and more.

Lim highlighted that the aerospace, automotive, electronics, medical technology as well as energy industries would stand to especially benefit from this facility.

The new Innovation Centre offers design and production engineers the very best environment to learn, experiment, interact, and facilitate deeper learning and knowledge transfer in areas such as reverse engineering, additive manufacturing, shop-floor automated inspection and digitalisation of operations.

Solutions at the Hexagon’s Smart Manufacturing Innovation Centre include:

  • Advanced CAE solutions for design engineering, for simulation such as Cradle and [virtual manufacturing / manufacturing process simulation] tools such as the Simufact portfolio
  • CAM software for production solutions like NCSIMUL and VISI Reverse
  • Asset management and connected shopfloor digital solutions like SFx Asset Management,
  • Quality analysis solutions such as Q-DAS, VGSTUDIO Max and Laser Trackers
  • Statistical Process Control to collect data for analytics.

 

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HMI Introduces New CMM Solution For Precise Inspection Of Delicate Electronic Parts

HMI Introduces New CMM Solution For Precise Inspection Of Delicate Electronic Parts

High-volume inspection of smartphone camera lenses simplified with low-force probing and optical scanning capabilities in one coordinate measuring machine (CMM)

Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division has launched a new coordinate measuring machine (CMM) that overcomes challenges common to the measurement of delicate components, such as smartphone camera lens assemblies, to help manufacturers perform quality inspections up to four to six times faster than conventional methods with uncompromising sub-micron accuracy.

Continued demand for high-value products that are precisely assembled from delicate materials, such as smartphones and wearable technology, requires electronics manufacturers to inspect large volumes of fragile and miniaturized components with high precision. For example, the plastic lens barrel of a smartphone could have a part diameter of 7 mm and the tolerance to which they are produced could be as small as 1-2 microns. The precise geometrical shape of these components is of great importance because misalignment would lead to distorted camera images and severely affect the customers’ experience of the product. For many applications, quality sampling is sufficient, but every part of a lens assembly must be inspected to ensure perfect quality.

With a first term length-measurement accuracy of .28 microns, the Leitz PMM Gold – with a “P” for precision – is the most accurate metrology machine ever produced by Hexagon. The new machine’s optical inspection takes about five minutes to inspect a lens barrel from start to finish, doesn’t require human intervention beyond the positioning of parts, and does not contact fragile components during measurement. In addition to supporting faster measurement processes, its non-contact probes are especially sensitive to deviations in geometry, which can be critical to validating the quality of precision components. For example, up to seven different material layers are required to produce a single smartphone camera lens, so even minor variances in surface quality can drastically alter results.

By contrast, the profilometers traditionally used for the inspection of delicate electronics parts such as smartphone camera lenses, often deform components during measurement and require a commitment of 20 to 30 minutes per part for inspection due to stringent part-positioning requirements. While highly accurate, an additional limitation of the profilometer is that it can only be used for final quality inspection, whereas non-contact inspection can be introduced at each phase of assembly where it is required.

Svenja Schadek, product manager, commented, “As the world’s largest CMM provider, Hexagon has significant experience across product teams in responding to the needs of manufacturers as they navigate new challenges to productivity and quality. Through combined R&D effort, we developed a CMM that features very high accuracy and a smaller footprint so that our customers could bring the latest consumer products to market faster, with greater confidence in their manufacturing processes by employing rigorous, high-sample-rate inspection.”

The ability to easily switch between optical and low-force tactile inspection tools is a strength of the Leitz PMM Gold, as an accurate measurement of components with deep crevices or detailed features can be difficult to achieve without the use of style. Low-force tactile probing capabilities provided by the new CMM ensure that delicate surfaces remain intact, while an optical sensor supports the performance of rapid inspection without contacting parts. The CMM’s fully automatic sensor-exchange system enables users to easily switch between these probe and sensor heads and delivers seamless transitions when measuring a mixture of different part features.

