Learn how RoboGym Robotics, a veteran BattleBots team, said goodbye to Solidworks and took their design game to the next level using Onshape, the cloud-native, all-in-one CAD and PDM solution. RoboGym was able to analyze key components of their Roundhouse BattleBot like its armor and weapon bar, run simulations, collaborate, iterate, and optimize their design to its fullest. Read this informative Onshape blog.
Who knew? How colorants affect plastic
In plastic injection molding, one aspect of polymer characteristics that doesn't always get the consideration it deserves is the addition of colorant. Believe it or not, there is a whole scientific body of knowledge about the ways in which adding color to plastic can affect its behavioral properties. This short article by Denny Scher of ICO Mold takes a high-level look at some of the different, and surprising, ways colorants can affect plastics. Read the full article.
igus has developed intelligent two- and four-hole fixed flange bearings with wireless sensing capabilities for wear detection. Constructed from self-lubricating, high-performance plastic, the bearings feature an integrated abrasion sensor, thin circuit board, and cableless battery supply. Wear interrupts the board's conductor paths, causing the electronics to lose the signal. The sensor then transmits a long-range network signal to an igus i.Cee switch cabinet module for analysis, including the percentage of abrasion. Learn about igus smart bearing technology.
Screw jack configuration and selection tool
Thomson has added a screw jack config and select tool to its online engineering toolset to help design engineers optimize and specify screw jacks for applications involving loads up to 100 tons. Screw jacks are increasingly replacing hydraulic cylinders in many ultra-heavy, low duty-cycle applications. Enter load, speed, travel, duty cycle, and other motion parameters. Learn more.
Retaining magnets from JW Winco: Universal and clever
JW Winco has expanded its magnet line to support more applications with new materials, shapes, systems, and even raw magnets. Learn about their latest offerings, including retaining magnets designed for corrosive environments (GN 50.8), encapsulated magnets designed for sensitive or painted surfaces (GN 51.8), handle magnets (GN 53.3), and powerful magnets designed to handle challenging environs (GN 52.6). Learn more.
3D print tool steel with the ease of a plastic
The Virtual Foundry, a pioneer in advanced 3D-printing materials, is excited to announce the launch of their latest innovation: M300 Tool Steel Filametâ„¢ (not a typo). This material answers the demand for FFF 3D-printable Tool Steel, delivering unparalleled strength and versatility. What sets this material apart is its seamless compatibility with various 3D printers, including Creality, Bambu Lab, Ultimaker, and more. The filament prints effortlessly, resembling the ease of working with PLA (plastic). Learn more.
New from Ruland: Inch-to-metric rigid couplings
Ruland Manufacturing now offers rigid couplings with inch-to-metric bores as a standard product, giving users a wider range of off-the-shelf couplings. This expansion is the latest addition to the company's inch-to-metric, standard coupling product line that includes seven types of motion-control couplings and universal joints. Instead of re-machining or ordering custom-made couplings, using off-the-shelf, inch-to-metric rigid couplings saves time and money. Learn more.
Case study: YouTuber builds one-of-a-kind PC chassis with Xometry's manufacturing services
Learn how Josh Sniffen, the YouTuber behind the popular PC-building channel Not From Concentrate, leaned on Xometry for a wide range of manufacturing options, personalized DFM feedback, and order management support for his latest creation: the HEXO ATX. Read this very cool Xometry case study.
E-Z Lok threaded insert CAD models available in online catalog
E-Z Lok, a leading manufacturer and master distributor of threaded inserts for metal, plastic, and wood, has recently launched an online CAD library to showcase a wide selection of its products. Built by CADENAS PARTsolutions, this catalog streamlines the design and spec process for engineers, MRO, and OEMs. Datasheets available for download. Learn more about E-Z Lok threaded inserts.
70% longer service life for linear bushings
As a result of an optimized production process, Bosch Rexroth's segmental linear bushings with plastic cage used in a wide variety of industries achieve a load capacity that is up to 20% higher and a service life that is up to 70% longer. They are part of a Rexroth round guide with a matching shaft. The increase in load capacity makes it possible to use a smaller size in many cases while meeting the same requirements. Downsizing reduces system costs, saves space, and reduces weight. Learn more.
