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A Design for a Universal Fixture for the Improved Production Process of

Flowrators
Goodman Manufacturing (Sponsor), Dr. Michael Johnson (Professor)
Mark Davison (MMET), Sydney Hale (MMET), Colton Howard (MMET), Katrina Lack (MMET), Brandon Meyer (MMET), Ethan Torres (MMET)

Abstract
Current methods for producing flowrators at
Goodman Manufacturing are inefficient. The
overall objective of this capstone project
was to design, manufacture, and test a
universal fixture that could be used to
manually produce flowrators for Goodman
Manufacturing. Throughout this capstone
project, the project team has completed the
conceptual design, finalized design,
manufacturing, and testing phases of this
project.

Introduction
Goodman Manufacturing requested that
the project team develop a universal fixture
to improve the current flowrator bending
process. The copper flowrators that are
installed in AC units are bent into the
appropriate shape manually by workers.

Approach
The project team took the following
approach to achieve the objective:
Consultation to develop functional
requirements
Initial concept design and review for
customer approval
Machine finalized design

The pegs, pictured in Figure 5, are used to


create the bends in the flowrators. These
pegs are placed in the holes on the
pegboards with quick-release pins, as
pictured in Figure 6.

Results
Functional Requirements
Goodman Manufacturing gave the project
team the following customer inputs, which
were developed into functional
requirements:

Figure 5: Machined peg

Universal, or adaptable, to each


flowrator configuration
Intuitive and operator-friendly
Durable, compact, and lightweight
Fast changeover
Repeatable results

Figure 8: Test holes for waterjet cutting process

The project team decided to machine the


main body of the pegboard using a waterjet
cutting machine. Test holes, as seen in
Figure 8, were cut to determine tolerances
to ensure the quick-release pins would fit
snugly on the pegboard.

Concept

Conclusion

The initial concept was designed with these


inputs in mind:

Figure 6: Machined peg with quick-release pin


inserted
Figure 1: Unbent copper flowrator

There are many variations the flowrators


are bent into. Currently, there is one fixture
for every variation and size of flowrator.
Workers must leave their workstations to
search for the appropriate fixture each time
there is a changeover. The bending
process of each flowrator also varies from
worker to worker.

Figure 3: Initial conceptual design

After review with Goodman, the concept


was modified and finalized, as seen in
Figure 4. To improve the concept, Cchannels were added instead of bent sides
for ease of machining of the main
pegboard. The tolerances of the holes were
also changed to ensure the pegs would not
fall out during use.

To ensure the quick-release pins will not


deform during use, a simulation was
performed using SolidWorks, pictured in
Figure 7.

The removable pegs with quick-release


pins allow for a universal design, as the
pegs can be arranged to accommodate all
flowrator configurations. Due to all of the
components are made of aluminum, the
approximate weight of the entire fixture is
approximately 22 pounds, making it
lightweight enough for operators to carry.
Figure 7: SolidWorks simulation on quick-release
pin

Figure 4: Finalized design


Figure 2: Example of one variation of a flowrator
bend

The functional requirements the project


team used to assess the final design are as
follows:
The changeover time for the fixture must
take no more than 10 minutes to switch
from one flowrator configuration to the
next.
The fixture must be as lightweight and
compact as possible
A worker must be able to produce one
correctly bent flowrator by hand every 5
minutes using the fixture.
The fixture must be able to
accommodate 30 different configurations
of flowrators.