CUSTOM RUGGED SYSTEM ENGINEERING DESIGN PROCESS
Chassis Plans' design philosophy
is to provide exceptionally engineered, cost effective rugged
industrial computers at a competitive price. Chassis
Plans provides turnkey solutions of custom industrial
rackmount systems, allowing clients to have quality
industrial chassis with minimal investment in time or
- Technically sophisticated
- Turn Key
- Incredibly well documented
Chassis Plans' designs are superior to any others on
the market. We've been doing this since 1985 and
have designed more systems than any other design team.
We offer no unnecessary fluff. Features are often
added to others chassis to inflate the system specifications,
not because it improves the design. Many of these
features are of questionable benefit and several are
actually detrimental. As required, features can
easily be added to our chassis designs to include system
monitors, speaker amplifiers, and shock mount drives.
Real features, signs of excellent design talent, such
as hidden hinges, two-screw lid removal, adaptability,
door and seam overlaps, safety/emission compliance,
front accessible filters, cooling analysis, low cost,
serviceability, and just plain good looks are standard
with all Chassis Plans' designs. See our White
on cooling and noise, shock and vibration,
and others for some additional design background.
Chassis Plans' designs are cost effective. We are
dedicated to specifying, engineering, manufacturing
and integrating the products that fit your budget and
standards, providing reliability, during and after the
sale. Whether you need a turnkey solution or specialized
design, Chassis Plans will meet the excellence you demand
for your products.
All components such as fans, power supplies, drive cages,
etc., are easily accessible for quick removal and repair.
All purchased components have short lead times and the
designs are easily modified to suit customer component
requirements (handles, locks, etc.).
Chassis Plans' fast response time and skill will help
make your ideas and requirements a reality. From idea,
to prototype, testing and large production runs, we
are your industrial computer source. Testing for
agency approvals such as CE, UL, MIL Spec and FCC can
all be handled by our staff. Chassis Plans' designs
are guaranteed to be error free and to meet commercial
agency certification requirements.
So what's involved in manufacturing a custom enclosure?
It's just a a bunch of sheet metal - right?
Chassis Plans Manufacturing Documentation Package provides
a highly detailed set of drawings and other information
required to fabricate manufactured parts, purchase components,
and assemble a high quality industrial chassis. There
are no short cuts; all these steps are required.
All designs are done in Solidworks 3D CAD. Concept drawings for customer approval may be done in Autocad 2D for expediency. Both packages have advantages and
disadvantages. The end result, however, is a highly
documented design that is easy to manufacture and is
The Customer Proposal Drawing
The first step is to communicate with the customer what
we think they want. The customer drawing is a quick
but detailed representation as to what the chassis will
look like and how everything goes together. The drawing
is accurately scaled and well detailed. This
assures both us and the customer that all the parts
will fit, there is adequate cooling, and the product
appearance is what is desired.
The engineer constructs a completely detailed 3D model
or layout of the desired chassis in Solidworks. Each of the parts of the chassis is drawn
on it's own layer so that any fit and interference problems
can be determined. Once the design is finalized and
perfect, each of the component parts is extracted to
its own drawing and detailed as shown below.
Autocad 2D Orthographic Layout
: clicking the above
Solidworks image will open an email where you can request this eDrawing. This requires the free Solidworks e-drawing
viewer available at http://www.solidworks.com/pages/programs/eDrawings/e2_downloadcheck.html
Sheet Metal Detail Drawings
These are accurately scaled CAD drawings providing
all detail and manufacturing information for each
fabricated sheet metal part in a chassis. The drawings
are provided as files to the sheet metal vendor to
generate the machine program. The drawing is also
printed to provide inspection information. Any change
to the drawing once released for production requires
a new revision to both the drawing and the BOM.
An isometric pictorial of each of the subassemblies
and completed chassis shows the relationship of each
of the parts including required hardware. Multiple
views are provided for clarity as required. These
drawings are used by the manufacturing group to assure
every chassis is assembled to the same standard and
that "tribal knowledge" is not required
for chassis assembly.
Step-By-Step Assembly Instructions
While a picture is worth a thousand words, detailed
instructions and pictures assure the chassis is correctly
assembled in the least time. These instructions simply
clarify the assembly drawings.
Bill Of Material
1) Install Fans (item 35) and Fan Guards (item 36)
onto Fan Panel (item 6) using 6-32 x 5/8" Screws
(item 43) secured by 6-32 Nuts (item 44). Note direction
of air flow. Position fans with leads at bottom.
NOTE: Do not over torque nuts as this can break
the fan housing
2) Install Reset Switch (item 31) from front and
press into place. For consistency, install switch
so that pushing on the left side of the switch is
the reset position.
A complete listing of each of the fabricated and purchased
parts giving an item number related to the assembly
drawing, description, unique part number, and required
quantity. Special notes are included as required.
All items, both manufactured and purchased, are controlled
Source Control Drawings
This is the document used by the purchasing department
to procure purchased components. Included is complete
vendor information with company name, address and
phone numbers. Vendor part numbers are provided. Where
applicable, multiple vendors are listed allowing price
shopping and alternative sources. Known pricing information
is also provided. This guarantees the correct parts
are purchased at competitive prices.
Instructions and assumptions the chassis fabricator
should understand. Having this information up front
prevents mistakes and misunderstandings.
hallmark of a professional integration department
is shipment-to-shipment consistency. Chassis Plans
utilizes extensive system integration documentation
to assure that the 500th system is exactly identical
to the first. There is no 'tribal knowledge' involved
in how a system is put together and it does not matter
which Integration Technician is assigned to any particular
project. You are invited to download a typical Integration
(3.2M PDF) for review.