The reverse engineering package
We believe that AM technology has to be accessible to anyone at any level. So we decided to create an easy-to-get-started package for reverse engineering. You will get one 3D scanner, 2-4 hours of CAD training with an engineer, 4 hours of 3D printer and 3D scanner training and a Formlabs Form 3+ 3D printer.
And the price is quite impressive - starting from 52.000 DKK
Einstar scanner + CAD + Formlabs Form 3+ - 52.000 DKK
Einstar scanner + CAD + Ultimaker S5 - 59.000 DKK
To get you started on your 3D scanning journey. We have three dedicated experts in-house at 3DVerkstan, to get you started. They will train and provide the best knowledge to ensure your success with 3D scanning before moving on to CAD.
We have partnered with Podovo (an awesome engineering firm) to provide you with the best possible training and know-how to get you started with reverse engineering in your chosen CAD software.
And to go along with the first two steps, you will be equipped with a Formlabs Form 3+ resin 3D printer. Absolute best in class when it comes to desktop resin printers! It's hands down the most straightforward 3D printer to get started with and take you to new levels.
This package aims to add value and strengthen your company's CAD / CAM capabilities. Either to help you move production in-house or create a hybrid solution where you scan, we deliver the CAD work, and you handle the production.
If this sounds interesting, don't hesitate to get in touch with us; details are below!
Get in touch
REVERSE ENGINEERING CASE STUDY: CUSTOM FUEL INJECTOR GRIPPERS
Headquartered in Wisconsin, STS Technical Group has been operating for nearly 40 years working with clients on staffing, technical design, and engineering challenges. Warehouse companies consider many factors when designing grippers for pick and place operations. The materials used in the picked component and the gripper, grip strength, geometry of the picked component, radial jaws versus linear jaw motion, surrounding clearances, and the required pick and place location tolerances. STS Technical Group’s Director of Engineering Services Benjamin Heard used a Creaform laser 3D scanner and VX Elements modelling software to get a virtual 3D scan of the fuel injector to assist with the design of the grippers. The scan resulted in an image with intricate details, and scanning eliminated the time it would have taken to measure every gap, cylinder, and opening on the fuel injector. The scanned image could then be imported into 3D CAD software to generate an extremely detailed design using a mold feature in the software.
The process of designing and 3D printing the irregular grippers was a complete success and they operate as expected. The capabilities of the 3D printed grippers are far superior to the previous grippers, including a greater surface area to grasp the fuel injector, leading to less damage and scratches on the fuel injector.
REVERSE ENGINEERING CASE STUDY: IMPROVED INTAKE MANIFOLD
Andrea Pirazzini, the founder of Help3D, used Formlabs 3D printers to create an intake manifold with improved thermal performance for a pit bike that he rode at the 12 Pollici Italian Cup championship.
After consulting the specifications in detail, Pirazzini thought that 3D printing an intake manifold, a part that’s traditionally machined from aluminum, would be an interesting project. In the past, he had tried using FDM technology, but the result was not what he hoped for, as air leakage distorted the carburetor and the engine’s output.
To develop the project, Pirazzini used 3D scanning and Autodesk Fusion 360 software to reverse engineer the design. The scan of the four-stroke engine (two-valve) engine with its frame and carburetor helped him to correctly size the manifold and then to position it so that the carburetor would not crash into the frame or the exhaust system. Pirazzini also designed intake trumpets and intake ducts. With the use of CAD, it was possible to align the diameter of the head inlet with the carburetor, avoiding steps and any pressure drop or turbulence.
The new manifold design was printed with a Formlabs printer using the Rigid 10K Resin at a 100 microns layer height, creating a smooth surface without visible layer lines. As for the finish, Pirazzini used classic water-based sandpaper to smooth the surface. Unlike an FDM manifold, which has to be treated externally and internally to be watertight, SLA printing creates solid and waterproof parts. The reverse-engineered and 3D printed manifold was a big success: the cooling fins recorded a 40-50 degrees celsius lower temperature compared to a classic aluminum manifold.
