Non-Contact Gap Measurement

Many manufactured products contain mating components where a gap exists between adjacent surfaces. Most people don’t really think much about it but such products are all around us. Think about the gap between the hood and the fender on an automobile, the gap between the panels on a jet engine nacelle, the gap around the door on a washing machine, the gap around compartment doors on a rail car, the gap between doors on a refrigerator, the small gap surrounding buttons on a consumer product … the list goes on and on. The size of these gaps, their uniformity and parallelism, and the flushness between the adjacent surfaces are often very important for proper function, efficient performance and customer-pleasing aesthetics for such products. As a result, manufacturers need a trustworthy method to assess and validate that they are achieving proper gaps and flushness when they assemble their products.

The Premier Solution for Non-Contact Gap Measurement

The GapGun Pro2 is a unique and very effective non contact gap measurement solution for manufacturers. Using the GapGun Pro2, a user can perform simultaneous gap and flush measurement in a couple seconds with a simple pull of a trigger. GapGun Pro2 is a handheld laser profile sensor that measures gaps using the principle of laser triangulation. When a user pulls the trigger, the GapGun sensor projects a laser line onto the two mating surfaces and a camera in the sensor collects a series of images of the profile. Because the sensor is calibrated in an ISO 17025 certified laboratory, the GapGun can interpret the shape of the laser profile to extract accurate dimensional information about the gap size and flushness.

The GapGun Pro2 has two available sensors: the T60 sensor spans 60mm wide while the T15 sensor compresses its 2400+ pixels into a 15mm field of view to enable very high-resolution measurement for small gaps. Because the GapGun uses a laser sensor, it can perform completely non contact gap measurement, which is important for products where touching the surface could cause one or both to move (think about a flight control surface) or perhaps deform (such as leather interior components in a car.)

Benefits of the GapGun Pro 2

Non contact gap measurement (sometimes referred to as margin) and flushness measurement (also known as step or level) using GapGun Pro2 offers many advantages over traditional tools such as feeler gauges, taper gauges, dial indicators, calipers, etc. Here are a few:

Speed – the GapGun measurement takes only a couple seconds to gauge both gap and step. Measuring with GapGun is typically 5-8 times faster than traditional tools, completing inspections in an hour or two that previously took a full day or longer to perform

Accuracy – the GapGun sensor is manufactured and calibrated in a ISO 17025 certified laboratory and delivered with certified reference artifacts to ensure complete traceability and opportunity to validate accuracy at any time
Repeatability – when the GapGun measures in a couple seconds, it is not actually taking a single measurement. When the GapGun measures, it collects multiple images of the profile, processes the measurement for each image, ensures that they are stable and reports the average result from 4-8 separate measurements.

Reproducibility – the GapGun can be configured and taught how to interpret the gap and flush from any profile shape. The GapGun will then interpret the profile and calculate the gap the same way every time, regardless of who is actually holding the GapGun and performing the measurement.

Ergonomics – GapGun Pro2 is designed to be a favorite among operators. Its lightweight design features intuitive pistol grip, color touchscreen, clip-on battery pack and easy single-hand operation. The sensor mounted to the gun can rotate 180 degrees to maintain easy screen visibility and the sensor can even be removed and used with a head extension cable to simplify measurement for high or low points.

Streamlined data flow – manufacturers are measuring for a reason so accessing measurement results should be simple. The GapGun is usually set up the operator simply clicks “upload results” when finished measuring. From that one operation, the measurement results transfer from the GapGun to its host computer and then are exported and formatted for immediate use, whether in the form of an Excel report, file upload to quality database or production information system

These are just some of the reasons why GapGun Pro2 is the premier solution for non contact gap measurement and is widely adopted by world class manufacturers of aircraft, automobiles and many other products. With the GapGun Pro2 noncontact gap measurement, these manufacturers have turned a time-consuming, “necessary evil” task into an efficient data collection exercise that easily provides trustworthy data for process control decision makers.

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