Of all the best practices an electronic contract manufacturer (CM) should adhere to, perhaps the best differentiator to identify a leading CM is Design for Manufacturability (DFM) and Design for Test (DFT) reporting. DFM and DFT reports ensure customer (that’s you) satisfaction, quality control, and predictable costs. These reports should have detailed descriptions of the processes the CM would like to use in order to better build and test your product. Here’s what you need to know about DFM/DFT reporting from an electronics CM before you choose your provider.
What Are DFM/DFT Reports?
A Design for Manufacturability report occurs before the product goes to the production stage. To create a DFM, the CM engineers will inspect the product for manufacturability. This means the engineers will evaluate every aspect of the product with the goal of eliminating unnecessary operations and complexities when possible, for a less costly production process. The Design for Manufacturability reports will assess the product’s individual components, design details, production plans, and more to help minimize the odds of human error and maximize production quality consistency. A great CM will maintain communication and engagement to ensure that the final product design not only satisfies your requests but yields a highly reliable product deliverable throughout the manufacturing lifecycle.
A Design for Testability or Test review occurs prior to production. DFT reports aim to detect potential testing problems as early as possible and to resolve them before they turn costly for customers. Analyzing appropriate test access, a DFT can include testing strategies to not only prevent manufacturing defects but to also stop defective products from leaving the facility. Performing Design for Testability reviews can help optimize the assembly process and come up with an error-proof overall testing strategy.
DFM and DFT are not one-time reports, especially if a product undergoes a major design change. These reports should be continuously updated to review the design, assembly, and testing procedures in place to create your electronics. DFM and DFT reports detect and address issues before they cost you money on the production line. These reports also enable improvements during redevelopment.
The Importance of Design for Manufacturability/Design for Testability Reporting
DFM and DFT reviews are electronics assembly techniques to minimize costs and maximize quality. Without these periodic checks and reports, the customer could suffer serious and expensive errors during production. DFM and DFT reports mean that CM engineers actively search for human errors, defects, flaws, and mistakes that could compromise the item, and take immediate action to remedy the situation. Having eyes on your project at every stage ensures you don’t end up paying for your CM’s mistakes. Design for Manufacturability and Design for Testability services can achieve the following:
Comprehensive checks of customer design/ideation drafts
Ensure production quality and consistency
Reduction of any excess resources or processes
Finding and fixing errors prior to production
Thorough review of printed circuit board assembly design
Trace routing to increase circuit testability
Zero risk transfer to the customer
Best possible product yield rate during production
As an original equipment manufacturer and customer, you have the right to expect products to come without defects. You also have a right to expect them to come in on time and under budget. Products should not have deviations from the design, early life failures, or latent defects.
Ask About Design for Manufacturability/Design for Testability Reporting Before You Decide
While interviewing different CMs, ask about the company’s DFM, DFT, and other reporting services. Ask how in-depth the assessments go prior to production, and what the company will do if it encounters any issues, errors, or defects. Work with a provider that prioritizes product quality above all else, but that is also dedicated to achieving your personal goals in terms of timeframes and budgets. Detailed evaluations will help uphold requirements for a specific project. Find an electronic contract manufacturer that provides in-depth and comprehensive Design for Manufacturability/Design for Testability reports, such as Saline Lectronics, for quality control and satisfaction guaranteed.
In the injection molding industry, this is commonly known as DFM, and it is one of the first things you need to consider when beginning your design process.
“Design for manufacturing” basically means that you keep the many factors involved in the manufacturing process in mind as you are designing your part. Your technical specifications need to align well with the capabilities of the manufacturing process and should also consider the capabilities of the specific manufacturer you will be working with. Each manufacturer utilizes different materials and equipment, and the design of your part should take this into account. We recommend finding your manufacturer before beginning the design phase. Using a cooperative approach, you can ensure that your design is adaptive to what your manufacturer can do, rather than the other way around.
DFM occurs early in product development, before tooling and the assembly process, when the product is being designed. Doing so will make manufacture less time-consuming, which will reduce cost and increase ease of manufacturing. The exact process of DFM will depend on what product is being designed and produced. General principles of DFM include designing objects for efficient assembly, the standardisation of materials and components, reducing the number of parts, and minimising the amount of manufacturing operations required on parts during assembly. Other basics of effective DFM include standardisation of parts to save on part cost, design simplicity, which may reduce the complication or number of parts required, and setup time reduction.
For any business looking to make money and create products that are profitable, DFM is vital for efficiency, speed, and high rates of production. It is thought that approximately 70% of the manufacturing costs of a product derive from design decisions made in the early design stages, such as materials used or method of manufacturing. DFM therefore has great cost-reduction capabilities. A focus on the design stage, available through DFM, would significantly reduce the final production cost. It can also enable the identification, quantification and elimination of waste or inefficiencies at various points throughout the manufacture and production process. It may additionally be used as a method of benchmarking and, in doing so, a company can assess the products of competitors.
Design for Manufacturability, a rulebook for design and manufacturing engineers, helps creating efficient designs with accurate geometrical dimensioning and tolerances. The design rules and geometrical precautions mentioned in DFM rule book, solves design challenges that surface from the gaps between designs and manufacturing.
DFM essentially reduces design inaccuracies by eliminating design shortcomings early, shortens manufacturing lead-time, and offers qualitative products. All in all, DFM rules help the engineers to work towards elimination of material wastage and rework.
