Our customers are great at knowing what they want and Profile Precision Extrusions is up to the challenge from our customers to improve the aluminum extrusions and tubing we supply to them. For example, a customer with a new aluminum extrusion may find during pre-production that improvements are necessary for the ease of assembly or to create a final product that will perform even better. In addition to improving the product, customers may find it necessary to reduce the cost of their products and ask PPE for suggestions on how to modify their design to reduce the overall cost of their final product.
From the very beginning of many aluminum extrusion projects we work with the customer’s engineering team. Doing so allows us to give them frequent feedback on multiple extrusion design options before they select a final design. In some cases, the original design is improved upon after we’ve provided one or two rounds of engineering samples.
This past spring, we were asked to change the cut length of an extruded aluminum shape from .250” long to .115”±.003”. Until then we had never cut anything shorter than .175”, which is very short in the world of aluminum extrusions! Knowing this was one of the key components to our customers’ new product, and our curiosity to see how thin we could cut the part, we accepted the challenge. Our sawyer worked to develop a special method of bundling the parts, and our production manager worked with our saw blade vendor to come up with a blade made specially just for this part. Much to our surprise we were able to successfully cut the parts with a range of ±.002”! As a bonus, the new blade has been used on a number of other parts and has improved the productivity and accuracy of other extruded aluminum parts.
Another project we produce is a .750”±.002” outside diameter extruded aluminum tube for a long time customer. Late in 2016 they came to us and requested our assistance in reducing their manufacturing costs. Reducing cost was made to be possible by machining our aluminum extruded tubes on a Swiss-type CNC Lathe. Using a Swiss Lathe they would be able to increase their productivity and reduce the amount of scrap they generated. Unfortunately, our existing process wasn’t capable of meeting the ±.001” outside diameter tolerance that was required by the Swiss Lathe. Our production team went to work on the challenge. Special extrusion dies were ordered, the part was moved to our new aluminum extrusion press, and new production parameters were developed. The new production process is capable of keeping the variation to less than ±.001” and this happy customer just placed an order with us for deliveries into 2018.
If you have a new or existing project that requires improved tolerances, or have been told your design can’t be produced, contact us today. We’re in the business of producing aluminum extrusions and aluminum tubing that “can’t be done.”