Designed especially for ultra-high precision manufacturing, the Leitz PMM Gold is 30 percent smaller than competing machines, which saves valuable floor space. Available globally from today, the CMM’s unique capabilities are also ideally suited to the high-accuracy inspection of precision gears for electric vehicles, as well as other precision components and the calibration of gauges and master parts.

 

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Hexagon Launches Next Generation, Entry-Level Multisensor CMM

Hexagon Launches Next Generation, Entry-Level Multisensor CMM

Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division has released a new multisensor coordinate measuring machine (CMM) that facilitates smart manufacturing by providing a cost-effective entry point into automated measurement. Fully compatible with a range of Hexagon smart technologies, the OPTIV Lite 3.2.2 is designed to deliver a smooth transition from manual to automatic quality methods for greater inspection accuracy, reliability, and efficiency. In addition, the CMM offers connectivity to end-to-end manufacturing solutions for process and product improvements traditionally beyond the scope of entry-level machines.

OPTIV Lite 3.2.2 is purpose-built for quick and precise non-contact and tactile measurement of small parts across a range of industries, including electronics, e-Mobility, precision engineering, and medical. Offering complete traceability of measurement results and a simplified interface for ease-of-use, OPTIV Lite 3.2.2 is ideal for manufacturers looking to seamlessly adopt automated inspection procedures or meet expanding production demands.

OPTIV Lite 3.2.2 is optimised for reliable inspection close to production environments, with its rugged mechanical design, high machine dynamics, and capabilities for precise measurement in a wide temperature range. This lightweight machine offers a small factory footprint and excellent accuracy with its 6x motorised zoom lens with high resolution digital colour camera. Application flexibility can be enhanced with the optional touch-trigger probe HP-TM and the HR-MP probe changer rack that can hold up to three probe modules. Further options include a laser triangulation sensor and a rotary indexing table.

PC-DMIS metrology software comes as standard with OPTIV Lite 3.2.2, and users can increase operational simplicity with Inspect, a stand-alone application that allows production-level operators to easily execute measurement routines using a standard, user-friendly interface. Users can monitor system status remotely using HxGN SFx | Asset Management, enabling quality teams to optimise CMM performance and minimise downtime.

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Portable 3D Metrology: Combating Common Challenges In Large Parts And Assemblies

Portable 3D Metrology: Combating Common Challenges in Large Parts and Assemblies

Measurement and alignment tasks are a considerable challenge in the overall production process when dealing with large components and assemblies. Here’s how you can address them. Article by Jim Cassady and Jutta Mayer, FARO Technologies.

Mating of a custom Wagstaff mold table mounting system and the corresponding mold table.

In the world of manufacturing, dimensional control is a fundamental building block that cannot be compromised. It determines part-to-part variation, establishes part-to-CAD comparison to check whether specs are met, and ensures proper fit in a final assembly. Beyond getting part geometries right, however, there are additional reasons for maintaining standards in accordance with design specifications.

Investing in precision equipment for measuring and aligning components helps ensure that everything fits the first time around without any unnecessary rework, saving time and other resources for a company. Further, more serious consequences such as equipment failure or production delays can be avoided when alignment, measurements, and inspections are conducted properly and at appropriate phases of production.

A ‘Greater’ Need for Precision

For industries such as aerospace, automotive, shipbuilding, heavy equipment manufacturing, and many others that handle large components and assemblies, measurement and alignment tasks are a considerable challenge in the overall production process. On the surface, these challenges may not seem too different from what most manufacturers typically encounter. Yet, the difficulties, as well as the consequences of missed specifications, are magnified manyfold owing to the size of the objects being built.

Manufacturers that handle large workpieces would candidly share that as product size increases and part geometry grows more complex, it becomes harder for them to perform measurements and inspections accurately. Conventional hand tools such as rules, gauges, calipers, micrometers, squares, and protractors are effective up to a point, but they are also demanding in terms of time and operator skill, often making them prone to human error.

