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Automate Your Design & Estimating Processes, Reducing Days to Minutes

Get your hours back with D3 Automation! Automate your design and estimating processes, and bring what used to take days down to just minutes.  .

The tank & vessel industries are old ones. While there are many good aspects around tradition to celebrate, there are still several things that can be a detractor when considering leveraging technology and the change it can bring or the resistance to it. It is not uncommon to see large numbers of tenured team members spend more than 20 years at a company. That ability to have very knowledgeable employees is a big strength that is not always present in other industries, which often have a very fluid workforce with wide age ranges.

The Challenge

As old and stable as it is, these industries are not without the need to adapt to market changes and to be able to leverage technology where it makes sense.

However, that is not always easy to do considering the leap that may be required between the user and the technology. It is also not without risk when considering the fear that change can bring. This is very true for these industries, which often has a tough and rugged industrial feel to it when you consider the culture within.

Certain scenarios have been playing out that have been leading to a shift that coincidentally has led to a fundamental cultural change. Tank and Vessel fabrication companies in general have been starting to leverage sophisticated solutions at a much more rapid rate. Some of the changes in the industry include:

  • A predictable product that has the same but different outcomes
  • Similar industry challenges from one company to the next
  • Similar industry use of Excel
  • Similar industry use of AutoCAD
  • Rapidly evolving technical solutions that solved parts of the problem
  • Early adopters – companies that are willing to invest to automate workflows

The Solution

After a thorough process of evaluating industry goals and challenges, coupled with D3 having a unique rules engine, D3 began to work with some of the early adopters to solve the major areas of today’s workflow challenges. These areas consist of:

  • Develop a user-interface to rapidly lay out a tank with 3D graphics before creating full 3D model
  • Import Compress, PVElite or Aspen file and enable additional components for Vessel or Heat Exchanger before creating full 3D model
  • Integrate back office systems to tie-in costing of materials and labor to selections for quoting
  • Easy button creation of 3D models, drawings, bill of material lists, ERP data push, PDF and CNC exports

Pressure Vessel Configurator

"We have to leverage this technology because everyone else will once they know about it."
~ Springfield Mo Pressure Vessel & Shop Tank fabricator


The Results

Clients are solving problems that are allowing them to compete at a higher level.

The outcomes include:

  • Estimating and design tasks which used to take 165 minutes now take about 10 minutes
  • Drawings and other documents are created with a click of a button compared to days in engineering
  • Intelligent 3D models are created on the fly reducing what has to be done even for the most custom projects
  • Clients get what they want before the competition can respond and it is accurate.

Conclusion

While these solutions are not cheap, neither are the problems they are solving. Most projects have a six to 12 month ROI for all of the project. When you invest in tools that can improve the bottom line in large increments by harnessing rules into a reusable tool, a company can then be scaled with the business and not have to default to throwing more warm bodies at the problem.

You don’t have to let your intellectual property clock out at 5pm and hope it returns.

This article was written by Daryl Price, director of sales at D3 Technologies, +1 417-763-4033


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