A Vision of Success For Our Armed Forces
A case study glimpse that exemplifies and underscores the Pexco proposition to customers
A leading global defense contractor was challenged to redesign a soldier-mounted vision system. The objectives were to reduce cost and weight, consolidate the component parts of the design, and rationalize the vendor base providing a number of value-added secondary operations in the manufacture of the system, including machining, painting and plating.
The formulation of a material blend to match color requirements, leveraged design engineering and in-house tooling techniques to eliminate a metal component of the legacy system to reduce weight and cost.
With over 55 years experience supplying some of the largest defense platforms and programs with precision plastic parts, Pexco and its Spectrum Plastics business have become known experts in plastic solutions for defense systems relating to munitions, missiles, guns, connectors, sonar and avionics, and night vision. Pexco currently works with 13 of the top 25 defense contractors in the world. Its capabilities include metal to plastics conversions, engineering of high performance polymers, extrusion & injection molding of mission-critical parts, assembly plating, EMI/RMI shielding and other manufacturing services.
Given this history and reputation, Pexco and its Spectrum team were approached by a leading global defense contractor with a challenging project for a soldier-mounted vision system. The user of the system, the U.S. Army, required a simpler design in order to reduce costs, improve performance, and eliminate multiple secondary processes to ease manufacture and assembly.
By working with the customer and one of our material suppliers, Pexco was able to identify a custom-colored material that not only eliminated the secondary painting process, it also reduced the overall weight of the system by 30% by converting some of the aluminum components to engineered resins that displayed similar EMI characteristics. Additionally, Pexco’s design team also worked closely with the customer’s engineering group to eliminate some of the costly secondary machining operations by adding them into the injection molding development process.
In order to complete a successful metal-to -plastic conversion for this project, Pexco’s engineers designed the mold in such a way that they were able to adjust tolerances as needed throughout the sample testing process. This greatly facilitated development. The entire project from design to delivery took 20 weeks and then the new parts went through a series of drop tests. These tests are performed to ensure that plastic components will be able to withstand the same durability as metal components. After 6 weeks of drop tests, the parts were approved. The project resulted in saving the customer 1/3 of the overall system cost.
Since the 1950s, the defense industry has turned to Pexco to support some of the most complex components, metal-to-plastic conversions, and sub-assemblies demanded. With experience in Federal Acquisition Regulations and industry-leading engineering and processing capabilities, Pexco helps the U.S. military garner the greatest performance and cost-savings from injection-molded and extruded plastics.
Based in Atlanta, Georgia with several manufacturing plants across the United States and Mexico, Pexco is a North American leader in the design and fabrication of specialty plastics products. It provides standard and custom products and components to manufacturers and end-users for a broad range of market applications, including the Aerospace, Medical, Filtration, Lighting, and other Industrial sectors. Pexco offers a full range of design, engineering and fabrication services. It operates six Class 7 & Class 8 medical clean rooms. Pexco meets the requirements of ISO 9001:2008, and holds ISO 14001, ISO 13485, 21 CFR 820, OHSAS 18001, GMP, AS9100C, ITAR and other registrations and/or certifications for its manufacturing operations. Pexco is your trusted plastics advisor for specialty plastic products and solutions. For more information, visit www.pexco.com or contact 404-564-8560.
Pexco's molding technology division, the Spectrum Plastics Group, offers a wide range of plastic injection molding capabilities to meet our customers’ most demanding applications and requirements.
Working with Pexco enables each customer to choose from a selection of technology offerings. Whether your plastic needs involve extrusion, injection molding or a custom fit, we at Pexco are here with a solution.