THE OVERLAND INDUSTRY & NEW TECHNOLOGY
We were asked by Earth Cruiser to help them integrate their overlanding vehicles into the realm of digital 3D CAD and to help them devlelop a new subframe and fiberglas floor for their newest vehicle platform. We knew this would be no small feat to accomplish. When it comes to anything automotive, you're immediately dealing with, not hundreds, but thousands or even tens of thousands of parts. Knowing this was going to be a complicated process, we began with education.
Once everyone understood the long-term benefits of 3D CAD, we worked hard to locate already existing 3D models of the vehicle chassis that Earth Cruiser builds their vehicles on. This allowed us to focus on building only the proprietary Earth Cruiser components and assembling them into a complete model. We built each component and organized them into thoughtful file structures so that everyone could access everything they needed quickly and with as little thought as possible. Naming of files is also of paramount importance during this process. If no one can follow along with the naming patterns or, if you're set up for it, part numbers, it won't matter how well layed out your file structure is. After all the organizing, we moved on to subframe design.
The first step to leading this project towards success, was to educate the great people at Earth Cruiser about the long-term benefits of focusing on 3D CAD. Having all of your files available on-the-fly allows you to make necessary changes extremely quickly, as well as allowing technical documentation to update automatically. This streamlines the design process immensely and keeps everyone within an organization on the same page. Things get done easily and efficiently, instead of searching through boxes for specific files and specific documents within that particular file. Not to mention, once you locate the document you've been searching for, it still needs changes that will need to be performed by hand, creating even more papers for filing away later.
Earth Cruiser provided us with accurate measurements and the materials that they would be able to utilize for the build of their new vehicle. We took the information and created an extremely stout subframe that minimized twisting and torquing on uneven terrain and added a comfortable suspension to the rear cabin. After we honed the subframe, the fiberglas floor was layed out, making sure that the rear cabin would retain the staples that customers were used to, such as areas for dining, cooking, sleeping, showering, and entering the cabin. Once drawn up 3-dimensionally, molds were created to build the first of many floors for this new platform. We were glad to be part of helping a local company advance technologically and are looking foward to seeing their growth in the future and finding out how the 3D CAD environment has helped them achieve that growth.