Why should you consider Design for Manufacture when you’re developing a new part?

Hymid Design Director Andy Tettmar comments on design for manufacture in component development

So, you’re designing a new product that’s going to be the next big thing, a product that will have your customers rushing to hand over their hard-earned cash. But before you get there, have you considered if it is possible to actually make your product in high enough volume and at a sensible price?

You don’t want to spend days, weeks or even months detailing every last feature only to find that it is too expensive or – worse – impossible to make.

Design for manufacture to get a component right

The design for manufacture process looks at a part design in terms of the chosen manufacturing method and considers whether the detail of that design helps or hinders that part’s manufacture.

In the case of injection moulding this process would start by considering the part’s wall thickness, line of draw, draft angles, undercuts and material selection. This doesn’t cover everything, but it is a good start. Further investigation might consider such factors as cosmetic requirements, target price and expected volume.

Design for manufacture assessment

Design World recently ran an interesting article on the design for manufacture assessment process where they highlight the “moulding trinity” as: undercuts, uniformity and draft. They point out that these can all be assessed by clicking on the tools that can be found on most standard CAD packages toolbars.

This is no substitute for a conversation with an injection moulding specialist, but it is a way of avoiding the most obvious pitfalls that can catch out:

• designers who are new to injection moulding
• experienced engineers who are looking to verify some of the details of their product.

At Hymid, we welcome the opportunity to help develop design concepts to the point that they can realise their potential and be made economically at the required volume. Our tooling and moulding experience allows us to work with designers to strike the balance between sympathising with the original design concept while suggesting changes that will improve and simplify manufacture.

Get in touch with us today on 01803 615308 or at hello@hymid.co.uk.