The use of large, fixed Coordinate Measurement Machines (CMMs) in quality labs is impractical as many workpieces simply cannot be moved to the lab for measurement and inspection due to various reasons. In addition, fixed CMMs are limited in terms of the size of the parts they can inspect and become costly in large working volumes.

Apart from size and cost limitations, accessibility and line-of-sight issues also plague the technicians responsible for taking accurate measurements, as they struggle to find efficient ways to perform their jobs. That said, with today’s technological advancements, there are many solutions available that provide speedy and cost-effective ways around these common challenges.

Portable 3D Technology to the Rescue

Portable 3D coordinate measurement devices have long become the choice solution among manufacturers for large-volume measurement, as they combine accuracy with flexibility. Compared to conventional hand tools, portable 3D technology offers manufacturers a much higher level of precision, efficiency, and productivity all at once. Unlike fixed CMMs, these solutions require much less capital investment at the onset and are robust enough to perform even in a non-controlled environment, such as right on the production floor, in a dry-dock or hangar.

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One Measuring Software For All Applications

One Measuring Software for All Applications

Measurement service provider Lometec upgraded the measuring software for its tactile Wenzel coordinate measuring machines from Metrosoft CM to WM | Quartis. CEO Jörg Werkmeister and Technical Director Marc Lange report on their practical experience using the example of a dimensional inspection of a turbine blade testing device.

The Metrosoft QUARTIS workspace. The inner ring of the turbine blade testing device is seen on the LH 108 coordinate measuring machine. (Source: Lometec)

Lometec GmbH & Co. KG is an accredited metrology lab according to DIN EN ISO / IEC 17025: 2005. The company provides a fully air-conditioned 220-square-meter measurement room according to VDI / VDE 2627 Bl.1 with state-of-the-art optical and tactile measuring machines. Lometec’s customers are mainly from the automotive and aerospace industry, medical technology, and mechanical engineering.

 

Measuring of the CNC Manufactured Rings of a Turbine Blade Testing Device

All tactile measurement systems at Lometec are exclusively powerful coordinate measuring machines (CMMs) from Wenzel Group.

“The Wenzel CMMs offer a holistic concept of high-quality engineering, intelligent software and accessory options,” says Jörg Werkmeister, Chief Executive Officer of Lometec. He is very satisfied with the decision to upgrade from Metrosoft CM to WM | Quartis.

Lometec was faced with a very sophisticated measurement task. A CNC manufactured inner and outer rings of a turbine blade testing device needed to be checked for dimensional accuracy for a customer. It was a very time-critical measurement task and the metrologists from Lometec used two LH 108 Wenzel coordinate measuring machines in parallel.

Clearly Designed Workspace for More Efficiency in Daily Use

Technical Director Marc Lange explains, “Due to the clearly designed workspace WM | Quartis works more effectively than was possible with Metrosoft CM.”

In the WM | Quartis user interface, the traditional menus and toolbars have been replaced by the Ribbon—a device that presents commands organized into a set of tabs.

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API’s Improved VProbe For Enhanced CMM Measurements Directly On Production Floor

API’s Improved vProbe For Enhanced CMM Measurements Directly On Production Floor

API presents the new and improved vProbe in online demos. vProbe achieves CMM-level accuracy when measuring components of any volume. API’s new vProbe is smaller and lighter. It features automatic probe recognition, smart buttons, and has a working battery life of up to eight hours.

“The new and improved API vProbe tactile measuring sensor provides the ability to perform accurate CMMstyle measurements directly on the production floor. Integrated with the API Radian Laser Tracker series, vProbe significantly enhances the measuring capabilities and functionalities of traditional Laser Trackers.”, summarises Jan-Hendrick Lott, General Manager von API für die Region EMEA, on the performance of the new measuring sensor.

