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Mechanical Design for Assembly

understanding and applying the principles of mechanical

product and part design for ease of assembly

A multimedia self-instructional educational

knowledge content reference package

• Importance of assembly in product development

• Operational definition of assembly as a process

• An overview of assembly systems

• Principles of product and part design for assembly

• Criteria for determining part redundancy

• Examples of design principle applications

• Quantifying ease of assembly improvements

• Vibratory feeding of small parts

• Small part orientation and feed rate analysis

Carl F. Zorowski
Professor Emeritus
Mechanical Engineering
N.C. State University

Copyright 2004
Copyright © 2004 by Carl F. Zorowski All rights reserved

ISBN: 0-9713126-2-1
Mechanical Design for Assembly

“All learning is in the learner, not in the teacher.”

- Plato –

“You can not teach a man anything,

you can only help him find it within himself.”

- Galileo –

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Mechanical Design for Assembly

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Mechanical Design for Assembly


her encouragement, support and understanding

Greg, Ben, Marshall and Aspen,
the continuation of the gene pool

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Mechanical Design for Assembly

Mechanical Design for Assembly

Table of Contents Page

Introduction. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
Course Objective and Overview, Content and Format, Proposed Study Guide,
Installation and Operation of CD.

Chapter 1 – Why is DFA Important. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11

Manufacturing Environment, Traditional Design Approach, Material and
Information Flow, Product Cycle Cost, DFA in Toys, Basic Tenets.

Chapter 2 – Assembly Definition . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21

Assembly Purpose, Assembly Functions: Handling, Composing, Checking;
Assembly Objects, Reasons for Separate Parts, Parts Sequence Diagram, Four
Part Spindle Assembly, Assembly Process Flow Chart.

Chapter 3 – Assembly Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39

Methods of Assembly, Assembly Economics, Assembly Line Components,
Assembly Line Categories, Line Factors, Geometric Line Configurations.

Chapter 4 – Principles of DFA – Product Design . . . . . . . . . . . . 55

Suitable Base, Layered Assembly, Modular Parts, Error Accommodation, Fastener
Simplification, Minimizing Parts, Flexible Items, Part Redundancy Criteria

Chapter 5 – Principles of DFA - Part Design . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75

Feeding and Orienting, Tangling and Overlapping, Maximizing Symmetry,
Emphasizing asymmetry.

Chapter 6 – DFA Examples . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 91

Product Redesign Process, Diaphragm Valve Assembly, Pneumatic Piston
Assembly, Light Switch, Copier Latch, Lessons Learned.

Chapter 7 – Quantifying Assembly. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103

Basis of Quantitative Tool, Assembly, Events, Part Merit, Redundancy, Combined
Average Merit, Product Assembly Merit, Assembly Event Choices/Values,
Pneumatic Piston Example, Redesign Guidelines

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Mechanical Design for Assembly

Chapter 8 – Vibratory Bowl Feeding . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 117

Vibratory Bowl Feeder, Part Movement, Flat Plate Conveyor Dynamics, Analysis
of Part Motion, Vibratory Bowl Feeding Characteristics, General Feeding
Characteristics, Effect of Bowl Loading on Recirculation

Chapter 9 – Part Delivery Rate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 135

Feed Rate Factors, Natural Resting Positions, Initial Distribution Matrix, Average
Part Length, Passive Orientation, Device and System Matrices, System Efficiency,
Feed Rate Determination.

Chapter 10 – Summary. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 149

The Importance of DFA, Assembly Process Defined and Described, Features of
Assembly Systems, DFA Principles for Products and Parts, DFA Product Analysis
and Redesign, Quantifying Ease of Assembly, Vibratory Part Feeding, Part
Orientation and Feed Rate Determination

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Course Objective and Overview

Content and Format
Proposed Study Guide
Installation and Operation

Introduction -1- C.F. Zorowski ©2004
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Mechanical Design for Assembly

Course Objective and


The total Mechanical Design for Assembly The very nature of the definition of design
instructional package was created to meet the implies a process dependent on creativity,
needs of engineering life-long learners who inventiveness and synthesis. Because of this
desire through self-study to continue their capabilities the “teaching” of engineering design
professional development. It was designed with is often misunderstood and/or miss represented.
the instructional objective to provide a learning Development of creative design skills is rarely
environment that overcomes the frustrations and included in the teaching of so-called mechanical
difficulties often encountered by self-learners in design courses. Calculating the maximum
attempting to decipher and understand standard stress in a helical spring whose dimensions,
text books. This is accomplished through an material and external load are all known is not
integrated visual, oral and text presentation of design. It is analysis. Determining the
the subject knowledge content. dimensions and material for a spring to with-
stand a given load in some confined space is
Webster defines design broadly as “a mental more like design. However, even then a
process or scheme in which the means to an question may remain as to whether a helical
end are laid down”. More specificity is needed spring was the best machine part to satisfy the
in the practice of engineering. A more accurate operational need. How one can be taught to
definition might be “an activity under taken by choose the correct element in the first place is
engineers that results in the creation of the the real challenge of design education.
description and specification of a device, system
or process that meets some recognized or Design for assembly is an even more difficult
identified need of society based on existing subject to deal with. In the case of the helical
technology while making use of available natural spring once its properties are specified there
resources within some specified set of exist mathematical models that permits its
constraints applicable to the circumstance in operational characteristics to be quantitatively
question.” Although the engineering definition is determined. However, if cost considerations
longer there can be no disagreement of its dictate that the spring ends be left open and the
consistency with the more generic Webster coil spacing is greater than the wire diameter
definition. However, it is precisely the greater how does one determine quantitatively how
specificity of design as an engineering process much greater are the assembly problems due to
that requires further consideration of the subject tangling during the storing and feeding process.
content of this educational module and its
manner of presentation. The approach adopted in this Design for
Assembly educational module begins with first
In the creation of any new product, from recognizing the importance of the assembly
concept to final prototype, there are a myriad of process and that it can be generically defined in
factors that must be considered in all aspects of operational terms that can be visualized
the development process. Many of these factors graphically. Guidelines are then established for
have become identified with specific aspects of selecting assembly choices that will reduce
the total design process. They are often orientation, movement, fastening difficulty and
referred to as DFX (Design for “X” ). “X” in this numbers of parts in both product and part
instance might represent factors like: function, specification. The technique used to illustrate
cost, safety, quality, strength, repair, reliability, this approach is based on the DFA analysis of
appearance, etc. One of the factors that often existing products and their redesign to improve
does not receive the attention it deserves is their ease of assembly.
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Mechanical Design for Assembly

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Mechanical Design for Assembly

Content and Format

The complete Mechanical Design for
Assembly instructional package consists of two Only two screens appear on each page. This
items, a CD disk and a printed Instructional provides space for the viewer to take notes or
Supplement. The disk contains a multimedia make other relevant comments while listening to
audio enhanced graphical presentation of the the disk presentation. With the full text of the
subject content. This covers the knowledge audio provided important phrases and concepts
required to both understand and apply the in the text as well as important equations on the
principles of the mechanical design of products graphic can be highlighted as desired by the
and parts to improve their ease of assembly. student. Quick visual reference from one screen
The complete CD presentation consists of ten to another in any given chapter is readily
self-contained chapters that can be played possible as might be helpful in the solution of the
independently using installed software together Off Line Exercise. Also, quick reference to
with the disk. The ten chapters contain some topics and physical concepts is readily available
300 graphically illustrated and animated screens with use of the index in the Appendix of the
accompanied by complete audio explanations of supplement. Imaginative students of the subject
the presented material. Navigation aids are will undoubtedly employ other complementary
provided on each screen. This permits the uses of the CD disk together with the
viewer to stop the presentation, exit the chapter, Instructional Supplement.
replay the audio or select other screens in the
chapter or any other chapter. Capability to view A short quiz is included for each chapter in
the text of the audio in a pop up window is also the Appendix that students can use to further
available. Some chapters include examples and evaluate their comprehension of the chapter
interactive exercise problems that illustrate the content. These are most effectively taken as
application of the material covered. Solutions of timed ten-minute exercises without reference to
the interactive problems are included to allow the supplement or disk. Solutions to the quizzes
the viewer to verify their own results. At the end are also provided in the Appendix.
of each chapter Review Exercises with
immediate feedback are provided for viewers to Example solutions to a number of the Off
check their general knowledge of the material Line Exercises are provided in the Appendix
covered. Also included is an off line exercise for along with a topical Index to provide a ready
practice in the application of the chapter reference to specific concepts and subjects
concepts beyond the presentation. Instructions included through out the Instructional
for the use of the software program on the disk Supplement. Finally, the Appendix includes
are covered in the section on Installation and instructions for the student to undertake and
Operation. carry out an extended formal project
representative of a real practical problem. This
This Instructional Supplement is provided as more extensive final exercise provides the
an additional learning aid and ready hard copy learner with an experience that synthesizes the
reference to all materials presented on the CD application of all knowledge content included in
disk. Its contents include grayscale copies of all the educational module.
instructional screens on the CD together with the
printed script used for the audio enhancement of
each screen. The printed supplement can be
used in a variety of ways to enhance the
instructional experience that best suits the
preferred learning style of the student.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly

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Mechanical Design for Assembly

Suggested Study Guide

Although individual learning styles may differ presentation on the CD. As suggested on the
widely the following is provided as a suggested chapter index page proceed through all pages in
study guide to achieve both effective coverage sequence. Do not hesitate to interrupt the
and self-evaluation of adequate understanding presentation (stop button) and start it over
and proper application of the knowledge content (replay button) if you do not understand the
of Mechanical Design for Assembly. explanation. The page may be replayed as
many times as necessary. The manual may be
First, it is useful to recognize that the ten used during this process for reference to the
chapters of the module can be subdivided into audio text, highlighting important items or
the following areas of emphasis: making relevant notes. The audio text is also
1. An introduction to why the subject is available on the screens of the CD presentation
important and how assembly can be by clicking on the text button after the audio is
defined operationally. (Chap. 1 & 2) complete or has been stopped.
2. An overview of modern assembly
systems. (Chap. 3) Complete the interactive exercises as they
3. Design for assembly principles for are encountered to evaluate your understanding
products and parts. (Chap. 4 & 5) of the most recent material covered. You may
4. Application of design for assembly return to the chapter index page (index button)
principles to example products. to review any page that may be useful.
(Chap. 6)
5. Quantitative evaluation of design for Use the Review Exercises at the end of the
assembly improvements. (Chap. 7) chapter for an immediately evaluation of your
6. Vibratory feeding and orientation of small general knowledge of the important concepts
parts. (Chap. 8 & 9) covered. Make use of the “Hot words” (links to
7. A short summary of all material covered other screens) as appropriate. At this point
(Chap. 10 undertake the solution of the Off Line Exercise.
Area 1 provides an appreciation for why The supplement may again be useful at this
assembly is important and how it is defined point to quickly review or reference important
operationally and graphically. Area 2 is an equations and concepts. Finally, take the end of
overview of the composition and characteristics chapter quiz without reference to either the CD
of modern assembly systems. Area 3 presents or the supplement and then check your answers
the important guidelines for ease of assembly in against those provided in the Appendix. If you
the mechanical design of products and parts. are satisfied with your comprehension of the
Area 4 applies the guidelines of Area 3 to the content of the chapter proceed on.
redesign of several existing mechanical
products. Area 5 presents a formal technique When you have completed all ten chapters it
for quantifying assembly improvements in is recommended that you undertake the project
product redesign. Area 6 describes the presented in the Appendix. This activity is more
characteristics of vibratory feeding of small extensive than the preceding exercises. It
parts, passive part orientation and how feed provides an experience in synthesizing all the
rates can be easily determined quantitatively. material covered with the added requirement of
Area 7 is a brief review of all materials in the first requiring assumptions concerning aspects of the
nine chapters. The chapters should be covered situation presented that are not defined. The
in the order listed for continuity. value gained from this activity will be in
proportion to the time and effort committed.
It is recommended that the study of each
chapter be started with the audio enhanced

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Mechanical Design for Assembly

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Mechanical Design for Assembly

Installation and Operation

The Mechanical Design for Assembly CD Alternative:
educational module is a self-contained 1. Insert the Design for Assembly disc in
PowerAudioTM instructional product created in the CD drive.
Asymetrix Toolbook II AssistantTM. Be sure to 2. Open Windows file Explorer
read the following installation and operating application.
instructions before proceeding. 3. Double click on CD drive to list files.
4. Select and double click on setup.exe
Hardware/Software Requirements: file.
PC running Windows 95/98/2000 or NT 5. Install Wizard will appear.
CD 2x or higher drive (the faster the 6. Follow steps 5 and 6 as previously.
Sound card with speakers (capable of If “Typical” installation is chosen (or all files are
playing wave and midi files). not placed on hard drive) CD must remain or be
MS Windows media player placed in drive to play complete educational
module presentation.
To Install CD Software Program
(First, close all running applications before To Run Design for Assembly :
installing Design for Assembly)
1. Insert the Design for Assembly disc in the 1. From the Start menu in Windows
CD ROM drive. 95/98/2000 or NT point to Programs
2. From the Start menu choose Run in then Design for Assembly shortcut.
Windows 95/98/2000 or NT. 2. Click on Begin Module file.
3. In the Run window, type location from which 3. Program will begin and detailed
program is to be installed (for example D:\). navigation instructions will be provided
Then type setup.exe. (see note below) on the Main Menu page
4. Click OK and follow instructions on screen in Or
Install Wizard. 1. From the Start menu in Windows
5. Choose either “typical” or “custom” 95/98/2000 or NT point to Programs,
installation. “Typical” places only the then to Design for Assembly
program operating system on hard drive with 2. Click on any Chap. _ desired.
all remaining files left on CD. “Custom” 3. Program will open at Chapter selected.
permits installation of educational module
files on hard drive. This can require To Exit Design for Assembly :
significantly more storage space. Advantage
of installation on hard drive is more rapid 1. From any page in any chapter click on the
transfer between chapter and audio files. Stop button until Replay button appears.
6. Restart computer. 2. Click on Exit button.
3. The Exit page will appear and allow two
(Note: Following step 3 above a window may choices: to exit the module or return to
appear with icons of files on the CD disc. If this the Main Menu.
occurs double click on setup.exe file and
proceed with step 4)

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Mechanical Design for Assembly
Navigation, Audio and Special Features: Appears when
Click Here audio is finished
Six navigation and operation buttons and Next Page
always appear in the bottom border of each button should be
page in the module. Their functions are as clicked.
described below:

Stops audio and forwards to

next page. Return Returns reader from
problem solution page to
next page in chapter.

Returns reader to main

Stops audio and returns to Main Menu Chapter Menu to permit
previous page.
selection of another
chapter or exit module
(Note: Above navigation buttons are only active Some Special Notes
if pointers are highlighted. If active they will
respond even if audio is playing.) 1. Older sound cards may not be equipped
to play midi (synthesizer music) files. If
Stops audio and slide no music occurs when second page of
Stop animation. On repeated Begin Module appears wait 30
clicks will bring up Replay seconds and next page with audio will
button and Click Here come up automatically.
button. 2. If audio volume requires adjustment refer
to your operating systems manual
Exit Transfers to exit page to (Windows 95/98/2000 or NT) for
permit Exiting module or instructions on changing volume of wave
return to Main Menu page files.
3. Pages of Design for Assembly education
Shows “popup” window module should fill about 2/3 of monitor
Text in lower right of page with screen. Size of presentation window can
text of audio for that page. be adjusted. Refer to your operating
systems manual (Windows 95/98/2000
Returns to Chapter or NT) for instructions on changing
Index Index Page for selection monitor settings.
of a specific page 4. Pop up windows are closed by clicking
on X in top right corner.
Four additional operational buttons that appear 5. If content, video and text chapter files
intermittently when the audio finishes are the remain on CD rather than loaded on hard
“Replay”, “Click Here”, “Return” and “Main drive transfer time of hyperlinks (special
Menu” buttons. buttons) may slow down depending on
speed of computer. Click once to
Replay Replays page from the activate hyperlink and apply patience!
beginning with audio and Hour Glass icon will appear indicating
all slide animation transfer is underway,

Introduction - 10 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004
Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 1

Chapter 1
Why is DFA Important

Screen Titles
Importance of Manufacturing
Manufacturing Environment
Traditional Approach
Material and Information Flow
Typical Product Cycle Cost
Design Process Requirements
Manufacturing Opportunity
Examples of DFA in Toys
DFA’s Basic Tenets
Review Exercise
Offline Exercise

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 1

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 1

1. Title Page 2. Page Index

In this introduction, the stage will be set for Shown below is a list of all the pages in
a study of Design for Assembly or DFA for Chapter 1 by title. Each is hyperlinked to
short. The topics covered will include the its specific page. It is recommended that
importance of manufacturing to our the reader first proceed through all the
nation’s well being, the market pages sequentially. Any specific page can
environment in which manufacturing finds then be revisited by clicking on the title.
itself today, the traditional and outmoded
approach to product design, the real
complexity of the of the product life cycle,
typical product cycle cost and its impact on
the design phase and finally the
opportunity and requirements of product
design today.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 1

3. Importance of Manufacturing 4. Manufacturing Environment

When our young nation was in its fortieth The environment that manufacturing
year of its independence Thomas functions in today is highly demanding.
Jefferson wrote in a letter to his friend International competition continues to grow
Benjamin Austin the following statement: around the globe. More sophisticated
To be independent for the comforts of life consumers and customers demand the
we must fabricate them for ourselves latest in technology and innovation. There
Manufacturers are now as necessary to is a greater demand for customized
our independence as to our comfort. products to suit individual needs. Henry
That statement, made over 180 years ago, Ford once succeeded by offering the public
is just as valid to day, if not more so. Both a car in any color as long as it was black.
our way of life and our country’s economic That won’t do today. Firms like Gateway
well being are just as dependent today on build computers to individual personal
our ability to quickly, efficiently and order. Increasing domestic labor costs
productively manufacture quality products continue to create productivity
that not only provide for our needs but are improvement pressures. One cannot
also competitive on the world market. We compete successfully without a quality
must therefore continue to advance and product. The automotive industry learned
improve our ability to design and this lesson but at a high cost. Other
manufacture quality goods industries like basic steel never got the
message and disappeared. Changes
brought about by demographic changes in
the age and taste of consumers must be
met. There is also a shortage of required
technical talent in the work force. All of
these factors demand the most advanced
product development and manufacturing
process possible.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 1

5. Traditional Approach 6. Material and Information Flow

The traditional and outmoded approach to To better appreciate the complexity of just
product realization consisted of design and the product creation portion of the total life
manufacturing functions that worked in too cycle consider the diagram depicting
great of isolation. The design team schematically how material and information
created a product description that met flows through the process. As materials
functional requirements and then threw the flow horizontally through the production
plans over the wall to manufacturing to process each of its major functions,
produce. Manufacturing would take one (buying, processing, assembly and selling)
look at the plans and declare that the first must interchange information with all the
thing they would need to do was redesign design, planning and management
the product so that it could be made. In functions on a continuous and integrated
times before the environment described on basis. There is no way that this required
the previous page that could and did work vertical and horizontal matrix of interaction
but it can’t and won’t today. The process can operate successfully with some
must be integrated and the design must function in isolation. The total process
meet all the need of the total product life must all take place as concurrently as
cycle from day one: that is from production possible to meet the productivity, cycle
to sales, maintenance, environmental time, and competition of today’s market
impact, consumption and finally disposal. place. Note too that all the external
economic, consumer and other market
factors that impact and drive the decisions
to activate this process are not even
accounted for in this simple representation.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 1

7. Typical Product Cycle Cost 8. Design Process Requirements

This graph represents a typical distribution It thus becomes clear that design must not
of product cycle cost. Those involved in only answer the question of achieving the
design may not generally appreciate that function of the product but also such
theirs is usually the most expensive part of questions as: what will the components be
the total product cost. Since this is where made of? Will the components be made or
the greatest investment is being made and purchase. The classic build versus buy
it takes place very early in the cycle it also option. And how will the product be
represents that portion of the process assembled or put together?
where the greatest impact can be made on
the outcome of the venture. That is, the
better the design then the lower the cost,
the greater the productivity, the higher the
quality, the better the acceptance, sales
and operation of the final product. Hence
the design phase, properly executed, is the
key and critical element to successful and
competitive manufacturing.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 1

9. Manufacturing Opportunity 10. Examples of DFA in Toys

The options and opportunities that become DFA is not a new idea. Its concepts of
available in the product design phase to components that easily fasten together
improve manufacturing productivity have with minimum skill, effort and tools have
been recognized by many. The question been employed in construction toys for
then becomes how best to take advantage many years. Take a minute or two to think
of these opportunities. This in turn raises of three that you are familiar with and then
the question - what aspect of the design click on the buttons to compare your
process would it be of value to learn more selections with three of my favorites.
about and perform better. One area that
has not received much attention in the past Button 1
is that of assembly. That is, how should a Lego is my number one all time choice of a
product be designed so that the process of construction toy demonstrating good
putting it together integrates effectively principles of design for assembly. Click on
with all its fabrication, operational, service the photo button below to see some
and other market needs. This area of examples.
knowledge is referred to as DFA or Design
for Assembly. It be will covered in the Lego photo
subsequent chapters of this book. The picture on the left shows a number of
classical Lego component blocks. Note in
particular the design of the studs on the
top surface that lightly press fit into the
circular receptacles on the bottom surface
to hold the parts together with friction. No
separate fasteners are required and
assembly skills are simple. The picture on
the right shows an example assembly
constructed with a number of block

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 1

11. Examples of DFA in Toys (continued…) 12. DFA’s Basic Tenets

Button 2 Lets try another little exercise. Using either my

My second choice used to be called tinker toy favorites, yours or a combination of both think
when I was a youngster but now goes under the of four objectives these toys achieve as related
name of Fiddlestix. Its an oldie but a goodie. to ease of assembly that accommodates to a
Click on the photo button to see some examples child’s abilities and motor skills. After you have
of the modern version. developed your list click on the buttons below
sequentially to see how well we agree.
The left pictures shows a variety of the
My choices eliminate the need for separate
components. The toy is assembled by inserting
the ends of the split rods into the holes on the
fasteners, how about yours? One of the
joint elements that have the shape of disks, reasons that the erector set doesn’t make the
square and spheres . The photo on the right is an top ten in this list is because of its need for nuts
example of a simple assembly created with these and bolts to hold the pieces together. That
components. took too much patience and skill.

