Borescope technology has definitely become more user-friendly and advanced as compared to how it was a decade ago. Borescopes of today have brighter LEDs, high-resolution cameras, intuitive controls and ergonomic designs. These advancements have resulted in the implementation of borescopes at all levels of manufacturing, from the product development phase to floor QC, all the way through finished goods validation. However, no matter how advanced or user-friendly your borescope is, it will be of no good until or unless you have the right skills for using it.
Following are some simple yet effective techniques that one can implement to fine-tune their borescope skills. Many of the following tips and techniques may sound familiar to anyone who dabbles in photography, which should not come as a surprise, after all, borescope is a very specialized camera made to carry out a unique task.
- It is extremely important that you use the right tool for your job. You will for sure not choose a hammer to do a screwdrivers’ job. Therefore, you must choose the right borescope according to the length of insertion tube needed, the narrowest diameter of the inspection pathway and the number of turns that you would need to make for a complete inspection. Answering these simple questions will enable you to select the right borescope for the type of inspection that you are doing.
- Now that you have selected the right borescope for your job, before you begin your inspection check if the camera is free from any dust, dirt or grease.
- It is better to start with the brightest LED intensity and then lower the intensity as needed.
- If your borescope has a ‘Gain’ setting, adjust it to the highest level especially if you are inspecting a larger diameter component.
- Always keep in mind that the borescope inspection takes time and you may not find what you are looking for right away. Always take time to familiarize and orientate yourself with the component. Patience is really important when inspecting any component.
- Once you have familiarized yourself with the component and have identified the inspection area, ‘fine-tune’ your ‘Gain’ control and LED as required to avoid glare and light washouts.
- Your borescope camera will always focus automatically to the nearest object in its field of view. Therefore, be sure there is nothing in between your viewing target and the borescope.
- During an inspection, when you see a defect, try to get a rough estimate about the defect’s size via comparative measurement.
- In the case where you want to record a video or capture an image during your inspection, try to hold your insertion tube and test object (if applicable) as steady as possible. Any movement in either of the bodies will often result in a blurry low-quality video/image. In borescopes manufactured by SPI Borescopes such as ‘Recon’, you just have to pull a trigger to capture an image thus reducing any fidgeting.
- When you are carrying out inspection and identifies your target object, it is advised to take at least three photos. Almost all modern borescopes have internal storage for memory cards that have the capacity to hold thousands of photos. By getting at least three photos each time, you are almost certain that each time you will have a better-quality photo even if one or two of them are blurry. After all documentation is done, you can easily delete the unwanted photos from the memory card.
Visual inspections are often the best technique to determine the quality at each step of the manufacturing process. It is important that you take your time to learn these techniques to get the most out of your inspection and in the long run, save your money, time and improve your overall QC outcomes.
Author- Cary Gahm (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Cary Gahm is a highly innovative and driven product engineer & entrepreneur. While attending and after graduating from the University of Michigan, Cary has launched several multi-million dollar companies including SPI Borescopes, On The Map, Inc., and TempMee. His most recent invention will revolutionize everything we know about the industrial borescope industry. Stay Tuned!