3D printing is shaping the way the automotive industry is designing and developing cars. Learn how our client, KRC Power Steering out of Kennesaw, Georgia, uses Stratasys’ 3D printers to manufacture high-performance power steering systems.
But first, watch our client application spotlight video for a brief background on KRC Power Steering and their 3D printing needs.
Developing Proprietary Designs
The Automotive Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) industry has gradually been moving away from hydraulic power steering because of increased fuel economy standards for passenger vehicles. This left KRS Power Steering with a business challenge. If they wanted to stay ahead of their competition, they needed to learn how to develop their own proprietary design for a hydraulic pump housing for their race-use steering systems.
Designing with SOLIDWORKS and Stratasys
They used SOLIDWORKS to design a new housing and had raw castings made by an aluminum foundry. And while KRS has extensive CNC machining capabilities, they found some of the features in power steering housing were impossible to machine. In order to get a realistic and dimensionally accurate model, they invested in the Stratasys Dimension SST 1200ES 3D printer.
This FDM printer gave KRC ultimate control over their modeling process. With two different options for layer thickness and use of ABSplus thermoplastic material, this was the ideal choice for strong, accurate parts. As a result of the machine's accuracy, KRC Power Steering was able to do fitment checks of engine brackets, pulleys and other component designs. The cost of a Stratasys printer was easily offset by how quickly KRC could get their parts to market.