Refining Customer Designs
A lot of the refinements that we will make is when a customer drills a part out and say the part needs to be bent. If it is a thicker part, they might on the one end of the bend if it is too short you won’t be able to bend it because there is not enough material there to bend it. Customers don’t usually think about that kind of thing. You have got to have enough material there to bend the part accurately, also just checking the tolerances out on the prints. Making sure they are achievable and go back to them and ask them if it is necessary, a lot of them will dimension prints with a 3 place decimal, it is just a universal.
They might not need it that tight, it is just that’s how it came out when they did the print, so if they don’t know that the will just let it go that way. One thing that pops into my mind off the top of my head is if a customer doesn’t really understand what capabilities we have here, they might design something in a totally different manner. For instance a weld that has no bends in it, they are all single pieces welded together. When we bring that in we can offer them price reductions or value added engineering ideas by taking multiple pieces and linking them together. We can cut them and bend them verses cutting individual pieces, putting them together like a puzzle and welding them all together.
So things like that, really understanding our customers’ expectations and really getting them to know our capabilities is of mutual benefit, we can make things cheaper and easier for them and they in turn design their next parts without having to go through that step. So the one I just mentioned, the bending verses the welding if we can bend something verses weld it together that saves a lot of time. As it is one less process it has to go through from laser cut flat to bending maybe it is good after that to laser cutting extending it to weld shop. Setting up fixtures kind of stuff where you can send it to the press break to be bent and it is ready to go out the door.
One thing like we said is the constant communication, really understanding what that customer is really looking for. If they have something and they really don’t know because they are not weld engineers. Obviously themselves so they put a weld symbol on a part that is 3 times the thickness of the material. That is way over welded so we are going to price it accordingly, whereas if we understand the product, understand the application. We are going to say hey this thing is over welded. We should back this down, to make value added recommendations and really understand it and say what that means for you and results in a lower price for those guys.