AAV Plastics were approached by an exisiting customer who had experience of AAV’s design and manufacturing capability.
Odeo flares made a laser distress flare. The user is able to pinpoint their location using a the flare. The laser beams rotate, giving a flashing light appearance, visible for up to 5 miles- and lasting for hours rather than seconds. They were manufacturing their flares from machined ABS, Acrylic (PMMA) and foam, and just about covering their costs.
We had the brief of designing, tooling and moulding a new flare housing. It had to be robust, float the right way up, easy to change the batteries, and a number of other considerations.
AAV were able within a few days to give a tooling price indication to enable the project to proceed. We then went through a number of iterations of the design. SLA prototypes were provided enabling functional and initial market tests to be carried out. Images from the design process can be seen at http://www.odeoflare.co.uk/specs.html
We then received the order for the tools, some of which were completed in house and some outsourced.
The tools were completed to schedule and parts supplied for assembly. Included in this is the little know “Wipe off” tool technique for moulding tubular parts at much lower cost than using conventional side cores, to make the main body of the flare.
The parts are moulded in ASA (Acrylonitrile Styrene Acrylate). ASA is very similar to ABS (Acrlonitrile Butadiene Styrene) but has very good long term Ultaviolet resistance- obviously important in this case. The clear lens is moulded in PMMA (Known as acrylic/perspex), which is tough and excellent Ultraviolet resistance.
Odeo flare is now in production and can be seen at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRrnjC6rDw8&feature=player_embedded
It has also received a number of awards:-