Do you know what an ideal manufacturing project should look like?
You should know what to expect during your engineering project at each phase, including:
- Design For Manufacturability (DFM)
- Design Verification Testing (DVT)
- Product Verification Testing (PVT)
Also, before you share sensitive information with a manufacturer, we recommend that both parties sign a mutual non-disclosure agreement (NDA).
A mutual NDA ensures that you’re protecting your Intellectual Property (IP) at all times. It also creates a more open exchange of ideas between you and the manufacturer.
The Ideal Manufacturing Project Starts with a DFM Analysis
There are a few common problems that customers encounter when they’re pursuing a manufacturing project.
The first is that most companies don’t know how to realize their product when it comes to manufacturing processes on the real manufacturing floor.
How do companies solve these problems to produce a cost-effective and scalable project? That’s where iConn enters the picture.
These companies need a design for manufacturability analysis, also known as a DFM, which requires resources, skills, or tools they may not have.
After a pre-DFM review, customers move into the DFM phase. At iConn, this includes a whole team of specialists from different disciplines, including:
- Product Engineers
Each of these specialists looks for different components that contribute to the DFM. Specifically, they’re analyzing the details of dimensions, as well as specifications of materials.
The DFM also helps to determine the types of materials you can use and, if necessary, a recommendation for specific materials. Our review also includes a mold flow analysis for plastic injection molding projects.
In addition to plastics, there are a lot of other product components to consider. There are cables, metal parts, machine parts, and the assembly process.
The DFM maps everything out. It ensures that everything is designed for repeatability and scalability. Also, the engineering teams use the DFM to verify the progress of the project at this stage.
Documentation For Every Step of the Ideal Manufacturing Project
The ideal DFM process also includes a lot of documentation. It covers how individual parts are manufactured, inspected, and how they come out of the tool.
The DFM also specifies how parts that are produced in different facilities will be transported. It also defines how teams will assemble and test the product.
When the DFM is complete and there are no issues with manufacturability, we move into the Design Verification Testing (DVT) stage.
Design Verification Testing
At the DVT stage, we start producing prototypes.
iConn’s primary facility includes in-house SLA and SLS 3D printers and some soft tooling capabilities. So, in short, we are actually fabricating and building the tools.
By working out the fabrication schedule, we can do the first article qualifications based on those tools. But we still have to do the production verification run after that first article.
Specifically, we need to know if our manufacturing system can now realize the customer’s goals.
Product Verification Testing
During the PVT process, we thoroughly document all of our standard operating procedures (SOPs). This ensures that the assembly teams know exactly what they need to do and that the quality assurance teams know what to look for during production.
The PVT provides additional information too. You can test your customers’ packaging requirements, for example, to make sure that they can carry the weight of the load and provide integrity during transport. After all, you need to ensure that you get a working product to your customers’ hands at the end of the day.
When you work with iConn, a dedicated project manager puts your project through every step of this process. We’re also very focused on documenting everything. That includes drawings and SOPs.
With iConn, you know that the specifications you test will be realized on the manufacturing floor. And the documents we develop together will ensure that your ideal manufacturing project will be successful.