3D CAD SOLIDWORKS Case Study Bucyrus

The Challenge
Bucyrus International, Inc., is a global leader in the manufacture of shovels, drills, and draglines for the surface mining industry. With products that were both large and costly to manufacture, the company needed a logical way to design and market them while minimizing and often eliminating the need for prototypes. Bucyrus evaluated various 3D mechanical design systems in an effort to extend the boundaries of the surface mining equipment market, improve design productivity, and create accurate computer visuals.

The Solution
Bucyrus chose SOLIDWORKS software for its ease-of-use, 3D visualization and animation capabilities, and close integration with PDM software and analysis tools. The designers use Matrix PDM for managing SOLIDWORKS data, SOLIDWORKS Simulation Software for FEA analysis, and SOLIDWORKS Animator and PhotoWorks for producing animations and graphics of machine designs. The dynamic assembly capabilities in SOLIDWORKS allow them to perform clearance checks on assemblies and moving pieces to ensure there are not interference problems. SOLIDWORKS gave Bucyrus designers the confidence and agility to develop a revolutionary new product — the 795B Electric Mining Shovel with Hydraulic Crowd — which pushes the parameters of the surface mining equipment market.

“Before SOLIDWORKS, we didn’t discover visibility problems until the machine was assembled on the shop floor.” – Derrick Juul, Bucyrus Designer.

Summary and Metrics:

  • Shortened design cycle by 25%
  • Reduced FEA analysis time by 20%
  • Improved product confidence level by 25%
  • Pushed the parameters of the surface mining equipment market