Logo
Create Account           Login

Cases3D Printing Case — SJ

3D-print increases the ability to get all vehicles in traffic on time

SJ

3D-print increases the ability to get all vehicles in traffic on time and provides a better customer experience without broken parts or missing cup holders, for example. Railway vehicles have a very long technical life, problems often arise when suppliers disappear, or spare parts stop being manufactured. This could mean that vehicles are left stan- ding for long periods due to small faults that could have been quickly rectified.

There are also some products where SJ is not completely satisfied with the functionality. For example, there is a model of toilet roll holders in the relatively new SJ 3000 trains that often roll off and disappear. “We have vehicles that are in the workshop waiting for spare parts that cannot be obtained. The alternative is to have wagons in traffic with, for example, a closed toilet”, says Anders Gustafsson, Head of large projects at SJ’s Vehicle division. Historically, the problem has had to be solved by seeking a new supplier or rebuilding vehicles to be able to use similar parts. But now the development of 3D printing offers new opportunities. The solution to obtain spare parts that you could not find suppliers for, SJ decided to start a project with 3D-print. They came in contact with PostNord Strålfors and entered into a good collaboration that is characterized by developing capacity and know- ledge in the area. Initially, SJ started printing spare parts for passenger wagons and X55 trains, also known as SJ 3000.

So far, they have 3D printed a dozen products such as ventilation grilles, curtain roller holders and covers for electrical outlets. Primarily they have been printed for lack of spare part suppliers, but they have also developed the toilet roll holders for SJ 3000 trains using 3D-printed prototypes.

The orders for the various products are made by SJ via PostNord Strålfors 3D portal. No
one of us who has been involved in the 3D projects has design or CAD knowledge. But it is not necessary with the 3D portal, it is very easy to start projects and follow process, says Anders Gustafsson. The technology is much more mature than we knew. We thought it would take at least a year just to get prototypes. But in just a few months we had the first spare parts ready to be assembled. The new technology has solved SJ’s primary problems. We have received several parts where we previously had material shortages and could not get hold of things. During the first year, we were able to make about ten products. Problems with a lack of functionality have also been encountered – the toilet roll holder is no longer a problem after product development, Anders Gustafsson concludes.

 
“We have vehicles that are in the workshop waiting for spare parts that cannot be obtained. The alternative is to have wagons in traffic with, for example, a closed toilet”, says Anders Gustafsson, Head of large projects at SJ’s Vehicle division.

The newly developed holder does not come off so easily and SJ has placed a serial order with PostNord Strålfors. 3D printing spare parts mean that SJ saves time, and in the long run also money. But above all, they have got better vehicle availability. 3D print increases our ability to get all vehicles in traffic on time

and provides a better customer environment without broken parts or missing cup holders, for example. Over time, this means that we get fewer vehicles in the workshop, says Anders Gustafsson.

The number of 3D-printed products will in- crease over time, Anders Gustafsson believes. In the longer run, technology can streamline spare parts management with minimized inventory. There are thousands of spare parts for a train and today, we almost buy an extra train that is just on the shelf. Therefore, I believe that we will gradually change from stocked spare parts to a virtual warehouse where you print the spare parts as needed – at least when it comes to the less critical parts.

Talk with An Expert

Reach out to our sales department. They are experts and will support you when you create your first 3D-project.

Contact Sales

Newsletter
Newsletter

Don’t miss out on the latest news regarding 3D printing. We regularly update about our latest projects and trends.

Next Case: MTR Tech
Shopping Basket