The benefits of DFM for Product Design include:
1) Lowers production costs: When designers comply with DFM guidelines, manufacturing processes are selected early. This can help manufacturers to reduce labor costs by managing expensive tooling and avoiding manufacturing process revisions.
2) Simplified Production Scale-Up: DFM minimizes design rework probabilities, enhances product quality, and accelerates mass production and time to market.
3) Reduced ECOs: Evaluating end user’s requirements early in the design stage eradicates expensive modifications at the manufacturing stage.
4) Effortless Assembly: DFM designed parts require fewer efforts from operator during assembling as it focuses on fewer number of parts and minimal tooling.
5）Improved Quality: Creating manufacture-able designs enables manufacturers in first-time-right precise product and improves competitiveness.
All the aforementioned benefits of DFM cumulatively work to earn time in overall product development cycle and reduce overall expenses. It has become an imperative for manufacturers to optimize a product’s design while eliminating frictions during assembly and manufacturing procedures, and reducing ECOs as well as material wastage.
Many companies today are integrating the DFM and DFA practices through design and manufacturing teamwork. The Design for Manufacturing (DFM) and Design for Assembly (DFA) techniques are two different classifications. DFM techniques are focused on individual parts and components with a goal of reducing or eliminating expensive, complex or unnecessary features which would make them difficult to manufacture. DFA techniques focus on reduction and standardization of parts, sub-assemblies and assemblies. The goal is reduce the assembly time and cost. But if you think about it, they must be integrated to prevent one from causing negative effects on the other. The designer may seek to combine parts to reduce assembly steps, quantity of parts and hardware. If the resulting parts are difficult or expensive to manufacture then you have gained nothing. We must work together to accomplish both goals. The principle goals for simultaneous DFM/A are detailed below.
The DFM/DFA methodology allows for new or improved products to be designed, manufactured and offered to the consumer in a shorter amount of time. DFM/DFA helps eliminate multiple revisions and design changes that cause program delays and increased cost. With DFM/A the design is often more comprehensive, efficient to produce and meets the customer requirements the first time. A shorter total time to market frequently results in lower development costs. The application of the DFMA method results in shorter assembly time, lower assembly cost, elimination of process waste and increased product reliability.
Design for manufacturability or DFM report, ensures that the final product made from the customized plastic mold has no flaws. The advantages of design for manufacturing are given below:
Reduces overall production costs
Minimizes equipment costs that wouldn’t be of any use in the long run
The production takes place at an increased pace
Lower material and human labor costs
The production cycle gets shortened, as mentioned in the earlier points; this implies fast mass production time, which can save a lot of time
Greater automation potential
The quality of the product delivered is immaculate
Design for Testability is equally essential. The importance of running this test is given as follow:
Performing these test makes us aware of potential design issues that could lead to structural integrity issues of Printed Circuit Board
These reports by the injection mold designer give us a sneak peek into the Printed Circuit Board
Design for testability enables design teams to go over the layout once again to check if there’s something that can be improved in test access for the final printed circuit board
Since this report helps catch the design issues at early stages, the cost of production is much lesser and the manufacturers can save both time and money which would have otherwise been wasted due to rework.
Plastic is one such material that has good mechanical properties. Also, it is lighter than metal and thus it is actively used for making furniture molding. The material also provides the right amount of toughness to help the product function properly. Injection molding is a commonly used manufacturing process. However, owing to its intricacies, the designers need to consider various design constraints to ensure that the design is entirely focused on maximizing the molding performance and reducing the tool costs.
Design for Manufacturing and Design for testability are the two tests that are performed by designers to ensure that design does not have any flaws and the end product will satisfy the needs of the customers.
nobody would want to pay for the mistake of the CM, so examining the project at every step becomes crucial. There are a few benefits of both design for manufacturing and design for testability reports, and they are as follows:
The product delivered to the customer would be risk-free
This helps minimize getting involved in processes that contribute little to no to the final process
Looking for errors and fixing them promptly before the products are sent for production
This also ensures top tier production quality and consistency
Regular and comprehensive checks of customer design or ideation drafts to avoid any major slip up at a later stage
Printed circuit board assembly design is gone over with a fine-tooth comb to maintain precision and yield an error-free product
Design for Test or Testability takes place before production. The main aim of Design for Testing is to find out potential testing problems at an early stage and put efforts to rectify them before it wreaks havoc with the company’s finances.
Design For Testability of DFT includes various testing strategies which are aimed to find the possible manufacturing defects. Performing DFT tests can help in coming up with an error-proof testing strategy.
Also, Design for Manufacturability and Design for Testability reports do not follow the “one size fits all” formula. These reports are regularly updated, reviewing the design, assimilation, and testing procedures to ensure that the end product is flawless.
A design for manufacturing or manufacturability report helps to detect the possible faults before the product is sent to the stage of production. To create a Design For Manufacturability report, the CM engineers assess the product and give it a green signal once they find everything is correct. Over here, the CM engineers play a major role as they check every aspect of the product to avoid any rework or wastage of time.
In the Design For Manufacturability stage, the CM examines everything about the product, including its components, design details, production plans, and other components to reduce the chances of rework. A good CM ensures that everything is in line and instructions are being communicated so that the final plastic mold design satisfies the expectations of the customers while yielding a highly reliable product.