We use 3D printing to fasten our production process
Since the beginning of 2015 Iteq Engineering, an independent sister company of Iteq Industries, offers the opportunity to produce and assemble single projects and prototypes all by herself. For that she designs sketches for clients and uses a 3D printer which increases the development process.
Manufacturability as primary asset
Iteq saw an opportunity in optimizing her situation by turning the production process upside down. Engineer Martijn Lammers describes the situation as follows: "We see the manufacturability as primary asset, next to cost price and quality. When all that's fixed, we create a nice design."
Since the first of January Iteq Engineering builds prototypes all by itself. In most cases they produce light industrial machines, like conveyors, parking meters, and sauce dispensers. "We shop the difference accessories and weld, spray, and assemble them by ourselves" says Lammens.
To gain contact with engineers, product developers, and production companies Iteq Engineering joined the trade fair Rapidpro early march in Veldhoven, where they showed a 3D printer and the opportunities of this new technology at their stand. "We use 3D printing to fasten our production process" says Lammers. "If we have an idea, we can easily analyze the shortcomings by a 3D print. Imagine the production process of a gear wheel, which is expensive because of the milling and welding process. Now you just make a print, and see immediately if it functions or that you need to add two or three teeth."
With the prototype building at home and the 3D printer Iteq Engineering is able to produce and assemble (complex) prototypes all by itself.
Lammers: "We can develop an idea from the start and accompany our costumer from idea until plug & play, we notice that costumers love to do business with just one partner for the development of ideas. Even if they have no or incomplete drawings we're able to help them. We use short production lines and switch fast between idea, development, and prototype. By doing this we don't lose any technical knowledge between any of the development stages. And because we produce by ourselves now, we can produce faster than before. The use of the 3D printer increases the development process essentially. This will offer us more expertise and knowledge. If you can read and understand drawings, even incomplete, you can produce faster. Clients are really surprised when they receive their product so fast."
Lammers sees a rising quality by 3D printing. The progress lies in the development of the printed material. The quality gets better every time. "We think that the quality of printing will develop in such a way that one day it will replace a part of the simple turning and milling jobs."
Meanwhile the combination between Iteq Engineering and Iteq Industries (and also the third branch Iteq Vietnam) functions very well, a lot of products developed by Iteq Engineering are now produced by Iteq Industries.