2018-2019: In collaboration with Pelican, this student team designed a combined hinge and latch pinning machine for the Storm Case product line. Currently, Pelican uses multiple pieces of equipment to insert pins into the hinges and latches of the 26 Storm Case products. The goal of this project was to design a universal machine to accommodate pinning for most/all case geometries to improve functionality and save space.
The team conducted a case geometry analysis, performed pin insertion tests, and defined the key project requirements. After generating concepts for components and full machines, the team evaluated the concepts through prototyping, modeling, and cost analysis, ultimately selecting one to pursue. The team refined this design, selected machine components, created a detailed CAD model, and fabricated a proof-of-concept prototype to demonstrate the pinning action. The proposed modular multi-pinner design accommodates 25 of the 26 cases on the Storm Case line. The team delivered their CAD files, bill of materials, prototype, verification results, and risk analysis to Pelican for continued development and possible future implementation.