Button 3 Standardized components mean fewer initial

A third choice is what is called Lincoln Logs but is choices and greater final flexibility. I have seen
also known under the name of Pioneer Building some very impressive models of the statue of
set. It is another construction toy that has stood Liberty, the White House and the Titanic made
the test of time. It was created in 1916. Click on from standard Lego components – a lot of
the photo button to view examples. them!

Lincoln Logs Again Lego takes the prize on components that

The photo on the left shows samples of the easily fit and snap together, simple enough for
building set major parts. They are notched even a young child can quickly and skillfully
circular rods simulating how real logs were learn how to assemble them. A characteristic
notched to build the walls of a early log cabin. In
also possessed incidentally by tinker toy and
this instance gravity is what holds the structure
Lincoln logs.
together. The photo on the right shows the type
of play structure that can be created with these
components even to putting a roof on the top. A fourth objective is to reduce assembly time
When you complete with this example close the and skills. Two very important factors in
pop up window and go on to the next page. increasing productivity and product quality in

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 1

13. Review Exercise 14. Offline Exercise

At the end of each chapter one or more Each chapter includes an offline exercise
review exercises are provided to assist the that will require the reader to undertake an
reader in checking their comprehension of additional task that involves application of
the material presented. In this exercise the some aspect of the material covered in the
reader types in an appropriate response in chapter. This first offline exercise deals
a blank following the completion of the with the idea of the application of DFA in
audio. Press the tab key after entering a toys and recognizing its characteristics.
response to receive an immediate First, make a trip to a local toy store and
feedback. If a negative feedback is review the various construction or put
obtained enter another response. A together types of toys available. Select
double click on the tab key following a one for your exercise that you feel makes
feedback will move the cursor to another good use of common sense DFA
blank space. If you wish to review the principles. It must be different from any
material being requested simply click on already discussed. Next, prepare a report
the hot word in the question to pop up the that describes the toy, identifies and lists
relevant page in the chapter. When it’s ease of assembly characteristics, and
finished with all the blanks go on to the tells how they are incorporated. Use
next page. photos and /or drawings to illustrate these
characteristics. Once you understand the
exercise click on the main menu button to
go on to another chapter or exit the

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 1

Why is DFA Important - 20 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004
Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 2

Chapter 2
Assembly Definition

Screen Titles
Assembly Purpose
Assembly Functions
Assembly Process Tree
Assembly Process Demo
Assembly Objects
Example – Assembly objects
Part Sequence Diagram
Reasons for Assembly
Valve Assembly
Reasons for Separate Parts
Four Part Spindle Components
Locktite Addition
Gasket Insertion
Screw Insertion and Adjustment
Assembly Sequence Diagram
Review Exercise – 1
Review Exercise – 2
Off Line Exercise

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 2

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 2

1. Title Page 2. Page Index

Chapter 2 looks in detail at the definition of Shown below is a list of all the pages in
assembly and its role in the creation of a Chapter 2 by title. Each is hyperlinked to
product. Topics covered include the its specific page. It is recommended that
purpose of assembly, the functions of the reader first proceed through all the
assembly, characterization of assembly pages sequentially. Any specific page can
objects, parts sequencing in product then be revisited by clicking on the title.
assembly, the need for separate parts and
a detailed analysis of the assembly of a
four part spindle subassembly. Examples,
exercises and a reader’s project are

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 2

3. Assembly Purpose 4. Assembly Functions

How products get put together is not The assembly process can be
something that consumers thinks about characterized by three generic functions.
very much irrespective of the complexity of The first is the “Handling” function. This
the product. They only come face to face refers to the activity and tasks required to
with the task if they purchase a product bring two or more parts into a particular
that is accompanied with the statement spatial relationship with one another. The
“some assembly required”. On the other second function is the “joining or fastening”
hand the product designer must have a (composing) of these parts to ensure their
thorough and fundamental understanding continued relationship to one another
of the assembly process, it purpose, what achieved by the handling function against
it consists of, how it takes place, what outside effects. The third function is
impacts its complexity and how it is “checking” which is to determine that the
interrelated to the functional design of the first two functions have been carried out
product. Lets begin with the purpose of properly. When these three functions have
assembly. It can be simple and accurately been carried out it can be said that
stated that the main function of assembly assembly has taken place.
is to join or fasten together components,
materials and subassemblies into complex
products. This process of joining or
fastening together is often referred to as
composing. Sounds simple enough but let
proceed further.

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5. Handling 6. Composing

The “handling” function can be further Composing is that part of the assembly
broken down in to three generic sub- process in which mated parts are joined or
functions which ensures its completion. fastened together. This function is
The first of these is storing. This simply subdivided into “means” and
refers to the fact that parts must be made “mechanisms”. “Means” refers to the
available in some convenient fashion. application of such properties and
They might simple be provided in a box, or characteristics as force, form, and material
more sophisticatedly in a dispensing whereas “mechanism” refers to how the
magazine. Other examples might be in “Means” are achieved. If two parts are
hoppers or racks or on pallets. The held together by a nut and bolt the
second generic function in handling is mechanism is “joining” and the “means” is
“transporting”. This refers to the fact that the force required to overcome the friction
from the store the part moved to where it between the mated parts. If two parts are
will mate with another part. In being held together by welding the “mechanism”
moved it should be recognized that this is a change of phase ( molten metal to
might require separation from other parts solid) and the means is material (the
and proper orientation of the part that welding rod). If gas is placed in a tank the
might include turning and or rotating to “mechanism” is “filling” and the means is
prepare it for mating. The third function of “form”, that is, the gas is held in place by
“handling” is the “positioning” of the part. the shape of the tank. Think up some
This refers to establishing it proper location additional examples on your own where an
and alignment with its mate in preparation adhesive might be used or two parts are
for the next part of the process which is held together by a shrink fit interference.

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7. Checking 8. Assembly Process Tree

Recall that the checking function of The multiple branches and sub branches
assembly refers to determining if the of this tree diagram clearly illustrate that
handling and composing functions have assembly is a complex well defined
been properly carried out. This function process. Assembly is significantly more
consists of examining three criteria. The involved in what it encompasses and
first is called “presence’ and refers to requires to be accomplished than what
determining if the part is in place. The might first meet the eye in simply joining
second is called “position” and asks the two parts together with a simple fastener.
question “is the alignment of the part And there is still more to come to
correct?”. The third criteria is the “quality completely understand the process and to
of the composition”. This asks the incorporate that understanding in the
question “can the imposed external effects design phase of a products life cycle.
be withstood?”. If all criteria are met the
assembly process is completed. To see
how this all fits together take a few minutes
now and draw a simple tree diagram of the
assembly process as it has been defined in
terms of the required functions and sub-
functions, tasks and activities. When you
finish your tree diagram compare it with the
one on the next page.

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9. Assembly Process Demo 9. Assembly Process Demo (continued…)

A simple physical example of the assembly The next step is to position them together
process is demonstrated by the stapling both face up and orient their edges so they
together of copies of a two-page are properly aligned.
document. In the first step the two pages
are transported and brought into proximity
with one another from where they are

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9. Assembly Process Demo (continued…) 9. Assembly Process Demo (continued…)

The next step is to position the corner to Fastening of the pages or composing the
be fastened in the opening of the stapler assembly is achieved by applying sufficient
with the proper orientation. force to the stapler to insert and clinch the

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9. Assembly Process Demo (continued…) 9. Assembly Process Demo (continued…)

Final the finished product is checked to Observing the quality of the staple clinch
determine if the staple is in the proper completes the checking function. The
location. entire process is then repeated for the
additional number of copies required.

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10. Assembly Objects 11. Example – Assembly objects

Six distinct categories are used to classify In this exploded and complete diagram of a
the parts that go into a product. They are simple spherical joint the individual parts
referred to as assembly objects. The are labeled as to the type of assembly
simplest is a machine part. Its object they are. The two spacer rings and
characteristics are that it is an individual retaining clips as well as the spherical ball
part composed of single material. A itself are labeled components. They could
subassembly is an assembled collection of have just as well be called machine parts
machine parts which is only some portion since they are made of a single material.
of the finished product. The third category In a similar way the assembled joint could
of object is a building block. This is a also be called a subassembly as well as a
subassembly or product that meets some building block. This illustrates that there
specific product functional requirement or can be an overlap in the use and
specification. An example might be the application of the different assembly object
starter for an automotive engine. A classifications.
component is a generic classification that
can be used interchangeably for a machine
part, subassembly or building block. The
fifth category of object is a base
component. It is generally a larger
component onto which other components
or subassemblies are assembled. The
final category is formless materials. These
are flexible and nonsolid materials such as
glue, paint, liquids, etc.

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12. Part Sequence Diagram 13. Reasons for Assembly

A very useful tool in defining the assembly If a product consists of more than one part
for a specific product is the part sequence then assembly is required. Hence the
diagram. It graphically illustrates the order reasons for assembly are that there are
in which the parts are brought together to multiple parts in a product, but why do
first form subassemblies that when brought separate parts have to exist. One of seven
together with other parts, components and reasons usually will explain the need. The
subassemblies eventually forms the final first is movement. If two parts need to
product. As illustrated in the diagram by move relative to one another then they
the yellow block one of the early must be separate. If the parts need to be
subassemblies might well become the made of different material such as two
base component on which every additional conductors separated by an insulator then
component is assembled. The value of three separate parts are required to meet
this diagram is that it provides a visual this need. Production considerations that
means of identifying each part and could reduce cost and simplify operation
component, when it enters the assembly may dictate the need for separate parts.
process, and what subassemblies are The fact that a part might wear out or a
important in the building of the final component might need to be replaced
product. The diagram shown is generic. could justify its separate existence. Two
In its application to a real process all parts mating parts may need to be separate
and subassemblies are given specific because they perform different functions
names for easy of identification. relative to one another. The part may be
called upon to perform a special function
than can only be accomplished by it being
separate. Finally, the aesthetics of the
design might be of enough importance to
dictate separate parts.

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14. Valve Assembly 15. Reasons for Separate Parts

The cut away valve assembly shown in the Click sequentially on the buttons to check
diagram will be used to determine why the your selection of the reason for separate
numbered parts need to be separate parts against my choices. I hope we both
based on the reasons listed on the agree.
previous chart. This valve functions by
seating a rubber semi spherical stopper 1) The parts of the clevis must be
into a steel seat. The stopper is supported separate to provide for movement of the
by a metal ring held in place by a small lever when the valve moves up and down.
drift pin. The valve main stem can be
moved vertically by a clevis and lever 2) The spherical stopper is made of
arrangement at its top. The main valve rubber to provide a leak proof seal against
stem is protected by a cylinder attached to the seat. A gasket of flexible material is
the valve base. Using this description and used to seal the valve assembly from the
the diagram select reasons for parts to be tank. Hence material differentiation
separate from the previous page that apply requires these parts to be separate.
to the five numbered components and
areas on the diagram. When you have 3) The cylinder and seat base are
finished go on the next page to check your made separate and then welded together
selections. to reduce the cost of making them as one
part by machining a large billet.

4) Separate fasteners are used to

attach the valve assembly to the tank for
ease of removal and maintenance.

5) The drift pin needs to support the

ring at only two points whereas the ring
need to support the stopper uniformly
around it circumference not to distort its
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16. Four Part Spindle Components 17. Locktite Addition

We will now analyze in detail the The assembly process will take place on a
automated assembly of a four part product rotary indexing machine with employing
which is really a subassembly of some final four assembly stations. Before the locktite
product. The subassembly product can to added it will be necessary to
consists of a cylindrical spindle body, a separate, orient feed and allocate the
drop of locktite adhesive, a gasket and a spindles that are supplied to the process in
screw. The locktite is placed in the bulk form. Part feeding is accomplished
recessed head of the spindle. A gasket is with a vibratory bowl. A passive orienting
then placed into the recessed head. device is used to properly align the
Finally a screw is inserted vertically and spindles. They are then transported to the
adjusted to a final set height to complete indexing table by a vibrating rail where
the subassembly product. they are allocated one at a time into a
retaining slot. The spindle then moves on
to the next station where the locktite is
added by a dosing nozzle.

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18. Gasket Insertion 19. Screw Insertion and Adjustment

The spindle with locktite is then indexed to At the final station the bulk screws are
the next station for the gasket insertion. separated, fed, oriented and transported
First the bulk gaskets must be separated, using the same techniques of the previous
feed, oriented and transported to an stations. Following the insertion of the
combination gripper and inserter. This is screw by a combination gripper and screw
accomplished by again using a vibratory diver device a gauging spacer is
bowl, a passive position orienter and a introduced to ensure that the screw is
vibratory channel. One gasket at a time is positioned at it final desired height.
picked up by the gripper and inserter
device, moved over the head of the spindle
at that station and inserted into the
recessed head. Before moving on to the
next station a reflected light sensor is used
to check that the gasket is there.

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20. Assembly Sequence Diagram 21. Review Exercise – 1

Even a simple product like the four-part Several interactive exercises are
spindle subassembly described on the presented here to assist the reader review
previous three pages can become very some of the important concepts covered in
involved and contain a large number of this chapter. Each question requires
operations. An assembly sequence flow responses that are typed in from the
diagram can be used to graphically keyboard. When the audio is complete
illustrate this complexity. In the diagram begin by typing a response in the first
below the yellow boxes in the three blank space. Clicking on the tab key will
horizontal parallel tracks depict the storing provide immediate visual feedback. If the
and feeding, orienting, transporting and feedback is negative clear the response
allocating of the three physical parts. The and try again. A double click on the tab
three red blocks in the vertical track key will move the cursor to the next blank.
indicate where the dosing, and insertion of If you need or want help click on the hot
the gasket and the screw take place to word in the question to pop up the relevant
create the three subassemblies on their page in the chapter. When finished click
way to becoming a final product. Note the on the next page button.
two checking steps included, determining
the presence of the gasket and fixing the
final height of the screw. This simple
assembly took seventeen steps to
complete. Is there any doubt now that
assembly as a process must receive
special attention in the design phase of a

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22. Review Exercise – 2 23. Off Line Exercise

In this second review exercise you are to As an off-line exercise to test your
match the items in the left column with one understanding of the contents of this
of the appropriate assembly functions on chapter it is recommended that you
the right. Place the cursor over one of the undertake the following project. First,
items in the left column, hold down the left obtain a household electrical wall
mouse and drag the pencil to the correct receptacle or toggle light switch from your
green dot on the right. Wait until the audio local hardware store.
is completed before trying to do this. If the
match is correct the red arrow will remain
fixed to the dot. If the match is incorrect
the red arrow will disappear and you can
try again. More than one arrow can be
drawn to the same dot. When you have
completed all the matches correctly go on
to the next page by clicking on the page
forward button.

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23. Off Line Exercise (continued…) 23. Off Line Exercise (continued…)

Disassemble the product into all its major On a list, name and number all the parts
separate parts. This may require drilling and indicate what category of assembly
out a rivet or two. object they belong to. Then create a part
sequence diagram that illustrates how the
parts go together to form intermediate
subassemblies before the final product is
completed. Note if there is a base
component and what role it plays in the
process. If you do this successfully you
have a good understanding the definition
of assembly.

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Assembly Definition - 38 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004
Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 3

Chapter 3
Assembly Systems

Screen Titles
System Input / Output
Methods of Assembly
Manual Assembly
Automated Assembly
Flexible Assembly
Choice of Assembly
Assembly Economics
Assembly Line Components
Assembly Line Categories
Indexing Line Factors
Free Transfer Line Factors
Continuous Line Factors
Line configurations
Rotary Indexing Table
Free Transfer Carousel
Continuous Moving Line
System Matrix
Review Exercise – 1
Review Exercise – 2
Off Line Exercise
Chapter Summary

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 3

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1. Title Page 2. Page Index

Chapter 3 is an overview of generic Listed below are all the pages in Chapter 3
assembly systems. It is important to have by title. Each is hyperlinked to its specific
an appreciation of the different type of page. It is recommended that the reader
assembly systems in use to better apply first proceed through all the pages
the principles of design for assembly to be sequentially. Any specific page can then
taken up in chapter 4. Topics covered in be revisited by clicking on the title.
the chapter include assembly methods and
their details, assembly economics,
assembly line components, categories and
configurations and schematic examples of
three typical line layouts and operations.
The development of a matrix of assembly
methods versus line categories is provided
for the reader to complete.

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3. System Input / Output 4. Methods of Assembly

Every assembly system irrespective of its There are really only two basic methods of
layout or operation is subject to inputs and assembly. These are manual assembly
outputs. The inputs consist of the and assembly by machines. Manual
components that go into creating the assembly is carried out by human
product as well as the energy required to operators and is normally done by hand.
carry out the assembly process. The Assembly by machines is generally
outputs are waste from the process and accepted as being made up of two
the product itself. The remainder of this separate categories: so called automated
chapter will deal with the details of the assembly and flexible assembly.
assembly system that is shown here as a Automated assembly is machine assembly
generic process. by special purpose machines designed for
a specific assembly function. It is often
referred to as “hard” automation since it
usually is a one of a kind devise
performing one function. The second
category of machine assembly is designed
flexible automation or “soft” automation.
These machine are programmable and can
perform a variety of functions depending
on their programming and capability.
Assembly robots make up this category.

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5. Manual Assembly 6. Automated Assembly

A number of the important characteristics Flexibility is severely limited by the very

of manual assembly are listed on this nature of the special design hardware that
page. Tools used for manual assembly performs the assembly process. It may not
are usually simple and inexpensive. These permit any significant design change in the
might be hand tools like screwdrivers, product. The cycle time and production
wrenches, pliers or soldering irons as well rate of the process is also dictated by the
as hand held power tools such as electric design of the automated assembly device.
drills or power torquing devices. Downtime However, high speed and accuracy can be
due to the existence of defective parts is achieved by appropriate design of the
almost negligible as the human operator assembly machine itself. These special
serves to screen these out of the process. machines and the auxiliary devices that
The cost per unit of product remains feed them with parts can be quite
essentially constant with production rate. If expensive to both design and build.
more product is required more manual Hence, there is a very high initial up front
operators are hired. Their cost to produce cost that results in the unit cost of
a product effectively stays the same. The assembly to decrease almost linearly with
process is very flexible and adaptable due production rate. Finally, production on
to the intelligence of the human operator these special assembly machines can be
that can be easily trained to handle seriously hampered by defective parts if no
assembly changes in the product. method is employed to screen bad parts
However, the speed and accuracy of the out initially.
process is limited by the physical skills and
ability of the operator as well as the
number of coffee breaks they require in
Monday mornings.

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7. Flexible Assembly 8. Choice of Assembly

Flexible assembly represents a Whether manual, automated or flexible

compromise between the speed and assembly is chosen for putting together a
accuracy of hard automation and the specific product is dependent on a large
simplicity and adaptability of manual number of variables. Four of the more
assembly. It possesses a greater degree important factors include the unit cost of
of adaptability since it can be programmed the assembly process, the production rate
to perform different assembly functions. required to meet market demands, the
This programmable capability permits availability of appropriate skilled labor and
multiple assembly functions to be the life of the product over which the
performed at a given work station as assembly system can be amortized. This
compared to hard automation. Studies of will be examined in more detail by
the economics of robotic assembly indicate comparing the economics of unit cost as a
that its cost is between manual and hard function of annual production rate for the
automation on a unit cost basis. One of three method of assembly described.
the reasons for this is that the initial design
and development cost are spread out over
the number of robotic machines built for
general-purpose applications. Finally,
robotic arms and work head can in general
be modified to accommodate given needs
with significantly less cost than hard

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9. Assembly Economics 10. Assembly Line Components

From the characteristics described for manual Every assembly system requires three
assembly recall that the unit cost is effectively basic components to function properly.
constant with production rate since the rate is The first is a transfer devise or system that
increased by hiring more operators but the unit moves parts or assemblies from one
cost of assembly stays the same. This is
workstation to the next. Different common
represented on the plot of unit cost versus
annual production rate by the yellow horizontal types of transfers systems will be
line. In contrast the unit cost of hard discussed later. Second, the assembly
automated assembly effectively decreases system requires parts feeders that deliver
linearly with production rate and can be parts, components or sub assemblies to
represented by the sloping green line. Where the workstation for the operator, robot or
these two lines intersect represents the point work head. These can vary from complex
where it is desirable to switch assembly vibratory bowl feeders to simple boxes or
methods to insure the lowest unit cost as a magazines that hold the parts. Finally, the
function of annual production rate. To the left assembly system requires an assembly
of the intersection manual assembly should be
station at which either the manual, robotic
used whereas to the right of the intersection
hard automation provides a lower unit cost. or hard automation assembly operation is
Introducing robotic assembly is represented by performed.
the red curve. Its initial cost is less than hard
automation but studies show that it tails off with
production rate as illustrated. Considering all
three methods there are now two intersection
points where the method should be changed to
provide the lowest unit cost. That is, for low
annual production rates manual assembly is
generally the best choice. As the production
rate increases robotic assembly provides a
lowest unit cost. For high annual production
rates hard automation is the best selection.

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11. Assembly Line Categories 12. Indexing Line Factors

Generally one of three generic assembly line In the discussions of line factors that
categories is employed in creating an assembly follows on the next three pages positive
system. The first is called an indexing line. It factors are highlighted by a red check
is characterized by having all the products, in while negative factors will be marked with
their various states of assembly, move at the
a red check that has been crossed out.
same time to the work head at next fixed
station in the line. That is, the product moves Now an indexing line is generally the most
in a synchronized fashion through out all compact of all three line types. It is
stations in the assembly system. It stops at particularly good for the automated
each station while the assembly function is assembly of small parts that can be
performed. The second type of line is called a mechanically fed to the work heads. It can
free transfer line. It is characterized by having also be designed to achieve high
the product move on independent pallets or production rates with hard automation
holders as needed by the work station. If a hardware. Some of its disadvantages
pallet leaves one work-station and the next include its rate of production being dictated
work-station is still occupied the pallet is held in
by the slowest operation in the process
a buffer until the station becomes available.
This system is obviously not synchronized. since all movement is synchronized. It is
Work-stations accept the next job from the also very susceptible to poor production or
buffer in front of them when they become breakdowns due to defective parts if no
available to carry out their assembly function. screening devices are employed. It also
The third type of generic assembly line is a requires station design and operation that
continuous line. In this arrangement the locks all assembly operations together so
product moves along continuously without they take place at the same time.
stopping. This of course requires the manual
operator or automated work head to move
along with the product as it performs it
assembly function. All three line categories
have advantages and disadvantages that will
be discussed next.

