Aviation Case Study – Step 1: Reverse engineering using Artec 3D scanner

In this case study, discover how Javelin is using reverse engineering and 3D printing to help build accurate, strong, lightweight doors for an airplane’s landing gear compartment.

Michael Shuler, an aviation enthusiast, is building a Falco airplane, designed in Italy in 1955 and although it is over 60 years old, it is still considered one of the most spectacular aircrafts in terms of style, appearance and handling.

reverse engineering

Falco Airplane

Project challenges

One of the challenges Michael encountered in this project was the construction of the wheel-well doors. This part is not only complex, it is located in a tight space that is hard to reach. Manually measuring the part would be both time consuming and challenging. In developing the right solution for this problem, Michael also had to consider managing the weight of the doors and using an aviation approved material. Both weight and material are important factors in the construction of any aircraft part.

Javelin brought in Deandra Reid, our Senior Applications Specialist to assist with the project. Deandra specialises in 3D Scanning and used the Artec Eva 3D scanner to reverse engineer the part. In choosing which scanner would be the best fit for the project, the size and complexity of the part were her main concerns. Deandra chose the Eva scanner because it provides a high level of accuracy and one metre field of view. The Eva can scan a large area quickly and accurately, saving time and reducing errors.

Landing Gear Compartment

Landing Gear Compartment

Reverse engineering saves time

Reverse engineering is necessary for projects where we don’t have access to part drawings or accurate part drawings. The first step is to capture the scan information into Artec Studio and then export that information directly into SOLIDWORKS using the Geomagic for SOLIDWORKS plug-in. This process allowed the team to capture accurate data quickly, saving time and reducing errors.

View the next video in the series: Converting data into CAD using Geomagic for SOLIDWORKS


Reverse Engineer a large complex part in a tight space.


Use a combination of 3D Scanning, Geomagic for SOLIDWORKS and 3D Printing.


  • Save time and reduce labour costs
  • Eliminated design errors and mistakes

Artec 3D Scanners

Artec offers a variety of handheld and desktop scanner options. 3D scanners are used in a wide range of industries including Industrial Design, Medical, Science and Education. Artec uses a three step automatic process using advanced software to capture data.

Learn more about 3D Scanners


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