Brown, C., "Offset Fastening Flex Track," SAE Technical Paper 2012-01-1850, 2012, doi:10.4271/2012-01-1850.
Flex Track Drilling systems have been successfully implemented into several production environments and scenarios over the past couple of years. They continue to see a high demand where traditional machine tool implementations might be prohibitive due to cost or existing jig structures. This demand for innovation has led to a unique Flex Track design termed an Offset Flex Track that not only works between the vacuum rails, but can work beyond the envelope of the rails. This allows the machine to be used in situations such as the leading edge of wings where the vacuum rails cannot straddle the work envelope. The next evolution of this Offset machine is the introduction of final fastener installation onto the head using an onboard rivet gun. In addition, the camera used to locate datum points on the fuselage is now integrated into the nose piece, eliminating the need for a tool change to a spindle mounted camera. The next generation of Flex Track machines will continue to push the boundary of lightweight, portable automation solutions in the aerospace manufacturing environment.