Design For Assembly (DFA)
What it is
An approach for systematically analyzing product designs for the purpose of simplifying design and related manufacturing processes. This approach was developed by Geoffery Boothroyd and Peter Dewhurst of the University of Massechusetts.
What results can I expect?
When properly implemented, DFA will result in major improvements in:
- Simpler product design – fewer parts
- Simpler manufacturing process – fewer steps
- Lower product and manufacturing costs
- Lower product investment costs – less tooling
How do I know if it will help me?
DFA may help you in your product development efforts if:
- Products are more complex than they should be
- You don't already have a way to ensure product simplification
- Product cost is too high
How does it work?
Product information is gathered which describes parts and their assembly sequence. This would include physical parts or models as available, part drawings, exploded assembly drawings and process information. Equipped with this information, we "build" the product on paper, detailing every step of the process. For each step we identify parts that could potentially be eliminated as well as excessively difficult manufacturing steps.
We then brainstorm many ways to either eliminate parts, reduce part cost or simplify manufacturing. This typically yields 50 or more potentially viable ideas. These ideas are assessed and many are combined to form "rich concept alternatives." These alternatives are then evaluated to determine a chosen direction. A project plan for implementing that chosen direction is then created.
Some of the errors most commonly made include:
- Being too conservative – missing significant opportunities
- Compromising product features or functionality to reduce cost
- "Cheapening" the product in the eyes of the customer
The EurekaResults difference
We always start with the rule: "No reduction in anything the customer would value!
"We combine the power of VAVE with Design For Assembly, Inventive Problem Solving (TRIZ) and Quality Function Deployment to provide an especially effective approach which does not compromise customer satisfaction.