Mass production makes items faster, better, and cheaper. The larger your production volume, the lower your cost and, subsequently, your product prices. This is common knowledge, but what is not well known is the magnitude of this effect. In this post I would like to show you a few comparable products, albeit with vastly different production volumes, and hence different prices.
In my last couple of posts I looked at design for manufacturing and assembly DFMA. However, there is more out there. Often, they are grouped as Design for X, where X could be anything related to the product life cycle, including development, production, shipping, servicing, use, disposal, and many more. There seems to be a large number of more-or-less well-known terms that are used somewhere. Many of them claim to be essential, but not all are. If you try to do them all, you will never get the design done. Focus on the ones that are most promising for your case. After all, all designs are designed for something, usually a trade-off of functionality versus cost. This is sometimes also known as design to cost.
This post finally concludes my list of questions to ask for design for assembly (DFA). I myself was surprised that there is enough material for three posts, and this does not even include the introductions and the design for manufacturing aspects (DFM). Anyway, let’s have a look at how you can make assembly easier.
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.
In 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.
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!
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.
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.