German Automotive OEM

Reducing Tool Qualification Time by 25% or more

A German automotive OEM sought to speed up its tool qualification process, which was often taking as long as 10 months per tool. Because it was operating in a highly competitive industry, it was vital for the company to explore other process options to reduce material costs and speed up process development.  

To avoid time-consuming experimental efforts, the customer utilized AdvantEdge to conduct machining simulations for tool qualification. Ultimately, they saw a 25% reduction in their tool qualification process. 

CHALLENGE

The experiments-driven tool qualification process typically required ten months. Each prototype design iteration and procurement, by itself, could take as long as 12 weeks, lengthening the evaluation process and increasing experimental costs. Narrowing down the choice of tool supplier, chip breaker geometry, tool coating and process conditions presented a significant challenge contributing to the lengthy process for new material classes, in particular. The customer sought to compress the tool qualification time and reduce experiment-related costs. 

APPROACH

The traditional approach involved selecting inserts based on vendor recommendations, testing these inserts, requesting design changes and repeating, culminating in a lengthy process. The customer decided to narrow down the insert selection process using machining modeling. Based on the simulation analysis conducted through AdvantEdge, just 2 inserts were selected, instead of the typical 4 to 8. These two inserts then went through the rigorous experimental procedures to finalize the insert of choice. 

IMPACT

  • Tool qualification time reduced by approximately 25%
  • Reduced cost of machining experiments
  • Optimized tool model iteration process moving forward

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