Consilio3D breathes new life into old aeroplanes

The challenge:

Consilio3D won an exciting contract to convert 14,000 fifty year old aeroplane design diagrams into 3D CAD models. This will allow the manufacturer to enhance the design of this successful craft, something they can’t do from paper drawings. This is the type of work which Consilio3D excel at. For smaller projects they outsource the scanning. For a project of this size, however, this is cost-prohibitive and time-consuming, as each document sent to the bureau service must be checked out individually. Outsourcing the scanning also means that Consilio3D cannot easily quality control the work.

The solution:

Consilio3D: Conversion of 2D archives into 3D CAD models

Consilio3D: Conversion of 2D archives into 3D CAD models

To increase efficiency, ensure accuracy, and save money, Consilio3D invested in three Colortrac scanners to take their scanning work in-house. They have purchased a SmartLF GX+ 56 monochrome scanner and two SmartLF SC Xpress 42 color scanners. Together, and taking advantage of Colortrac’s super speed USB3 interface, these scanners enable Consilio3D to complete an amazing 600 scans per day!


The benefits:

Consilio3D looked at many different scanners before choosing Colortrac models. They first considered Colortrac because of the reputation for great service from both Colortrac and their partners.

After this, the most important criteria was accuracy and Consilio3D were delighted that Colortrac scanners are accurate to 0.1% +/- 1 pixel. Consilio3D needed a 1:1 scanner which will work quickly and give great results. After performing some test Scans and checking for distortion and accuracy, Consilio3D was delighted with the Colortrac output. They also needed wide scanners so that documents can be scanned quickly, without the need to rotate A0 drawings.

Consilio3D has even scanned a six foot drawing and was impressed that both the scanner and software managed this with no difficulty. The only challenge was ensuring that there was no damage to the old drawing, so Consilio3D purchased a special table to hold the document and two staff worked together to feed and collect the document carefully.

Consilio3D invested in SmartWorks Pro to clean up the images of the old documents once scanned. Using this professional scanning software allows Consilio3D to automate their process. They performed some initial scans to optimise the SmartWorks Pro settings, such as using despeckle to take out small marks which the originals have been stained with over time. These settings were then saved as a ‘preset’ which was shared among all Consilio3D computers running SmartWorks Pro. This means that everyone is producing great, clean scans automatically.

Steve Evans, Director of Sales at Consilio3D states: “Accuracy is everything. We have half our 3D CAD team working in Croatia and they don’t have access to the physical documents. Working with scanners and software we trust means that we are confident with all our output for our client.”

Duncan Baker from John E Wright, who provided the training, said: “This is a really exciting project and it’s great to see the efficiency gains Consilio3D are making bringing their scanning in-house”. After this project is complete Consilio3D plan to use their scanners to build their own bureau service, scanning originals, converting them to vector and 3D CAD models. Steve Evans states: “We expect to buy more Colortrac scanners very soon.”