In the example bellow we show the reverse engineering process by using an Ace Skyline scanning arm and Geomagic Design X software.
What is reverse engineering?
“Reverse engineering, also called back engineering, is the processes of extracting knowledge or design information from anything man-made and re-producing it” (cf Wikipedia). More generally, in industry, the goal is to create a CAD file by reproducing exactly a physical object.
When reverse engineering is used in industry?
It seems impossible nowadays to have neither blueprint nor CAD file, but it happens in some not uncommon cases: very old parts for automotive collection, handmade parts from design and prototyping department, or for example when a sub-contractor company has turned bankrupt.
How to proceed?
- Choose the right hardware (3D scanner, measuring arm, CMM, structured light digitizer, computed tomography) with the right software (CAD software with point cloud acquisition) depending on application needs.
- Acquire a point cloud from the part with a 3D scanner and measure more demanding zones with the probe under the scanner (only available on Kreon 3D scanners)
- Convert the point cloud to a mesh for an easier file manipulation. It can be calculated in real time in most acquisition software.
- Analyze and understand how the original part has been drawn. In our video we use regions to extract and recognize geometrical zones like cylinders, plans, spheres, bevels or freeform surfaces from the mesh.
- Build the CAD model onto the mesh. Using hybrid modeling, by merging free form surfaces and mechanical entities, is generally a good way to work.
- Control the result all along the process.
- Export the CAD model to your main CAD application with the parametrical historic (only available with a few advanced dedicated softwares).
If you want to try it by yourself, download the mesh file of the car rim from the video above.