Trick to measuring angles in SOLIDWORKS
Learn from the pros at TriMech how to take angle measurements easily in SOLID-WORKS. TriMech has an entire YouTube channel dedicated to SOLIDWORKS tips, and the company is excellent at training too. View the video.
6 considerations for selecting a ball valve
Ball valves are the ideal valve of choice for liquid and gas conveyance lines ranging from diesel fuel to compressed air. Although these valves may seem simple, there's a lot more to them. Parker Hannifin offers valuable advice on body materials, configuration, seals, venting, and more in this informative post. Read the Parker blog.
Great Resources: Sheet metal design guide
If you're looking for a basic guide to sheet metal design, this one from Xometry will serve your needs well. Follow the design requirements and tolerances in this guide to ensure parts fall closer to design intent. This is the type of information you'll sock away and then refer to again and again. Read the full article.
What's a magnetic GHOST fastener?
PEM® GHOST™ Fastening Technology from Penn-Engineering uses a fully concealed pinch-lock mechanism to create a secure and sleek lock with zero visible evidence of disassembly once engaged. Using a magnetic release tool on the concealed fastener actuates the internal components, unlocking the pinch-lock grip and instantly releasing the pin from the fastener. From automotive interiors to access control systems, this clever fastening tech is adaptable to many applications. View the video.
Engineer's Toolbox: The secret to living hinges that fold flat
Living hinges are often used to produce a container and its lid as a single molded part. If properly designed, they can open and close thousands of times without ever losing strength or flexibility. Proto Labs provides valuable tips on designing these (sometimes thin and fragile) parts. Read the full article.
NanoSteel delivers new advanced automotive steel to General Motors
NanoSteel, a leader in nanostructured steel materials, recently announced the delivery of its first advanced high-strength steel (AHSS) to General Motors for initial testing. Designed to provide automakers with a new standard in material performance, the sheet steel is poised to accelerate vehicle lightweighting initiatives focused on affordably meeting rising global fuel-economy regulations.
Production of the material, targeted to the $100 billion-plus automotive steel market, is the result of a multi-year joint development program between NanoSteel and AK Steel Corp., an industry-leading innovator in steel product development.
NanoSteel's commercially produced automotive sheet steel overcomes the historical tradeoff between strength and formability by delivering exceptional levels of both properties at the same time (approximately 1200 MPa tensile strength and 50 percent elongation). The high strength allows designers to create parts utilizing thinner-gauge material (less weight), while the high elongation allows manufacturers to produce the newly designed parts without expensive processing techniques, employee retraining, or additional capital costs. The unique combination of properties also allows engineers the design freedom to create novel part shapes, which further reduces weight.
VIDEO: See NanoSteel's advanced high-strength sheet steel properties in action.
"Many advanced materials with outstanding properties end up abandoned because they are too hard to use or too expensive to make," says NanoSteel CEO and President David Paratore. "NanoSteel's advanced high-strength steel is designed to be both easy to produce using conventional alloying elements with standard slab casting equipment and easy to use, enabling the stamping and forming of parts at room temperature without additional manufacturing infrastructure or investment, such as that required for ‘hot' stamped parts."
What sets NanoSteel apart
NanoSteel takes common raw material constituents used to make conventional steel alloys and combines them in different ratios to create proprietary alloy chemistries.
In conventional steel, the grains and matrix that comprise the structure of the steel are measured in microns. NanoSteel's alloys are nano-structured, which means grain and matrix sizes smaller than 100 nanometers. These nano-scale microstructures produce unique mechanical and physical properties resulting in capabilities outside the known performance boundaries of existing steels.
NanoSteel's technology is a "bulk materials nano-technology," which means that raw material chemistries are composed of conventional-size constituents that do not contain any nano-size particulates. Only the post-production microstructure of the thermal spray coatings, weld overlays, powder metals, and sheet steels are nano-scale in size.
NanoSteel bases the material chemistries of its patented alloys on iron, providing a competitive cost advantage given its abundance and recyclability. The company does not use any expensive, rare, or exotic constituents.
NanoSteel follows a market-driven product development model so that basic laboratory discoveries are commercialized for large-scale industrial implementation. After selecting a material chemistry that meets a desired set of properties, NanoSteel simulates actual production processes in the laboratory so that subsequent production and performance validation trials lead to a successful product launch. All NanoSteel alloys are designed for use in mainstream industries with existing manufacturing processes and widely available commercial application equipment.