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13. Free Transfer Line Factors 14. Continuous Line Factors

Free transfer lines can be used with all An assembly line that moves the product
three methods of assembly. It is along continuously at a constant rate is
characterized by individual product both easier to design and fabricate. There
movement on pallets or in some form of is no stop and go movement of the
holder. This independent movement tends product. This significantly simplifies its
to average out variations in the line. The control. Both of these factors provide for
inclusion of buffers permits the individual lower initial cost compared to the other
stations to operate at different speeds type of lines. The continuous line is better
independent of each other. This type of suited for larger products. The best
line is inherently safer for the operators example of this is the moving assembly
and handles the effect of defective parts line used to assemble automobiles. This
more easily since a single station can be was one of Henry Ford’s biggest
shut down while the remainder of the line contribution to modern manufacturing.
operates until all buffers are filled. The However, the pacing of the product is rigid
independence of the stations permits as it moves along at the same rate as all
greater modularity in the automation and other products on the line. It also requires
provides the opportunity for optional the operator or assembly machine to move
stations to be included. This allows along with the product as the assembly
different models of the same product to be function is performed. An important
made on the same line. The overall cost is disadvantage of a continuous line is that
generally higher than other lines because any breakdown will shut down the entire
of the transfer hardware requirements, line. Individual operator performance
buffers and total line programming control affects the overall production and quality of
needs. The production rates are also every product. An old story told in regard to
generally lower than an indexing line this last item is don’t buy a car built early
Monday morning or late Friday afternoon.

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15. Line configurations 16. Rotary Indexing Table

There are three basic line configurations or Schematic representations of three

geometry which are the most popular assembly systems displaying examples of
today. These are the rotary, carousel and different categories and configurations of
in-line. The rotary is as the word implies. lines are illustrated on the next three pages
The product moves in a circular path using common symbols for the work
through a number of fixed work stations stations and the product. The first
normally coming on to and leaving the line example is that of a rotary indexing table.
at or near the same point or work station. The model system shown in plan view
The second type is called a carousel and is below consists of an indexing table, in blue
characterized by two parallel flow paths on cross hatch that rotates a quarter of a turn
which the product moves in opposite on each index movement. There are four
direction and is switched from one path to fixed work stations, represented by the
the other by crossover transfer devices. solid green circles equally space around
Again the product normally enters and the circumference of the table. The
leaves the line at or near the same point. product is designated by small red circles.
This geometric arrangement provides the It goes through four stages of assembly as
greatest flexible for the size and indicated by the numbers 1-4. Each time
arrangement of the work stations. The in- the table rotates the product proceeds on
line configuration, which is effectively a to the next station where the next
straight path through the required assembly function is produced. All work
workstations, usually takes up more space stations are synchronized to operate at the
than the previous two. The product on an same time when the product arrives.
in-line system begins at one end and Following the assembly activity the product
proceeds through each of the work- in indexed to the next required operation.
stations until it is completed at the other
end of the line. An automotive final
assembly line is probably the best example
of this geometric line configuration.

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17. Free Transfer Carousel 18. Continuous Moving Line

The schematic model in plan view shown This final schematic example is of a
here is a free transfer carousel assembly continuous moving line assembly system.
system. Again the transfer line is in blue The same symbols are used to depict the
cross hatch, the fixed work stations are transfer line, the work stations and the
green circles and the smaller red circles product. This can be the simplest of all
represent the product. Added elements in systems. Since the product moves
this system are the buffers, represented by continuously along the line it is recognized
yellow rectangles, located between each that the worker or assembly machine at a
work station. The movement of the specific work station must move along with
product around this line is not the product as the assembly function is
synchronized. It is dictated by the performed. This is represented by the
availability of a workstation to accept it and green dotted extensions to the work station
the size of the buffer between stations. It symbols. Again the limitations of the
is easily seen that control of this type of graphical animation of the lines operation
system is highly complex. In the example depicts a synchronized stop and go motion
shown all buffers can only accept two which is not true of a real system on which
products. Note that in the animation of the the product moves continuously.
operation of the line some stations remain
temporarily open and some buffers fill up
as the product makes it way through the
system. Unfortunately the animation gives
the impression of synchronized flow of the
product but this is only a graphical
limitation of the model but not of a real

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19. System Matrix 19. System Matrix (continued…)

To solidify what the reader has learned in this System Matrix – Manual Free Transfer
quick overview of assembly systems an
exercise is now presented for completion by the Manual assembly on a free transfer line works
viewer. The exercise is to establish a matrix of well since buffers can be included that allow the
possible assembly systems matching assembly operators to work at their own speed and
methods with system types. This will consist of account for delays that may occur due to
a three by three matrix array as shown below. defective parts or other irregularities.
The reader is to decide which combinations of
assembly method and system type can be put System Matrix - Manual Continuous
together by placing a yes or no in each square
of the matrix as appropriate on the readers work Manual assembly on a continuously moving
sheet. After you have completed the entire assembly line is a very appropriate combination
matrix click on the button in any of the nine and is used particularly for large products like
squares of the matrix to check your answer. automobiles or motorized farm equipment. The
When the button is clicked and held down either operator simply moves with the product on the
a yes or no will appear. When you release the line as the assembly function is performed.
button an audio explanation of that choice will
be provided. You can click the buttons in any System Matrix – Automated Indexing
sequence you desire, however a button to
move on to the last page of this chapter will only This is an ideal combination particularly for
appear after the ninth button in the matrix is small products or assemblies on a rotary
clicked. indexing table with parts fed automatically to the
automated assembly heads at each station.
System Matrix – Manual Indexing Such a system can achieve high production
Manual assembly on an indexing line simply will
not work well. It requires integrated sequencing System Matrix – Automated Free Transfer
and timing of the assembly function that would
be difficult for a human operator to achieve and This combination of assembly method and
maintain with any real degree of consistency. product transfer line can be used for a large
range of product sizes. The line must be
equipped with appropriate buffers between
stations to balance the product flow and
production rate.

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19. System Matrix (continued…) 19. System Matrix (continued…)

System Matrix – Automated Continuous System Matrix – Flexible Continuous

Automated work-stations on a continuous line is Although this combination of assembly device

a combination not normally used. It would and transfer system can be made to work
require a moving work-station that would have together it is not used very often. It requires the
to be synchronized to move along with the flexible robotic device to be programmed to
product. This is not only physically difficult it synchronize the movement of its working head
represents an additional cost that is hard to with the line in addition to the assembly function
justify. that it must perform.

System Matrix – Flexible Indexing

A computer controlled flexible robotic work head

can be easily combined with an indexing
product transfer system. Since the work head is
flexible it can also serve as either part of or the
entire part feeding system in addition to being
the assembly device.

System Matrix – Flexible Free Transfer

This is the combination of assembly device and

transfer system that is used most frequently with
robotic work heads. Advantage can be taken of
the programmable capabilities of both the
robotic device and the free transfer system to
achieve a high degree of flexibility permitting
product variability on the same line.

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20. Review Exercise – 1 21. Review Exercise – 2

This review exercise covers some of the In review exercise two you are to match
important facts covered on assembly the characteristics in the left column with
systems. It is completed like the review one of the appropriate assembly methods
exercise in chapter 1. The reader types in on the right. Place the cursor over one of
an appropriate response in a blank when the items in the left column, hold down the
the audio finishes. Clicking the tab key will left mouse and drag the pencil to the
give an immediate feedback. If a negative correct green dot on the right. Wait until
feedback is provided enter another the audio is completed before trying to do
response. A double click on the tab key this. If the match is correct the red arrow
will move the cursor to another blank. If will remain fixed to the green dot. If the
you need help with the answers click on match is incorrect the red arrow will
the hot word in the question and the disappear and you can try again. More
relevant page will pop up. When finished than one arrow can be drawn to the same
with all the blanks go on to the next page. dot. When you have completed all the
matches correctly go on to the next page
by clicking on the page forward button.

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22. Off Line Exercise 23. Chapter Summary

In this off line exercise you will apply what This chapter has provided the reader with
you have learned about assembly systems an quick overview of generic assembly
by proposing a system for a product you system and their characteristics. The
choose. Look around at some of the subject is one that contains a great deal
simpler everyday household or office more detail and information than can be
products that you use. Select one that provided here. However, what the viewer
does not have too many individual parts should carry away from this chapter is an
and is relatively easy to put together or appreciation of the different methods of
take apart. With what you have learned in assembly, something about their
this chapter and using engineering economics, their required assembly
common sense propose an assembly components, assembly line categories and
system for putting this product together line configurations. With this information in
assuming some appropriate production hand we are ready to proceed to chapter 4
rate. Be sure to take into account all the to take up the subject of the principles of
parts in your product and how they go design for assembly. Click on the menu
together. In a brief report describe the button to return to the main menu and
system you propose and justify why you select chapter 4 to continue.
have selected it. Your system can be a
combination of different kinds of systems if
that is what your product requires.

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Chapter 4
Principles of DFA-Product Design

Screen Titles

DFA Subdivisions Generic Snap Fastener

Guideline / Product Design Some Snap Applications
Principles of Product Design Minimize Parts
Suitable Base Minimize Parts Example 1
Layered Assembly Minimize Parts Example 2
Layered and Stacked Examples Minimize Parts Example 3
Modular and Multifunctional Parts Minimize Parts Example 4
Accommodation for Errors Minimize Parts Example 5
Pin in Hole Problem Minimize Parts Example 6
Alignment Example 1 Flexible Items
Alignment Example 2 Flexible Items Example
Alignment Example 3 Criteria – Part Redundancy
Alignment Example 4 Review Exercise – 1
Simplify and Reduce Fasteners Review Exercise – 2
Fastener Reduction Example Off Line Exercise

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1. Title Page 2. Page Index

Chapter 4 covers the general principles of Listed below are all the text pages in
design for assembly in detail. It is the Chapter 4 by title. Examples that follow
creative application of these principles that the text pages are not included to simplify
lead to product designs that cost less to the listing. If examples follow a text page
produce and are easier to assemble while the listing is identified by an arrow in a
still satisfying the product’s operational yellow disk. Each text page is hyperlinked
requirements. The principles are to its specific location in the chapter. It is
presented in generic form with specific recommended that the reader first proceed
examples to demonstrate their application. through all pages in the chapter
The presentation of the principles is sequentially. Any specific text page can
subdivided into two categories. The first then be revisited by clicking on the title.
category presents general guidelines for
product design for ease of assembly. The
second is the design of parts for feeding
and orienting. This second category is
covered in Chapter 5. It receives special
attention since it is such an important part
of any assembly process.

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3. DFA Subdivisions 4. Guideline / Product Design

As indicated in the introduction to Chapter To follow up on the topics of the previous

4 the general principles of design for page it is worthwhile repeating a statement
assembly are subdivided into two that Andreason, in his classic text “Design
categories. The first to be considered will for Assembly”, makes about the subject.
be the general guidelines for product “Design the product so that it is easy to
design for ease of assembly. These are assemble manually – consequently it is
the generic rules that creatively applied in highly probable that it will be easily
the early stages of design will help assembled automatically.” Note however,
optimize the product’s design in terms of there are no guarantees implied. A similar
manufacturing, assembly, operation, and statement by someone I no longer recall
maintenance. The second category deals goes something like this “If a product can
with guidelines for the design of parts for be manually assembled by a blindfolded
feeding and orienting and will be covered operator wearing gloves with one hand tied
in Chapter 5. Whether machine or manual behind their back then it can probably be
assembly is employed feeding and assembled robotically.” The emphasis is
orienting of individual parts represents a clear, keep it simple. Now, lets look at the
very significant part of the total effort. principles that will achieve the end desired.
Recall the activity flow chart for the four-
part spindle subassembly discussed at the
end of Chapter 1.

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5. Principles of Product Design 6. Suitable Base

There are seven general principles for DFA that We will now consider a number of these
will be stressed in Chapter 4 and the remainder of principles in detail and look at some
this module. The first is to build the assembly on appropriate examples. The first principle dealt
a suitable base. The idea is to start with a base with building the product on a suitable base.
onto which you can simply continue to add parts This can be further subdivided into three
and subassemblies until the product is completed. related guidelines. The first is that the base
An example is an automobile that begins with the should be oriented in a horizontal plane
uni-body to which everything else is attached until
whenever possible. In the automobile example
the car rolls off the end of the assembly line under
used on the previous page the uni-body is
its own power. The second principle is to layer or
stack the assembly whenever possible. This
oriented horizontally in the position it will have
adds the components in a sequential fashion that when the car is finished. It wouldn’t make any
eliminates the need to adjust or re-handle any sense to do it any other way. The second
component previously inserted. The third guideline is that either the base itself should
principle is to use modular or multifunctional provide for a stable position and support for the
parts. Obviously, parts that can perform several assembly process to follow or some fixture
functions or are sufficiently modular to be used in must be designed to provide this positioning
other models of the product eliminates the need and stability for the base. Consider the
for extra parts and reduces cost. The fourth assembly of a bicycle as an example. The
principle deals with accommodating for errors and central frame of a bicycle obviously has to be
uncertainties. This is another way of saying that supported and clamped in some type of fixture
one must be aware of problems created by close to make it accessible and firm for the addition
tolerances, cumulative tolerance errors and of the remaining components that create the
alignment needs of the assembly process. The finished product. The third guideline deals with
next principle has to do with eliminating the design of the base to include guide aids
unnecessary fasteners and simplifying those that that will assist in the location of the parts to be
are required. Fasteners often represent a added to it. These aids can take on many
significant percentage of the number of parts in a
forms, locating pins, slots, tabs, recesses and
product and a very fertile area for improving the
inserts are only a few examples.
assembleability of a product. The sixth principle
suggested that flexible items be limited. These
are always harder to both handle and feed
whether it is being done manually or by machine.
Finally, it is always desirable to minimize the
number of parts in a product design. This
reduces manufacturing cost as well as assembly
time and improves the quality of the product’s
operation and maintenance.
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7. Layered Assembly 8. Layered and Stacked Examples

With a suitable base designed consider The example on the left is a schematic
next how the parts will be added to it. First representation of a simple electronic
the base must be placed or held in a product consisting of a circuit board, a
suitable fixture if it is unable to stand alone. control unit, a container bottom and cover.
Next it is best if the parts can be layered or Several of the principles of DFA discussed
stacked sequentially to eliminate having to are represented here. First the container
re-handle anything that has already been bottom is also the base on which the
inserted. Third, always assemble from product will be built. It is oriented in a
above when possible. This can sometimes horizontal plane. The control unit has
be achieved by dividing the product into already been attached to the circuit board
suitable subassemblies. Assembly from in a separate process so that it can be
the side or bottom is always more difficult layered as a subassembly onto the base
and sometimes even impossible. To avoid from above. The product is completed by
these conditions it may sometimes be placing the cover on the unit also from
necessary to rotate the fixture holding the above. The base has snaps cast into it to
base to permit assembly from above. both locate and hold the control unit. This
Design parts and components that can be eliminates separate fasteners. In a similar
both easily inserted and removed or fashion the cover snaps onto the bottom,
disassembled from the product. Slip fits again eliminating separate fasteners. The
that require no force to accomplish example on the right demonstrates a
insertion are the best. If at all possible stacked assembly with easy insertion and
design the parts so that they don’t need to disassembly. A flexible drive belt has been
be regripped, reoriented or rotated once eliminated by the use of gears. Actually,
they have been picked up. Fasteners are the shafts will be horizontal in the final
always more easily inserted if their product, which is a portion of a printer. For
orientation is vertical and the movement is the sake of assembly from above, so that
down. The basis for the majority of these gravity can help, the entire unit has been
guidelines is simply the recognition that it rotated 90 degrees from it final orientation
is easier to let gravity help in the assembly to provide for vertical down insertion with
process rather than working against it. all the parts slipping together.
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9. Modular and Multifunctional Parts 10. Accommodation for Errors

The final product cost will be reduced and There are always practical limits
the assembly process simplified by the use associated with both the specification of
of modular and/or multifunctional parts dimensional tolerances in parts and
whenever possible. One way of achieving those tolerances in
accomplishing this goal is to group manufacturing. Hence, the design must
components into modules for use in similar accommodate to uncertainties in
products in the same family. That is, if it is manufacturing precision and dimensional
possible to use the same subassembly in a part tolerances whether the issue is the
number of different models of the same class of fit between adjoining parts or the
product the resulting savings and overall accumulation of tolerance error when
improvement are obvious. This both several parts fit together. A second very
reduces assembly time and increases the important aspect of this concern is the
quality of the final product. Even greater problem of alignment. A large number of
potential for savings and quality assembly operations deal with the
improvement is achieved if parts can be equivalent of what can be classified as the
designed that are multifunctional. “pin in hole” insertion problem. In this
Reduction in the number of parts in a instance both fit and alignment are critical
design should always be a major objective. concerns impacting the ease and
The fewer the parts the less complex the quickness with which this function can be
process of putting the product together, the performed. To achieve these ends both
easier the maintenance and the more fitting aids and alignment guides are
trouble free the use and operation. employed. Fitting aids consist of features
like chamfers, ramps or lead-ins to help
guide the part into its final assembled
position. Orientation guides such as the
examples listed are used to align the part
in the proper position before the
composing takes place.

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11. “Pin in Hole” Problem 12. Alignment Example 1

This is a graphical representation of the In this example, which is a variation of the

generic pin in hole insertion problem that pin in hole problem, a critical alignment
commonly occurs in a variety of ways in problem is totally eliminated by a simple
product assembly. If the diameter of the change in the original design. In the
pin and hole are machined for a close arrangement on the right compressing the
tolerance fit the location of the pin and its spring with the collar requires that
inclination relative to the centerline of the alignment between the pin, washer and
hole are critical relative to the ease of collar are all maintained at the same time
insertion. With no assistance for guiding while the spring starts to be compressed.
the insertion process can require precise Manually this would take at least two
initial part alignment as illustrated on the hands if not more. This difficult assembly
far right. By simply chamfering the end of process is eliminated by simply making the
the pin as shown on the middle pair the pin a little longer. This permits the washer
insertion process becomes easier even for to rest on the spring before the collar is
the same tolerance between the pin and applied and the collar begins to guide
hole. By chamfering both the pin and hole down the pin before the spring begins to
as on the left the insertion process compress. Note that the end of the pin is
becomes even easier and allows for a chamfered to aid in guiding both the
greater initial misalignment of the pin with washer and collar onto the pin.
the hole. In all three examples the
tolerance of the final fit remains the same.

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13. Alignment Example 2 14. Alignment Example 3

The design on the right requires two critical Another variation of the pin in hole problem
alignments of the pin at the same time for is shown here where a disk with a tight fit
insertion to take place. A process made is to be slipped over the end of a shaft.
even more difficult as the bottom alignment Even with the end of the shaft chamfered
may be hidden from the view of the the alignment of the disk will be critical for
operator. A creative simple solution that the process to proceed with ease. The
eliminates the need for the two alignments design change to the end of the shaft on
to take place at the same time is to shorten the left will result in the assembly taking
the length of the pin with the smaller place both quicker and easier. By
diameter. In this fashion the upper reducing the diameter of the end of the
alignment takes place first and actually shaft slightly below that of the shoulder
becomes a guide for the bottom alignment where the fit is critical the disk can be
to follow even though it may not be visible. slipped on the shaft end easier and the
Again note that the end of the pin is reduced diameter section acts as a guide
chamfered and the transition at the for the disk to be slipped onto the shoulder.
shoulder between the smaller and larger Again chamfers and bevels on the shaft
diameter portions of the pin is beveled to are introduced to further enhance the
make insertion easier. assembly process.

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15. Alignment Example 4 16. Simplify and Reduce Fasteners

Alignment Example 4 is representative of a Fasteners in product design are like “putts” in a

situation in which the design requires golf game. An extra “put” on each hole will
holding close tolerances over a long quickly turns a par golfer into just another
weekend amateur. Similarly an extra
distance. In the design on the right the
unnecessary fastener for each component in a
tolerance between the centers of the holes product quickly turns it from one that is truly
in the bar and the centers of the pins must well designed into one that is more costly,
be tightly held if the fit between the pins complex and harder to put together. Fasteners
and the holes are close. This creates both are obviously required to insure adequate
a manufacturing and assembly problem. composition but the truth is most designers
One way to resolve this problem is to slot overdue it most of the time. Hence, the first
one of the holes in the bar as shown on the and most important rule in DFA is reduce and
right. Then only the width of the slot in the eliminate fasteners where ever possible.
bar needs to be closely held in Replace separate fasteners by integral
components like snaps, tabs, slots, press fits,
manufacturing to provide the final fit for the
etc. If screws are needed use self-tapping
two components while greatly improving ones where possible. Orient screws and other
the ease of assembly. The need for threaded fasteners for vertical insertion so that
holding close tolerances on the distance gravity can help. Do this even if it requires
between the two pins is also reduced. reorienting the product in assembly. Always
make sure that there is sufficient room for
either manual or automatic tools as required.
Keep in mind what type of field maintenance
tooling may be available. Assembly can be
simplified by using adhesives or welding but
this may complicate repairs. Finally, don’t mix
or use odd standards. A product with both
English and metrics fasteners can be a “bear”
to put together.

