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Quaife Engineering

Quaife Engineering Ltd - Transcript

It’s a family run business we started back in 1965, my father started it. Doing a lot of self-contract work for different people and one of the companies were Norton’s. Wanted a viceroy gearbox. So they kind of worked with me father to get one done. Then obviously it all kind of snowballed from there. In 1971 Triumph actually bought the design of Quaife Engineering. Back in the 70s I was doing a lot of motorcycle racing as well, so we done quite a bit of that as development. We are into five, six, seven, eight speed gear boxes now every kind of gear box you can think of. We still manufacture here all in house. And sell to everywhere all around the world.

With SOLIDWORKS you obviously can have a working model, you can rotate the gearboxes, and exactly engage the gears as well in SOLIDWORKS and you can start seeing all the clashes you may have if it’s been drawn wrong. So instead of going ahead and building it then finding out when it’s all on the dynos

You can design anything, but you’ve got to be able to make it and put it together, so the 3D side of that was an enormous advantage to us over the previous 2D package. Because we could actually visualise the whole thing. We make a huge variety of components, we make an enormous number every month and the way we used to do it was the old fashioned way of rows and rows of filing cabinets; that was an enormous waste of time. With the use of PDM Professional. We can, every single person that needs access to that drawing, has access to that drawing.

It makes development very, very easy. We can move certain sections of design within certain gearboxes into others really quickly. It’s a good tool to work with.

You can put a lot of the gears through SOLIDWORKS (Simulation) to see what forces they will take and what power they would be capable of taking.

We have used Simulation for that on this part where we have a flywheel for a customer that was not made by us. We modelled this part up in SOLIDWORKS, we then used Simulation to put the stresses and strains on the part and see what happens. Luckily enough the Simulation showed us exactly what the failure was found in the testing as well. So from that we’ve been able to redesign this part.

We make an awful lot of small parts from solid and they are milled from start to finish complete from a solid billet. We have three seats of SolidCAM and we do use the IMachining as well, on two of those seats. The amount of time saved is massive. We can go straight from the model, straight into a programme, to machine the part. Using Photoview 360 we can render a lot of those models to the point which most people would believe it’s a photograph. We can give the end user or the customer what appears to be a real picture. We are looking at composer to do the next step between going from a rendered part onto a website, so people can explode the part and see what’s involved in those parts and the complexity of them. But also going down the route of making spares ordering much easier for the online shop.

Cadtek are excellent, they keep us up to date. We get the new release disks on the day that they come out. We then sit on them for a few months until Cadtek are happy that any bugs there are, are ironed out. So we tend to go through the first release then we install it and then the Cadtek guys come along and do it all for us.

There’s a helpline/phone line all in. so we can talk direct, get any information. All the latest updates keep coming in each year so we’re always increasing the memories and everything else and the log in that SOLIDWORKS can give us.

Yes, I think that over the years by having this it’s made a better quality product, at the end of the day.


Since 1965 Quaife’s track record of success has helped to build the brand into a globally recognised business that places great emphasis on long term working relationships with employees, customers and suppliers. Using Advanced Manufacturing techniques, SOLIDWORKS Visualize, PDM Professional and Simulation, Quaife are able to continually design, manage and manufacture world class gearboxes.

Whilst best known for their sequential gearboxes and Automatic Torque Biasing differentials in the motorsport world, a large part of the business is dedicated to providing expertise from first designs through to production runs and aftermarket support.

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Quaife Engineering

The 3D side…was an enormous advantage to us over the previous 2D package.

We can go straight from the model, straight into a programme, to machine the part.