Accurate 3D measurements of internal and external features

vProbe is a wireless, hand-held, lightweight, tactile probe with easy hold grip that allows users to perform extended coordinate measuring functions by inspecting intricate internal and external features or part characteristics providing fast and accurate dimensional measurements.

Easy, error-free application through Smart Buttons for common software functions

vProbe offers more versatility than a portable arm CMM, greater accuracy, and consistent measurements making it inherently more suitable for medium and large parts. The RFID probe stylus recognition feature of the New vProbe eliminates the need to manually select the probe stylus, ultimately removing potential for error. Additionally, Smart Buttons create a better user experience, minimising trips to the computer to select common functions which are now integrated in the probe. Dynamic tactile scanning capability provides instant coordinate feedback, and the integrated battery provides up to 8 hours of measurement activity. Styli lengths up to 500mm with a variety of tip sizes can be accommodated.

Applications of the 3D measuring system – demo options both on site and virtual

vProbe is ideal for applications in component measurement, hidden point measurement, quality assurance, fixtures, jig and tooling, reverse engineering, scanning and all other precision measurement applications.

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Portable 3D Metrology: Combating Common Challenges In Large Parts And Assemblies

Portable 3D Metrology: Combating Common Challenges in Large Parts and Assemblies

When it comes to metrology, here’s how customers can boost confidence, accelerate delivery timelines, and reduce scrap and rework rates all at once. Article by Jim Cassady and Jutta Mayer, FARO Technologies.

In the world of manufacturing, dimensional control is fundamental to successful part assembly. It determines part-to-part variation, establishes part-to-CAD comparison to check whether specs are met, and ensures proper final fit. Beyond getting part geometries right, however, there are additional reasons for maintaining standards in accordance with design specifications.

Investing in precision equipment for measuring and aligning components helps ensure that everything fits the first time around without any unnecessary rework, saving time, and other resources for a company. Further, more serious consequences such as equipment failure or production delays can be avoided when alignment, measurements, and inspections are conducted properly and at appropriate phases of production.

A ‘Greater’ Need for Precision

For industries such as aerospace, automotive, shipbuilding, heavy equipment manufacturing, and many others that handle large components and assemblies, measurement and alignment tasks are a considerable challenge in the overall production process. On the surface, these challenges may not seem too different from what most manufacturers typically encounter. Yet, the difficulties, as well as the consequences of missed specifications, are magnified owing to the size of the objects being built.

Manufacturers that handle large workpieces would candidly share that as product size increases and part geometry grows more complex, it becomes harder for them to perform measurements and inspections accurately. Conventional hand tools such as rules, gauges, calipers, micrometers, squares, and protractors are effective up to a point, but they are also demanding in terms of time and operator skill, often making them prone to human error.

The use of large, fixed coordinate measurement machines (CMMs) in quality labs is impractical as many workpieces cannot be moved to the lab for measurement and inspection. For example, if a ship is dry-docked for a limited time for retrofitting purposes, transporting parts that would fit on a CMM into a quality lab would not be practical. In addition, fixed CMMs are limited in terms of the size of the parts they can inspect and become costly in large working volumes.

Portable 3D Technology to the Rescue

Portable 3D coordinate measurement devices have long become the choice solution among manufacturers for large-volume measurement, as they combine accuracy with flexibility. Compared to conventional hand tools, portable 3D technology offers manufacturers a much higher level of precision, efficiency, and productivity all at once. Unlike fixed CMMs, these solutions require much less capital investment at the onset and are robust enough to perform even in a non-controlled environment, such as on the production floor, in a dry-dock or hangar.

The resulting ability to deploy measurement devices right where the manufacturing process takes place accelerates execution timelines and allows manufacturers to deliver quality products with greater confidence. What this means for large-part manufacturers is that, instead of settling for hand tools or a bulky fixed CMM set-up, they can opt for alternatives that offer the right mix of performance, cost, and flexibility.

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