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17. Fastener Reduction Example 18. Generic Snap Fastener

The graphic depicts a sheet metal The graphic shown illustrates the geometry
component that is to be attached to some of a generic snap fastener. This device
type of base. The classic solution to this can be used to effectively connect and
required composition would be to fasten hold two components together without the
down the component with four screws or need for a separate fastener. It consists of
bolts, one at each corner of the two parts that are designed as integral
component’s base. Yes, this would parts of the two components to be joined.
certainly keep it from moving but really The snap itself is a cantilever beam with a
complicates the assembly and adds to the hook formed on its end. The other part is a
cost. In the design shown the classical receiver on the part to be fastened that
solution is replaced by using a tab and slot holds the snap hook once the snap is
arrangement to both provide orientation inserted as the parts are joined. The
and composition at one end with the use of cantilever beam portion of the snap must
a single threaded fastener at the back end be sufficiently flexible to allow the hook to
of the component, a much simpler and deflect and seat itself in the receiver. This
obviously elegant solution. The five parts type of snap fastener is most frequently
required in the classical solution is reduced used to join plastic parts together. The
to two parts. Consider that if the snap and its receiver can be molded into
component and base were both steel the the plastic that is generally flexible enough
fastener might even be replaced by a spot to permit the deflection required to engage
weld. That would reduce the parts the hook. It should be kept in mind the
involved to just one. sufficient room and accessibility is required
at the location of the receiver to permit the
snap to be deflected when the parts are to
be disassembled and separated.

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19. Some Snap Applications 19. Some Snap Applications

Some example snap fastener applications
will now be reviewed. The first photograph This second photograph shows the lens
shows three parts of a five-part digital cover completely assembled with the arrow
camera lens cover that is assembled indicating the snap on the detent resting
without any separate fasteners. The outer against the stop on the back cover. In this
cover on the left is molded with four snaps photograph it can be seen that there are
one of which is indicated by the red arrow. two such snaps on each detent resisting
These snaps fit into four open slots visible the effect of the unseen compressed coil
on the back cover to the right. One of the spring.
sliding detents that hold the cover
assembly to the lens collar is shown above
the back cover. The other sliding detent is
shown in the assembled position. A
compressed spring pushes the two detents
apart. They are held in place by the snap
indicated by the arrow that comes to rest
against a stop on the back cover.

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19. Some Snap Applications (continued…) 19. Some Snap Applications

This photograph shows a typical connector
on a category five eight wire This is a somewhat non-typical application
communication cable. The snap holding of the snap concept but it still achieves the
action on this device is accomplished when composition desired. Another variation of
the step cutouts on the tab come in contact the snap concept is illustrated in this
with stops on the receiver into which the photograph of fasteners used to attach
connector is inserted. To release the upholstery panels to car doors and inside
connector the tab is bent down which trunk cavities. In this instance the design
lowers the cutouts below the stops in the must permit removal of the fastener
receiver. without access to the back side of the hole
in the sheet metal into which the fasteners
was inserted. This is accomplished by the
short bevel at the rear of the front snap
ramp. When the button is pulled back the
bevel compresses the snap allowing it to
be removed from the hole.

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20. Minimize Parts 21. Minimize Parts Example 1

All products consist of parts that are The graphic shows a molded plastic single
separate from one another in order to component that is used to both hold and
perform different functions as described in actuate a limit switch. The long slender
Chapter 2. However, one of the primary cantilever beam is the actuating device. Its
goals of a product designer must be to deflection by some other part of the final
minimize the number of parts in his product product triggers the switch. The switch
design. Creative efforts to achieve this itself is fastened to the component by two
goal through multifunctional parts or in integral molded snaps that lock over the
other ways that reduce part count pays off outer surface of the switch body. Two pins
in huge benefits. To begin with it simplifies molded into the component are used to
the assembly process. This in turn locate the switch using two holes already
reduces manufacturing cost and can available in the switch body. This single
significantly reduce assembly time. It molded component replaces eight parts in
usually will also improve the quality of the the original design that included two sheet
final product and will increase reliability metal stamping, several fasteners and
and performance. Remember that each separate pins, a nut plate and a helical
additional part in a product is another spring. This is an outstanding example of
source of potential problems whether they how creativity can be used to simplify a
be in manufacturing, assembly or design, reduce its cost and improve its
operation. Although difficult to achieve quality.
“the ideal product to assemble is one that
consists of only one part”.

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22. Minimize Parts Example 2 23. Minimize Parts Example 3

The photographs show an outstanding The upper graphic shows the cross section
example of creative geometric redesign of a stepped gear subassembly. It
and use of materials to reduce the number consists of six separate parts. The two
of parts in a simple staple remover. The gears blanks are machined from steel
plastic finger grips, spring and pivot pin in plates and the gear teeth are then
the left design have been replaced on the machined on to the blanks. The two gears
right by a creative use of a plastic molding are then drilled and tapped so that they
that combines the function of the pivot, can be joined together by four separate
spring and grips into a single component. threaded fasteners. This is certainly an
The staple remover jaws have also been appropriate classical design. However, by
reduced in size. Although it isn’t apparent applying some creativity and taking
these redesigned jaws simply snap into the advantage of other manufacturing
plastic gripper component whereas they techniques this six-part subassembly can
required staking in the original design. be reduced to one part. The lower graphic
Also note that the required peening of the shows a design that has the same
pivot pin in the original design is also geometry and achieves the same function.
eliminated as an assembly function in the The difference is that the part is made of
redesign. Both cost of manufacturing and sintered metal that eliminates all the
assembly have obviously been significantly machining and the fasteners. This is a
reduced in the improvement of this good example of why designers need to be
product. familiar with manufacturing processes and
their application.

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24. Minimize Parts Example 4 25. Minimize Parts Example 5

In this example a hole in a casting need s This example depicts another example
to be covered. The classical solution is to where a change in the manufacturing
machine a cover plate and attach it to the process simplifies the design and the
casting with threaded fasteners. The cover assembly. On the right the functional
and fasteners could be as many as five requirements of the design is achieved by
separate parts. A much simpler solution is machining an end cap which is then either
the one shown in the lower graphic. In this press fitted or welded to the end of the
alternative a recess is machined into the pipe. In the design on the left the same
casting at the edge of the opening. The functionality is achieved in one component
recess is machined rather than cast to hold by employing deformation shaping. Note
a close tolerance on the diameter of the that this also eliminates the need for
hole. The machined cover is now replaced attachment method employed in the first
by a stamped metal cap that is simply design. Improved designs are often
tapped to the bottom of the recess and obtained by creative applications of
held there by means of a light press fit. manufacturing techniques together with the
Again a much simpler solution not unlike geometry required to achieve the desired
the freeze plug inserts used on engine functionality.
block castings. Check one out on your car
if you are not familiar with this application.

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26. Minimize Parts Example 6 27. Flexible Items

In many instances identification Flexible components require special

information, instructions for use and attention in assembly. Items like wires,
warnings are attached to products by cables and belts are very difficult to handle
means of adhesive labels. These extra and assemble automatically. They require
items can sometimes be eliminated by great care and skill even if the assembly is
including the information in the performed manually. Wires and cables
manufacture of some part. The can be more easily dealt with by providing
photograph illustrates how instructions and them with the means to be plugged
other useful information have been molded together or into some receptacle. This can
into the base of a light switch. In addition also be used to establish their location for
to specifying wire size for push wiring and machine assembly. The easiest way to
terminal connections a gage for wire handle multiple electronic components is to
stripping is included as well as instruction mount them on circuit boards. Virtually all
for releasing push wiring. Also note the electronic appliances use this technique
graphics at the lower right provided as a today irrespective of how many or how few
warning that aluminum wire should not be the components are. Another technique
used. for eliminating the handling of flexible drive
belts is to provide for the transmission of
power by gears or friction drives.

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28. Flexible Items Example 28. Flexible Items Example

The two electronic components on the left
are provided with plugs to permit their The ubiquitous integrated circuit board that
attachment to the base component. This populates every computer is an excellent
aids in their attachment but clearly the example of this technology carried to the
assembly will not be easy. In addition, no highest state of refinement.
means are presented for fastening down
the components themselves. It is clearly
obvious that the arrangement on the right
will be easier to deal with in assembly.
The components themselves plug in
directly to a circuit board that itself very
simply plugs into the base component. Of
course this design requires the design and
production of the circuit board as a
separate component. However, the more
components there are to be inserted into
the circuit board the more cost effective
this process becomes both in terms of
manufacturing cost and assembly ease
and time.

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29. Criteria – Part Redundancy 30. Review Exercise – 1

In any product it is always worthwhile to The exercise on this page will serve as a
evaluate the potential redundancy of parts review of the more important topics
as the design progresses. Criteria to covered in this chapter. On the left is a list
determine redundancy are directly related of items that have been discussed. On the
to the reasons for separate parts right is a list of phrases that the items
discussed in Chapter 2. However, for the match up with one to one. To establish a
present purpose only three criteria stated match place the cursor over an item and
in terms of questions will be considered. left click the mouse. A pencil will appear
The first is “Does the part move relative to that will produce an arrow as it is dragged
parts already assembled in the normal to any one of the green dots in front of a
function of the final assembly?”. The phrase. If the choice and match is correct
second is “Does the part need to be of a the arrow will remain attached to the dot. If
different material from parts already the selection is incorrect the arrow will
assembled for functional, but not aesthetic, disappear when the mouse button is
reasons?” The third is “Does the part need released. The selections can be made in
to be separate from parts already any order. Use the selection process to
assembled to permit necessary assembly rethink the material presented concern the
or disassembly?” “NO” answers to all item and phrase. When all selection have
three of these criteria identifies a part as a been made correctly click on the forward
potential candidate for elimination. It is navigation button to go to the next page.
then up to the creative ability of the
designer to determine how that may be
brought about. An additional good rule of
thumb to always apply is that fasteners
areal rarely considered essential separate
parts. They should always be considered
candidates for elimination.

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31. Review Exercise – 2 32. Off Line Exercise

This exercise deals with the criteria for As an off line exercise the reader is now
identifying potential redundant parts that asked to extend the electric device product
may be eliminated from the design. You study undertaken in Chapter 2. Using the
will recall that three questions were asked wall socket or toggle switch that was taken
about the part and its behavior relative to apart earlier to develop a parts list and
adjacent parts. If the answers to all three assembly flow diagram apply the criteria
questions were NO then the part was for potential part redundancy to each part
potentially redundant. This exercise asks of the device. Indicate on the parts list
you to identify the important part those that might be eliminated based on
characteristic or behavior that was the three question criteria suggested to
included in these three criteria. Answer by identify potential redundant parts. This will
clicking on the “true” box if the be used later in a redesign exercise to
characteristic was important and on the improve the product from a DFA point of
“false” box if it wasn’t. Immediate view. You may observe that the principles
feedback will be provided following your of DFA have already been applied quite
choice. Once the feedback appears a well to your product. If that is the case you
mouse click will cause it to disappear and might want to try to find an older model
you can go on to the next choice. After that would benefit from some redesign.
you have correctly identified the important Don’t forget in this effort what was said
characteristics correctly click on the about fasteners in terms of their not
forward navigation button to go to the next necessarily being essential. Once you
page. under stand what the exercise requires
click on the return button to go back to the
chapter menu or revisit any of the pages in
this chapter before leaving it.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 5

Chapter 5
Principles of DFA-Part Design

Screen Titles
Feeding and Orienting
Principles of Part Design
Tangling and Overlapping
Protrusion Example
Tangle Example 1
Real Springs
Shingle example
Tangle Example 2
Retaining Rings
Tangle example 3
Gravity example
Nesting Example
Some Overlooked Examples
Symmetry Example 1
Symmetry Example 2
Symmetry Example 3
Asymmetry example 1
Asymmetry Example 2
Plastic Motor Fan
Review Exercise – 1
Review Exercise – 2
Off Line Exercise

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1. Title Page 2. Page Index

Chapter 5 covers the second part of the Listed below are all the text pages in
principles of design for assembly dealing Chapter 5 by title. Examples that follow
with the design of parts for orienting and the text pages are not included to simplify
feeding. This subject is covered the listing. If examples follow a text page,
separately from the principles in Chapter 4 the listing is identified by an arrow in a
because it plays such an important role in yellow disk. Each text page is hyperlinked
the assembly process whether it takes to its specific location in the chapter. It is
place manually or by machine. As before recommended that the reader first proceed
the principles are presented in generic through all pages in the chapter
form with specific examples to sequentially. Any specific text page can
demonstrate their application. Particular then be revisited by returning to the page
emphasis is placed on the symmetry and index and clicking on the page title.
asymmetry of part geometry. At the end of
chapter are several exercises to assist the
reader in reviewing the material covered.

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3. Feeding and Orienting 4. Principles of Part Design

The importance of the role of the feeding The four principles to be discussed deal
and orienting of individual parts in the primarily with characteristics of the
assembly process can be easily geometry of each individual part. The first
underestimated. To demonstrate this principle is to design the geometry to
point, consider again the assembly facilitate feeding and orientation. The
process flow diagram developed in chapter simpler these function can be performed
2 for the four-part spindle subassembly. the easier and quicker the assembly will
The total number of individual steps in this take place. The second principle is to
assembly numbered 17. Of this total 12 design the part geometry to avoid the parts
steps involve the feeding and orienting of becoming tangled with one another,
the four parts. These are represented by overlapping on top of one another or
the yellow rectangles in the three parallel nesting and getting stuck inside of one
horizontal paths leading to a specific another. A classical example of nesting is
assembly activity. These 12 steps how Styrofoam coffee cups stick together
represent 70 % of the total assembly when they are stacked together. The third
process. It is not uncommon for feeding principle is to maximize symmetry in the
and orienting to take up this much of the part as much as possible. This can greatly
process. Hence, it is a subject worthy of decrease the amount of orienting required
further detail consideration. to get the part into its final position.
Finally, and almost paradoxical, it may be
best to emphasize asymmetric features of
the part if symmetry is not possible or

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5. Tangling and Overlapping 6. Protrusion Example

First consider the subject of tangling and On the right is shown a flat part that both
overlapping as related to feeding and can and will become tangled with others of
orienting. If a hole, slot or open the same kind by interlocking. The lower
penetration is available on a part that some portion of the part is both narrow and thin
protrusion on that same part can enter and enough to slip into the slot in the upper
get stuck in then it will happen if the parts portion. This can create a real problem for
are stored together. Hence, this condition automatic feeding. The solution to the
must be eliminated by either redesigning problem in this instance is quite simple.
the part or keeping them separate in On the left, a dimple has been formed in
storage. Helical coil springs with open the lower portion of the part that will restrict
ends, which are the cheapest way to the protrusion from entering in to the slot.
produce them, will tangle unbelievably if In this instance, the solution could also be
stored together. This makes it almost made part of the stamping process that
impossible to separate them to feed produces the part. Only a small change is
individually. Hence, the spring ends need required in the stamping die to produce the
to be closed. Thin flat surfaces on which part on the left.
the part is being fed will easily shingle or
over lap. The solution is to turn up the
edges to provide thicker contact surfaces.
Reducing the opening size in retaining
rings, split washers and other similar
devices will avoid tangling when fed.
Increase the angle of contact surfaces on
elements that can overlap. Be alert to how
gravity might be used help. Finally, ribs in
nested parts to reduce nesting.

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7. Tangle Example 1 8. Real Springs

Depicted here is the classical tangling A number of pairs of actual springs are
problem encountered with open-ended shown in the photograph. The four pairs
wire helical springs. This is of course the on the left are compression springs as
cheapest way to produce the spring but it indicated by the gaps in their coils to
is obvious that the free ends will become permit compression deflection. Even
entangled with other ends and even more though these four pairs all have closed
so with the full coils of the spring. Place a ends it is clear that they easily tangle as
number of these open-end springs in a illustrated. This is a consequence of the
box, shake them around and then try to required space between the individual
pick one out. What results is that they all coils. The springs at the top and on the
want to stick together and come out as a right are extension springs. This is clear
necklace or a clump. There are two ways because they have hooks or loops at their
to solve this problem. One is to close the ends and there is no spacing between the
ends of the spring as shown on the left. coils. Note that on the largest tension
The closed end can be flat or looped for spring tangling can still occur because the
attachment just so it doesn’t have an open end hooks are open. These examples
free end. A second way to solve the illustrate that tangling generalizations on
problem is to manufacture the spring at the parts like springs are always of interest but
site where it will be used one at a time as specific design must be analyzed for
required. This might be a possibility in a conditions that generalizations might not
automated machine assembly process. cover.

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9. Shingle example 10. Tangle Example 2

If the generic parts on the right are being Another classical example of tangling is
transported or moved by some type of encountered when the opening in retainer
vibratory track in a machine assembly it is rings, slotted washer and other similar
easy to see how their thin bases can components is large enough for the free
overlap and shingle. This in turn can end to enter the loop of the ring or washer.
create problems when the parts are to Such a condition is illustrated on the right.
allocated one at a time in the assembly Here again the solution is quite clear. The
process. One way to solve this type of opening needs to be made smaller or the
problem is to place a lip or edge on the thin geometry of the opening can be altered as
base as shown on the left so that it shown in the two examples on the left.
becomes more difficult for the edges to Again, it is important to take into account
overlap. In all these examples it is some how the part will be made and how it will
characteristic geometry of the part that be used in the final product design. A
could lead to tangling and/or overlapping solution could also be to eliminate the ring
that the designer must both watch for and completely and incorporate its function in
be creative in eliminating relative to the some other part in the assembly.
process to be employed in the assembly Remember one of the important principles
process. of DFA is to reduce the total number of
required parts in the product.

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11. Retaining Rings 12. Tangle example 3

The photo shows two sets of spring type This example is somewhat similar to the
retaining rings. The set to the left is for one on the previous page. The part on the
internal use while the pair on the right is for right is formed from a thin strip of metal
external application. On the left the gap is that is rolled into a cylindrical shape with
so large as to permit easy tangling. This is an open slot parallel to its axis. These
a consequence of the space needed for parts would tend to tangle and form a
tooling and the fact that the ends must be chain with one another if stored together.
brought together prior to internal insertion. One solution to keep this from happening
In contrast the pair on the right has only a is shown on the left. The interruption in the
small gap required for flexibility because its slot will virtually eliminate all tangling and
end must be separated for external interlocking. It can easily be included in
application. In addition, space for tooling is the stamping process that produces the
generally more available external to a shaft strip prior to its being rolled into its
on which the ring would be applied. These cylindrical shape. Although it appears
two examples illustrate that the design and complex it can be accomplished for
use of specific parts may dictate geometry virtually no increase in cost.
that will create feeding problems even
though the function of the parts are similar.

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13. Overlapping 14. Gravity Example

One way of delivering fasteners to the The designer must always be alert to the
assembly site is by means of an inclined role that gravity will play in both the feeding
slotted track as shown in the center of the and orienting of parts as well as their
diagram where gravity provides the feeding insertion in to the assembly. In this
force. The example depicts a rounded top example the high center of gravity and
fastener that can overlap its neighbor as short base dimension of the parts on the
they slide down the chute. This can easily right give rise to a high probability that part
cause jamming that will stop the flow of the will tip over causing problems if the up right
parts. The problem is the shape of the position is that needed for the final
edge of the top of the fastener. The two orientation. Recognizing that a reduction
changes in geometry for the fastener top in in the ratio of the height to base dimension
the upper right and lower left will greatly will improve stability the parts on the left
reduce this problem. Another way of will behave better in the delivery process.
eliminating the problem would be to use a Again, it is important to remember that this
different type of delivery system in which is just one example of how gravity could
jamming of the rounded top fasteners effect orientation and that it is important to
would not occur. However, keep in mind keep the principle of using gravity to help
that the condition of overlapping is the in the application you may have at hand.
issue at hand.

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15. Nesting Example 16. Some Overlooked Examples

This example was mentioned on the page Everyday we come in contact with
where tangling was first discussed and is examples of unique and effective part
brought up again as a reminder of the feeding and orienting that we tend to
basic principle of eliminating the potential overlook but could learn from by just being
for part nesting. On the right is a series of a little more observant. The packaging of
stacked generic cup shaped parts. ordinary staples is a good example. By
Depending on the material and surface gluing the individual staples together into a
condition these can easily stick together strip and designing the stapler to accept
like Styrofoam coffee cups. One way to and use this package a very difficult
eliminate this problem is to form the cup orienting and feeding problem is uniquely
with ridges or ribs as shown on the left. solved. A second example is the
This keeps the surfaces from coming in packaging of self adhesive postage stamps
intimate contact with each other and allows onto a paper back roll for individual manual
for easy separation. separation and use. Together with a
simple plastic dispensing container another
feeding and allocation problem is
effectively solved. In this case orientation
is of secondary importance since the
postal service doesn’t really care if the
stamp is put on upside down.

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17. Symmetry 18. Symmetry Example 1

Now consider the role that geometric The pin on the right has the same basic
symmetry can play simplifying the feeding cylindrical dimensions of length and
and orienting of parts. It has been found diameter as the pin on the left. However,
that the greatest benefits come from on the right the two ends have different
symmetry with respect to the axis of geometries from one another. This will
insertion of the part. Symmetry can also increase the cost of manufacture and will
makes part feeding substantially easier. require special handling and orientation if
The greater the symmetry the less one of the ends is always to be inserted
handling is involved in orienting the part. first. The pin on the left with both ends
The more convenient the orienting process finished the same will have the same
the simpler the process of picking and orientation no matter how it is picked up.
holding the part becomes. In many There will be no need to rotate end for end
instances symmetry will also reduce as might be required of the pin on the right.
manufacturing costs. Consider a sphere Note that as a pin with symmetry about its
as an ideal part with perfect symmetry. No central axis there is also no need to rotate
matter how it is picked up, handled or the part about its central axis to achieve a
delivered its orientation will always be the special orientation.
same. All parts can’t be spheres but the
concept of using symmetry is illustrated.

