Design for Assembly Questions – Part 2

Design for assembly (DFA) is a large part of design for assembly and manufacturing (DFMA). In my last post I looked at how to improve fastener design and usage as well as reduce the part count. In this post I will look at reducing the number of variants, secondary processes, and making handling easier. This post continues my previous post with questions that can be asked in design for assembly.

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Design for Assembly Questions – Part 1

Assembly LineIn my last posts I discussed basics and workshop preparation for design for manufacturing and assembly (DFMA), as well as the questions for design for manufacturing (DFM). The juiciest part, however, is the options for design for assembly (DFA). This post starts with the specific questions to ask for design for assembly. However, there are so many options that I won’t be able to fit them into one blog post, and this will continue in subsequent posts. Anyway, let me show you how to do design for assembly.

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Design for Manufacturing Questions

After two post on the basics and workshop structure, I can finally start to go into the details of which questions to ask for design for manufacturing (DFM). In subsequent posts I will have more questions on design for assembly (DFA), which can of course be combined into design for manufacturing and assembly (DFMA).  I will also have a brief refresher on creativity techniques. Let’s start asking questions!

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Design for Manufacturing and Assembly Workshop Preparation

Design for manufacturing (DFM) and design for assembly (DFA) or its combination, design for manufacturing and assembly (DFMA), as well as its many design for X variants are a way to improve a design beyond its mere functionality. In my last post I gave you a basic introduction. This post will look at the prerequisites for organizing a design for X workshop. Subsequent posts will look at the different questions you can ask to further design for manufacturing and assembly.

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Design for Manufacturing and Assembly Basics

Lean is most often associated with production. However, it can also be used in other areas, like design. Bridging the gap between design and production is design for manufacturing or design for manufacturability (DFM) and design for assembly (DFA), often combined into design for manufacturing and assembly (DFMA). Lean can also be combined with lesser-known topics like design for inspection (DFI) or, more recently, design for additive manufacturing (DFA). There are many more. Let me give you an introduction to the reasoning behind design for manufacturing and its “Design for X” variants before going into more details on how to do it in subsequent posts.

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How to Convert a Job Shop into a Flow Shop – Part 1

Ford Motor Assembly 1917
Ford motor assembly with moving conveyors 1917

Job shops are always very difficult to manage. As I described in my previous posts, the irregular material flow causes fluctuations that are very hard to contain. In my view, the only true fix for a job shop is to convert it into a flow shop. In this post I will talk a little bit about how you approach the idea of converting a job shop into a flow shop … although this is not always possible. However, in many cases it is possible to increase flow-shop-like segments, even though the whole system is still a job shop.

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