In a recent interview, Elon Musk gave us a look inside his new Tesla Assembly Factory in Freemont, California. He made some very good points on the high level of automation, which seems to explain mos…
Aesthetics and Ergonomics
Industrial Product Design is a key factor in the commercial success of a product and every product design should start with research; who are the end-users, how will they use the product, what are the key benefits they are looking for, and what kind of styling will seduce them?
Our goal is to have the end-users rave about the new product to their friends, and often we achieve this not so much with the specifications as with the Aesthetics and Ergonomics. The mission of our industrial designers is to design a product which visually attractive and a joy to use, the two keys to selling more products.
Our industrial designers work side by side with our mechanical and electronic engineers to ensure that the product design will not only meet its aesthetic and ergonomic targets but is also easy to manufacture in China. Our team also has extensive experience working with overseas industrial designers, so we welcome cooperation with product design firms.
At the onset of every design project, our designers do extensive research into the basics—
– Who are your end-users?
– How will your product be used?
– What does the design need to communicate?
The main aspects of marketability are design and ergonomics. Design is about esthetics—if your product does not look appealing, it will not sell. The value of a good industrial design is crystal clear: an attractive design not only helps to sell more products, but it also allows you to charge higher prices, which means that the actual profit per unit can be a multiple of the profit on a so-so looking product.
Ergonomics, on the other hand, focuses on the human interaction with a product: How does it feel in your hand? Do the shape and contours conform to the part of the body that comes into contact with the device?
Our designers have the skills and the experience to design products in which the design and ergonomics work together to deliver an attractive, easy to use product.
Design for Manufacturing
While design and ergonomics are instrumental to making a product marketable, they alone do not guarantee success. Careful consideration of production in the initial stage is crucial because a sizeable percentage of the product’s lifecycle cost is committed at this time (cost of materials, production of parts, and assembly).
Titoma’s designers integrate design and industrialization into a single process, with the goal of designing a product that is easily and economically manufactured. This is achieved by early collaboration with mechanical and electronic engineers and production specialists to produce a design that fulfills price and manufacturing parameters,
The basic guidelines of our industrial designers are:
1. Less is More
One of the best methods for reducing manufacturing costs is to reduce the number of parts in a product. Fewer parts often lead to less sourcing, development, purchasing, assembly, testing, development time, and testing, among others.
2. Make it Modular
The use of modules in product design significantly reduces the level of intensity of manufacturing-related activities. In addition, it provides ease in repairing, maintaining, or replacing a part of the device in the event the part were to fail.
3. Use Standard Components
Standard components are naturally less expensive than custom-made ones. The availability of these components means reduced lead times—the amount of time it takes to procure components. Using standard parts also offers peace of mind with regard to the components’ reliability.
4. Keep it Simple
To minimize manufacturing cost, we select the optimal combination between material and fabrication process. Secondary operations such as painting, coating, and surface finishing should be avoided as should a high degree of precision on parts.These pose manufacturing challenges and increase the reject rate (yield loss), resulting in higher part production cost. That is why our designer design with ease of fabrication in mind.
5. Round it up, give it an angle, and don’t fight gravity
Use rounded corners as opposed to sharp angles since plastic flows better through rounded corners during plastic injection. