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Fritschi’s products have endeared themselves to users with their patented system and a design strategy that minimizes muscle strain across all of its product applications. Yet achieving the level of flexibility and fluidity of motion displayed in the Diamir Freeride and other Fritschi bindings is no small task.

It is therefore essential that Fritschi have access to superior freeform surfacing in both CAD and CAM when developing its products, and why the company turned to ZW3D software from ZWSOFT.

“We were inspired by the unlimited possibilities of ZW3D’s freeform surfacing and filleting,” said Martin Jordi, manufacturing engineer for Fritschi. “That was three years ago. Now the Freeride system is but one part of the Fritschi products palette, which is developed exclusively using ZW3D.”

In contrast to even the most meticulously defined design geometry, the real-world mechanical parts in ski bindings succumb to different rules. In practice, it’s difficult to calculate the effects of the various mechanical forces on different parts of the bindings individually and together. “Ski bindings operate under a different set of principles than most other products,” said Jordi.

As a result, Fritschi generally needs to create five or six prototypes using laser sintering or stereolithography, and from those test samples develop final dimensioning of the critical components. Fritschi uses ZW3D during this process for part fitting. As soon as the final parts are refined, the CAD data is sent directly to molding and milling operations. Fritschi now relies on ZW3D to generate milling cuts quickly and easily to shape the parts for all of their products.