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Guest Alec

"flashdriver" Manufacturing Exercise

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Guest Alec

This semester I am taking a class that focuses on product manufacturing with the eventual goal of designing a process to manufacture 600 of something, with that process being refined and executed in the following semester. In the past, they have given the teams more developed products from a design studio, but this year they are just giving us products they thought up over the summer, on the fly more than anything. The team I am on is tasked with creating a flashlight/screwdriver combo -- not terribly unique or original, but the point is to use as many different processes as we can as it's a learning experience. Because the given product is so undeveloped, we are being given more leeway than in past years to redesign and further develop the product.


Here is the given flashdriver. The flashlight and bit are at opposite ends and there is a clunky bit holder at the flashlight end, making it rather difficult to use the screwdriver as I found out while playing around with a rapid prototyped model.



Here is a quick (<2 hours) concept model, made in Rhino, of a revised flashdriver that has the light and bit at the same end, and the bit holder is integrated into the handle for a more usable screwdriver. (Yes, I know the threads are backward. I was making them by hand and wasn't paying attention to the direction.)




I haven't given too much thought to materials yet, the goal was just to design a concept that people would actually want to use without being too complex that we couldn't make it ourselves. Right now it's all about refining the design, but starting next week we have to begin planning the manufacturing process. Unlike a true industrial project we want to use as many different processes as possible so that the 14 person team that will be making it next semester has enough stuff for everyone to do.


Comments/critique on the design are welcome, as are thoughts on materials and manufacturing.

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