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19. Symmetry Example 2 20. Symmetry Example 3

The part on the right is a stamping with a In this example the same principle of
large and small hole in the upper and lower providing symmetry for the internal
tabs and an off center horizontal slot that features about the vertical and horizontal
extends into the right and left tabs. Its axis is applied as on the previous page to
orientation could require a rotation about the part design on the right resulting in the
both the vertical and horizontal axes and design on the left. In addition symmetry is
possibly even turning the part over. These provided in the left part design to both the
possible rotations for final orientation are front and back of the part making it
completely eliminated by the design of the unnecessary to turn the part over for final
part on the left. By repeating the large and orientation. Since it appears that these
small holes in both the upper and lower features will need to be machined into a
tabs and providing symmetry for the slot rectangular plate the manufacturing cost of
and piece about the vertical axis no the part on the left may be a little higher
rotation or turning over is required. The than the part on the right. However, the
manufacturing cost once the stamping dies time saved in feeding and orienting the
are produced would be the same for both part for assembly could very well reduce
parts. the total cost of manufacturing and

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21. Asymmetry 22. Asymmetry example 1

As mentioned earlier if it is difficult to This first example illustrates how both

achieve or use symmetry beneficially then symmetry and asymmetry might be used to
paradoxically it might well be best to assist in the final orientation of a part. The
introduce asymmetry into the part cylinder on the right obviously has only one
geometry. When this is the case it is best final orientation due to the single recess on
to exaggerate small features of asymmetric the right end. Whether this recess is on
geometry. This makes them easier to the left or right is not easy to determine by
detect relative to establishing the final observing the uniform cylindrical exterior
orientation of the part. Sometimes it is shape. When picked up it may be
even of value to deliberately introduce necessary to rotate the cylinder end for
asymmetric features. This can sometimes end in order to get the recess pointed to
be accomplished by removing material to the right. By machining a recess on both
produce a significant asymmetric feature. ends, which makes the part symmetrical
The basic principle that is being employed about a vertical axis, it won’t matter how
here is that an easily identified or the part in the upper left is picked up as
recognized exterior feature whether done one of the recess ends will always be to
manually or by machine can establish the the right. Thus symmetry is used to
proper orientation of the part prior to its resolve the orientation problem. In the
assembly into the product. lower left the exterior of the cylinder has
been machined to provide a significant
asymmetric external geometric shape. In
this case it can be easily recognized either
manually or by machine which end has the
recess and it can be picked up so that that

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23. Asymmetry Example 2 24. Plastic Motor Fan

In this example the exterior shape of the The photo shows the front (lower right) and
part on the right is symmetric with respect back (upper left) sides of a plastic fan that
to both the vertical and horizontal axis. is press fit onto the shaft of an electric
However, the interior small hole on the motor used in a power hand tool. This
vertical axis makes the exterior symmetry design takes advantage of both symmetry
useless in establishing the final orientation and asymmetry. The design of the fan is
of the part. Even providing total symmetry symmetric with respect to the shaft axis to
about the vertical and horizontal axes by make insertion on the shaft easy.
introducing three additional hole won’t help However, the front and back of the fan are
since the part can be picked up in a rotated different. This asymmetry provides the
position with respect to its center. means of orienting which side of the fan is
However, by removing a portion of the presented to the assembly work head. A
bottom of the circular disk as shown on the narrow track is used to send fans that
left an asymmetric feature is introduced come front side up from a vibratory feeder
such that when the flat surface is back to be recirculated. Click on the video
horizontal the small interior hole will always button to see this taking place. Only the
be in the right position. This final last fan shown has the proper orientation.
positioning can be easily established either Then close the window and go on to the
manually or by machine. Thus asymmetry next page.
accomplishes what is not possible by

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25. Review Exercise – 1 26. Review Exercise – 2

The exercise on this page will serve as a In this exercise the reader is to type in the
review of the more important topics missing words to create statements made
covered the design of part for feeding and earlier in the chapter. Start by moving the
orienting. On the left is a list of items that cursor to the beginning of the first blank
have been discussed in this chapter. On and left click the mouse. Type in an
the right is a list of phrases that the items appropriate response. Click on the tab key
match up with one to one. To establish a to receive an immediate feedback. If your
match place the cursor over an item and answer is not correct clear the blank and
left click the mouse. A pencil will appear type in another response. Following each
that will produce an arrow as it is dragged feedback double click on the tab key to
to any one of the green dots in front of a move the cursor to the next blank space. If
phrase. If the choice and match is correct you need assistance click on the hot word
the arrow will remain attached to the dot. If to pop up the relevant page. After
the selection is incorrect the arrow will completing the exercise click on the next
disappear when the mouse button is page button to go on.
released. The selections can be made in
any order. Use the selection process to
rethink the material presented concern the
item and phrase. When all selection have
been made correctly click on the forward
navigation button to go to the next page.

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27. Off Line Exercise

This exercise applies what you have

learned about part design to the light
switch or wall socket you are using for the
off line exercises. From your product
select three parts excluding fasteners.
Examine and study these parts relative to
their characteristics and features that
either contribute to or detract from their
ability o be fed and oriented in the
assembly process. Prepare a short report
that describes and discusses what these
characteristic and features are and how
they may effect their feeding and orienting.
Include suggestions as to how these parts
might be redesigned to improve these
characteristics. You will probably find it
useful to include drawings to help illustrate
your presentation. Click on the main menu
button to return to select another chapter
or exit.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 6

Chapter 6
DFA Examples

Screen Titles
Product Redesign Process
Original Diaphragm Valve
DFA System Analysis
Design Change Candidates
Redesign Diaphragm Valve
Original Pneumatic Piston
DFA System Analysis
Design Change Candidates
Redesigned Piston
Original Light Switch
Copier Latch
Copier Latch Statistics
Lessons Learned
Review Exercise
Offline Exercise

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1. Title Page 2. Page Index

Chapter 6 covers the applications of the Listed below are all the text pages in
principles of design for assembly to the Chapter 6 by title. Each text page is
analysis of several sample designs and hyperlinked to its specific location in the
their redesign to improve both chapter. It is recommended, however, that
assemblability and quality. The examples the reader first proceed through all pages
include a diaphragm valve subassembly in the chapter sequentially. Any specific
and a pneumatic sensing piston device. text page can then be revisited by
The reader is then given the opportunity to returning to the page index and clicking on
perform a similar analysis and redesign of the page title.
the product they chose earlier for the off
line exercises and is presented with the
results of one such analysis and redesign.
Finally, an example of an actual
commercial subassembly redesign is
presented and discussed. The chapter
concludes with an important lesson to be
learned from the commercial example.

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3. Product Redesign Process 4. Original Diaphragm Valve.

The process of analyzing an existing A diaphragm valve subassembly consists

product relative to the guidelines of DFA of two major components that are fastened
and redesigning the product to improve together. The valve portion is a thin
both its assemblability and quality can be circular plate with two interior holes on a
broken down into four major steps. The diameter. The second major part is an
first step is to disassembly the product into axle housing which is basically a bracket
all of its separate parts. All parts should be that fastens to the plate and can accept a
named and their function and assembly circular rod through two upturned tabs.
order listed. Creating an assembly This allows the entire subassembly to
process flow diagram is usually very rotate about an axis parallel to a diameter
helpful at this point. The second step is to of the circular plate. The axle housing is
perform a DFA systems analysis. This attached to the diaphragm plate by means
consists of applying the criteria for of two screws, two washers and two nuts
redundancy to each part and the seven as illustrated on the diagram. The entire
generic principles of DFA from Chapter 4. subassembly consists of a total of eight
The third step is to develop design change parts. Assembly would most likely take
candidates that will resolve problems and place with the orientation in the diagram so
inconsistencies identified in the DFA that the screws are inserted vertically down
systems analysis. The last step is to with the housing and plate properly
evaluate the redesign based on the aligned. This of course would require the
proposed changes to determine the level washers and nuts to be attached from the
of improvement achieved. bottom. This is not ideal but acceptable for
manual assembly.

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5. DFA System Analysis 6. Design Change Candidates

One of the first features that stand out in a The screws, washers and nuts can be
DFA system analysis of this subassembly eliminated altogether by placing studs on
is that six of the total eight parts are the axle housing and staking the
fastener components. This represents subassembly together. This immediately
75% of all parts, which is extremely high. eliminates six separate parts. To take
The fasteners are excellent candidates for advantage of the circular geometry of the
elimination or at least reduction in number. diaphragm plate only one stud need be
Since the housing and the diaphragm plate used and its location can be at the center
perform functions that are distinct and of the circular component. Incorporate the
separate, it is difficult to see how either stud on the bracket as a separate
could be eliminated. However, the two operation and bring it to the assembly with
holes in the diaphragm plate represent the diaphragm plate as a subassembly.
asymmetric interior features that will Finally, invert the assembly order so that
require special handling to insure proper the housing becomes the base on which
orientation of this piece in matching it up to the circular plate is located prior to
the housing. A follow up to this performing the staking operation.
consideration is that no advantage has
been taken of the external symmetry of the
circular diaphragm plate.

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7. Redesigned Diaphragm Valve 8. Original Pneumatic Piston

The redesigned valve subassembly The device in the diagram is a pneumatic

employing the changes from the previous actuated piston that provides pressure to
slide now appears as in the diagram. The an output vent when the pressure applied
number of components has been reduced at an input vent is high enough to raise the
by 75% to only the two required for piston against a compressed helical spring.
functionality; a significant improvement. The device consists of seven parts. The
Locating the stud at the center of the first is a machined base, which contains
bracket and requiring only one hole in the the input, and output vents and houses the
plate at its center dramatically simplifies piston and the spring. Note that the piston
orientation prior to composition. Inverting has a small guide stud on its underside
the order of assembly of the remaining two that slides in a receiver unseen in the
pieces greatly improves the accessibility of base. Piston upward travel is limited by a
the joined parts for the final staking circular piston stop. The helical spring fits
process. This redesign could now be very inside of the piston stop and sits on the top
easily be performed by machine where as of the piston. A flat square cover
it would have been virtually impossible to compresses the spring and is attached to
automate the assembly of the original the top of the base by two screw.

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9. DFA System Analysis 10. Design Change Candidates

The two fasteners represent 28% of the Consider first a redesign of the cover that
total number of parts. This is still high and eliminates the two screws and makes
should be reduced if possible. The square orientation of the part easier. This can be
cover has asymmetric feature and will accomplished by replacing the cover with a
require special handling in assembly. The plastic circular cap that snaps into the top
piston stop doesn’t move, does not have to of the base. Additional machining of the
be of a different material from the top and base to produce a grove for the cap to
doesn’t need to be separate for assembly snap into is required but it will no longer be
or disassembly. Hence, it is a strong necessary to drill and tap the base for the
candidate for elimination if its function can two screws. Next, the piston stop can be
be included with that of another part. The eliminated by incorporating its function into
spring as shown appears to have open the lower part of the cap. These changes
ends, which will cause tangling problems in eliminate three parts from the original
feeding. It will be difficult to properly orient design. To provide for easier alignment of
the piston prior to assembly since the the piston a stud can be added to the
guide for the stud Is hidden and the piston center of its topside so that it can be
will have to be held by its edges. All of gripped and held during the insertion
these conditions represent good redesign process. Finally, to facilitate feeding of the
opportunities for improving the helical spring the ends can be closed.
assemblability of the device. These changes should significantly
improve the assembly process without
affecting the function of the device.

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11. Redesigned Pneumatic Piston 12. Original Light Switch

The diagram illustrates the redesigned Now we will review an analysis and
piston device with the candidate change redesign of a toggle light switch that might
incorporated. The order of the assembly is be similar to one you may have chosen.
the same as on the original design. By Lets begin with the original design. This
eliminating the screws and the piston stop particular device has a total of 19 parts. Of
the number of parts in the device now these, eight are fasteners and washers,
number only 4, a 57% reduction in the parts 2, 3, 4 and 13. This number needs to
number from the original design. It should be reduced. Part 5 appears to be
be noted in both this example and the redundant and should be considered for
diaphragm valve the first items considered elimination. Parts 10, 11, 12 and 13 which
for elimination in the redesign were the make up the electrical contact portion of
fasteners. Recall that in chapter 4 in the the switch look like candidates for
discussion about identifying potentially simplification and prior assembly to be
redundant parts it was stated that brought to the final design as a completed
fasteners are rarely considered essential subassembly. It would also be nice if parts
required parts. Hence, they should always 7 and 8 could be combined. These
come under immediate suspicion in a DFA changes would greatly reduce the total
analysis. number of parts and simplify the final
assembly process. Let go on and see
what a possible redesign might look like.

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13. Redesigned Light Switch 14. Printer Latch Subassembly

The first thing noticed in the redesign is Next lets look at a real commercial
how much simpler and uncluttered the redesign example of a more complex lock
diagram appears compared to the original and latching device for a photocopying
design. The electrical switch unit appears machine. The diagram on the left shows
to have been simplified and is coming to an exploded view of the original design. It
the final design as a subassembly. The obviously contains a large number of parts
number of separate fasteners has been and looks like a good candidate for
reduced to two screws necessary to attach redesign. The principles of DFA were
the final switch unit to the utility box in the applied to this subassembly resulting in the
wall. Instead of eliminating the faceplate, redesign depicted on the right. This is an
part 5, the mounting plate part 1 and base obviously simpler design in which it is
housing, part 9, have been combined. immediately noticed that many of the
Look at the previous page to identify these fasteners are gone. A detailed analysis of
parts in the original design. The faceplate, this redesign will not be presented but
part 1, in the redesign has been provided some of the more important statistics of the
with snaps to attach to the redesigned resulting improvement are listed on the
base housing, part 4. The two bumpers next page.
and helical spring that provided the snap
motion of the toggle in the original design
have been replaced by part 3 made of
plastic in redesign. Thus, the final
redesign consists of only seven parts one
of which is a subassembly and two screws
for fastening the switch to some generic
utility wall box. I hope your redesign was
as successful as this example.

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15. Printer Latch Statistics 16. Important Lesson Learned

The redesign resulted in a 73% percent Unfortunately, this redesigned lock and latch
reduction in the total number of parts from never made it into production. The reason is a
62 to 17. The estimated reduction in the lesson about when DFA is applied that can’t be
time of assembly was 79% from about 7 over emphasized. The redesign was rejected
because the copier was already in production
minutes to a minute and a half. Finally, the
and the cost of retooling, lost inventory and
estimated total lock and latch cost changes in the assembly process would have
reduction was 36% from twelve and a half been more than could be saved by using the
to eight dollars. All of these improvements redesign in the remaining projected model run.
are very impressive and demonstrate the Hence, the important lesson to be learned is do
utility of the design for assembly the DFA work up front in the early part of the
philosophy. It commercial value and return design process. Don’t wait until the product
in reduced cost and improved quality was goes into production to see if redesign can
certainly worth the effort of its application improve it. Design assemblability into the
in this example. product from the first day of its development.
Now go on to chapter seven for a brief review
of what you have learned in this entire module.

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17. Review Exercise 18. Off Line Exercise

This review exercise deals with the steps Being told how to play the piano and
and process used in a DFA systems watching someone else do it is no way to
analysis and redesign of an existing learn how yourself. The same is true in
product. The task is to match the number performing a DFA analysis and redesign to
of the steps in the process listed on the left improve the assemblability of an existing
with the summary of the process activity on product. Hence, the reader is now asked
the right. This is done by clicking on any to perform such an analysis and redesign
step and dragging a pointer to the proper on the wall receptacle or toggle light switch
summary green dot. When you have already used in several previous off line
completed the exercise correctly, proceed exercises. At this point you should already
on to the next page. have taken the device apart, created an
assembly process diagram and applied the
criteria for identifying potential redundant
parts. The next step is to apply the
principles of DFA for product design and
consider the feeding and orienting features
of the parts. With this information in hand
generate a set of design change
candidates, evaluate the improvement in
the redesign and document your results in
a report. Click on the main menu button to
go on to next chapter or exit the module.

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Chapter 7
Quantifying Assembly

Screen Titles

Design Issues Addressed

Desired Application Results
Basis of Quantitative Tool
Part Merit Rating
Geometric Part Rating
Part Merit Calculation
Product Assembly Merit
Feeding Choices (Manual)
Feeding Choices (Automated)
Insertion Direction
Fastening Methods
Redundancy Check
Product Merit Spreadsheet
Original Pneumatic Piston Merit – 1
Original Pneumatic Piston Merit – 2
Redesigned Pneumatic Piston Merit – 1
Redesigned Pneumatic Piston Merit – 2
Comparison of Merit Results
Review Exercise – 1
Review Exercise – 2
Dealing with Subassemblies
Off Line Exercise

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1. Title Page 2. Page Index

In Chapter 7, the reader is provided with a Listed below are all the text pages in
numerical tool that permits the ease of Chapter 7 by title. Each text page is
assembly of a product design to be hyperlinked to its specific location in the
expressed as a quantitative figure of merit. chapter. It is recommended, however, that
This allows for a direct numerical the reader first proceed through all pages
comparison between the ease of assembly in the chapter sequentially. Any specific
of an original design with potential text page can then be revisited by
redesign revisions to improve the returning to the page index and clicking on
assembly process. Application of the tool the page title.
to the pneumatic piston-sensing device
analyzed and redesigned in chapter six is
included. The results of this application
are discussed in terms of the utility of the
tool in both directing and evaluating
redesign efforts.

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3. Design Issues Addressed 4. Desired Application Results

Two design issues are addressed by To adequately address the issues

creating a tool that permits the ease of presented on the previous page an
assembly to be numerically quantified. analytically simple numerical tool is
Both deal with the normal desire of needed for calculating a quantitative figure
engineers to express behavior or of merit for ease of assembly of a product
properties in terms of numbers. The first is design based on relevant principles of
to increase the designer’s sensitivity to the design for assembly. It is not necessary
assembly and the impact of design that this tool be based on real physical
decisions in product development on ease principles. In fact, this is not impossible.
of assembly. The second issue is to However, it is necessary that the model for
establish a quantitative measure for ease this numerical tool be based on
of assembly based on a rational and propositions that appeal to the engineering
accepted procedure for the comparison of mentality for structure, order and
alternative design options. This provides relevance. This is the approach employed
for a level of comfort for engineers not in devising a method for comparing
readily available from qualitative products that are similar in functional
assessments such as those used in design but vary in their assembly
chapter 6. characteristics.

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5. Basis of Quantitative Tool 6. Part Merit Rating

There are three basic components that The figure of merit for a part is modeled as
make up the model for calculating a a vector in three-dimensional space
numerical figure of merit for the ease of defined by coordinate axes that represent
assembly of a product design. The first is the ease with which the part is fed,
that each part in the product is assigned a inserted and fastened into the product. A
numerical figure of merit from 0 to 10 numerical value from zero to ten is
depending on how hard or easy it assigned to each part for each of the three
undergoes the three fundamental assembly events. Zero corresponds to the
assembly events of feeding and orienting, event being very difficult to accomplish and
insertion into the product and the fastening ten represents that it is very easy to
or composing of the part. The second complete. These events values become
component of the model combines the the components of the merit vector that
three assembly event values for each part represents a numerical measure of the
into an integrated single numerical merit ease of the assembly of the part. The
figure for the part. The third component is greater the event component values the
an assessment of the possible potential greater the numerical magnitude of the
redundancy of the part. This is based on part merit vector and hence the easier the
the redundancy criteria described in assembly of that part. The manner in
chapter 4. The individual part merits and which selections are made to assign
the number of potentially redundant parts numerical values to the individual
are then used to determine two specific assembly events will be discussed in detail
overall product merit values. These will be later in this chapter. First, a description will
described following a discussion of how be provided of the geometric
the individual part merit figures are representation of the part merit vector in
established. the three-dimensional space defined by the
feeding, insertion and fastening axes.

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7. Geometric Part Rating 8. Part Merit Calculation

The modeling of the construction and The magnitude of the merit value for each
magnitude of the merit vector for a specific part is calculated as the square root of the
part begins with a three dimensional axis sum of the squares of the feeding merit,
system whose separate axes measure the the insertion merit and the fastening merit
ease with which the events of feeding, for each part. However, if each of these
insertion and fastening take place. This is events were assigned a value of ten then
illustrated by the yellow orthogonal axes the magnitude of the part merit would be
system. The origin of each axis 10 times the square root of three. To keep
corresponds to the most difficult the calculated part merit values easier to
implementation of the specific assembly deal with the magnitude is normalized by
event, which would be assigned a value of dividing the square root value by the
zero. As the event for a specific part is square root of three as shown in the
recognized as being easier its value is formula. Thus a part that has event values
increased along the three axes with a of ten for each event has a part merit value
maximum possible value of 10. Consider of ten also. When event values for a part
now that a particular part is assigned a are assigned to be less than ten, as in the
feeding value of 8, an insertion value of 7 example on the previous page, its
and a fastening value of 9. These are magnitude is also divided by the square
represented in the figure by the three root of three to make it proportionally
green component values. These smaller than the normalized maximum
components are now used to create a possible value. It is simply a means to
vector in the three dimensional space. make the interpretation and comparison of
This is represented by the red vector different part merit values a little easier to
whose magnitude will be greater than any deal with.
of its individual green components. It is
the magnitude of this red vector that is
used to model the assembly merit rating
for the part. This process is applied to
each part in the product to determine its
specific assembly merit rating.

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9. Product Assembly Merit 10. Feeding Choices (Manual)

After all the individual part merits are The task of assigning appropriate values to the
determined as defined on the previous page assembly events must now be addressed. The
these values are used to define two distinct manual feeding of parts will be considered first.
product merit ratings. The first is called the Listed on this page are a number of manual
combined average merit and is designated by feeding methods grouped together beginning
the acronym CAM. It is simply the average of with those that are the easiest to the hardest.
all the individual part merits as indicated by the For example, parts that are arranged with the
formula for its determination. It represents an same orientation in a precision pallet tray, or
overall measure of how easy it is to put the stacked in a slide tray or feeding magazine are
product together from considerations of easily grasped manually to be inserted. This
feeding, inserting and fastening all the type of feeding arrangement would be
individual parts. A second measure of the assigned a very high value, possibly nine or
ease of assembly of the product and its design ten. As the list of choices progresses down the
for assembly is called the product assembly page to the handling of flexible items the value
merit and is designated by the acronym PAM. to be assigned to the event is decreased to
It takes into account that the design may zero. The actual value assigned to the feeding
contain redundant parts, which if designed out event of a specific part must be the choice of
of the product would improve its ease of the analyst based on what is known or can be
assembly. In other words, it penalizes the reasonably assumed for the instance at hand.
combined average merit for the inclusion of The groupings listed on this page are only
redundant parts in the design. The product suggestions of the general order of difficulty
assembly merit can never exceed the that will be encountered for manual feeding.
combined average merit and is only equal to it Normally the numerical value is limited to
when there are no redundant parts in the integers for simplicity. The application of
design or redesign of the product. As a specific values in a given example will be made
specific product design is improved by applying clearer in a complete analysis that will occur
the principles of design for assembly, its later in this chapter applied to the pneumatic
combined average merit and product assembly piston sensing device from chapter six.
merit will increase in value. The best design
from the standpoint of assembly is one that has
a combined average merit that approaches 10
and a product assembly merit that is equal to
the combined average merit.

