tal to the product’s successful life. As
an example of policy, don’t change a
design without changing the revision
on the drawing. Don’t change the revision without permission. And, most
importantly, don’t ignore their suggestions for change.
Ego and ID
DFM is a task with many masters. Most
of them are able to clearly state their
goals and measure results.
Here’s another CAD tip: To avoid
problems with hurt feelings, use
written statements of objectives,
goals, and priorities that include plans
for measuring results. To quote Adam
Savage, former host of the TV show
MythBusters, “If you don’t write it
down, you’re just messing around.”
Part of the agenda for DFM review
meetings is to evaluate the measured
results and to adjust the design accordingly.
Manufacturing expects DFM to
deliver designs that are easy to fabricate and assemble. The ultimate
measurement scorecard is a schedule
and budget that define the success or
failure of the product. If the product is
too expensive or is not available, then
there are no sales.
As a player on the same team, ID is
a standout in review. ID needs a result
that satisfies tastes and ideals, which
are o;en di;icult to define and measure. I’ve enjoyed working with industrial designers who understand that
manufacturing is the ultimate master
and at the same time is able to bring
art to the cra;.
To those of you who have followed this column for the past dozen
years, thank you. We’ve covered several oddities and delights in the CAD
world. In 2018 we continue the theme
of managing DFM and its friend the ID.
Voga Co;ee Inc. is going to allow us to
use one of its co;ee brewers as a case
history in product development. It is
a story of a new company with a trick
of technology that transformed into a
Before Voga recruited me as their
DFM consultant, the company formed
a plan to buy a one-o; product design (see Figure 1) that “represented
a shop’s best practices.” The design
presented for fabrication was a STEP
Time-tested technology designed to provide
ultimate productivity for the modern manufacturer.
TURRET PUNCH PRESS
LS 3015 GC
TURRET PUNCH PRESS
file that showed the interior space they required for the
product but did not show any seams or hardware. It was
all up to the shop to figure out how to bend, weld, or bolt.
Surely this would result in the ultimate DFM, right? Especially if Voga bought one design from three di;erent shops.
Then they could pick the best of the best with practically no
in-house investment in DFM e;ort. From there, they could
consolidate their supplier network and go into production.
They budgeted roughly $100,000 for each one-o; design.
As a DFM consultant, would you have blessed this plan?
Voga actually made this investment and assembled the
three di;erent machines.
What results do you predict? Hint: They hired me. Let’s
meet for review next month.
Gerald would love for you to send him your comments and questions. You are not alone, and the problems you face o;en are
shared by others. Share the grief, and perhaps we will all share
in the joy of finding answers. Please send your questions and
comments to email@example.com.