There are many reasons manufacturers bring their assembly applications to Orbitform. Reasons can include maximizing the efficiency of their assembly process, facing inconsistent finished assemblies, or frustration with their current assembly equipment. Orbitform strives to be is a trusted partner that can support all assembly process needs.
One of the ways we partner with manufacturers is through the utilization of our Solutions Lab, located at our facility in Jackson, Michigan. The lab is fully equipped with our 6 core processes, which can be used to assemble sample parts. We also have three full-time Lab Technicians available to work with manufacturers on all facets of their assembly application.
Here are 5 ways manufacturers can utilize Orbitform’s Solutions Lab
- Identifying the Right Process
Assembling sample parts in the lab is one of the best ways to determine the right assembly process for an application. We offer an unbiased approach and can identify the right process to ensure the equipment provides the outcome each manufacturer requires.
An automotive manufacturer turned to Orbitform, searching for the best way to assemble their seat latches. We tried both our Orbital Forming and Hot Upset Forming processes to assemble sample parts for the manufacturer to evaluate. Based on their evaluation, they were able to determine which process yielded the results they required before purchasing equipment.
- Powerhead Sizing
Orbitform offers multiple sized powerheads rated for forming a specific diameter rivet or tenon and capable of applying a certain amount of thrust to form the workpiece. However, there are many other factors that affect what size powerhead is required for each application. We do have some general rule-of-thumb considerations, but the most effective way to determine the appropriate size powerhead is to assemble sample parts in our lab. Process monitoring technology allows our lab technicians to verify the thrust required for each assembly application. From there, we can ensure we provide the right size powerhead for the equipment.
- Tooling Development
Tooling used on assembly equipment can be critical to achieving the desired functional and aesthetic results for a joint. While there are standard tooling options for our equipment, such as our flat or conical peen tools, it is sometimes necessary to develop custom tooling to ensure the proper form, fit, and function of a joint. Our lab technicians utilize part models and samples to design tooling specific for each application. In addition to designing tooling for a new machine, we can also retool a manufacturer’s existing equipment for a new application.
One manufacturer turned to Orbitform when taking on a new project for assembling safety latches. They already had a B-500 Orbital Forming machine, and asked if retooling the machine for the new assembly was an option. Our Lab Technicians developed new tooling for this application to fit on their existing machine, increasing their return-on-investment.
- Design Assistance/Prototyping
When designing a new part for assembly and working through the prototyping phase, Orbitform’s Solutions Lab can be an invaluable resource. With over 40 years of combined experience, our Lab Technicians can share guidelines and suggest design changes to maximize the function and efficiency of your joint. In addition to optimizing product design for assembly, our Solutions Lab can be used for testing prototypes with different material fasteners.
For a medical device manufacturer, we formed sample parts and found that one of the two joints failed to achieve the desired torque. Through collaborating with our lab technicians and making a few design changes, they were able to achieve the desired torque in both joints.
- Small Batch Production Runs
When looking at assembly operations and return-on-investment, purchasing assembly equipment doesn’t always make financial sense. To support these manufacturers, we can perform small batch production runs in our Solutions Lab. We can also assemble parts in our lab to help meet production requirements while manufacturers wait for assembly equipment to be built and installed.
Whether manufacturers are looking to ensure they purchase the right assembly equipment, validate their assembly design, or assemble low volumes of parts or prototypes, our Solutions Lab is ready to support their needs. It all starts with your part, and through collaboration and partnership, we can define, verify, and optimize the right process to achieve your desired outcome. Contact us today to discuss your next assembly application and utilize our Solutions Lab.