Case Study


Replacement Aircraft Parts Company, Inc. (RAPCO) is an aftermarket manufacturer of replacement aircraft parts for the general aviation and corporate aviation industries.

John Wicht is the FAA Project Manager at RAPCO and was finding that their existing CAD software simply didn’t have the tools he needed to accomplish his tasks efficiently.

Summary and Metrics

  • 30% Increase in design productivity
"Since implementing SOLIDWORKS, I would say that our design productivity has increased at least 30% from where it was before we started using SOLIDWORKS."
John Wicht FAA Project Manager, Rapco

The Solution

Before working with CATI, John had taken a SOLIDWORKS class at a local college where he became familiar with the software.  As a result, he was able to justify purchasing a student license.  Realizing the power of the software, as well as its ease-of-use and industry wide acceptance, John knew that RAPCO needed the full SOLIDWORKS package.  Just two weeks after John contacted CATI, he had purchased his first seat of SOLIDWORKS.  “It matches our needs so well and it has integrated so well into our system that one license just wasn’t enough,” said Wicht.

2 years later, John is still happy with his decision, “I am consistently seeing a return on our investment year after year,” and he continues to reap the benefits of using SOLIDWORKS, “we have reduced design to prototype time, have less prototype rework, we spend less time on design validation, and less time on quality and production implementation.”

The future with SOLIDWORKS looks bright for Wicht and RAPCO. Currently, they have a number of new products in both the FAA approval stage and design stage, and they are considering adding PDM Enterprise to further round out their engineering design process.

Summary and Metrics

Since acquiring SOLIDWORKS, John has been able to use the software everyday.  He is now able to tackle far more complex projects than ever before.  As a result, John has found himself spending the same or less time on extremely complex projects using SOLIDWORKS as he did with far simpler projects using his old CAD tools.  Since making the move to SOLIDWORKS, RAPCO is “light-years” ahead of where they were just 2 years ago using their old CAD software.