Design for manufacture & assembly

Where products are to be made in high volume to exacting costs and schedules, the need to design from the outset for manufacturing and assembly is critical. This ensures that the resulting product is optimised for its production processes and that cost is controlled.

Sagentia is experienced at optimising products for both manufacture and assembly. Design for manufacture and assembly is integral to our approach to product development. It needs to be considered throughout the design process, across all engineering disciplines, and applied effectively to meet the requirements of the product and match the capabilities of the manufacturer.

Our approach

Design for manufacture and design for assembly are two closely linked but different requirements. They cannot, however, be treated in isolation. Easy to manufacture components don’t necessarily lead to easy to assemble systems; compromises in ease of manufacture may be required to facilitate ease of assembly and vice versa. We:

  • are experienced product developers applying the best manufacturing techniques to realise the product; we are not a manufacturer wedded to and invested in a particular approach to delivering a product
  • are truly independent, giving us the freedom to consider the best manufacturing techniques, be it casting, fabrication, machining, injection moulding or other moulding techniques; the use of flexi- or rigid circuit boards, the optimum construction of any PCBS and the most appropriate approaches to electrical interconnection. We will recommend the approaches that are best suited to the proposed manufacturing volume and desired engineering investment
  • consider trade-offs between possible implementations, or between engineering disciplines, early in the design process. For example should a feature be implemented using expensive precision components, or is it better to calibrate each unit on the assembly line, or is it possible to implement in software in order to simplify the electronics hardware or the mechanical complexity
  • are accustomed to working in tightly-knit interdisciplinary teams and this includes engaging with key component suppliers and manufacturers as required
  • believe that it is important to engage early with the proposed manufacturing partner(s) to understand their capability to challenge but also design to meet their strengths and competencies
  • undertake regular reviewing of the design internally with peers, with our clients and with the manufacturer
  • apply our experience of more acknowledged design for manufacture and assembly analysis techniques including formal scoring and ranking to judge the design effectiveness
  • regularly remain involved in our development projects through to the ramp-up stage, working with the manufacturer to plan and develop work instructions, test fixtures and pass/fail criteria, and assess their effectiveness

 

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