Benninger: 3D spare parts catalogs with CATALOGcreator®

The Benninger AG offers with individual system solutions the best conditions for the process optimisation in textile processing to their customers from the textile industry worldwide. The configurable machines are documented with the software CATALOGcreator® as 3D spare parts catalogs on CD-ROM.   Benninger AG The Benninger AG is an international group of companies with the headquarter in Uzwil/Switzerland and branch offices in Germany, Italy, Russia, China, India and the USA. The company for textile machinery was already founded in 1859 and is established on the global market for a long time. Today approximately 650 employees gather in Uzwil an annually turnover of CHF 240 Mio. With the high-quality production program of weaving mill preparation and textile finishing plants Benninger is able to cover the processes of weaving mill preparation as well as the wet finishing process. Starting point As vendor of individual system solutions Benninger has high requirements to the service documents of the machines. The complete documentation was created up to now as print catalog with the program FrameMaker. This process was relatively time-consuming. To be able to guarantee the complete documentation simultaneously with the delivery of the machines, electronic spare parts catalogs should be introduced in the company in the future. Requirements The most important requirements to the software for electronic spare parts catalogs were: – Finishing of the documentation simultaneously with the delivery of the machine – Fully automated 3D derives from the CAD design data – 3D spare parts catalog on CD-ROM, incl. operation and maintenance manual – Multilingualism and many more   benninger1Solution Already in 2003 Benninger decided for the software CATALOGcreator®. In the first step 2D catalogs were generated with the program for electronic product and spare parts catalogs. The project manager at the Benniger AG, Reto Gerber, explains: „We wanted to use the already existing 3D data from engineering and integrate these models reasonable into the electronic catalog.“ In 2006 was the kick-off for another project with TID Informatik GmbH: The introduction of the 3D technology XVL. With the XVL technology all spare parts can be viewed three-dimensional on assembly Level in the Benninger CD-ROM catalog. This makes it substantially easier to identify spare parts in the electronic catalog. 3D technology: XVL To be able to integrate the CAD data from engineering into a web-capable catalog, the original graphical data had to be reduced significantly. The solution is the XVL technology of Lattice Technology. With the XVL technology a high data compression without loosing the clearness is possible. The data volume can be compressed up to 1 : 250 of the original data  volume and can be made web-capable. High compressed 3D models make possible to show technical products plastically and therefore realistic compared to 2D drawings or photos. XVL animations are interactive, too and not just an animation. Up to now the XVL technology is used mainly in the technical documentation. With the CATALOGcreator® software 3D models can be integrated easily in electronically created, web-capable spare parts catalogs. Technology Benninger uses the advantages of high compressed 3D models with XVL. Besides the overview graphics for the machines, viewed in 2D, all assemblies are shown now three-dimensional in the electronic catalog. A better clarity is guaranteed by that. The derivation of the high compressed 3D models is done fully automatic out of the CAD design data, generated with SolidWorks at Benninger. The software CATALOGcreator® brings together the graphical data with the information from the enterprise resource planning system BRAIN. With the CC-XML Data Converter, a module for the structured import of data, the automatic export of the parts list data from the ERP into the spare parts catalog is done. A project specific characteristic is that a Autodesk product (COMPASS) is used as PLM and EDM system together with the 3D CAD program SolidWorks at Benninger. Because of the high flexibility of the CATALOGcreator® software the data from the different software environments could be integrated without a problem in the electronic catalog. Conclusion The Benninger AG delivers their customers individual configurable machines. Since 2003 Benninger has generated already hundreds of 2D spare parts catalogs for the textile processing machines with the catalog software CATALOGcreator®. Since 2006 the complete documentation is available as three-dimensional catalog on CD-ROM for the complex machines. Reto Gerber, project manager CAD/PDM, recapitulates as follows: „With the use of CATALOGcreator® and the 3D technology XVL the following advantages arised for us: – the false order rate is almost about zero – time savings during catalog creation – cost reduction during catalog production.“

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