Case - Ericsson

The use of both Quick Cast and Quick Die - a case in point

Reduced times to market

A way to significantly reduce times to market is to combine the Quick Cast and Quick Die casting methods intelligently to produce quality items in a short time. The advantages of the two casting processing differ which will reduce the product's development time significantly. This also allows changes and optimisations of the product to be made throughout the development process, up to the last phase of the final pre-series.

Case - Ericsson

Formkon produced an "electronics housing" for Ericsson by first using the Quick Cast method and then making a small pilot series of 150 items using the Quick Die process. The schedule was extremely ambitious and very compressed over a period of 17 weeks. A wide range of prototypes was produced and tested during this period.

Ericsson had two requirements for the item (dimensions 390x290x80mm) which were water resistance and various unique thermal conductivity capacities, a property which is also of interest to many other Formkon customers. A decision to use aluminium as the material was made from the very start.

Step 1: Production of Quick Cast prototypes

                                                                     

 

Benefits of Quick Cast

  • Delivery time from 5 - 10 workdays
  • The use of casting tools is not required.
  • Highly complex items can be produced without considering release angles, radii and parting lines.
  • Small wall thicknesses from 1mm or less can be produced.
  • Porosities are very limited due to the use of vacuum in the casting process.
  • Many different alloys are available.


 

Based on 3D data delivered by Ericsson, two sets of prototypes were produced in AlSI7Mg - in just 2 weeks - using the Quick Cast process. The primary object was to test the item's thermal conductivity and the water resistance of various rubber types in the item.  The results of these tests were used to optimise the entire item. At the second test, 6 prototypes were produced to test the final details and optimisations further. Ericsson was then able to decide that the entire item was to be tested in a Quick Die quality.


Step 2: Production of Quick Die prototypes and pre-series

The difference between the Quick Cast process and the Quick Die process is that the latter requires prior production of a casting tool which also means that it takes longer to produce the Quick Die prototypes. The first 15 Quick Die prototypes were made in 7 weeks. Ericsson then completed functional tests of the prototypes which resulted in various changes to the item and tool. After this, 50 additional items were produced in only 3 weeks. Based on these items, the final test was completed after which a small series of 150 items was produced.

This allowed several significant tests to be completed in 17 weeks to make the product ready to market in as short a time as possible.

Benefits of Quick Die

  • Delivery in 4 - 8 weeks.
  • Low tool costs.
  • Pressure cast properties providing optimum conditions in connection with prototype testing.
  • Completion of rapid pilot tests.
  • Production of small series of only 100 - 1000 items.
  • Completion of rapid, low-cost tool changes.