The Eye of Success - Stimpson Co.

Stimpson parts
FeatureCAM Screenshot

With mergers and acquisitions so prevalent in today’s business world, a company with 150 years of success must surely have mastered the principles of economic survival.

Stimpson Company, which was established before the Civil War in 1852, is the world’s largest producer of eyelets.  Stimpson manufactures and sells over 3,800 types of eyelets alone.

They also sell thousands of different grommets, washers, hole plugs, snap fasteners, CEฎ rivets, clamps, corners, ferrules, contacts, connectors, arrows, shells, hooks, quick rivets, spinners, spots, stampings, terminals, and vents.  Stimpson customers can choose from several different metals, almost any imaginable color, and up to 18 finishes.  Within the last 25 years, Stimpson has shipped orders totaling over 200 billion products.

The Stimpson legacy is based on quality products backed by the research and development needed to ensure successful sales and the foresight to capitalize on the industry’s latest technologies.

FeatureCAM – the CAD/CAM software used at Stimpson Company – is a good example of how Stimpson utilizes industrial advancements.  FeatureCAM incorporates cutting edge feature-based and knowledge-based technologies.  Traditional CAM systems are operations-based, meaning that users must create part programs by defining each roughing and finishing operation and then entering several manufacturing details.  With feature-based technology, FeatureCAM users simply draw or import their geometry and then build their parts by identifying each component as a feature, such as a hole, pocket, boss, chamfer, etc.  Knowledge-based technology allows the software to use the geometry and selected features to accelerate the manufacturing processes by automatically selecting tools, calculating speeds and feeds, determining roughing and finishing operations, generating toolpaths and NC code, and providing simulations.

This has given Stimpson several advantages.  "We love the automation of FeatureCAM!"” comments Dale DeMay, Supervisor of Stimpson’s Plunger Press Department.  "It increases our productivity and shortens my programming time.  It also gives us the control to customize the program to our needs.  If we get a tool that isn’t included in FeatureCAM’s tool library, we enter the information for the new tool and FeatureCAM adds it to a tool crib specific to our shop.  We can also set up attributes for each type of machine, such as horsepower and preferred speeds and feeds."

"FeatureCAM is Windowsฎ-based and includes wizards to walk us through several of the processes, which makes it very easy to use," he continues.  "The geometry tools make it easy to create parts completely within FeatureCAM.  But the best part for us, is being able to import drawings from AutoCADฎ.  We use AutoCAD 2000ฎ and Mechanical Desktopฎ, and with FeatureCAM, we can import our files without having to worry about transfer problems."

Stimpson’s vast selection of products is always growing, and if a client needs a custom part, Stimpson has the resources to produce the part promptly and inexpensively.  FeatureCAM helps make this possible by quickly providing accurate prototypes and invaluable research and development data.

Custom orders sometimes require text engraving.  With FeatureCAM, text engraving can be created with any Windowsฎ True Type font and can be placed at any angle, along an arc, or along a curve.

In addition to quality products, both Stimpson and FeatureCAM realize that satisfied customers are the key to long-term growth.  Helping ensure their customers’ success is a priority.  FeatureCAM’s customer support and training have helped Stimpson continue their progress.  When Stimpson purchased one of the first machine tools outfitted with a PC fusion control, they needed a post immediately.  They contacted Kyle Kershaw in the FeatureCAM service department.  He easily programmed the post and emailed it to them right away without additional cost.  Stimpson also took advantage of FeatureCAM’s training options to help give them a superior edge with their programming.

"We started with FeatureMILL2.5D and did very well," Dale says.  "A year later, we upgraded to FeatureMILL3D and did well with that also.  But to get us up to full speed, we decided to attend the training…now the sky is the limit!"