Indy Composite Works, based in Indiana, US, is now using JETCAM’s High Performance Nesting module to optimise nest patterns.
Indy states it designs and manufactures composite structures for a variety of industries. Dave New, Vice President of Indy said “The old software did not perform consistently or effectively. It didn’t easily cross nest patterns from multiple designs, and once a layout pattern (nest) was determined it was a manual process to generate the cutting path.”
According to JETCAM, Indy set about evaluating nesting systems in 2013 and spoke with JETCAM’s US distributor, NestOne Solutions, along with several other companies. They provided a set of plies of their highest volume projects to each vendor. From the results they found that JETCAM’s nests were between 5-15% better than competing nests.
Russ Polak, Process Engineer noted “JETCAM was far and away better than the other software systems we evaluated. It was easier to use, generated better material yields and provided the best reporting for management. It was also very cost competitive in comparison to the other systems we reviewed.”
The decision was made to purchase JETCAM Expert, a postprocessor to drive the Gerber Knife Cutter and JETCAM’s free form high performance nesting module. Indy Composite Works also purchased JETCAM Orders Controller (JOC) to create work lists of plies to be nested and to take advantage of its powerful reporting capabilities. New continues “Our engineers immediately saw the benefit of JETCAM and proactively sought more information and guidance on how to use the software. With great support from NestOne they quickly learned how to use the software to its full advantage and have since trained others in the facility.”
Indy Composites use SolidWorks to organise their plies, but pass them to JETCAM for processing. Component files can be quickly and automatically created with profiling information using JETCAM’s SCAP (Single Component Automatic Processing) facility, making them immediately ready for nesting.
New says he found the software posed no problem for staff to get to grips with “The software was surprisingly easy to use. Unlike other software we use, we don’t have to continuously contact customer service to work through issues or seek assistance to navigate the system.”
JETCAM Orders Controller (JOC) is used to create cutting schedules for the Gerber. It can remotely use JETCAM Expert to create component files from SolidWorks using SCAP, and then single plies or complete assemblies of parts can be dragged and dropped onto work sheets, ready for nesting. Polak added “JOC has allowed me to easily set up the various kits that we need to cut. Once I pull in the plies it’s a simple process to get a table set up. I can use SCAP to create components and then just specify ‘2 of this, 3 of that’ etc.”
Indy state that reporting also improved drastically. In addition to a range of standard reports, Indy Composites were now able to design and style their own custom reports using JETCAM’s advanced report designer.
The company also explains it has been well supported by US distributor NestOne. “Anytime I have had a question I am able to call or email our reseller and within minutes I have a response with a solution to the question or a timeline of when it can be answered or fixed,” explains Polak.
Indy Composites says it now has a system in place that creates more efficient nests much quicker than before that also run faster on the machine. They have greater flexibility with nests and better reporting. New added “We believe that we will have completely recouped our costs within 6 months. Nests are now consistently over 90% efficient.”
Photo provided by Indy Composites
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