Rentapen wins Award for Excellence in Business


On November 9, Rentapen, Inc, a woman-owned machine tool design and build company was honored for its achievements in exceptional marketing by the Waukesha Award Program.


Rentapen Inc. specializes in weld and assembly fixtures and custom and standard precision shims. The weld jig and assembly fixture design and build company was selected for the 2012 Best of Waukesha Award in the Miscellaneous General Business Services category by the Waukesha Award Program.

Earlier in 2012, Rentapen also was voted one of the Top 10 Businesses in the Waukesha Area by the Waukesha Business Alliance and the Biz Times. That award was based on Customer Service, Growth, and Employee Relations.

Each year, the Waukesha Award Program identifies companies that they believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and our community. These exceptional companies help make the Waukesha area a great place to live, work and play.

Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2012 Waukesha Award Program focuses on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the Waukesha Award Program and data provided by third parties.

About Rentapen
Rentapen works with manufacturers when they are tooling up their factories to produce their products. In response to their customers’ need to reduce the time needed to design and build a fixture, Rentapen developed a line of standard yet versatile components. These components save machine designers and manufacturers time when designing and building their weld and assembly fixtures.

This simple weld fixture contains Rentapens time-saving RAPid Tooling Components(TM)

The product line, called RAPid Tooling Components include clamp risers, blocks, plates and precision shims. They are quickly becoming popular among machine tool designers and have grown to be half of Rentapen’s sales. Thanks to a dynamic website where 3D models of the components can be downloaded and placed easily into designs.

About Waukesha Award Program

The Waukesha Award Program is an annual awards program honoring the achievements and accomplishments of local businesses throughout the Waukesha area. Recognition is given to those companies that have shown the ability to use their best practices and implemented programs to generate competitive advantages and long-term value.

The Waukesha Award Program was established to recognize the best of local businesses in the Waukesha community. The organization works exclusively with local business owners, trade groups, professional associations and other business advertising and marketing groups. The Waukesha Award Program’s mission is to recognize the small business community’s contributions to the U.S. economy.

6 Benefits to using Sub Assemblies in Machine Design

Discover How Sub Assemblies Save a Ton of Time and Money in Machine Design.

Sub Assemblies in machine design are fun and easy and the really help save time and money in a lot of ways.  Once you learn how to use them efficiently you will see all kinds of places that they can be used.  Then, you can be the CAD wizard at your company!

A sub assembly is just a 3D CAD Assembly that is inserted into the Main 3D CAD Assembly in machine design.  If that sentence doesn’t make sense, keep reading and watch the video below to get a good idea of how Sub Assemblies are super tools for Machine Designers.

For example these Jergens Jig Feet along with RAPid Shims and manufactured risers are used several times in a fixture.  As sub-assemblies they save time, and unclutter the assembly drawing.

 

 

 

 

This configuration of RAPid Blocks and RAPid Shims is used in several places on a weld fixture.  Only the pin changes.

 

 

 

So this configuration, without the pin, is a good candidate for a sub assembly.
It will save engineering time to create it once in a Sub Assembly and then insert the Sub Assembly into the Main Assembly several times.

 

This goal post is part of a change over fixture.  A change over means that more than one product is welded within this fixture.  To “change over” the fixture to hold a different product, one sub assembly can be removed, and another sub assembly (or cover plate) can be put in its place.

In a fixture with lots of parts, it is easier for the machine assemblers to read the assembly drawing and assemble a machine when the drawing is less cluttered.

Benefits

1)      The Machine Assemblers will love it!  The drawings are easier to read.  There are less Balloons on the Main Assembly Drawing.

2)      It is easier to job out parts of the fixture to be made by contractors or machine shops.

3)      If sub assemblies are contracted out to be made, more people can be working to create the machine at the same time, moving the machine into production faster.

4)      Faster CAD design because the same sub assembly can be inserted several times into the main assembly.

5)      Assembly model checking time is reduced because each sub assembly only has to be checked once.

6)      The MAIN BOM can contain all the parts for the whole machine, just like always.

