Production Intent Prototyping: Give your metal part what it deserves.

It is rewarding to look and feel a prototype in your hand and know that it matches your part print, but…

Is that all you want in your prototype?

The answer is no.  You need to confidently know the production process for your metal part is well-established, strong and adaptable to meet future output demands.

How do you attain this confidence?

With Ultra’s customized Production Intent Prototyping that establishes a higher percentage rate of production success and delivers metal parts that will match your design print.

What does this involve?

It’s determining with each customer at the RFQ stage their production requirements such as high-volume or low-volume quantities scheduled for the long-term.

It’s determining manufacturability at the design stage.  Identifying the most efficient, consistent and repeatable production method that can deliver the part as designed.  It’s proving out what doesn’t work and making changes before significant resources are committed.

Our Production Intent Prototyping recently worked for an Ultra customer that is a high-profile American manufacturer of appliances.  Here’s their prototyping success story.


PROBLEM:

The customer’s previous supplier produced the initial prototype for their metal component with metal spinning.   This wasn’t the production method being used at the customer’s manufacturing facility so it didn’t define the design’s feasibility with the correct production method.

GOAL: 

Design and build tooling for the customer’s in-house production equipment to metal stamp this specific metal component.

PROTOTYPING PLAN:

Ultra’s Die Designers and Manufacturing Engineers analyzed the design print and then formed action plans to prove out formability, material thinness, material flow and tolerances.   This involved utilizing Ultra’s knowledge of tooling dies, materials and metal stamping to establish a robust, high-quality, repeatable manufacturing process.

It was critical to meet face-to-face with the customer to fully understand their expectations and requirements.

  • Need the tooling die to complete the production of this metal component in 10 stations.
  • Production output is 25,000 of these metal components per day.

KEY FACTORS TO PROTOTYPING SUCCESS

  1. Selecting the correct size of the blank for this tooling in order for the material to flow precisely into its designed form.
  2. Determining the right radius and volume of the material.
  3. Testing each individual station as it was completed to evaluate if it was performing as designed.  With the extensive experience of Ron, Die Designer, and Matt, Manufacturing Engineer, we achieved the correct die operations on the first attempt for all the stations.
  4. Correctly prototyping the 10 station production process as it is set up at the customer’s manufacturing facility.   They utilize finger-like structures to pick up the metal component after each operation is completed at a station.  Ultra was able to prototype this production method in our Aida 250 stamping press to guarantee success.

Prototyping the production process.

Let’s establish a comprehensive prototyping process together.