There are few automotive window regulator manufacturers globally who design, develop and manufacture. MarchantCain can provide the full service of concept design through to manufacturing and end-of-life support.
Design of window regulators is a specialised electromechanical engineering discipline. There are many factors to be considered when first designing a window lift mechanism. The specification of the system is the first to be considered including whether the vehicle is to have framed or frameless doors, glass weight, vehicle weight targets, anti-trap requirements, glass moving speed and, on the commercial side, budgetary considerations.
MarchantCain uses its proprietary calculation tool to define the motor type and strength and to then devise the first rail positions based upon glass surface and glass kinematic which our engineers generate. Refinement and position of our standard components follows and all these defined positions are again run through our proprietary design tool to ensure compliance with the customer’s specification. From here, when agreed with the customer, we move to the detailed design stage and tooling.
MarchantCain is certified to the IATF16949 standard and consequently all our processes are carried out and audited to this standard.
The implementation of door modules as opposed to assembling all the component parts on the production line is a philosophical matter for car manufacturers. It is a complicated decision to make. A door module which may have many or all of the component parts such as window regulator, sound speaker, electronics etc already fitted can save the manufacturer time, space and money in logistics, purchasing, and quality departments by pushing all those requirements onto the supplier. The OEM only has to buy one part number as opposed to all the separate parts. Simplistically this makes the decision even easier for a four-door car. Economics are dependent on what is put into the mix of the door module. Two people from the same company may not agree on what goes into the mix whereas a company such as Mercedes has spent considerable time refining what goes into the door module and is sufficiently confident that they only use door modules. The discussion has been ranging for a long time. It is a difficult decision to make. MarchantCain will work with individual OEMs to ensure their decision is the most cost-effective for them.
A hidden marvel, window regulators, or window lift systems, are probably one of the most complex parts within the door of a modern vehicle. Glass can be curved in one or more planes so that its movement within the door when the regulator is activated must accommodate the height and weight of the glass within the curvature of the door packaging. It is imperative that the glass movement follows the glass surface. This means, generally, because of the drop angle and the curvature of the glass in both planes, that the glass rotates around a helix. The best way to envisage this is to think of a huge glass donut where the donut is at an angle, part of the surface of which is the glass which needs to drop at an angle inside the door. Depending on the style and shape of the car, front windows and rear windows will drop at different angles.
The window regulator must be designed to fit precisely within the packaging of the door alongside all the other contents such as motors, latches, wiring, speakers, impact bars and air bag and yet its movement not be compromised by them. It must position the glass correctly for the seals to work effectively. The seals must ensure that the window will not allow rain or noise to penetrate the cabin or the glass to ‘pop out’ at speed and to wipe the window when moved up and down. The choreography of the window, moved by the glass lift system, must negotiate the seals at the top of the door, which usually means it must move in by fractions of millimetres immediately before moving out again to dock with the upper seal.
Anti-trap mechanisms must usually be incorporated into modern cars, which adds further complexities.
There are currently two types of moving glass system and a third which is becoming more popular. The most common is the framed door system used in most cars and trucks. Sports cars generally use a frameless door system. The new system coming onto the scene is the flush-glazed system which gives the aesthetic appeal of a sports car with the practicality and strength of a framed door. During its history MarchantCain has designed and/or manufactured all these systems.
Get in touch today
MarchantCain is a global designer, developer and manufacturer of window regulators with more than 25 years’ experience in the industry.