Numbering

It depends on your numbering system.  All parts in a sub assembly get normal part numbers.  Even the sub assembly gets a normal part number.  If a 3/8” jam nut is part 103, you can use part 103 inside a sub assembly and also elsewhere in the main assembly and it won’t be a problem.  The main Bill of Material will reflect the total quantity of parts both inside and outside the sub assembly.  And the Sub Assembly Bill of Material will contain only the quantity of part number 103 used in the Sub Assembly.

We find it helpful to use the words “sub assembly” in the name or description of the sub assemblies.  That way they are easy to identify in the BOMs.  Your company may use a special group of numbers for your sub assemblies.

Now discover how to get the Bill of Material (BOM) to show all the parts but balloon only the parts not in the sub assemblies!  Watch this short video.  (The demonstration is using Pro/E Wildfire 4.0. )

So the instructions for flattening  the Bill of Materials for the purpose of ballooning only those parts not included in the sub assembly is as follows.

Steps

  • Select Table from Top Menu
  • Select Repeat Region
  • Select Flat/Rec Item from the pop-up window
  • Select the Bill of Material (Table)
  • Select Default or Flat (to flatten the Bill of Material)
  • OR Select Recursive (to expand the BOM show the parts that are in the Sub Assemblies)
  • Select the sub assemblies in the BOM
  • Click OK or “Done”

Be sure to sign up to receive Education and Updates!  All people who sign up in April 2012 will receive RENTAPEN’s DOWEL HOLE GUIDE.

Give me a Recommendation on Linked in!

View Susan Straley's profile on LinkedIn

Leave a comment below… tell me, do you use sub assemblies?  Why or why not?

‘Til next time…

The Queen

Three Ways to Detail a V-Block – Jig or Weld Fixture Design 101

The Art and Science of Detailing a V-block

Now that we have talked about how to hold a round tube with a V-Block and how to create a V-Block in Pro/E 4.0 (Pro/Engineer), now it is time to talk about detailing. How do you make a drawing of a V-Block so that the machinist can understand it, and create it as quickly and accurately as possible.

A Word About Detail Standards

I keep saying that Machine Design is both Science and Art.

When you work for an existing company, they most likely have standards that you will follow for dimensioning.

If you don’t have standards or are confused about how to dimension a part, it is helpful to spend some time getting to know how your parts will be made. When you take a break from the computer, if you can go out and visit the shop and talk to the people who make the parts that you design, it will be time well spent. A helpful CNC operator, or an angry one, can teach you a lot about designing and detailing.

When your company is reviewing their detail standards, be sure to invite some machine operators onto the standards committee. They will bring a perspective that could save the company time and improve the quality of the parts that are made. A couple things you have to keep in mind is that this part might be made again in the future. If so, you want to detail it so not just your current machinists can read it, but future machinists as well.

So. enough about that!

I have detailed the V-Block in three different ways. Let’s take a look.

So there you have it, three ways to detail a V-Block. I am sure there are other ways that I have not covered here.

Do you do it differently? Please tell me by adding your comments below. This is our chance to learn from each other.
To follow this ongoing conversation on Jig or Weld Fixture Design, just sign up for future Education and Updates on the right of this page.

Keep learning,

The Queen

Giving College Students An Opportunity

Rentapen Inc. gets recognized for their participation in Waukesha County Technical College’s Co-op/Internship Program.

WCTC awarded Rentapen with the Certificate of Appreciation for their active participation in the Co-op Internship Program.

Rentapen inspires and guides student-trainees for the potential workforce.


For example, Peter Christiansen is a student at WCTC who joined the Rentapen team as an IT Intern. Christiansen started interning at Rentapen in August 2011.

Christiansen is creating a program that will make it easier for jig and weld fixture design engineers to download 3D models of Rentapen’s RAPid Tooling Components™. The design engineers will be able to get 3D models that can be placed in their Computer Aided Designs (CAD). So now engineers who are designing weld fixtures can go onto Rentapen’s website www.rentapen.com and pull down a 3D model of a block, plate, clamp risers, or shim pack. From there, they can put it right into their Pro/E or Solidworks designs.