3D SCANNING TECHNOLOGIES
There are multiple scanning technologies currently on the market, all offering their own advantages and weaknesses.
Laser triangulation uses light projected onto the object to take up to millions of measurements (dots) per second. The light reflected from the dots back into the scanner’s sensor to help it capture the geometry of the object. These types of scanners are often the most accurate, and are great for highly detailed parts that have clear surfaces.
Laser triangulation scanners do have limitations. For example, this technology is not used in most portable scanners because the laser dots need to project from a stable source, and the source has to be kept a close distance from the scanned object. These technologies typically require reflective markers to be applied onto the object to be used; markers that need to be removed after use, which could be an obstacle depending on the object being scanned.
Finally, the laser dots can be harmful to human eyes, so it is important to use extra safety precautions when scanning body parts with a laser triangulation system, or to check with your scanner manufacturer to make sure the device is eye-safe.
White light scanners integrate several images (or patterns) taken at the same time from a single observation point. A pattern of light is projected and laid over the component being scanned, and then all of the images are integrated into a single 3D snapshot. White light scanners are far more common in medical applications, since it is safe to use on both humans and animals and excels when an object is not perfectly still.
Traditional white light scanners have been slower to scan than laser triangulation scanners.
Photogrammetry means the act of deriving precise measurements from photographs. It involves taking a set of overlapping photos of an object, building, person, or environment, and converting them into a 3D model using a number of computer algorithms. This is the most commonly used method when creating a 3D scan with a smartphone, since modern phone cameras are capable of capturing and combining large numbers of photos.
Photogrammetry should be considered the least expensive and least accurate method for creating prints, and is not suitable for serious business applications.
Scan accuracy varies considerably between scanner technologies, and higher accuracy comes at a higher cost. The required tolerances of your final part can be a helpful guide for determining your accuracy requirements for a 3D scanner.
'There are two main categories of scanners: white light scanners and laser light scanners. Both white light and laser scanners use projected light and an offset camera to triangulate points on a scanned object. A laser scanner projects laser lines on the object, while structured light projects a focused grid from a digital projector. White light can achieve higher accuracy than laser scanning due to the noise caused by laser speckle patterns. Both of these technologies can be found in handheld and desktop forms.
With accuracy in the range of 0.1 mm or better, laser and white light scanners are a good fit alongside high-resolution 3D printers. Formlabs stereolithography (SLA) 3D printers (such as the Form 3+) produce parts at a similar accuracy, and with a similar printable area, to the scan volume of many desktop laser scanners.
Besides the accuracy between measured points and their actual location, scanners also vary in terms of resolution, which is the distance between captured points at a given scan distance. This means that details on the scanned object that are smaller than the scanner’s resolution won’t be captured. For example, a highly accurate scanner with a lower resolution might detect the general shape of jewelry on a statue, but not clearly show individual details on a ring or necklace. Depending on your project requirements, this may or may not be a dealbreaker.
An easy way to remember these metrics is: accuracy is the measurement error between the part and digital value. Resolution refers to the density of measurements.
In general, white light scanning provides the best resolution and accuracy when compared to laser scanning. For some artistic use-cases for 3D scanning you may need a lot of detail, while overall accuracy is less important—especially if you don’t require your part to fit precisely with other parts in an assembly. In these cases photogrammetry is an excellent low-cost option to explore.
Accuracy can mean slightly different things depending on the manufacturer and scanning technology. For example, the accuracy of handheld scanners depends on the distance to the subject and the quality of scan reconstruction, while desktop scanners have consistent accuracy within the constrained scan volume. If you are considering buying a 3D scanner for precise measurement, make sure to compare like to like.
ACCURACY: 3D PRINTERS
Formlabs SLA 3D printers produce parts at a similar accuracy, and with a similar printable area, to the scan volume of many desktop laser scanners. The accuracy of any 3D printing will vary depending on which materials you use to print, and the mechanical properties of those materials, which can also affect how likely a print is to warp or be distorted in any way.
If you’re unsure about the accuracy of a specific printer, then the best way to evaluate one is to inspect real parts by requesting a free print or sample part created on the machine.