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PROJECT SUMMARY
Pipeline Design & Engineering created a test fixture to quickly & safely (avoiding damage to the device & operator) disassemble a medical device

TEAM:
Mechanical Engineer
Manufacturing Vendor

DESIGN TOOLS USED:
SolidWorks 3D CAD

MARKET:
Test Fixture

PROJECT REQUIREMENTS

  • The fixture must give an operator (with little training) the ability to disassemble a surgical device without causing any measurable damage to the device
  • The fixture must be made from materials that are approved for medical device contact
  • The fixture must have a series of adjustable and interchangeable tooling ‘fingers’ that are replaced after normal wear [Delrin preferred for ‘soft handling’ characteristics]
  • The fixture must disassemble the surgical tool in a precise and repeatable fashion once the initial set-up and alignment have been completed

SUMMARY OF ACTIVITIES

The customer needed to disassemble a surgical device for inspection, cleaning, and rebuild/overhaul. Preliminary methods [prying, hand tools, ‘press to release,’ etc.] yielded mixed results (hard to control/repeat; also, regularly resulted in irreversible damage to the device exterior which in a production environment leads to high scrap).

Pipeline experimented with several “benchtop” mockup designs and identified a process and set of tool geometry that was effective. A prototype was procured & evaluated using rapid prototyping techniques. Pipeline tested the disassembly action on multiple devices and reviewed functionality with the customer. Experimental improvements were noted and integrated into the second phase of the design. The design was then released for final production and was procured using CNC machines and OTC McMaster hardware.

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Product Design?

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