Quickstep Technologies, a global manufacturer of composite materials solutions for the defense and commercial sectors, selected and implemented Jetcam expert nesting and CrossTrack composite manufacturing suites to manage nesting at its factory in Bankstown, Western Sydney, Australia And prepreg composite material location and life cycle tracking.
The project is divided into two phases-the first phase is the introduction of CAD import and nesting to immediately benefit from Jetcam's high-performance nesting material efficiency. The second phase will extend CrossTrack to the workshop, allowing employees to arrange cutting nests, track stacking tools, and monitor the location and workshop/shelf life of raw materials and kits around the factory. After comparing multiple systems with nested benchmarks, Quickstep clearly saw that the return on investment in material savings alone can provide a return within 6 months of the first phase of the project.
The decision to choose CrossTrack was made in May 2020 based on affordability and current and future features. Due to the outbreak of new coronary pneumonia, the decision to install and train must be carried out remotely. Jetcam created a virtual environment based on Quickstep's CNC configuration, and internally generated and tested a copy installation. Once verified, the software was remotely installed and tested next month, and the NC code samples were immediately verified. The first test nest was completed within two hours after the first remote installation connection and further training provided online. A virtual machine was created on the same server with a copy of Jetcam/CrossTrack settings, allowing Quickstep to plan and test the rollout of the second phase in a replicated environment without affecting its daily operations and system configuration.
Martin Bailey, General Manager of Jikang International, pointed out:
"The new crown pneumonia forces us to think about this implementation in a completely new way, which will become a blueprint for future installations. We work closely with Quickstep IT and engineering staff and our own employees in multiple time zones to minimize online installations. And configuration time. Implementation is fast because CrossTrack is a standard off-the-shelf solution. It is specifically designed for composite manufacturers and fills the gap often left by financial-driven ERP systems."
David Doral's comment on this point is:
“Remote installation across different time zones is very challenging and will bring the project to a standstill. Jetcam is responsive and flexible in providing training and support. Clear communication and transparency between the two teams is essential for delivering a solution that not only meets Quickstep needs but also A reasonable budget solution is essential."
Phase 2 will extend CrossTrack to provide automatic roll allocation and raw material/layer position and life tracking when creating nests.
Quickstep also benefits from Jetcam University, an online portal that provides customers with hundreds of tutorial videos covering all aspects of the software. This allows staff to back up their knowledge gained through online training through short videos focused on specific tasks.
Since Quickstep has many legacy nestings of DXF format, they want to import them, so they also accepted a short-term subscription from Jetcam Order Controller (JOC), which includes DXF splitting. This greatly reduces the amount of work required to put this data into CrossTrack. Once separated, they can create a CSV file containing individual ply and part information, which can be imported in just a few clicks.
Only two weeks after installing the software, the company entered the final testing phase, after which they will switch to CrossTrack to generate all the nests. Preliminary results from Quickstep show that a 3% reduction in pre-preg material consumption is almost a set point. These benefits will be applied to the main Quickstep program, but the company expects that these savings will increase when the system is applied to all cutting operations. They will begin the second phase of testing, and then launch later this year. An investigation into how CrossTrack can help manage stacking tools and autoclave scheduling is already underway.
David Doral finally told reporters:
"As part of our strategic plan to continuously promote operational improvement through investment in new technologies, we are considering various options in the future, among which CrossTrack will integrate with our ERP system to provide Industry 4.0 features and help us achieve a completely paperless workshop Since the system has already paid itself for only material savings within a few months, any further savings will go directly to the bottom line.