Alternative Engineering is a leading Melbourne based engineering and manufacturing company that specialises in high-capacity production environments with particular expertise in the Pharmaceutical and Food & Beverage sector.

Recognising that every hundredth of a millimetre counts when it comes to precision manufacturing part of their process is to accurately measure customer machines and components. A minor misalignment can cause manufacturing impairments, damage or even breakages once in production. That’s why.

Alternative Engineering chose a Hexagon Absolute Arm to accurately measure the parts and equipment for manufacturing.

Quick, light, mobile and precise- that’s what makes the Absolute so special.

What is the Absolute Arm?

An Absolute Arm is a portable, coordinate measuring machine which allows precise and accurate measurements of an object.

The Absolute Arm can move in three-dimensional space forward/backward, up/down, left/right combined with rotation about three perpendicular axes. The physical arrangement of the arm is much like a human arm, with a wrist, forearm, elbow which allows intricate measurement in confined spaces.

The Absolute Arm can be used for a range of applications including quality control, inspection, on-machine verification, reverse engineering or 3D modelling.

This allows Alternative Engineering to produce the most accurate information for manufacturing.

Using the Absolute Arm for change part manufacturing

When Alternative Engineering measure for replacement parts they aren’t just copying existing parts for manufacture as this can cause a ‘Chinese Whispers’ effect on the new parts. Any wear and tear or inaccuracies with the original parts will get transferred to the newly manufactured parts. This will, in turn, cause the same issues as were already being experienced.

Alternative Engineering doesn’t just manufacture to a standard ‘Blueprint’ either. In their experience a machine can sustain damage and wear over its life which then alters its shape. Slight changes in machine alignment are often hard to detect. Working off an exact copy or replica of current parts will cause further issues. The Absolute arm allows Alternative Engineering to take measurements directly in the manufacturing environment where process improvement is most beneficial.

This is where the Absolute Arm gives Alternative Engineering an advantage.

Jarred Baines, one of the Alternative Engineering project engineers has stated that ‘By mapping out the actual layout of the machine we ensure that new parts are tailored to suit. This results in fewer inaccuracies and higher stability.’ We can recreate the correct bottle path to ensure maximum efficiencies.’

‘The fact that the Absolute Arm is an extremely portable solution means it can be brought directly onto the factory floor providing the most accurate 3D Measurements of your machine,’ he said.

When you require new change parts Alternative Engineering will make an onsite visit with their Absolute arm. Bringing the Absolute directly to your bottling line to get exact 3D measurements which they can then turn into CAD images and simulations to see how they work.

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