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11. Feeding Choices (Automated) 12. Insertion Direction

Automated part feeding is accomplished Selecting a merit value for the insertion
principally with vibratory bowl feeders or event is a little easier to deal with than
sometimes with programmable feeding feeding. Insertion has to do primarily with
devices. Normally only small parts are fed how the part has to be moved into the
in this fashion on automated assembly assembly irrespective of whether the act
lines. The feeding and orienting functions takes place manually or is automated. The
are generally grouped together to be important consideration is the direction and
considered as a single coupled assembly character of the movement of the part.
event. Hence, in determining an event Listed on this page is a suggested variety
value for quantifying feeding the orientation of insertion directions again proceeding
function is included if automated feeding from the easiest at the top of the list to the
takes place. On this page, four categories hardest at the bottom. Again, the analyst
are specified as proceeding from the must decide from either known information
easiest to the hardest. These include the or assumption which insertion action is
four combinations of easy feeding and appropriate and a reasonable value to
easy orientation to hard feeding and hard assign to it. Keep in mind that the
orientation. The choice of the numerical analyses to be performed are primarily to
value between ten and zero to be chosen compare changes in design due to hopeful
in a specific instance must again be improvements. Hence, it is relative
selected by the analyst. This is a judgment numerical values that will be of the
call based on how much is known or can greatest importance not absolute
be reasonably assumed about the specific measures.
instance in question. This is a good
example of why the development of a
product design must be integrated across
design and manufacturing as pointed out in
chapter one. Selecting a specific feeding
event value will again be addressed in the
example analysis conducted later in the
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13. Fastening Methods 14. Redundancy Check

The final assembly event to be assigned a With all three assembly events assigned
numerical value is the fastening of the part. numerical values the magnitude of the part
A similar process to that already described merit vector can then be calculated using the
for feeding and insertion is employed. formula on page eight. The next step in the
analysis is to determine if the part is potentially
Listed on this page are a variety of
redundant. To do this the criteria established
suggested simple fastening methods that in chapter four will be applied. This is
proceed from the easiest at the top to the accomplished by answering three questions
more difficult at the bottom. All of these about the behavior of the part. These are:
can be accomplished either manually or by
some mechanical means so that no (1) Does the part move relative to adjacent
distinction between these two kinds of parts in the use of the assembled product?
processes is made. Again, the analyst (2) Must the part be made of a different
either must decide from known information material from that of adjacent parts for its
or based on assumption how the part will function in the assembled product? And
(3) Must the part be separate from
be fastened to assign a value to the part
adjacent part to permit its assembly in or
for this event. One additional removal from the product?
consideration is that if the part has to be
held in place while it is being fastened it is If the answers to all three of these questions
generally a good idea to reduce the are NO then there is a good possibility that the
numerical value by at least one unit. part can be eliminated and hence considered
to be redundant.

Finally, for the purpose of quantifying assembly

a good general rule of thumb is to consider all
fasteners to be redundant even if some may
need to be included in the improved design.

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15. Product Merit Spreadsheet 16. Original Pneumatic Piston Merit – 1

Attention is now directed to the analysis of an A complete quantitative analysis of the
entire product. This is most easily assembly of the original and improved
accomplished with the use of a spreadsheet as
pneumatic sensing device discussed in
shown on this page. Any spreadsheet program
like excel works well for this purpose. On the chapter six will now be carried out. First,
very left of the sheet the individual parts of the review the construction and assembly of
product are listed in the order in which they are this product by clicking on the hot-word.
assembled into the product. The next column When you have completed your review
simply lists how many of these parts there are click on the next page button to obtain the
so that their number can be easily determined audio description of the spreadsheet.
as the sum at the bottom of the column. In the
next column are placed the numerical values of
the feeding event for each part as described on
pages 10 and 11. In the next column are
placed the event values for the insertion
direction of each part as described on page 12.
In a similar fashion the next column contains
the fastening event value for each part. With
these three numbers the magnitude of the part
merit vector is calculated using the formula on
page 8 and placed in the next column. These
part merit values are then summed and placed
at the bottom of the column. Finally the
redundant part check is applied to each part. If
a part is potentially redundant place a one in
the appropriate space. If it is not redundant
place a zero in the space instead. Finally, sum
the integers in the redundant part column.
Now the formulas for the Combined Average
Merit, the CAM, and the Product Assembly
Merit, the PAM, as presented on page nine can
be used to calculate these final values for the

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17. Original Pneumatic Piston Merit – 2 18. Redesigned Pneumatic Piston Merit
The seven parts of the product are listed in the
first column of the spreadsheet. Note that even The quantitative analysis will now be
though the two screws are the same they are
repeated for the redesigned pneumatic
listed separately for clarity. It is assumed that
the assembly will be manual. The base, piston piston-sensing device. Begin by clicking
and piston stop will be fed in some form of on the hot word to review the redesigned
stacked or positioned containers; hence, they piston device in chapter six.
receive a value of ten for this event. The
springs, which have open ends, and the covers
and screws are simply provided in separate
boxes which makes their feeding and orienting
much more difficult. Hence, they are all
assigned values of three. The insertion of all
parts is vertical so they all get tens except for
the piston whose stem has to be guided into a
blind hole. All parts except for the cover and
screws slip into place for their fastening event
and are assigned tens. The cover must be
held down while the screws are being inserted
and thus it is given a nine. The screws
themselves are assigned threes since that
function appears well down the fastening
method list. The redundancy check identifies
the piston stop and the screws as potential
redundant parts. With this information, the
Combined Average merit is calculated to be
8.28 while the Product Assembly merit is 4.73.
Neither of these results is very good
considering the maximum value for both could
be ten.

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19. Redesigned Pneumatic Piston Merit – 2 20. Comparison of Merit Results

The three redundant parts have been The sensor example just analyzed
eliminated with the redesigned cover and provides some indication of how this
piston stop. That reduces the total number quantitative tool can be used to provide
of parts to four in the left column. The guidance in improving the design of a
block event values all remain the same. given proposed product. Since the
The piston insertion is increased to nine Combined Average Merit value was some
with the addition of the handling stub that 18% below the maximum possible of ten it
significantly improves this function. was worthwhile attempting to improve the
Closing the ends of the spring will assembly events of feeding, insertion and
dramatically improve its ability to be fed, fastening where possible. In addition,
which increases its value to eight. Finally since the Product Assembly Merit was only
the redesigned cover will be both easy to about half of the Combined Average Merit
feed and insert represented by the tens it was also important to eliminate the three
and it will easily snap into place for potentially redundant parts. Hence, some
fastening represented by a nine. These general guidelines for areas of redesign to
changes increase the Combined Average be considered for improvement are
Merit to 9.68. The Product Assembly Merit presented in the table. If both the CAM
is the same value since there are no and PAM are quite high it might be just as
redundant parts. With both the CAM and well to leave the design as it is. If the CAM
the PAM at values of 9.68 out of a is high but the PAM is low it will be of
maximum possible value of ten it is clear greater importance to work on eliminating
that the redesign has significantly the redundant parts. If the CAM is low and
improved the assembly of the product and the PAM, which can never exceed the
it appears that little more can to done to CAM, is close to its value then emphasis
improve it further. should be place on improving the three
assembly events. Finally if both the CAM
and the PAM are low, as in the example
analyzed then both the assembly events
and the redundant parts both need to be
worked on
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21. Review Exercise – 1 22. Review Exercise – 2

The review exercises for chapter seven As an extended review exercise consider
includes both filling in the missing words and the circumstance in which a final product is
answering several true-false questions. If you
made up of a combination of separately
have any difficulty with them click on the hot-
words in the question statement. When you created subassemblies and individual
have completed the exercises go on to the next parts. How would you apply the process of
page. computing a combined average merit and
product assembly merit in this instance?
Question 2 Outline a process for treating this situation
that is both appropriate and consistent with
True – Your answer is correct the method presented and then go on to
False – Your answer is incorrect. Click on the the next page to see what I recommend.
hot word to review the definition of the CAM.

Question 3

True – Your answer is incorrect. Click on the

hot word to review the definition of the PAM.
False – Your answer is correct. The
normalizing factor is the square root of three.

Question – 4

True – Your answer is incorrect. Click on the

hot word to review the role of redundant parts
in the PAM.
False – Your answer is correct. Redundant
parts play a role in the PAM.

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23. Dealing with Subassemblies 24. Off Line Exercise

A procedure that seem appropriate and As an off line exercise apply the method
consistent to me is the following. First, for quantifying assembly as presented in
analyze each subassembly separately and this chapter to the wall socket or light
determine a specific combined average switch you have analyzed and redesigned
merit and product assembly merit for each in the previous chapter. Set up a
one. Second, treat each subassembly as spreadsheet similar to the one used in this
a separate individual part and determine chapter and determine both the Combined
the combined average merit and product Average Merit and the Product Assembly
assembly merit for the final product. In this Merit both for the original design and your
process each subassembly should be redesign. Prepare a short report that
assigned appropriate part merit figures includes the spreadsheet results for both
associated with its assembly into the final designs and discuss their implications
product. Finally, redesign both the relative to the ease of assembly of the
subassemblies and the final product as product. Also justify and discuss your
dictated by their individual combined assumptions and assigned values for the
average merit and product assembly merit individual part assembly events.
values in accordance with the guidelines
on page.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 8

Chapter 8
Vibratory Part Feeding

Screen Titles
Vibratory Bowl Feeder
Bowl displacement
Part Mechanics Model
Oscillating Flat Plate Conveyor
Conveyor Velocity
Part Mechanics
Part Motion (one cycle)
Part Movement (one cycle)
Average Part Velocity
Forward Part Movement
Different Starting Points
Vibratory Bowl Part Movement
Drive Parameters
Movement Limits
Mean Conveying Velocity
Effective Hop
Important Characteristics
Load Sensitivity
Typical Load Behavior
Analysis Model
Average Recirculation
Sample Problem
Decrease Load Sensitivity
Review exercise
Off Line Exercise
Velocity Curve

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1. Title Page 2. Page Index

Chapter 8 covers the basics of vibratory Listed here are all the text pages in
feeding of small parts. It begins with a Chapter 8 by title. Each text page is
description of bowl feeders and how they hyperlinked to its specific location in the
operate. A detailed analysis is then chapter. It is recommended that the
undertaken of the mechanics of small part reader first proceed through all pages in
feeding on a flat plate conveyor. With this the chapter sequentially. Any specific text
understanding any specified flat plate page can then be revisited by clicking on
conveyor motion can be analyzed to the title after returning to the index page.
determine average part velocity. Some of
the generic characteristics of the more
complex feeding of small parts with bowl
feeders are then discussed and some
general guidelines are presented useful in
the application of bowl feeders.

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3. Vibratory Bowl Feeder 4. Bowl displacement

The workhorse of small part feeders in The alternating force imparted by the
automated assembly operations is the electromagnet on the bowl causes the
vibratory bowl feeder. It consists of a upper ends of the springs to be displaced
circular bowl with a flat bottom surface perpendicular to their axes as shown in the
supported by a series of inclined springs graphic. This can be represented
that attach to a stationary support base. mathematically as some normal
Around the bowl’s circumference is a spiral displacement a0 multiplied by a sinusoidal
flat track that proceeds from the bowl function in time. Physically this creates a
bottom to some elevated outlet. The bowl combined alternating vertical and torsional
is driven by an electromagnet that is fed motion of the bowl. At the edge of the
with an alternating current. This exerts an bowl where the track is located this
alternating force on the bowl. The movement can be approximated by a
resulting motion of the bowl is described in horizontal oscillation and a vertical
detail on he next page. oscillation whose components are
dependent on the angle of the spring
inclination. Any small part on the track will
be subjected to these displacement inputs
and undergo some resulting dynamic

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5. Part Mechanics Model 6. Oscillating Flat Plate Conveyor

To analyze the dynamic response of a part The advantage of considering the

subjected to the bowl motion the model movement of a block on a flat oscillating
employed is a rectangular block resting on an conveyor is that the block remains in
inclined plane. The angle theta corresponds to contact with the surface as it moves
the angle of the track relative to the bottom of
relative to the plate. Hence the model now
the bowl. Coordinate axes F and N for the
motion of the block are directed parallel and consists of a flat plate that oscillates
normal to the incline for convenience. There horizontally in some fashion with a block
are two forces that will influence the movement resting on its surface. The motion that may
of the block. The first is its weight W that take place is that the block may slide
always acts vertically down. The second is a forward or it may slide backward or it may
positive or negative frictional force parallel to remain stationary. The objective however
the incline provided the block is in contact with is to understand the response of the
the surface. In addition the block is subjected system such that a plate oscillation can be
to the sinusoidal motion of the inclined track specified such that the block will move in
represented by the expression s equals a0 sin
the plus x direction. This is demonstrated
omega t. Depending on the magnitude of the
track oscillation and the forces on the block by the following animation. Note that there
four possible motions can take place. The is actually some negative motion of the
block can remain stationary, it can slide block but the effect of the total response is
forward, it can slide backward or it can hop off that the block moves to the plus x end of
the track or combinations of these can take the plate.
place. Describing the responsive motion of the
block analytically is a very complex process
and will not be attempted here. However the
mechanics of a part on an oscillating flat plate
conveyor will be studied in some detail to
provide insight into the vibratory feeding

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7. Conveyor Velocity 8. Part Mechanics

The motion of the conveyor will be analyzed Now the mechanics of the block representing a
first. This will be done studying its velocity part will be analyzed. Assume positive
versus time curve. Assume the plate starts conveyor and part velocities with the velocity of
with zero velocity and increases linearly for the conveyor greater than the part. The friction
some period of time. Since the slope of the force between the part and conveyor will be to
curve is positive it means the plate has the right creating a positive acceleration for the
undergone a constant positive acceleration a0. part that will result in its sliding forward in the
At the end of this period the plate is subjected positive x direction. Newton’ second law, that
to an equal but opposite negative acceleration. is force equals mass times acceleration, is now
Its velocity begins to decrease until it passes applied to the part in the x direction. This gives
through zero and then begins to increase the frictional force, mu, the coefficient of
negatively. Note that the constant slope of this friction, times the part weight W equal to the
second portion of the velocity curve is minus mass represented by the weight W divided by
a0. Finally the plate is again accelerated with the gravitational constant g times the
positive acceleration a0 until the velocity acceleration a. Solving for the acceleration
comes back to zero completing one cycle of gives a equal to mu times g. Note that this is a
oscillation. From basic mechanics the area constant as long as the velocity of the conveyor
under the first half of the curve A1 represents is greater than the velocity of the part. Now
the forward movement of the plate. The consider the case where the part velocity is
negative area under the second half of the greater than that of the conveyor. In this
curve A2 represents the backward movement instance the frictional force due to slippage is
of the plate. If the plate is to return to its directed in the negative x direction. Applying
original position at the end of the cycle these Newton’s second law as in the pervious case
two areas must be equal. This further indicates results in the acceleration of the part being a
that the maximum and minimum velocity values negative mu g. Again this is a constant as long
of the oscillation must be equal. Analytically as the part velocity is greater than the conveyor
this is represented by recognizing that distance velocity. This will now be applied to a part
traveled s is the integral of v dt. Integration subjected to the conveyor velocity diagram of
over the cycle gives A1 – A2. For s to be zero, the previous page.
that is, no net displacement of the plate then
A1 must be equal to A2.

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9. Part Motion (one cycle) 10. Part Movement (one cycle)

Assume that the part is placed on the The displacements and effective
conveyor at time zero with a zero velocity movement of the conveyor and the part
as the conveyor velocity begins to can be represented and interpreted by a
increase. Since the conveyor velocity is comparative graphic of their displacement
greater than that of the part the part will vectors for one cycle. The conveyor
accelerate at mu g which is less than the moves forward and back the same amount
conveyor acceleration. The velocity of the returning to its initial starting position since
part increases linearly as shown on the area cap A1 is equal to area cap A2. The
graphic. The instant after the two part however moves forward farther than it
velocities are the same the conveyor moves back since area small a1 is greater
velocity will drop below that of the part so than area small a2. The consequence is
that it will decelerate at the rate of mu g that effective forward motion of the part
causing its velocity to decrease linearly. has taken place. Thus the motion
This behavior will continue until the two simulated by the earlier animation has
velocities are again equal. At this point the been achieved. The only question that
conveyor velocity becomes greater than remains to be answered is whether this will
that of the part so the part will begin continue for subsequent cycles of the
accelerating at mu g causing its velocity to conveyor.
increase linearly a second time. At the end
of the conveyor cycle the part velocity is
still increasing. For this single cycle of the
conveyor the area a1 represents the
positive displacement of the part while
area a2 represents its negative
displacement. Since a1 is obviously
greater than a2 the part has moved
forward on the plate.

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11. Average Part Velocity 12. Forward Part Movement

Unfortunately, since the acceleration and To begin with the conveyor velocity curve must
deceleration of the conveyor are equal in be non symmetrical since the previous choice
magnitude the part movement will behave the didn’t give the result desired. Intuitively it
same with respective to the plus V and minus V would seem that a conveyor motion that
directions irrespective of when the part is combined a slow forward motion with a rapid
placed on the conveyor after a number of return should help. The conveyor velocity
cycles have transpired. It is intuitively obvious curve in the graphic achieves this condition and
that the part will oscillate back and forth some will return faster to its original starting position
but will effectively remain in the same location provided area A1 is equal to area A2. In this
on the conveyor. Hence, the average velocity instance the positive acceleration of the
of the part will be zero even though conveyor is chosen to be just equal to mu g.
displacement for a single cycle may be Now when the part is placed on the conveyor
positive. The question now is what must be at the beginning of the first cycle its velocity will
done to the conveyor velocity curve to obtain a increase linearly the same as the conveyor.
positive average velocity for the part? Try to However when the conveyor starts slowing
answer this question for yourself before going down more rapidly than before it velocity will be
on to the next page. less than that of the part so the block will
decelerate with acceleration minus mu g and it
velocity will decrease linearly. If the cycle
period for the conveyor is chosen properly both
its velocity and that of the part will become zero
at the same time. Then the next cycle for the
conveyor and part will repeat what took place
in the first cycle. This will continue for all
subsequent cycles. In this instance it is seen
that that the part will experience a positive
displacement in each cycle and hence will
attain an average velocity in the positive
direction. There is only further question to be
answered and that is what happens if the part
is placed on the conveyor at times other than
the beginning of a cycle.

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13. Different Starting Points 14. Vibratory Bowl Part Movement

The same conveyor velocity curve as on the Now that the flat conveyor feeding problem is
previous page will be used to answer the understood the vibratory bowl conveyor
different starting point question. If a part is problem will be revisited. As mentioned earlier
placed on the conveyor at the beginning of the the part motion behavior in this circumstance is
cycle its behavior will be as on the previous much more complex because the part can hop
page shown for three cycles on the graphic. on the inclined track as will as slide. The
Now place a second part on the conveyor at graphic illustrates one such possible motion.
some point in the middle of its forward motion. At the beginning of the cycle the part slides
Using the analysis technique developed it is forward. This is followed by a greater amount
seen that after three cycles it approaches the of backward sliding at the end of which the part
steady state curve of the first part. Now place leaves the track. In this instance the part hops
a third part on the conveyor somewhere in the forward a significant distance at which time the
return portion of the first conveyor cycle. Again cycle begins again. Hence there is effective
it is observed that this part also approaches the forward motion imparted to the part but it
behavior of the steady state motion of the first movement is complex. This type of complex
part. What is taking place is that the second dynamic response has been mathematically
and third parts are undergoing transient motion analyzed but is more specialized than needed
until they reach the steady motion represented here. Hence only some of the general results of
by the first part. Hence, it can be concluded this form of study will be covered.
that all three parts will achieve the same final
average velocity following some transient
motion. One final comment before leaving this
topic is that all types of conveyor velocity
behaviors can be proposed to achieve different
final steady motion of the part. Try devising a
conveyor behavior that will achieve a final part
velocity that is almost equal to the maximum
positive velocity of the conveyor.

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15. Drive Parameters 16. Movement Limits

The definition of several parameters will be The complex nature of a part’s response
of value before proceeding with a as a function of normal acceleration and
discussion of some of the generic behavior drive angle is illustrated in the graphic.
of vibratory bowls. Two of the most This chart provides boundary limits for the
important variables used to present generic type of response that will take
response behavior are the drive angle and place. It is interpreted as follows. For a
the normal displacement or acceleration. moderate drive angle and moderate
As illustrated on the graphic the drive acceleration, point A, the part will undergo
angle is the angle of inclination of the drive both forward and backward sliding. For
motion direction measured relative t the the same drive angle but higher
track on which the parts move. The acceleration, point B, the part will slide
normal amplitude ao is the positive forward and backward as well as leave the
component of the bowl motion measured track. That is, it will experience a hop. For
perpendicular to the track. In a similar moderate acceleration and a high drive
fashion the normal acceleration is the angle, Point C, the part will only
normal amplitude multiplied by omega, the experience forward sliding. Note that there
angular frequency of the drive motion, are regions in which no motion will take
squared assuming the drive motion can be place. Also it must be kept in mind that
represented as being sinusoidal in form. this graphic only indicates what type of
motion will take place. It does not indicate
what the magnitude of the displacements
will be. However, it does dramatically
illustrate how complex the dynamic
response of the part can be. Intuitively,
can you guess what acceleration defines
the boundary for leaving the track?

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17. Mean Conveying Velocity 18. Effective Hop

Now consider how the mean conveying Next consider the effective hop a part
velocity of the part is affected by normal might experience. Again the chart is
amplitude and drive angle. Although represented as being generic but it too was
generic in form the chart shown was derived by mathematical analysis of the
derived from the mathematical analysis of complex response of the part to the bowl
the part motion for a specified small track motion. Effective hop can be interpreted
angle. It indicates that for a given value of as the distance traveled forward by the
normal amplitude a decrease in the drive part from the time it leaves the track until it
angle results in an increase in the average again is in contact with it. Here again it is
conveying velocity. Does this seem seen that for constant normal amplitude
intuitively correct? Why? To keep the the effective hop increases as the drive
mean velocity constant an increase in the angle decreases. Note that for very low
drive angle would require an increase in values of normal amplitude this effect is
the normal amplitude. Does this seem reversed. There are also values of normal
physically correct? Can you explain it? amplitude below which no hop will occur
for a given track angle.

