How Virtual Reality revolutionizes model and tool making!

The innovative group of companies team Zimmermann, a specialist for model and tool making from Kaiserslautern, relies on VR as a new technology in cooperation with the leading XR-startup ZREALITY: during the GIFA in Düsseldorf at the end of June the team presented their new virtual showroom.

The customers of team Zimmermann Group, which consists of the companies Zimmermann Formtechnik GmbH, Horst Zimmermann GmbH as well as ZiMaTec GmbH, are astonished when they put on the VR glasses and suddenly stand in front of a meter-high ship’s engine block. In reality, with a length of 10 metres, a height of 5 metres and a weight of 10 tonnes, it is much too large and much too heavy to be exhibited at or presented at a trade fair. And that’s not all: at various points and components of the engine block you will find further so-called Info-Points. These can be selected to view further information on the services of the specialist for model and mould making, moulding technology and pre- and product development. By selecting an info point, one jumps into the various service areas of team Zimmermann and sees there the description of the company’s services – clearly illustrated with pictures and videos. One finds even a product catalog with 3D models. These are animated, so that the individual models and tools including the castings and sand cores slowly build up in front of the viewer and appear real to touch.

“We at team Zimmermann cover so many facets of model and tool making that we have always had difficulties presenting all our expertise on a limited space exhibition stand. Thanks to the virtual showroom, there are no more limits for us here and we can give our customers and visitors much more far-reaching and in-depth insights into our competences”, says Rolf Zimmermann, one of the managing directors of the Zimmermann Group. And the use at the fair is by no means everything: “In the future, any of our sales staff will simply be able to take VR glasses with them to our customer meetings and present all our services and tools on site. This is an enormous time saving, as our customers simply understand much more quickly that they are getting a complete package from us, which not many can offer, thanks to the visual experience”.

The application runs on all common VR glasses and is connected to the Sphere platform. “By using the platform, team Zimmermann can incorporate new and more up-to-date content into the applications at any time and on its own initiative and play it out live,” says Jan Knieriemen, Managing Director of ZREALITY. “As soon as the TEAM completes a new model or tool, all you have to do is exchange the 3D model from the CAD software and the latest version automatically appears in every previous application. This makes it easier to communicate with customers, for example, as “you can meet together in the virtual showroom and inspect the model”.

After such positive feedback from the customers, the team Zimmermann Group is planning to expand with additional functions. “We still have some great ideas which we now want to implement. The technology convinced us, we will definitely implement further applications with ZREALITY technology, both in the area of virtual and augmented reality”, says Uwe Martin, another managing director of the Zimmermann Group.