User Story

Die Tron : Vero International

Grand Rapids, MI-based Die Tron is a high-end tool and die manufacturer that exclusively serves the automotive industry. It specializes in progressive, line, and transfer dies. Its products range from brackets to heat shields to safety components for tier 1 and tier 2 companies such as Magna International and Challenge Manufacturing. The firm was established in 1984 and employs approximately 55 people in its design and shop floor operations.

David Rose, Die Tron's vice-president is responsible for its day-to-day operations. He says that in today's competitive marketplace, Die Tron faces tough challenges such as reducing costs and cycle times, as well as improving product quality. "We meet these challenges by continually improving efficiencies and remaining on the cutting edge of new technology," Rose notes.

Six years ago, Die Tron implemented VISI-Series software from Vero International (Wixom, MI). VISI-Series is one of the world's leading PC based design and manufacturing solutions for the mold and die industries. It offers a unique combination of applications, fully integrated wireframe, surface and solid modeling, comprehensive 2D and 3D machining strategies with high speed routines, and dedicated tool design for plastic injection and progressive dies.

Rose adds, "We use VISI modules for all operations except for finite element analysis. VISI-Series software is in use from product die modeling to VISI Wire and VISI CNC on the shop floor. The entire design and manufacturing facility uses the software. It is our single source for CAD/CAM."

Prior to installing VISI-Series, Die Tron used 2D AutoCAD. Rose and his colleagues agreed that to remain competitive, they needed to upgrade to a 3D package. "We evaluated several products including Unigraphics, SolidWorks and VISI-Series," Rose says. "The VISI demonstration showed us that the product provided every function we needed at a competitive price. Not only was VISI less expensive than its counterparts but it offers better functionality than UG and SolidWorks."

He says that using just one file throughout the organization reduces the risk of error and streamlines processes. "The seamless integration allows everyone using the system to work from one single file. In addition, it allows more flexibility in the way we use it for part drawing."

Moving from 2D to 3D
While many companies forgo the migration from 2D to 3D due to the angst it can cause, Die Tron embraced the process knowing that it would help the company remain successful. Rose says, "Going from 2D to 3D was the first in three phases as we implemented VISI-Series. The transition was not that difficult. Within approximately three months we were up to speed."

About one year later, phase two was initiated - implementing VISI-Series on the shop floor using the VISI CAM software. Phase three began about one and one-half years ago - using VISI Wire. Rose says the three phases have worked out very well. "The software is integral for all our projects. There isn't a job that we don't use the products."

VISI-Series advantages
Rose says that as a result of implementing VISI-Series, Die Tron operations are at least 30 percent more efficient. "Using just one 3D solid file across the board makes it a lot easier to visualize our work." He also notes that the software helps the company save time and money. "We are at least 10 per cent faster in the design cycle with fewer mistakes. That certainly affects time to market. We do not have file translations going from our CAD department to the CAM department. That's a tremendous time saver."

Since Vero is a relatively small company, Rose says that it's easier to communicate software improvements. "Our suggestions go further up the food chain more quickly. The company is easy to work with. It was a lot easier dealing with Vero in the process of reviewing and selecting the software than other software providers.

TST-Software, is the exclusive VISI-Series distributor for the state of Michigan and Windsor, Ontario. It has provided training and support services for Die Tron for the past five years. Rose adds, "I have worked with Eric Bragg at TST-Software for more than 10 years and have confidence in his level of expertise. The staff at TST-Software is very responsive. I can call schedule training at a moment's notice. If there is ever an issue, they are expedient about addressing and solving it. They are a very proactive organization."

For more information about VISI-Series, go to For more information about TST-Software, go to

To contact the writer, email

Author: Laura Carrabine

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Page last modified on May 2, 2006
Copyright 2006 by John Stark