This situation is the innovative journey of Rolf Lenk Werkzeug- und Maschinenbau GmbH, a German manufacturing factory, when they transitioned from traditional CNC machining to the cutting-edge realm of 3D metal printing. 

Classic Expertise Meets Modern Solutions 

Rolf Lenk's experience with conventional CNC machining processes laid the foundation for their foray into additive manufacturing in 2013. Their first printer is a selective laser melting (SLM) machine, ideal for producing prototypes and limited-edition parts. 

One such instance involved a control box cover for a vintage 1967 Cadillac Eldorado. The absence of blueprints for this legacy component posed a challenge. Traditional tooling for this request would have been prohibitively expensive. 3D metal printing, however, emerged as the solution, offering a chance to restore the Cadillac to its former glory. 

Classic Cadillac Eldorado from the year 1967 

Industry Solutions and Business Opportunities through 3D Metal Printing 

The case of the Cadillac Eldorado shows the power of 3D printing in two key benefits: 

Manufacturing Optimization 

Using metal printing technology, Rolf Lenk slashed the total manufacturing time for the control box cover to a mere 55 hours for subsequent identical components. This represents a significant reduction from the initial 75 hours. 

Efficient Production of Legacy Parts...Without Drawings! 

In an ingenious approach, Rolf Lenk developed a method specifically for situations like this one. Here's the process breakdown: 

🔻3D Scanning: The damaged part undergoes a meticulous 3D scanning process to capture its exact form. 

🔻Data Conversion and Remodeling: The captured data is then transformed into a CAD drawing and remodeled to its original state. 

🔻Additive Manufacturing: With the design file complete, the SLM machine springs into action. In this instance, the 2.32kg part, crafted from ALSi10Mg, was replicated using a two-laser SLM®280 printer, taking 42 hours. 

🔻Post-Processing: The final stage involved an additional 13 hours of meticulous finishing. 

Cadillac Eldorado control box cover and SLM 280 printer parameter 


A Future-Proof Approach 

For Gregor Sodeikat, Managing Director at Rolf Lenk, 3D metal printing has become an indispensable part of their operation. He emphasizes their openness to new technologies and their immediate embrace of additive manufacturing as a groundbreaking metalworking advancement. Sodeikat highlights the numerous benefits this technology brings: 

✔ Targeting new customer segments 

✔ Optimizing and developing innovative products 

✔ Meeting diverse customer demands 

✔ Ensuring a future-oriented and adaptable business model 

Beyond Classic Cars: A Universal Solution 

The breakthrough achieved by Rolf Lenk extends far beyond the classic car restoration scene. Numerous industries grapple with the challenge of maintaining operational fleets due to the unavailability of spare parts for older machines. 

This novel approach using 3D metal printing offers a glimmer of hope, raising the possibility of producing essential spare parts in every instance. 

Metal 3D printing is the solution for restoring spare parts 

This case study serves as a compelling testament to the transformative power of 3D printing. By embracing this technology, companies like Rolf Lenk are not only streamlining their operations but also unlocking a treasure trove of new business opportunities. 

Vinnotek: Your Trusted Partner for 3D Printing Design and Simulation Solutions 

The transformative journey of Rolf Lenk Werkzeug- und Maschinenbau GmbH is a testament to the power of metal 3D printing in optimizing manufacturing processes. However, to fully unlock the potential of 3D printing, expert design and simulation services are crucial. 

Vinnotek emerges as a reliable partner in this domain, offering comprehensive 3D printing design and simulation services for critical parts in many industries, such as aerospace, automotive, energy, and medical. 

We not only bring the benefits of advanced 3D printing technology but are also the official representative of Nikon SLM Solutions - one of the world's leading 3D metal printer manufacturers and Titomic - a pioneer in large-scale additive manufacturing applications, such as tools, spare parts, and machine parts, replacing traditional manufacturing methods.  

With a combination of creativity and professionalism, we are committed to working with your business to optimize designs, reduce production costs, and improve work efficiency. 

Contact Vinnotek today to experience innovation and advancement in your industry! 


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