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Based in Berkshire, Scott Tools is a relatively new engineering company with fresh ideas and an innovative approach to mold design, development and manufacturing. Founded in May 2008 by industry respected Ken Whittaker, Scott Tools have already established a reputation for supplying quality tooling to market sectors such as automotive, medical and construction.

Working closely with ROTHENBERGER AG, a global market leader in the development and distribution of sophisticated pipe tools and machines, Scott Tools have been involved in the development and production of the revolutionary Plasticut, a safe and simple to use pipe cutter for both professional and DIY use. Ken Whittaker explains, “The Plasticut is a unique design with no moving parts and ideal for use in confined spaces. A simple click and twist action creates a clean and square cut with no pipe distortion, which is often the cause of leaks.”

"Having an integrated system allows us to maximize the use of the data from the 3D mold design. For example, 2D drawings are created automatically, electrode extraction is simple and the model data is immediately ready for manufacture.”

Tim Neeves

The Plasticut product has been designed and manufactured internally using the latest CADCAM technology from Vero Software. “We have historic knowledge of the Vero products and were already aware of the software benefits. We knew these were the tools to ensure we remain competitive in such demanding times” claims Whittaker.

The component design and mold tool have all been constructed using VISI Modelling and VISI Mould, a Parasolid based hybrid solid and surface modelling system. Tim Neeves, Design Engineer, explains the design process. “The models were originally constructed in 3D and sent for rapid prototyping before tool design. While this was great for studying aesthetics, the robustness of the samples didn’t allow for live testing. This is very important as the exposure of the blade and the engagement angle may differ for each product size. Even if the approach angle of the blade is just a few degrees out, the blade can track up the pipe which results in an un-clean cut.”

During the development cycle, to ensure each product size was correct, a second prototype was machined directly from nylon blocks for pipe-cutting trials. “It was during this stage that we decided to add strengthening ribs and alter the screw position to lock the blade” explains Neeves. With the product design agreed, all tooling was designed using VISI Mould and the product molded using PA66 glass filled nylon. “It was at this stage that the VISI software really exceled” continues Neeves. “Having an integrated system allows us to maximize the use of the data from the 3D mold design. For example, 2D drawings are created automatically, electrode extraction is simple and the model data is immediately ready for manufacture. This approach allows 1 designer to feed between 6 – 8 toolmakers.”

All NC toolpaths are created using machining STRATEGIST, a powerful 3D CAM solution that can be used either in the CADCAM office or the shop-floor. “With demands for ever-shorter lead times and improved quality, high speed machining is becoming more widely adopted and machining STRATEGIST has allowed us to run our Bridgeport BMC 600X and Haas Super Mill at increased feedrates because of the smooth continuous tool motion.”

The Plasticut tube cutter is now available in multiple sizes ranging from 10mm – 50mm and ½” – 2” for the US market. Although the product is now commercially available, further development have taken place and the next generation of Plasticut products we see the introduction of a safety catch which will only retract when the pipe is inserted. Currently, each Plasticut tool has an individual safety diablo to protect the operator from the blade.

Each separate size requires a new mold tool and Ken Whittaker is keen to emphasize the importance the software and support has had in developing over 26 tools in just 6 months. “We knew the team at Vero would deliver and help us move forward. The support team are highly skilled and have been fantastic in answering any question we throw at them. Vero are highly regarded in our organization as our software partner and both VISI and machining STRATEGIST have become an integral part of our organization.”

 

About The Company:

Name: Scott-Tools Limited

Webwww.scott-tools.co.uk

 

Benefits Achieved:

  • Single product environment for product and mold tool design
  • 1 designer feeding 6 - 8 toolmakers
  • HSM toolpaths running Bridgeport VMC and Haas SuperMill at increased feedrates
 
Comments:
 

"Having an integrated system allows us to maximize the use of the data from the 3D mold design. For example, 2D drawings are created automatically, electrode extraction is simple and the model data is immediately ready for manufacture.”

Tim Neeves

 

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