Have you ever come up with an idea for a new product? It’s an exciting process that involves a lot of brainstorming and thought. But much of the thinking is usually geared toward how the product will be used, rather than how it will be made.
Functionality and form are definitely important considerations, but don’t neglect the manufacturing component! Design for Manufacturability (DFM) is the process of designing products while taking into account how they will be put together. The goal is to make manufacturing as easy as possible. This may require some re-designs and complete overhauls along the way, but has a number of benefits (especially if you embrace this technique from the start).
DFM can save considerable time and money. Reducing the number of components, for example, can often reduce costs and production time. There’s also the benefit of less labor required to put everything together, which can lead to further cost savings. Material selection is another area where costs can be cut down, choosing materials that have the necessary qualities but may be cheaper or easier to source than others.
If a component requires machining, choosing a softer material will save time since it’s easier to work with. Finding a way to eliminate machined parts or features will cut down production time even further. There are numerous points where you’ll be able to think of options that cut down on production time and costs.
While all of this may seem like a burden, increasing time to market through additional planning, it’s actually the opposite. By eliminating snags before they happen and making the process as simple as possible, products can be brought to life more quickly and at a lower cost. This in turn creates more value in the final product, which can then be passed along to your customers.
If you’d like some help in determining where you can simplify your own manufacturing process, feel free to reach out to our experts.