A leading manufacture of presses has found that sourcing standard and configured-to-order-parts, as well as parts that will subsequently be modified in-house, from Misumi can save around 20 per cent in materials and in-house shop time.
An international supplier of hydraulic presses, work holding, and fastening devices for custom manufacturing operations found it was spending too much time getting its parts. This was due to multi-sourcing of parts from standard catalogues, local machine shops, or even sometimes making them in-house. Often these were routine parts or simple components that required minor modifications from standard catalogue items. The company needed a better way to source components - ideally a one-stop-shop. But it was not that simple, as the supplier also had to meet certain other criteria.
In the end, the press manufacturer chose a supplier that offered a variety of components and configurations and that could respond to its one-of-a-kind requirements quickly. This way, it would not have to pick-and-choose from multiple sources. Its team now uses standard catalogue items from one supplier and sometimes modifies the parts to suit its designs. The end result is often custom components.
On one model of hydraulic press, Misumi supplies all of the mechanical components between the top and bottom plates (except the small sensor brackets). This includes the linear shafts and collars, linear shaft supports, linear bushings, blocks, plates, locating bushings, stoppers, screws and bolts.
To make the staking tools at the top, engineers modified an existing Misumi component. The company saved 20 per cent in materials and in-house shop time by using one supplier. This approach also saved on the overall component costs and conserved time in the engineering, part sourcing, in-house machining, and multi-vendor paperwork areas.
For demanding designs that might require extra machining, engineers purchase a configured or standard component from Misumi and further modify it in their own workshop to serve a particular purpose. The company then assigns its own part number to the newly created component for its customer's reference.
The press manufacturer knew what it wanted in a supplier: an outfit that could deliver quality parts at a good price and on time. Many suppliers are often inconsistent from part to part. According to a product development manager at the press manufacturing company, it really shows up on the configured components. He noted that the tolerance, finish, and material quality should match what is stated in the catalogue: "We have no problem further machining a configured or standard component to create a custom piece for a specific application."
This engineer's job is to identify and manage all constituent elements of a project. This starts with the customer interface and moves to the design concept, creating initial drawings, estimating process, sourcing of components, customer approval supervision, integration of design/machine shop departments as well as the delivery of all components, final assembly, test, delivery and start-up.
Catalogues must include all the engineering detail, pricing, and delivery information so that engineers can go directly from their drawings to the order process. This reduces project costs and turnaround time even on complex designs. The press manufacturer almost always references the Misumi paper catalogues. Moreover, the engineers also use the CAD configurator tool at www.misumicad.com. Engineers can configure a part, download the native CAD file, modify it and then insert it into the CAD assembly.
Additionally, the press manufacturer has subsidiaries and joint ventures in many countries around the world, so it was important for the company to have an international supplier. Misumi can therefore respond when local support is required.
In conclusion, the product development manager states: "This is probably the best scenario - when we combine our expertise with that of a competent vendor and everyone wins."