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19. Important Characteristics 20. Load Sensitivity

There are other generic response Load sensitivity relates to the phenomena
characteristics similar to the two just that the feed rate of parts from a vibratory
described that can also be developed. In bowl changes as the part load in the bowl
reality, however, it is extremely difficult to decreases. This is not surprising as the
predicate numerically what the final bowl together with the parts is a mass
average velocity of a part will be. In spring system subjected to a forcing
practice the exact operating conditions of function. Thus the bowl performance
the feeding bowl are generally developed changes as it empties and the mass of the
experimentally based on previous system decreases. Initially a decrease in
experience with similar size and weight of the bowl load will result in an increase in
parts. However, following are some part velocity. As the bowl empties the part
generalized important characteristics that velocity is governed by the bowl bottom.
are well worthwhile keeping in mind. A That normally results in a subsequent
zero track angle will produce the highest decrease in the part velocity. Generally it
part velocity. Forward conveying is really is desirable to overfeed the assembly
restricted to small track angles. In practice machine but excessive overfeeding results
track angles seldom exceed a few in increased part recirculation that could
degrees. Because of the first lead to part damage.
characteristic parts in the bottom of the
bowl travel faster than parts on the track.
Thus parts on the track are pushed along
by the parts from the bottom of the bowl.
This can in turn lead to the pushed parts
jamming the orienting device or falling off
the track back to the bowl bottom to be
recirculated. In reality the feed rate will
effectively be governed by the zero angle
track velocity. Hence the value of
understanding flat plate conveyor behavior

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21. Typical Load Behavior 22. Analysis Model

The graphic illustrates the effect of load The initial behavior of the bowl operation
change on part feed rate from a bowl as load is decreased is modeled as a
feeder. It is observed that in the bowl as straight line increase in feed rate as
delivered part feed rate increases as the depicted in the graphic. Using the
part load decreases. At a little less than parameters as defined to the right of the
half load it is seen that the part feed rate figure the slope of the behavior curve can
begins to decrease returning to about what be written as the quantity F sub R minus F
it was at full load. From full to half load the sub M divided by L sub P which is the
feed rate doubles. If the system was portion of the load fed before the bowl is
designed to just overfeed the machine at reloaded to its starting operation point.
full load there would be significant part The feed rate F sub P can then be written
recirculation taking place at half load. This as F sub M plus L sub P times P, the
is not very desirable. One way to correct portion of the load fed at the feed rate F
this situation is to stiffen the bowl. This sub P. The average part recirculation at P
shifts the bowl operation on its resonance is now desired.
response curve and can result in behavior
as depicted by the lower curve. Another
technique used to solve this problem is to
reload the bowl after a portion of its initial
load has been fed. To gain an insight into
how serious this problem can be a model
will now be developed to estimate the
magnitude of potential part recirculation.

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25. Average Recirculation 26. Sample Problem

Without going into the details of its Apply the recirculation formula to the data
development the average recirculation can from the typical load behavior curve
be expressed in terms of the integral introduced earlier. Calculate the average
expression shown where R represents a recirculation when the bowl is refilled after
measure of the recirculation. Carrying out it becomes half empty. Then calculate the
the integration gives the expression recirculation when only one quarter of the
indicated in terms of the parameters load is fed before it is refilled. Did the
defined in the model on the previous page. recirculation change in the direction you
If R is zero there is no recirculation. If R is expected. You can check your results by
one the recirculation is 100%. Note that if clicking on the solution 1 and 2 buttons.
L sub P is zero the formula gives a value of When you finish viewing the solutions and
zero for R. Hence the model assumes no return click on the next page button.
overfeed at the initial full load operating

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23. Decrease Load Sensitivity 24. Review exercise

There are several techniques available to This review consists of three multiple-
limit the effects of load sensitivity on the choice questions. Click on the letter block
change in feeding characteristics of a following each question with your choice of
given bowl. The first is to sense the level answer. You will be provided with an
of the load and use a second bowl to feed immediate text feedback. If you wish to
the primary feeder. A second technique is review the principle underlining the
to shift the dynamic response curve of the question and its correct answer click on the
bowl by changing its spring constant. This hot word in the question statement. After
usually requires increasing the spring finishing all three questions proceed on to
stiffness as was the case with the typical the next page.
example presented earlier. The third
technique is to use an external feed track Question 1
separate from the bowl and operate the
bowl intermittently. A fourth technique is to A. This answer is incorrect. If the part is
provide feedback control to the bowl to sliding backward the conveyor velocity is
hold its amplitude of oscillation constant greater than the part velocity giving rise to
irrespective of the load. Click on the photo a positive part acceleration.
button to view a picture of the first
technique in application. A bowl feeding B. Yes, this is the correct answer.
motor rotors is being monitored by a level Backward sliding results in a frictional force
sensing device on the left and is being in the plus x direction producing a positive
feed additional rotors intermittently by a flat acceleration.
conveyor at the top of the photo. After
closing the pop up window proceed to the
next page.

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27. Review Exercise (continued…) 28. Off Line Exercise

Question 2 This off line exercise deals with the

analysis of a specific flat plate part
A. This answer is not correct. If the conveyor. Using the velocity curve for the
displacement at the end of a cycle is conveyor as defined on the next page
negative or less than zero the conveyor answer the three specific questions listed
has overshot its starting point. on this page. If you can do this
successfully you will have demonstrated to
B. Yes, this is the correct answer. If the yourself that you understand the theory
displacement at the end of a cycle is zero and application of the analysis technique
the conveyor will have just returned to its developed earlier in this chapter.
starting point.

C. This answer is not correct. If the

displacement at the end of a cycle is
positive or greater than zero the conveyor
will have fallen short of getting back to its
starting point.

Question 3

A. This answer is correct. If the conveyor

velocity is less than the part velocity then
the part is sliding forward creating a
negative frictional force and a negative

B. This answer is incorrect. The stated

condition results in forward sliding of the
part producing a negative friction force and
corresponding negative acceleration.
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29. Velocity Curve

After viewing the velocity curve as long as

you choose click on the main menu button
to exit the module or select another

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Chapter 9
Part Delivery Rate

Screen Titles
Feed Rate Factors
Natural Resting Positions
Distribution Chart
Numerical Values
Initial Distribution Matrix
Part Requiring Orientation
Average Part length
Orientation System
Generic Device Matrix
Sample Matrix 1
Sample Matrix 2
Designing Orienting Devices
System Matrix
Wiper Blade and Narrow
Matrix Multiplication
System Efficiency
Feed Rate Formula
Calculating Feed Rate
Review Exercise
Off Line Exercise

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1. Title Page 2. Page Index

The issues dealing with the automated Listed here are all the text pages in
orientation and final feeding of small parts Chapter 9 by title. Each text page is
are covered in Chapter 9. The topics hyperlinked to its specific location in the
discussed include: the description of the chapter. It is recommended that the
natural resting position of parts in terms of reader first proceed through all pages in
an initial distribution matrix, using the initial the chapter sequentially. Any specific text
distribution matrix to determine average page can then be revisited by clicking on
part length, passive orientation devices the title after returning to the index page.
that make use of part geometry, describing
the orientation process in terms of device
and system matrices, using the initial
distribution and system matrices to
determine orientation efficiency, and finally
combining all these factors into
quantitatively determining the final feed

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3. Feed Rate Factors 4. Natural Resting Positions

As parts are delivered from a vibratory The distribution of part orientations as

bowl they will have a variety of delivered by a bowl feeder is the first topic
orientations. Chapter 8 concentrated on to be considered. This is customarily
part delivery velocity. That is only one of referred to as the natural resting position of
the factors that determines part feed rate the parts. The graphic illustrated the four
to the assembly operation. Before being natural resting positions of a cup shaped
presented to the assembly work head the part as it might come from a feeder. Note
parts must pass through some type of that the two additional possible positions of
process that provides only parts of the the part of it sitting with its central axis
proper orientation. The rates at which perpendicular to the back of the track are
these oriented parts are delivered are not included, as they are not stable resting
dependent on three other factors. The first positions. The question now is what
is the distribution of part orientations as percentage of the parts being feed as
delivered by the feeder. The second factor shown will be in position a, b1, b2 and c?
deals with the physical size of the part and This is what is meant by the initial part
the third factor is how the parts are distribution.
oriented into the final desired position.

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5. Distribution Chart 6. Numerical Values

How parts will be distributed is dependent The values for A of 0.52 and B of 0.77 from
on their shape, how their dimensions are the previous page are interpreted as
related and the location of their center of follows. Fifty two % of all the parts will be
gravity. A number of classical shapes in orientation a. Parts b1 and b2 share the
have been studied both analytically and orientation probabilities between points A
experimentally. The graphic illustrates a and B. It is not unreasonable to assume
chart that provides the results of such that they will share this equally. Hence,
studies for the cup part on the previous the percentage of parts in positions b1 and
page. It gives the probability of the resting b2 are 12.5% each which is one half the
position as a function of the length to difference between values A and B in
diameter ratio of the part for a specific percentage. Finally, the percentage of
center of gravity location. Note that the parts in orientation c will be the difference
surface of the track is also specified. between a probability of one and the 0.77
Assume that the part of interest has an l value at point B. Note that the four
over d ratio of 0.4. Hence, it is a little orientation percentages add to 100%,
squat in appearance. A vertical line drawn which accounts for all the parts.
through l over d of 0.4 intersect the lower
curve at a probability of 0.52, point A, and
the upper curve at 0.77, point B. Below
point A the part will be in orientation a.
Above point B the part will be in orientation
c and in between the two curves the
orientation will be b1 or b2.

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7. Initial Distribution Matrix 8. Puzzler

It is convenient to express this delivered Unfortunately, the natural resting positions

orientation distribution in terms of a matrix for only a limited number of classical
of probabilities. This is referred to as the shapes like the cup part have been studied
initial distribution matrix or IDM and is and the results documented. Hence,
expressed in single row form as illustrated quantitative information such as on the
for the natural resting positions of the cup previous probability chart is difficult to
part. Again note that the sum of the come by. For unusual shaped parts it is
probabilities is one so that all the parts are effectively non-existent. That raises the
accounted for in this format. Further note following question: If no chart or data is
that this is a one row by four-column available for a specific small part
matrix. This is important as related to distribution how might you estimate what it
some matrix multiplication that will take might be? If you have problems coming up
place later. with a simple answer and, yes, there really
is one, click on the hint button for some

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9. Part Requiring Orientation 10. Average Part length

Shown in the graphic is a simulated Before going on to the subject of

rectangular part whose sides have three orientation there is another property of the
different dimensions. It is desired to feed part distribution that needs to be
this part such that only the orientation a is considered. This is a parameter called the
presented to the work head for the average part length. It permits the
assembly process. In this instance it is determination of the average number of
seen that as the part is delivered by some un-oriented parts that will pass a given
vibratory feeder it can have six different point if the velocity at which the parts are
natural resting positions. It can rest on any moving forward is known. In other words,
one of its three sides with two different the average number of parts per unit time
orientations. As might be expected the passing a specific point on the feed track
probabilities associated with it resting on before orientation is simply equal to the
side three are the greatest. The resting velocity of the parts divided by the average
probabilities then decrease, as the resting part length. This parameter of average
side is two and then finally one. With part length is determined by multiplying the
these probabilities as given the initial initial distribution matrix by what is called
distribution matrix is defined. You might the length matrix of the part. The length
just write out the [IDM] for practice. Next matrix is a column matrix of the part
consider how the final single orientation of lengths parallel to the track for the
this part might be accomplished. orientation order in the [IDM]. The
example shown gives the length matrix for
the rectangular part described on the
previous page. Multiplication of the two
matrices results in a scalar value that for
this example gives an average part length
of 17.28 mm.

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11. Orientation System 12. Generic Device Matrix

The most common method used to orient The behavior of any orienting device can
parts takes advantage of the parts be expressed by a multiple column row
geometry. This is accomplished with what matrix. In the graphic the rows of the
are called passive orienting devices. Two matrix represent the orientation of the parts
such devices are illustrated in the graphic entering the device while the columns
for the part under consideration. The first represent the orientation leaving the
device is a wiper blade that is designed device. The interpretation of the matrix
with a gap between its lower edge and the element a sub aa is that it represents the
track of 12 mm. All parts that present percentage of parts that enter in the
themselves to the wiper blade with a orientation a that will leave in orientation a.
dimension greater than 12 mm will simply In other words if a sub aa is 1 then all parts
be wiped of the track and sent back to the a pass through the device without having
bowl to be feed again. For the rectangular their orientation changed. Thus element a
part under consideration this will eliminate sub ab would be zero as well as all other
parts c and d that have a height of 14.3 elements in the first row since the sum of
mm and parts e and f that have a height of all elements in any given row must be one.
20 mm. Only parts a and b pass under the In the second row element a sub ba
wiper. To eliminate part b a narrowed represents the percentage of parts
track of 8 mm is employed. Then as parts entering with orientation b that leave the
a and b pass across the narrowed track device in orientation a. Thus what
parts b will fall back into the bowl since its happens to a part that enters with any
center of gravity will be over the edge of specific orientation is determined by
the track. Thus only part a passes from reading across a row and up a column. In
the vibratory feeder to the work head as general this means the a sub ij represents
desired. the percentage of parts that enter in
orientation i that leave in orientation j. In
this fashion the operation of any orientation
device can be expressed numerically.

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13. Sample Matrix 1 14. Sample Matrix 2

In this example a wiper blade is used to In this example only parts with orientation
provide orientation to a rectangular block with a a are desired to be delivered. Assuming
square cross section. The block approaches that parts are fed to the device in positions
the device with three possible natural resting a and b a V shaped cut out is used to
positions. These are represented by
eliminate and return to the bowl parts b.
orientations a, b and c. Thus the device matrix
will require three rows. Since orientations c will This is accomplished by a cut out which
be wiped of the track by the blade the only takes advantage of the size of the base of
output orientations will be a and b. The b and the location of the parts center of
orientation matrix will therefore possess only gravity to have the parts tip off the track.
two columns. With all of parts a and b passing Since parts a have a larger base they will
under the wiper and leaving the device a one is pass over the cut off provided they are up
placed in the first row and first column positions against the back of the track wall. Those
as well as the second row second column that are sufficiently forward toward the
location. All of the remainder elements in the outer edge will fall off just like parts b.
matrix are zero. In other words all a parts pass
Hence, not all of parts a will pass through
through the device with none reoriented into
position b. Similarly all b parts pass through the device. The orientation matrix for this
the device with none reoriented into any other device will have two rows representing
position. Finally all of the c parts are returned orientations a and b but only one column
to the bowl so none of them are reoriented into representing parts a that pass through.
either a or b orientations. Most orienting However, not all of parts a will make it over
devices are designed to remove parts whose the cut off. Thus the element in the first
orientations are not desired leaving only the row first column position of the matrix is
desired existing orientation to pass on. some value less than one. In this case the
However it is also possible to design devices matrix indicates that 80% of parts a pass
that actually change a parts orientation.
through successfully. Again this is an
example where the unwanted part
orientation is eliminated rather than

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 9

15. Designing Orienting Devices 16. System Matrix

Designing effective and efficient orienting Most part orientation is accomplished with
devices that take advantage of a part’s unique several different devices that act in series.
geometry requires a combination of
imagination and creativity. In addition to the
Together these devices are referred to as
part geometry its center of gravity can also play an orientation system. Creating the matrix
an important part in devising a passive that describes the behavior of an
orienting device. There are generally two orientation system is simply a matter of
approaches to passive orientation. The first, multiplying together the matrices that
which includes the examples already represent the individual devices as
discussed, is simply to eliminate the part with indicated in the first equation on the page.
the orientation that is not desired by returning This is illustrated generically in the
the part from the feed track to the vibratory example by the three matrices a times b, b
bowl to be refed. Perhaps these devices might times c, and c times d. Assume that all
better be called part elimination devices. The
second approach is to create a device that will
orientation is a consequence of part
actually produce a reorientation of the part from elimination. In the first device b will be less
its original resting position to some other than a since fewer part orientations will exit
orientation. Try your luck at coming up with then entered. This is similarly true in the
passive device designs for the three cases second and third devices. Hence, c will be
illustrated. In Case 1 a flat rectangular part is less than b and if only one orientation
to be reoriented to exit the device sitting on its remains then d will be one. Carrying out
long edge. In Case 2 the bolt shaped part is to this multiplication results in a system
be delivered oriented vertically with the cap on matrix that will consist of a rows and d
top. In Case 3 a rectangular part is to be columns. Since only one orientation is
reoriented such that it stands on its smallest
face with its intermediate face against the back
desired at the end of the system this will be
of the track as in its approach orientation. If a column matrix with rows equal to the
you need some help with this click on the hint number of part orientations that entered
button to few a list of some of the common the system. The general rule required in
devices in use for both elimination and matrix multiplication that the columns of
reorientation. the first matrix must be equal to the rows in
the second matrix must always be satisfied
in computing the system matrix.
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17. Wiper Blade and Narrow Track 18. Matrix Multiplication

The system matrix for the wiper blade and The graphic indicates the manner in which
the narrow track that was used to eliminate two elements in the resulting c matrix are
all but one orientation of the rectangular determined from the elements in the a and
part in the earlier example will now be b matrices. The elements involved and the
determined using the process described on computations are color coded for ease of
the previous page. To begin with the wiper understanding and following the process.
blade is represented by a 6 by 2 matrix Remember that in matrix multiplication it is
that indicates that all input orientations are always across the row and down the
eliminated except a and b which pass column. When you are finished with this
through unchanged. Parts a and b then page click on the return button to go back
pass over the narrow track that eliminates to the next page in sequence in the
all b parts. Hence, the narrow track matrix chapter.
has two rows and one column indicating
that only part a passes through. These
two matrices can now be multiplied
together since the columns of the first are
equal to the rows of the second. The
result is a column matrix with 6 rows. The
numbers in brackets below the matrices
designate the row column relationship for
the multiplication process. If you would
like to review matrix multiplication click the
recall button to see how it is done.
Otherwise go on to the next page.

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19. System Efficiency 20. Feed Rate Formula

The concept of system efficiency can now All factors are now defined to calculate the
be introduced. The system efficiency of a feed rate of final oriented parts per unit
complete orienting system is defined as time. This is done with the generic formula
the percentage of the total parts fed to the on this page. The feed rate in parts per
system that are delivered through the unit time is equal to the product of the
system in the orientation desired. system efficiency multiplied by the mean
Numerically it is determined by multiplying part velocity divided by the average part
the initial distribution matrix times the length. Recall that the average part length
complete system matrix. Since the initial is given by the product of the initial
distribution matrix is a single row matrix distribution matrix times the length matrix
and the final system matrix is a single while the efficiency is the product of the
column matrix multiplying the two together initial distribution matrix times the system
will produce a scalar product that is a matrix of the orienting devices. The mean
single number. This multiplication is part velocity can be estimated from
carried out on this page for the rectangular techniques from the previous chapter or by
part example under study. The result is experimentation.
that the efficiency is equal to 42 %. In
other words of all the parts delivered to the
wiper blade and narrow track 42 percent
will come through the system in orientation
a which was desired. The result in this
instance is essentially obvious since 42
percent of the parts were in the natural
resting position a to start with and the
wiper and narrow track simply eliminated
all the others. However, if some
reorientation of other parts had taken place
then the answer would not be obvious.

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21. Calculating Feed Rate 22. Review Exercise

For the example problem involving the In this exercise complete the first four
rectangular part a numerical part feed rate mathematical equations with the
can now be determined if a value is appropriate mathematical symbol or
assumed for the mean part velocity. For expression. You will receive an immediate
the sake of argument consider a part feed back by pressing the tab key. Press
velocity V of 35 mm or about 1.5 inches the tab key a second time too go on to
per second. With an efficiency of 42% and another blank space. In the last equation
an average part length of 17.28 mm the the blanks require words rather than
part feed rate becomes 0.85 parts per mathematical symbols. If you need any
second. Obviously this formula can be help click on the hot word in the respective
used to determine what the average part equation. When finished click on the next
velocity needs to be from the vibratory page button.
feeder to provide a specified feed rate.
Now go on to the review exercise for this
chapter and an off line exercise that is
more involved than this example problem.

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23. Off Line Exercise 24. Questions

This exercise makes use of all the material The first question implies that the feed rate
covered in this chapter and a little more. of the desired oriented part can be
Note that instead of the average part determined without the average part
velocity the bowl delivery rate is given in velocity being specified. This is true but
parts per second prior to the orienting you will need to establish how that can be
system. Another difference from the done with the information given. The part
example in the chapter is that reorientation velocity from the bowl is addressed in the
of some parts takes place in the orienting second question where a feed rate is
system. The two questions to be specified and the average part velocity
answered for this problem situation are needs to be determined. When you
given on the next page. understand the specifications of the
problem and the questions click on the
menu button to return to the main menu.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 10

Chapter 10
Module Summary

Screen Titles
Chapter – 1
Chapter – 2
Chapter – 3
Chapter – 4
Chapter – 5
Chapter – 6
Chapter – 7
Chapter – 8
Chapter – 9

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 10

Summary - 150 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004
Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 10

1. Title Page 2. Page Index

Chapter 10 reviews what the reader should Listed below are all the text pages in Chapter
have learned from the module by providing a 10 by title.. Each text page is hyperlinked to its
brief summary of all the preceding chapters. A specific location in the chapter. It is
knowledge of this material coupled with the recommended that the reader first proceed
experience derived by completing all the through all pages in the chapter sequentially.
included and off line exercises will not by itself Any specific text page can then be revisited by
make the reader an expert in the application of returning to the page index and clicking on the
DFA. However, it will provide the reader with page title. To facilitate returning to a previous
the necessary tools to become a user of the chapter for some detailed review needs each
process and with practice an effective and page is also provided with a return to main
successful practitioner. menu button.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 10

3. Chapter 1 Summary 4. Chapter 2 Summary

The educational objective of chapter 1 was to The educational objective of chapter 2 was to
present the arguments for why DFA is so present how assembly could be both defined,
important. It began with a consideration of the described and illustrated. It was first
features of the manufacturing environment of recognized that assembly consists of three
today and the demands and requirements this operational functions; handling, composing and
environment places on product development checking. These functions were further
for success in the world market place. The subdivided into storing, transporting and
traditional role of design and manufacturing positioning for handling; means and
working in isolation from one another will no mechanisms for composing and presence,
longer meet the needs manufacturing today. position and quality of composition for
The entire process of material and information checking. This process higharchy together
flow in manufacturing must now be totally with the assembly object classifications of
integrated and proceed interactively. It exists machine parts, subassemblies, components,
as a matrix of functions that constantly base components and formless materials
exchange information and results. Even a brief provided an operational definition of assembly.
consideration of product cycle costs indicates Reasons for assembly in terms of needs for
that the greatest impact on the success of a separate parts was established by
product can be made in its early design phase requirements such as movement, material
differentiation, production concerns,
replacability, functional requirements and
aesthetics. Finally the parts sequence diagram
was introduced as a graphical illustration of the
order in which parts go together in a product
and the assembly sequence or process flow
diagram was presented as a means of showing
what functions are required and their order in
the physical assembly of a device.

