Motors made to order

Oct. 9, 2003
Engineering changes are a fact of life for most any design project. However, when redesigns lead to the need for custom-made products, delivery can fall hopelessly behind schedule.
A custom-designed Leeson motor drives a pump for the Murano pedicure spa.
Leeson's Smarteam builds custom motors from as few as 25 to thousands of units.

Leeson Electric, Grafton, Wis., is breaking this mold by helping engineering consulting firm Progressive Engineering, deliver custom-motor prototypes in two weeks.

The motor, designed for European Touch Ltd., drives a pump and fits into a tight space inside a pedicure spa. Electrical and mechanical design changes were made throughout the design process including adding an automatic protector. Cooling issues also surfaced, which led to modifications to the motor enclosure.

Leeson's Smarteam managed to deliver three prototype motors within the two-week time frame. The end result was a 42-frame custom motor with a modified shaft.

The Smarteam is a group of designers that draw on a broad base of engineering expertise to help customers with custom motor needs. They can travel to meet with customers, or the customer can meet at the design center located in the company's headquarters. The design center features a round table with a revolving center, letting all present examine samples as they pass around the table. A 37-in. monitor lets engineers view SolidWorks drawings, bill of materials, CAD drawings, and other items.

The Smarteam builds custom products to match customer production schedules from as few as 25 pieces up to thousands of units per shipment and has been partnering with customers for over 10 years.

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