Design for Manufacturing/Design for Reliability (DFM/DFR)


Design for Manufacturing/Design for Reliability (DFM/DFR)

DFM/DFR sessions are intended to translate device component geometry and requirements into a repeatable and measurable tooling/manufacturing process. These sessions combine the collective wisdom and experience of the team and can uncover both design and manufacturing ideas that can increase the chance of success, reduce production costs, and set the tone for a collaborative relationship.

The first step is to understand the customer application and how the overall device operates. Once understanding of the risk profile of the component/assembly is obtained, then the design and manufacturing process can be improved to minimize/eliminate these risks. Typical discussion topics include:

  • Function of the part/assembly
  • Use environment
  • Failure modes
  • Consequences of failure
  • Mating parts and manufacturing process to make them
  • Regulatory considerations and requirements

The second step is to review the part design for mold-ability. The solid model is reviewed from a tooling and processing standpoint. Typical discussion topics include:

  • Gate locations(s) and type
  • Wall section thickness, consistency and transitions (thin to thick)
  • Parting line locations
  • Witness lines & knit line locations(s)
  • Ejector means/location(s)
  • Molding cooling considerations:
    • Mold materials
    • Water jackets
  • Potential use of coatings
  • Mold durability based on steel conditions, resin, annual volume requirements
  • Mold maintainability (what will wear first or if there are fragile areas, how will they be maintained?) and planning for requalification
  • Spare components if necessary
  • Areas to make steel safe and areas to have inserts (including interchangeable inserts)
  • Interface with automation (if applicable)
  • Features in the tool or molding workcell design to facilitate secondary operations
  • Packaging considerations (how the parts need to be presented for the next process step)

The third step is to review the part/assembly requirements and prints for measurability. The dimensions, tolerances, and prints are discussed to understand how critical they are, the intent of the measurement, and if the requirements are achievable. Typical discussion topics include:

  • Validation requirements
  • Inspection methods and associated equipment
  • Inspection fixtures
  • In-process inspection requirements
  • Plan for correlation between shipping/receiving locations