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5. Chapter 3 - Summary 6. Chapter 4 - Summary

The educational objective of chapter 3 was to The objective of chapter 4 was to describe and
provide an overview to the reader of currently illustrate with examples the principles of design
used assembly systems to provide a basis of for assembly as applied to product design.
appreciation for how the principles of DFA Seven specific principles were presented.
might impact the process. The presentation These included building the product on a
began with the three methods of assembly: suitable base oriented horizontally. Layering
manual (or by hand), automated (by single or stacking the components on this base by
purpose machines) and flexible (by means of vertical down insertion. Using
programmable robots). In terms of unit cost modular and multifunctional parts to simplify
manual was the least expensive for low the design and subsequent models.
production rates, automated was the least Accommodating for both dimensional and
expensive for very high production rates and alignment errors to insure easy composition.
flexible feel somewhere between these later Simplifying and reducing the number of
two. In the discussion of assembly systems it fasteners consistent with good composition.
was first recognized that types required three Minimizing the total number of parts in the
basic components, a transfer device, a parts product. And finally either eliminating or
feeder and a work station. Depending on how facilitating the handling of flexible items. A
the product moved through the system three method for identifying potential redundant parts
line categories were defined: an indexing was presented in terms of three criteria. If the
system in which the product movement was part didn’t have to move relative to adjacent
synchronized, a free transfer system where parts, didn’t have to be of a different material
product moved on an as needed basis made for functional reasons and didn’t have to be a
possible by buffers and a continuous system separate part for assembly or disassembly
where the product moved continuously along then it was very likely the part was redundant
the line. Finally three geometric configurations and could be designed out with some
for these system were described. These creativity.
included the rotary, carousel and in-line

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7. Chapter 5 - Summary 8. Chapter 6 - Summary

The objective of chapter 5 was to describe and The objective of chapter 6 was to show the
illustrate by examples the principles of design reader how to perform a DFA analysis of a
for assembly as applied to the design of parts product and how to use the analysis to develop
to facilitate their feeding and orienting. Special change candidates for redesign that would
emphasis was placed on these two activities improve the product assemblability. The steps
since in any assembly process they are a very of this process included first separating the
significant portion of the entire process. Three product into it component parts. The second
specific topics were addressed relating to both step was to perform a DFA system analysis,
internal and external geometric part features. i.e. what principles of DFA were violated in the
The first being the avoidance of part geometry original design. With this information the third
that might result in tangling, overlapping and step becomes using the principles of DFA to
nesting. The second was the value of resolve the problems and violation identified in
maximizing the symmetry of the parts external step two. The final step is to incorporate the
geometry. Finally the possible emphasizing of changes and evaluate the improvement in
external asymmetric part geometry when assemblability which have been achieved.
symmetry was neither possible nor beneficial. From the commercial example presented a
valuable lesson was learned. Application of
DFA and design for assemblability must be
part of the total design process from the first
day of the product development cycle.

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9. Chapter 7 - Summary 10. Chapter 8 - Summary

The objective of Chapter 7 was to describe and The objective of chapter 8 was to provide the
illustrate a numerical tool that provides the reader with an appreciation for and some
means to quantify the ease of assembly of a quantitative insight into the mechanics of the
product design for the purpose of comparing vibratory feeding of small parts. This was
alternatives to improve the quality of the accomplished by considering in some detail
assembly. The basis of the tool resides in the operation of both vibratory bowl feeders
three steps. The first is to assign numerical and flat plate conveyors. Following an
values to part to the assembly events of introduction to bowl feeder operation a
feeding, insertion and fastening into the sufficiently detailed analysis of vibratory flat
product. In the second step these values are conveyor dynamic response was presented to
treated as the orthogonal components of permit the determination of average part
vector whose magnitude is a measure of the velocity given a prescribed conveyor motion.
assembly merit of the part. The third step is The complexity of part movement in bowl
the analysis of the possible redundancy of feeders was revisited with examples of
each part to determine its potential for selected generic studies of potential motion
elimination from the design. With this responses as well as input acceleration and
information two product merit figures are track angle effects on part velocity and hop
defined. One is the combined average merit behavior. Some general guidelines were
that measures the overall feeding, insertion presented applicable to bowl feeder use. The
and fastening of all the parts. The second is subject was completed with a brief overview of
the product assembly merit that accounts for the effect of bowl loading on part recirculation.
the impact of the redundant parts. The
assignment of merit event values are
discussed using a scale of 10 to 0 from easiest
to hardest. Application of the tool is carried out
for the pneumatic piston-sensing device in
Chapter 6. The results demonstrate the
application and utility of the tool from which
some general design guideline are drawn.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Chapter 10

11. Chapter 9 - Summary 12. Conclusion

The subject of the quantitative determination of I want to thank you for the personal effort you
part delivery rates was covered in chapter 9. have expended and patience exhibited in
This began with a consideration of factors that working your way through educational module
affect the rate at which oriented parts are on Design for Assembly. It was my pleasure to
delivered to the work head. The first issue serve as your instructor and guide. I hope you
considered was the natural resting positions of found the subject and the material both
parts coming from a feeder and the use of an interesting and of value. As stated in the
initial distribution matrix to numerically introduction to this chapter a knowledge of this
represent their probability of orientation. The material coupled with the experience derived
concept of average part length as the product by completing all the included and off-line
of the initial distribution matrix and the length exercises will not by itself make the reader an
matrix was presented. The subject of passive expert in the application of DFA. However, it
orienting devices that take advantage of part will provide you with the necessary tools to
geometry was introduced and their behavior become a user of the process and with
characterized numerically by device and practice an effective and successful
system matrices. This led to the definition of practitioner. I wish you good luck in your
orientation system efficiency as the product of endeavor to do so.
the initial distribution matrix and the complete
orientation system matrix. Finally a generic
feed rate formula was presented as the
efficiency times the initial part velocity divided
by the average part length.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix


Page Index
Quizzes and Solutions
Project Instructions

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

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Mechanical Design for Assembly - Appendix

Accommodation for Errors 61 Basic Tenets 18
Aesthetic Considerations 31 Not a New Idea 18
Alignment Examples 62, 63, 64 DFA Subdivisions 58
DFA Systems Analysis 95, 97
Assembly Definition 21
Distribution Chart 139
Assembly Economics 45
Assembly Functions 24
Assembly Line Categories 46
Assembly Line Components 45
Assembly Objects 30 F
Fastener Reduction 64, 65
Assembly Process 26
Fastening Methods 111
Demo 27, 28, 29 Feed Rate Calculation 147
Assembly Purpose 24 Feed Rate Factors 138
Assembly Sequence Diagram 35 Feed Rate Formula 146
Assembly Systems 41 Feeding Choices
Assembly System Matrix 50, 51 Manual 109
Asymmetry 85, 86 Automated 110
Automated Assembly 43 Feeding and Orienting 78
Average Part Length 141 Flat Plate Conveyor 121
Average Part Velocity 124 Flexible Assembly 44
Average Recirculation 130 Flexible Items 71
Flexible Items Examples 72
Formless Material 30
B Forward Part Movement 124, 125
Base Component 30 Four Part Spindle 33
Building Block 30 Free Transfer Line 46, 47
Function Differentiation 31
C Functional Requirements 31
Carousel Configuration 48, 49
Checking 24, 26 G
Combined Average Merit 109 Generic Device Matrix 142
Comparison of Merit Results 114 Sample Matrix 1 143
Component 30 Sample Matrix 2 143
Composing 24, 25 Geometric Line Configurations 48
Continuous Line 46, 47
Conveyor Velocity 122
Copier Latch Example 99, 100 H
Criteria – Part Redundancy 73 Handling 24, 25
Hard Automation 42
Decrease Load Sensitivity 131 I
Definition of Assembly 21 Importance of Manufacturing 14
Demographic Pressures 14 In Line Configuration 48
Design Change Candidates 95, 97 Increased Competition 14
Designing Orienting Devices 144
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Mechanical Design for Assembly - Appendix

Narrow Track 145
Indexing Line 46 Natural Resting Position 138
Information Flow 15 Nesting 84
Initial Distribution Matrix 140
Innovative Products 14 O
Insertion Directions 110 Off line exercises
International Competition 14 Chapter 1 19
Chapter 2 36, 37
J Chapter 3 53
Joining 24, 25 Chapter 4 ..74
Chapter 5 90
K Chapter 6 101
Chapter 7 116
Chapter 8 132, 133
L Chapter 9 148
Layered Assembly 60 Operation (CD) 9, 10
Load Sensitivity 128 Orientation System 142
Analysis Model 129 Original Diaphragm Valve 94
Typical Load Behavior 129 Original Light Switch 98
Original Pneumatic Piston 96
M Original Pneumatic Piston Merit 112, 113
Machine Part 30 Overlapping 79, 83
Manual Assembly 42, 43
Manual Station 45 P
Manufacturing Environment 14 Part Mechanics 122
Manufacturing Opportunity 17 Part Merit Calculation 108
Material Differentiation 31 Part Merit Rating 107
Material Flow 15 Part Motion 123
Matrix Multiplication 145 Part Sequence Diagram 30
Means 25 Part Redundancy Criteria 73
Mechanisms 25 Parts Feeder 45
Methods of Assembly 42 Positioning 25
Minimize Parts 68 Presence 26
Minimize Parts Examples 68, 69, 70, 71 Principles of Part Design 78
Modular Parts 61 Principles of Product Design 59
Module Summary 149 Product Assembly Merit 109
Chapter 1 152 Product Cycle Cost 16
Chapter 2 152 Product Merit Rating 109
Chapter 3 153 Product Merit Spreadsheet 112
Chapter 4 153 Production Considerations 31
Chapter 5 154 Protrusion 79, 82
Chapter 6 154
Chapter 7 155 Q
Chapter 8 155 Quality Crisis 14
Chapter 9 156 Quantifying Assembly 105
Movement 31 Quantitative Tool 107
Multifunctional Parts 61

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Mechanical Design for Assembly - Appendix

R Vibratory Bowl Feeder 120

Reasons for Assembly 30 Vibratory Bowl Part Movement 125
Replacability 31 Effective Hop 127
Redesign Process 94 Important Characteristics 128
Redesigned Diaphragm Valve 96 Limits 126
Redesigned Light Switch 99 Mean Conveying Velocity 127
Redesigned Pneumatic Piston 98
Redesigned Pneumatic Piston Merit 113, 114
Redundancy Check 111 W
Review Exercises
Wiper Blade 145
Chapter 1 19
Work head 45
Chapter 2 35, 36
Chapter 3 52
Chapter 4 73, 74 X
Chapter 5 89
Chapter 6 101 Y
Chapter 7 115, 116
Chapter 8 131, 132
Chapter 9 147
Robot 45
Rotary Configuration 48

Shingling 81
Shortage of Talent 14
Snap Fasteners 65
Snap Fastener Examples 66, 67
Soft Automation 42
Stacked Assembly 60
Storing 25
Subassembly 30
Suitable Base 59
Symmetry 85,86
System Efficiency 146
System Matrix 144

Tangling 79, 80, 81, 82
Traditional Design Approach 15
Transfer System 45
Transporting 25

Valve Assembly 32
Vibratory Bowl Displacement 120

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Mechanical Design for Assembly

Project Instructions

The purpose of the project is to redesign appropriate for presentation to management

an existing commercial product to improve for some potential action.
its ease of assembly using the principles of
design for assembly. It is further suggested that the project be
conducted over a period of a week or two.
Selection of Product: This will provide sufficient “soak” time for
different creative options for redesign to be
The product chosen for this project developed and considered. The objective is
should be different from and more complex
to come up with the best redesign. It will not
than any example already covered. An
appropriate product should be something necessarily be the first idea considered.
that is not too large but should consist of a
minimum of 20-30 parts or more. For Report Preparation:
convenience select an item that can be
readily disassembled with simple hand tools. Your reports should be professionally
A discarded counter top kitchen appliance or prepared. It should be typed and all
power hand tool is about the right size and drawings, tables, etc. should be neat and well
complexity. If you work for a company that prepared. The appearance of the report as
produces mechanical products, that fit this well as its content are important to the
description, it might prove interesting and completeness of the project as well as to your
potentially worthwhile to select one for this
satisfaction with the final result. Use of
photographs where appropriate for greater
Procedure: clarity of description is recommended.

The suggested procedure for conducting

this project is to follow the guidelines of the
generic 4 step Product Redesign Process Report Contents:
outlined at the beginning of chapter 6. Since
the product will be more complex it is further A complete final report should contain
suggested that a written report of the redesign the following items:
effort be prepared following the steps
outlined in the next section. This will 1. Title Page
accomplish two objectives. First, it will 2. Executive Summary
insure that all items necessary for a complete 3. Table of contents with page numbers
redesign effort will have been appropriately 4. Picture of the original product together
addressed. Second, it will provide with a description of its function and how
experience in preparing a record of the it works.
project effort and results in a form 5. An assembly drawing of the product
showing how the parts go together .
6. A list of all the parts with associated
numbers that also appear on the assembly
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Mechanical Design for Assembly - Appendix

7. A part sequence diagram that gives the Example Project Results:

assembly sequence of parts into
appropriate subassemblies and how they Abbreviated example results of several
go together into the final product. This redesign projects completed in
should be in the form illustrated in accordance with these instructions are
Chapter 2. Use names and numbers for given on the following page.
identification of parts from item 5.
8. The description of a DFA analysis of the
product covering the principles of
product and part design covered in
Chapters 4 and 5 in preparation for
redesign. Don’t forget potential part
9. A list of candidate design changes in the
product to improve ease of assembly with
justifications for these proposed changes.
10. An assembly drawing of the redesigned
product incorporating the changes from
item 8. Its comparison with item 4
should give a visual indication of the
improvements that have been made.
11. A list of all the parts in the redesigned
product with associated numbers that also
appear on the assembly drawing.
12. A part sequence diagram for the
assembly sequence of the redesigned
13. A quantitative analysis of the original
design following the procedure outlined
in Chapter 7. This should include a
discussion and justification of merit
values assigned for feeding, insertion and
14. A quantitative analysis of the redesigned
product including the same discussion
asked for in item 12.
15. A comparison and analysis of the results
of the two quantitative analyses.
16. Conclusions as to the success of your
redesign effort.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 1 – Quiz

Name: ______________________________________

1. List six characteristics of today’s manufacturing


2. What are the four steps that products go through from raw
material and components to finished products as discussed
in material and information flow.

3. List three objectives achieved by all well designed assembly


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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 1 – Quiz

Name: __Master____________________________________

1. List six characteristics of today’s manufacturing

1. International competition
2. Innovative products
3. Increased customization
4. Productivity pressure
5. Quality crisis
6. Demographic pressures
7. Lack of technical talent
2. What are the four steps that products go through from raw
material and components to finished products as discussed
in material and information flow.
1. Buy
2. Process
3. Assemble
4. Sell
3. List three objectives achieved by all well designed assembly
1. Eliminate fasteners
2. Standardize components
3. Fit or snap together
4. Reduce assembly time and skills

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 2 – Quiz

Name: ______________________________________

1. List the three functions that make up Assembly-


2. What are the three activities associated with Handling?


3. Name four reasons for separate parts in a product.


4. List and describe four assembly objects.


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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 2 – Quiz

Name: Master__________________
1. List the three functions that make up Assembly-
1. Handling
2. Composing (joining)
3. Checking
2. What are the three activities associated with Handling?
1. Storing
2. Transporting
3. Orienting
3. Name four reasons for separate parts in a product.
1. Movement
2. Material differentiation
3. Replacibility
4. Function differentiation
5. Production considerations
6. Functional requirements
7. Aesthethis considerations
4. List and describe four assembly objects.
1. Machine part – individual element
2. Component – any part or subassembly
3. Subassembly – collection of assembled parts
4. Base component – part on which product is built
5. Building block – assembly that performs a special
6. Formless material – glue, paint, liquids

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Chapter 3 – Quiz

Name: ______________________________________

1. Name Three Methods of Assembly.


2. What are the major components that make up an

assembly line?

3. List three basic assembly line categories.


4. What are the common geometric line configurations?


5. Indicate which assembly line combinations are good or poor.

Flexible –Free Transfer good____ poor____
Manual – Indexing good____ poor____
Manual – Continuous good____ poor____
Automated - Continuous good____ poor____

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 3 – Quiz

Name: ________Master______________________________

1. Name Three Methods of Assembly.

1. Manual
2. Automated (Hard automation)
3. Flexible (soft automation)
2. What are the major components that make up an
assembly line?
1. Transfer system
2. Feeding devices
3. Work station, robot, etc.
3. List three basic assembly line categories.
1. Indexing
2. Free transfer
3. Continuous
4. What are the common geometric line configurations?
1. Rotary
2. Carousel
3. In-line
5. Indicate which assembly line combinations are good or poor.
Flexible –Free Transfer good_X__ poor____
Manual – Indexing good____ poor_X__
Manual – Continuous good_X__ poor____
Automated - Continuous good____ poor_X__

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 4 – Quiz

Name: ______________________________________

1. What are the two DFA subdivisions?


2. List five general principles of Product Design.


3. Give three guidelines for simplifying and reducing fasteners.

4. List the three criteria for potential part redundancy.

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Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 4 – Quiz

Name: _______Master_______________________________

1. What are the two DFA subdivisions?

1. Product design
2. Design of parts
2. List five general principles of Product Design.
1. Build on a suitable base
2. Layer or stack assembly
3. Use modular or multi-functional parts
4. Accommodate for errors
5. Simplify and reduce fasteners
6. Limit flexible items
7. Minimize parts
3. Give three guidelines for simplifying and reducing fasteners.
1. use snaps, tabs, etc.
2. Self tapping screws
3. Vertical insertion
4. Provide room for tooling
5. Remember field maintenance
6. Use welding and adhesives
4. List the three criteria for potential part redundancy.
1. Adjacent part movement
2. Requires different materials
3. Need to assemble or disassemble

Quizzes - 174 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004
Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 5 – Quiz

Name: ______________________________________

1. Principles of part design?


2. Guidelines for eliminating overlapping and tangling.


3. Guidelines for using asymmetry.


4. True – False.
Symmetry about the insertion axis is the best. T__ F__
Asymmetry is important as an internal feature . T__ F__
Open coil springs are not difficult to feed. T__ F__
Orientation is facilitated by symmetry. T__ F__

Quizzes - 175 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004
Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 5 – Quiz

Name: _______Master_______________________________

1. Principles of part design?

1. Facilitate feeding and orienting
2. Avoid Tangling, overlaping,and nesting
3. Maximize symmetry
4. Emphasize asymmetry if symmetry not possible/helpful
2. Guidelines for eliminating overlapping and tangling.
1. Eliminate protrusion
2. Close coil spring ends
3. Provide thicker contact surfaces to avoid shingling
4. Reduce opening size in snap rings, etc.
5. Increase angle s on elements that might overlap
6. Use gravity to help
7. Use ribs to stop nesting
3. Guidelines for using asymmetry.
1. Exaggerate small features of asymmetric geometry
2. Deliberately add asymmetric features
3. Remove material to produce asymmetric external features
4. True – False.
Symmetry about the insertion axis is the best. T_X_ F___
Asymmetry is important as an internal feature T___ F_X_
Open coil springs are not difficult to feed. T___ F_X_
Orientation is facilitated by symmetry. T_X_ F___

Quizzes - 176 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004
Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 6 – Quiz

Name: ______________________________________

1. What are the four steps of the Product Redesign Process


2. What is one good measure of improvement of a product

redesign using principles of DFA

3. When is it most important to apply design for assembly

principles in the development of a product..

4. In the diaphragm valve redesign what kind of part

elimination made the greatest improvement?

Quizzes - 177 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004
Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 6 – Quiz

Name: _______Master_______________________________

1. What are the four steps of the Product Redesign Process

1. Separate assembly into components
2. Perform a DFA analysis of existing design
3. Develop design change candidates
4. Evaluate redesign for improvements

2. What is one good measure of improvement of a product

redesign using principles of DFA
1. Reduction in number of parts

3. When is it most important to apply design for assembly

principles in the development of a product.
1. Apply DFA from first day of product design

4. In the diaphragm valve redesign what kind of part

elimination made the greatest improvement?
1. Fasteners

Quizzes - 178 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004
Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 7 – Quiz

Name: ____________________________________________

1. Draw a geometric interpretation of the part merit rating.

2. What is the formula for calculation the part merit rating?

3. What is the formula for the Combined Average Merit (CAM)?.

4. What is the formula for calculating the Product assembly

Merit (PAM)?

5. List the three criteria for checking potential part redundancy.


Quizzes - 179 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004
Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Chapter 7 – Quiz

Name: ______Master________________________________

1. Draw a geometric interpretation of the part merit rating.

Easy - 10

Easy - 10

Easy - 10


2. What is the formula for calculation the part merit rating?

(FeM )2 + (InM )2 + (FaM )2

Part Merit =
3. What is the formula for the Combined Average Merit (CAM)?.
Sum of part merits
Sum of parts
4. What is the formula for calculating the Product assembly
Merit (PDM)?
⎧ Sum of redundant parts ⎫
PAM = CAM ⎨1 − ⎬
⎩ Sum of parts ⎭
5. List the three criteria for checking potential part redundancy.
1. Movement
2. Different material
3. Assemble or disassemble

Quizzes - 180 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004
Mechanical Design for Assembly – Appendix

Quizzes - 181 - C.F. Zorowski © 2004