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GSK Precision Enhances Customer Loyalty and Trust, with Objet 3D Printer

“We believe that Objet 3D Printers provide the highest quality, multi-functional prototyping system for production of automobile components.”
— Hsi-Rui Chang, GSK Precision

In High Gear

Background

GSK Precision manufactures precise automotive products such as mechanical motors, transmission gear parts and engine control unit boxes. The company is part of the GSK Group Ltd., the largest automotive component manufacturer in Taiwan.

Rapid technological advances and increased competition created new challenges for producers of automotive components. Under increasing pressure to accelerate design cycles, GSK Precision found it difficult to uphold the high standards of innovation and quality for which its products are known.

One method of shortening product development cycles is to use high-quality rapid prototyping, but GSK Precision was not realizing the full benefit from its standard prototyping workflow. “We had always contracted out our prototyping,” said Hsi-Rui Chang, chief of management at GSK Precision. “Process-wise, this was not effective, as it always took too long and did not allow us to cut our total production time.”

Shifting Gears

The company decided to investigate options for rapid prototyping systems that it could bring in-house. After evaluating systems using different types of technologies, the design team selected an Objet Eden260V 3D Printer, which uses PolyJet technology.

“We found the Objet Eden260V prototypes to be of very high precision and quality,” said Chang. “We also were impressed that the Objet Eden hardware is very forward-looking, so it can address our future needs.”

The GSK Precision team also liked the Objet 3D Printer’s ability to create prototypes with rubber-like materials. Soft materials are particularly relevant to many automotive applications and, according to the GSK team, are aligned with current trends in rapid prototyping.

Record Times

GSK Precision uses the Objet Eden 3D Printer to prototype highly accurate parts, such as transmission gears, with ultra-fine detail usually only available with high-cost systems. Engineers can verify and test product appearance, assembly and kinematic behavior so they have full confidence when the products reach production.

Frequent in-house prototyping has also strengthened client communications and increased customer satisfaction. “Clients can see tangible product samples much earlier in the process, and our engineers can better understand client feedback,” said Chang.

With the Objet 3D Printer, GSK Precision is more competitive. It has cut its prototyping costs by about 5 to 10 percent and it has shortened its product development cycles by one month. “Previously when we contracted our prototyping, we were plagued by long waiting periods that seriously affected production dates. Our ability to independently produce high-quality prototypes in-house has greatly shortened our production times,” said Chang. “Most importantly, the Objet 3D Printer has significantly improved our client satisfaction and confidence.”

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