Process

Work Flow

We promise to deliver best quality services by managing a series of processes from receiving orders to delivery of products.

Quotation

① Consultation

Through consultation, we establish the desired precision and quality, purpose for use, use conditions and environment, and then draw a specific blue print for the final product. Costs and delivery requirements are also discussed here to elucidate the final product image.

Consultation

② Proposition

A proposal/quote is created based on the customers' specific needs. A cross-sectional meeting of leaders from design, analysis, prototyping, and manufacturing & processing sections are convened to brain storm ideas, discuss optimal specifications and feasible scheduling. First, an estimate of cost is calculated and then customized proposal/quote is issued. If application of a new method or material is requested, a trial and evaluation will also be conducted as well.

Proposition

Design

③ Lamination design

A lamination specification is derived for effective manifestation of requested performance. Then an elaborate simulation is conducted per laminate ply through analysis, and then orientation angles, types of fiber (prepregs), placement positions, laminating pattern and the number of plies are optimized.

Lamination design

④ Detailed designing

3D CAD is used to design parts, molds and jigs. The advantage of our start-to-finish production system is that it allows for timely feedback from the manufacturing floor in the designing process, enabling us to get the most out of physical characteristic of the CFRP.

Detailed designing

Manufacturing

⑤ Making molds

Molds are made using 3 axis, 5 axis processing machine. Considering the precision of surfacing ply, shapes, and numbers of parts to be made, the most appropriate material is chosen from metal, resin or gypsum. After processing, 3D scanner is used to take measurements of the mold to make sure that it is made to the original data.

Making molds

⑥ Creating patterns

First, laminate constitution is developed on a flat surface. Then patterns for laying up prepregs on the 3D curved surface mold are configured. In order to maintain the cosmetic of the weave and the signature rigidity of the carbon fiber, optimal dividing constitutions is calculated.

Creating patterns

⑦ Cutting out patterns

Cutting plotter is used to cut out patterns. Data for cutting is generated in such a way that curbs wastage when the patterns are actually cut out from the roll of material. Each pattern comes out with a batch number outlined in and corresponding with the laminating specification document. This prevents mistakes in laminating process. All materials are stored under maker assigned temperature.

Cutting out patterns

⑧ Lay-up

Cut-out prepregs are laid up in a release-treated mold. A system of checking for contamination is in place for every layer laid, and on the divided surface either overlapping or butt welding method is used according to the customer's specifications so the required thickness can be achieved. When working on the 3D curved surface, gentle application of heat is used to make the prepregs more pliable.

Lay-up

⑨ Bagging

The parts are wrapped in breather cloth and placed in a heat-resistant bagging bag then vacuum is pulled using a pump. Special attention is paid around the tight corners and grooves with the way the bag is put down so the pressure reaches all corners eliminating the risk of bridges or voids from emerging.

Bagging

⑩ Curing

The component is hardened under an elevated temperature and pressure in a vacuum state. Type of resin, mold material and whether forming agent is used or not is taken into consideration for;
choosing the most suitable autoclave, out of 6 different sizes on our manufacturing floor, and determining and managing the time, pressure, and temperature under which the component is cured.

Curing

⑪ De-molding

Now the hardened component is de-molded. The best angle and order in which the product is teased out is calculated for minimum stress on the cured item and then the mold, which is comprised of a number of parts, is broken up. Scrupulous inspection for foreign substances, distortion and voids is run by the curing quality control manager.

De-molding

⑫ Processing

Special tools are used to achieve the end shape specified. With expert skills and sensitivity, manufacturing engineers finish up the part by trimming the excess along the marked-off line transferred from the mold. If necessary, 3 axis, 5 axis processing machines are also called for in order to cater for various quantities and sizes.

Processing<

⑬ Bonding

Bonding maybe required depending on the final shape of the product. A variety of adhesives are at the ready for use. Out of the selection ranging from high-end quality product for aero-planes, generally distributed products, ultra-high strength and vibration proof flexible adhesives, the most appropriate one is picked based on the medium material and the planned operating environment of the product.

Bonding

⑭ Touch up

A final touch is made for the cosmetic of the product. Addressing the hardened excess adhesives, eliminating small voids on the surface ply, smoothing out the edge face and polishing and cleaning the entire product is a must not only for performance but also for the esthetic of the end products.

Touch up

Checking

⑮ Item inspection

Inspections are carried out by multiple quality control professionals using special inspection tools, ensuring that the final products meet the specifications set forth by the customer in areas such as weight, thickness, position of the trimming line, hole diameter and adhesion processing. Only those successfully passed the final inspection by the head of quality control are then delivered to the customer.

Item inspection

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TOKYO R&D Group
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