New Plastic Cipax Pioner 14 Active Boat
SERGIO ZILI OLI , PERSIC O, S.P.A.
Being a supplier with multiple capabilities, able to support customers in every aspect of the boat business, is the key to differentiating oneself from the competition and having success in today’s complex, segmented market.
Last year the Persico Rotomoulding and Marine Divisions collaborated on designing the final product, as well as on the manufacturing of the production equipment (rotational moulds), for the new Pioner 14 Active craft made by Cipax, a boat maker with sites in Norway, Sweden, Estonia, and Finland.
The Persico Rotomoulding Division has been a Cipax Group supplier for many years. Initially Persico provided just the moulds, but over the years it broadened its offering to include rotational moulding equipment (moulds, cooling jigs, and foaming tools) and know-how, helping Cipax to develop and improve its mathematical models for rotational moulding products. In 2011 Cipax decided to begin an intensive collaboration with Persico on a new 14-foot boat, starting from product design up to mould manufacturing, with the targets of a short development time and a reasonable final product market price.
Starting from the first-draft drawings of the craft, Persico addressed the main requirements of Cipax’s marketing strategy: developing a competitively priced product targeted at a wide customer base without sacrificing the technical characteristics and high performance for which Cipax Pioner boats are known.
Once all the functions and characteristics were defined, Persico integrated all the features into a mathematical model through the latest generation 3D modeling software. Using the extensive know-how of its Marine Division, Persico carried out all the necessary static and dynamic testing on the model in order to ensure performance and safety according to the EN ISO 12217-3 standard.
The goal was to develop a practical and functional craft, while allowing for modular solutions to meet individual customer needs. According to the experts at Cipax, that kind of boat was needed by various segments of the Nordic market, from daily users to weekend recreational boaters.
Developing the mathematical model for the end product, including all accessory equipment, required great commitment and effort by the Persico Engineering Division, as the lead-time was very short. Nevertheless, thanks to continual communication with the customer (face-to-face and by conference call), the design study was completed by the deadline scheduled at the beginning of the project.
Our rotational moulding manufacturing process utilizes the latest technology developed by Persico, starting with the casting process using a throwaway model. This technique allows us to produce the cast aluminum mould in less time and at a more competitive cost than the conventional model, yet maintains the same high-quality casting. Persico creates the mould frame with an innovative process beginning with CA D design, then laser cutting of the various parts, welding, and assembly on the mould.
There are many advantages to this process since we are working with mathematical files. It makes customer communication much more flexible when we are exchanging information before frame construction. Because the moulds are mounted on Rock & Roll moulding machines, there are high levels of stress. If needed, the customer can request additional reinforcement and changes in specifications. All this input occurs in the mathematical modeling stage when changes can be made more quickly and cheaply compared to when they have to be made directly on the mould.
Another advantage is that the complete frame is designed, laser cut, and welded separately from the aluminum mould shells, which are constructed in another parallel production process. This way total mould construction time can be reduced. The frame is built at the same time the mould is casted so that they can be assembled as soon as the two processes are finished.
The end result is that when manufacturing complete moulds of this size, you can save up to 2 weeks of production time.
Once the mathematical models of the Pioner 14 were approved, mould production began. Manufacturing time was reduced by the technical solutions that were integrated during the craft design stage through close collaboration between the Persico Rotomoulding and Marine Engineering Departments.
The craft was launched at the Tanumstrand trade show held in Sweden from 19 to 24 September 2011 and was well received by the public. Thus the challenging timetable and marketing goals set by Cipax were fully met.
Lars Haugli, project manager of the Cipax AS Boat Division, said: “The synergies between the Persico Marine and Rotomoulding Divisions gave us 360° support at all boat development stages, from engineering to static and dynamic testing, final design, and mould production. Persico’s extensive know-how in both the marine and rotational fields enabled us to achieve excellent results with reduced lead time compared to the usual procedure where the various production stages are performed by different companies. In most cases, the traditional method entails longer production times and additional costs due to unexpected design changes because the various parties involved meet up only when their individual jobs are completed.”
Pleased by the great result on the Pioner 14 Active project, Persico and Cipax are now beginning the development of a new large boat suitable for a wide range of end users and applications.
Persico Marine Division has also built racing yachts and collaborated on boats for the America’s Cup and the Volvo Ocean Race. Persico’s latest achievement is the Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing yacht that is competing in the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-2012.