3D Reverse Engineering

Can 3D scanning help to extract information about design intent? Read the blog to learn about 3D reverse engineering. Visit our website for details.

Chad Manning
Chad Manning

3D Reverse Engineering Explained  

Reverse engineering or back engineering involves deconstructing a product, system, or device to understand how it was built, its operating parameters and how it works and then reconstructing it as a 3D model.  

Reverse engineering is used to replace damaged parts for which CAD models are unavailable, update outdated parts, generate new manufacturing plans, fit new parts into an existing assembly line or to analyze the features of competitors’ products.   

The Importance of Using Quality 3D Scanners  

There is no room for error on reverse engineering projects. Poor quality data can lead to poorly designed models and erroneous conclusions. To ensure scan data reliability, reverse engineering services use quality 3D scanners. Quality or metrology-grade scanners are designed to capture the intricate details related to the smallest and most complex parts. In addition to scanning parts accurately, quality 3D scanners speed up reverse engineering workflows.

5 Steps to Reverse Engineering With 3D Printing Technology  

Follow these steps to reverse engineer a product 

 · Collect information about the product - Such as detailed geometric analysis, and measurements. The measurement process allows an understanding of how the geometry fits together, and how that affects the overall functionality of the part. A clear understanding of design intent is critical to a faithful re-design of the part.

 · Carryout a detailed product analysis- It’s important that your team gets a complete understanding of products to be reverse engineered, particularly products with complex shapes.  

 · Develop a model- Create a sketch or model of the part or object. A product model or sketch will help you understand the purpose of the product’s design. Most engineers use CAD to create 3D models of products, as it allows them to analyze every product part by viewing its accurate representation. Evaluate the CAD model to identify the flaws in it and determine if it requires any modifications. Convert the CAD model to an STL file and transfer it to the printer.   

 · 3D print the CAD file- If necessary, the model can be 3D printed. This is a typical step in rapid prototyping. The 3D printer will build the model by depositing the material layer by layer. 

  · Evaluate the product- The final model can be compared to the original scan to perform a comprehensive product evaluation. This is an important step in understanding the quality of the final model. 3d colormap deviation charts can be performed to identify any differences between the model and the original scanned object.

Benefits of Reverse Engineering  

Reverse engineering can be used to reconstruct obsolete and outdated products to improve their efficiency. 3D reverse engineering allows engineers to create CAD 3d models that can be used to produce newly designed products and tooling. Engineers may also apply their prior knowledge to come up with innovative re-designs and/or improvements. 

Nel PreTech leverages the latest technology to reverse engineer products. Our unparalleled ability to understand specific client needs and tailor reverse engineering solutions to meet them sets us apart from other reverse engineering services in Illinois. To make an appointment, call 708-429-4887.

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