Factors affecting selection of manufacturing process

Manufacturing Process Selection Criteria

The following points need to be considered before the actual manufacturing of a product.

  1. Material selection including and considering all the environmental and recycling aspects
  2. Selection of processing methods such as metal casting, metal forming, sheet metal working, powder metallurgy, machining, joining, finishing etc.
  3. Shape and appearance of the final product
  4. Dimensional tolerance and surface finish aspects of the final product
  5. Economics of tooling
  6. Design requirements
  7. Functional requirements of the product
  8. Production quantity required
  9. Safety and environmental concerns
  10. Cost

Product design is the most important parameter amongst all the parameters of the manufacturing system. As quality is imbibed at each stage in the product, if the product has not been designed right at the first stage, no subsequent operation or steps can bring back the quality into the product. Hence, the material and manufacturing process selection and all associated concerns such as availability, environmental considerations, recycling etc must be taken care of right at the product design and development stage. As far as the manufacturing process is concerned, it must be economical and capable of producing the geometric surfaces and other features which are embodied in the design of
the product.

manufacturing process selection
manufacturing process selection

Manufacturing Processes Classification

There are six basic / fundamental classifications of manufacturing processes.

1. Metal casting or Molding: expendable mold and permanent mold
2. Metal Forming and Shearing: rolling, forging, extrusion, drawing, sheet forming, powder metallurgy
3. Material Removal Processes / Machining Processes: turning, boring, drilling, milling, planing, shaping, broaching, grinding, ultrasonic machining, chemical machining, electrical discharge machining (EDM), Abrasive flow machining (AFM), abrasive jet machining (AJM), electrochemical machining, high-energy beam machining, laser beam machining (LBM) etc.
4. Joining: welding, brazing, soldering, diffusion bonding, adhesive bonding, mechanical joining, plasma arc, plasma MIG, projection welding, ultrasonic, electron beam welding, laser welding etc.
5. Finishing (painting, anti-corrosion coatings, etc.)
6. Rapid Manufacturing: stereo-lithography, selective laser sintering, fused deposition modeling, three dimensional printing, laminated object manufacturing, laser engineered net shaping

Read more : Introduction to manufacturing processes and their classification

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