Orange County Choppers (OCC) started designing and building custom motorcycles in 1999. The company selected SolidWorks Premium software as its standard design platform because it is easy to use, includes visualization and surfacing tools, and integrates well with MasterCAM software which automates machining on the company’s HAAS CNC production systems.
“Every bike we build is a 100% custom design,” said OCC senior designer Jason Pohl. “With SolidWorks, we can refine the design and then control the production of parts with a high degree of precision. SolidWorks has become the backbone of our development effort because everything revolves around the SolidWorks model.”
Instead of trying out different concepts in the shop using actual prototypes, the company now iterates on designs in the SolidWorks design environment, which is more efficient and cost-effective. Since implementing the software, OCC has accelerated its time-to-market by 100%, cut design cycles by 75%, and eliminated several rounds of prototyping.
OCC can now efficiently handle the increased volume of orders it now receives, both in development and during production. SolidWorks support for automated machining boosts throughput and because manufacturing from a solid model is more accurate, OCC is able to keep its costs down. Since implementing SolidWorks, the custom motorcycle manufacturer has cut development costs by 50%.
Pohl added, “Whether we’re working with an outside vendor or in our own machine shop, SolidWorks makes it easier to efficiently create usable parts. In my experience, 2D techniques hide flaws. 3D design reveals flaws. When it’s time to manufacture a part, the software enables us to have confidence that the model is right. That makes our lives a whole lot easier.”
SolidWorks also helps OCC interact more efficiently with customers, who often want to see how the motorcycle will look before placing an order, especially for a growing number of corporate bikes. Using the software’s visualization and communication tools such as PhotoView 360, OCC can show high-quality renderings of custom motorcycle designs to clients.
Orange County Choppers