Metal fabrication shops, like most businesses face various issues. These issues may include the following: keeping quality products priced competitively, meeting industry standard lead times, staying up to date with knowledge and technology to name a few.
Some metal fabrication shops like Decimet Sales Inc., also offer a service called rapid prototyping. Rapid Prototyping is a fast-fabricating process that utilizes CAD design professionals along with high-speed CNC Machining or metal fabrication equipment to build a physical product quickly.
One of the issues that rapid prototyping shops deal with is production efficiency. When a customer needs a prototype built in a short period of time, long-run production projects may have to be put on hold to make way for prototype production. When this happens, set-up time and costs as well as scheduling conflicts increase. Quality and lead times may also suffer. Above that, other customer jobs may not be completed on-time and on-budget. This translates into a decrease in customer satisfaction and a loss in sales or margins.
What can a prototyping and metal fabrication shop do to avoid these conflicts? What Decimet Sales did was set up what we call a Rapid Response Cell (RRC). RRC allows long run production projects to proceed uninterrupted. We created RRC to be a work cell consisting of a Laser Cutting machine, Press Brake, Pem Machine, and Welder which is used only for short-run and prototype projects. Jobs that have a due date of less than 1 week, less than 50 pieces or re-work parts are routed to the RRC using a special prefix in the job number. The cell is set-up in a specific area of the fab shop and is always manned. When there are no RRC jobs to do, the cell runs normal production. Labor hours are costed the same as other work centers, giving customers another reason to utilize the RRC. In addition, the RRC can be used for trial, one-piece-flow projects, testing alternative production methods or for employee testing.
Since the setup of Rapid Response Cell, DSI is experiencing rapid growth. Customers are now extremely satisfied because they are receiving their prototype parts faster and awarding more prototype and production work to DSI. Stress levels have also decreased. Everything is running more smoothly because of the heightened RRC visibility. Now when employees see the RRC prefix in the job number, they simply send it to RRC knowing that they can continue their normal, long-run production jobs without sacrificing time and quality. In short, RRC means more production in less time and that is a win-win for everyone.
If you need rapid prototyping, fabrication and/or CNC machining services, contact Decimet Sales. We are fully equipped to provide quality and efficient machining and/or metal fabrication productivity.