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CUSTOMER CASE:

 

THE CHALLENGE:

At Dixon Valve’s US manufacturing facility in Chestertown, Maryland, robotic arms are commonplace in production line cells, used for part transfers in the manufacturing process. Strength, safety, and chemical resistance are key components to Dixon Valve’s efficient work environment. With the thousands of different valves, fittings, and gauges that the company manufactures, each product line setup requires custom equipment, including tooling and grips to hold specific parts efficiently. Every gripping tool needed to be either outsourced to an external machine shop or machined in house with the manufacturing capabilities at hand. Either way, manufacturing parts as critical as production line grippers was getting time-consuming. As Dixon primarily produces valves and fittings, these grippers also require strength and chemical resistance, as well as wear resistance from repeated use.

THE SOLUTION:

As soon as Dixon Valve unboxed their industrial strength Markforged 3D printer, they put it to work. The Mark Two not only allowed to produce their robotic jaws quickly, but the material capabilities of the printer, including its ability to lay continuous strands of high-strength fibers into 3D printed parts, ensured reliability in a factory setting. The Mark Two enabled Dixon Valve to produce new manufacturing solutions at unprecedented speed and cost, providing the company with a powerful new tool in their toolbox. By incorporating the printer into the company’s workflow, Dixon Valve was able to expand and improve even further, and they don’t plan to stop there.

THE RESULT:

  • Reduced cost of re-tooling robotic arms by 90%
  • Reduced time to re-tool robotic arms by 85%

 

Industry: Education, Tooling & Fixtures, Prototyping, End-use Parts