The Benefits of Automation Equipment

PDFact can help you optimize processes and improve production with specialized equipment. Automation equipment creates more efficient manufacturing operations.

Modern control systems enable equipment to operate with increased speed and precision. Over time, complicated systems require maintenance, augmentation, and replacement.

PDFact offers a variety of options for computer integrated manufacturing including:

  • PLCs
  • HMI
  • Robotics

Process improvements in manufacturing systems result in greater reliability, efficiency, and productivity.

PDFact will consult with you to determine the best possible strategic utilization of automation equipment for your unique conditions and environment.

Automation Systems

Large-scale operations with hard automation can maintain high turnover rates, fast yields, and a high level of production. PDFact specializes in programmable automation for instances when processes need to be modified.

You can gain increased flexibility to change a product or better control an operating sequence using different types of automation equipment.

PDFact uses an assortment of CNCs and PLCs that work in real-time.

The key benefits are increased control over product quality, greater design versatility, and low and medium volume batches.

Vision Systems

PDFact’s Vision Systems are a great example of programmable automation solutions with versatility. These systems are typically stand-alone or bench top, but they can be built to plug and play within your requirements.

Each system is geared to inspect product features, take precise measurements, and 3D scan without touching the product with the measuring tool.

Systems include a location fixture like a cavity holding block, a simple plate and locating pins, or holding arms suspending the product in the air. This permits a repeatable method of holding specific products.

Once the product is in position, the system can be focused, tuned, or dialed via an HMI or viewing screen. 3D scanners typically require motion to capture a scanning area.

PDFact can automate this motion or keep it manual, depending on the client specifications.

Developing Automation Equipment

PDFact creates automated and semi-automated solutions for specific environments utilizing tools and techniques that align with project specifications. The process results in high-quality, versatile automation solutions.

Rapid Prototyping

Rapid prototyping machines come in a variety of technologies and models. These machines permit the binding of materials to create specific shapes (additive manufacturing).

3D printers are the entry-level of simplified prototyping machines. Process inputs generally include part placement configurations, part orientation, and build resolution.

Some technologies can process several materials and associated characteristics, which would require user designations. Once the parts are grown, post processes are commonly required, ranging from light vibratory processing, air blasting, and/or vapor honing.

Some technologies may require parts to be dyed to achieve desired coloring, such as multi-jet fusion. It is imperative the 3D files being prototyped meet the design requirements of the chose additive technology process being implemented.

Requirements typically include min/max wall thicknesses or rounded edges to eliminate sharp junctures, but each technology may have particular requirements to grow and post-process parts successfully.

CNC Machines

CNC machines also come in a variety of models and have vast capabilities. PDFact offers substrative technology. CBC machines operators typically utilize CAM softwares to efficiently program CNC equipment.

This adds a layer of safety, providing users the ability to simulate the subtractive processing on the specific equipment before actually running any parts. This promotes program and process refinement to save time, money, tools, and, build in safety.


Robotics can be used to perform repetitive tasks that have a multitude of requirements. Some requirements include accuracy, repeatability, and time constraints.

Typical applications include counting, sorting/organizing, packaging, repackaging, additive and subtractive operations, holding, and maneuvering.

PDFact believes that the most valuable leverage robotics offer is safety. They can perform tasks that are dangerous, or perform tasks in dangerous environments.

The applications and possibilities are endless, as are the jobs to create the solutions.

Upgrade Systems & Equipment for Greater Efficiency

Periodically, equipment needs to be updated, augmented or replaced.

Technological advancements present the opportunity to introduce automation equipment that will systematically improve manufacturing processes.

Implementation of automation equipment can help save time, money, and increase productivity.

Functional upgrading is one objective for equipment to perform at the highest level, but degradation is inevitable and it can affect processes.

Physical environment, location, energy access, and usage are some of the factors that contribute to functional degradation and be improved with automation equipment.

PDFact Technological Upgrades

Conversion of a manual lever press to pneumatic actuation.

This conversion replaces the manual press lever and associated mechanical ratcheting system with a pneumatic/mechanical semi-automated system.

Initially, press operators were required to physically pull a lever to actuate an assembly press. WIth this particular example, the press was used to snap two mating parts together at a controlled speed and force, repeatedly, 8 units per cycle, adding a pneumatically driven mechanism with spring overload.

This ensures assembly snap forces are being met consistently for each unit and cycle. In addition, the press operator is now responsible for simultaneously pressing two hand controls instead of physically pulling a press lever.

The hand controls prevent the operator from accidentally reaching into the press during operation, which promotes safety.

Safety Upgrades

Each automation example above includes added safety, including hand controls, emergency stops, and fault detection.

Safety and protection are always the most critical consideration in a manufacturing environment. Equipment design considerations include equipment, users, and the environment to optimize safety.

Economic and functional upgrades can also be implemented. When equipment needs to be replaced or retired, there is an opportunity to introduce new technologies and/or automated systems that have improved design considerations.

The results can increase uptime, productivity, and safety, saving time and money for your enterprise.

Planning ahead

The gradual integration of IoT technologies will promote product and system maintenance.

Remote controls will allow access to data that will inform maintenance planning and pre-scheduled equipment replacements.

PDFact supports enterprises seeking solutions in a variety of circumstances including:

  • manufacturer gaps or delays
  • remakes of small components
  • product and system development
  • product and system upgrades

Known for high quality and quick turnarounds, PDFact can help you determine which systems and components need upgrades or automation.

PDFact is always available to suggest ways to improve your automation equipment.

Contact PDFact

No matter where you are with your project, PDFact can help.

A glance at PDFact’s capabilities:

  • Prototype and execute proof of concept for assembly and inspection
  • Small fixtures and jigs that meet your needs with quick turnarounds merging in-house 5-axis machining capabilities with various 3D printed technologies
  • Manual assembly work stations incorporating features like force-limited, distance-controlled mechanisms for reliable positioning and assembly
  • Semi-automated platforms that are adaptable with pneumatic or servo-driven operations while adding sensors and controls which results in higher quality and safety


Call PDFact today at 215-239-7618 to tell us about your project, or email us here.