Christiansen is graduating with high honors from WCTC, with an Associates degree in program analyst and web/software analyst development. He is planning on joining the Rentapen team as a full time employee on December 20, 2011

“I’m excited to be done with the program and happy to contribute to the workforce,” said Christiansen.

Christiansen used to work in the Casting Industry as a quality control inspector, until he was laid off. Christiansen decided to go back to school for his Associates degree as a programmer analyst.

“We are pleased to have Peter join the Rentapen team full time. He is already familiar with the Manufacturing Industry and fixtures so its easy for him to understand our product line,” said Susan Straley, President at Rentapen Inc.

Rentapen is always introducing new product models to fit their customers’ needs. Christiansen will be in charge of making the product models available at Rentapen’s website.

Rentapen Inc. offers internships in design engineering, CNC operating, laser cutting, and information technology.

Does Your Company Encourage Educational Growth?

Manufacturers Utilize Education to Motivate and Retain The Engineering Workforce.

News 2011-12-15

According to the National Science Foundation, Division of Science Resources Statistics, “The majority of individuals in the labor force with Science and Engineering degrees are in their most productive years, (from their late 30s through their early 50s), with the largest group ages 40-44.”

So what keeps these engineers inspired in the work force?

“Education and learning more software is one way to get engineers ready for work force opportunities,” said Susan Straley the President of Rentapen Inc.

As the engineering workforce changes, employers implement retention and training programs. For example, Rentapen Inc., located in Waukesha, Wisconsin recruits and trains engineering interns. Rentapen has also implemented an education reimbursement program to keep their current engineer’s skills updated and their workforce motivated.

One of Rentapen’s design engineers is expanding his knowledge and updating his skills. Curtis K. a CAD Drafter at Rentapen Inc. just finished his Solidworks course at WCTC on Thursday, December 15, 2011.

Curtis has worked for Rentapen for one year and already has furthered his education to keep current with Rentapen’s 3D design services for customers.

“It is very important for a machine design company such as, Rentapen to have their engineers trained in both Solidworks and Pro/Engineer because Rentapen’s customers don’t all use the same software for their machine designs,” said Straley.

Curtis has five years of experience in Pro/Engineer and is beginning to work with Solidworks.

“I felt I needed to take the class because when I start working with Solidworks it will be easier for me to understand the software,” said Curtis K.

Rentapen, a company that specializes in jig and weld fixture design, encourages its employees to take advantage of Rentapen’s education reimbursement programs.   Since Rentapen’s design customers dictate what software they want their machine designs created on.  It is vital for Rentapen’s design engineers to have education in both softwares.

By: Bethany Kratz, Duchess of Cost Reductions

Seven Tips for Lean and Efficient Weld Fixture Design.

This is my FIRST Blog!!!  Yep!  And I am excited because we are going to go over how to design a simple weld fixture.  Then, with each new post we are going to delve deeper.  This is going to be like Weld Fixture Design 101, and then 201 and then 301!  So you may notice that some things may be not quite right in this weld fixture.  In future blogs we will address that.  So sign up to get notified regarding future education and updates.

 Weld Fixture Design is both an art and a science.  We won’t all agree on what is the right way.  I invite you to comment.  This way we can learn together.

So lets get started!

Tip #1  Ask the right questions before beginning.

Tip #2 Start w/ those items that touch the product parts.

Tip #3 Use purchased components where possible reducing time, costs, and errors.

Tip #4 Design in adjustability with shims.

The right combinations of shims will give the ability to fine tune the location of your product parts to .005” accuracy before mass production begins.

Tip #5 Review the design for weld access, efficiency and functionality.

Can you eliminate any parts?  Is there room for the weld gun?  Will you be able to get the parts out after they are welded?

Tip #6  Have the customer or production team review the design.

Make any changes they recommend and get their approval before putting in the holes, shims, fasteners and creating drawings.

Tip #7 Always have someone else check your work.

Get someone else to look over your design and drawings. 

In future posts we will go further into the design, address more complex issues, and continue learning together.

This list of tips is not all encompassing.  Let me know what you think.  What would YOU add?  Which of these tips would you like me to explore deeper first?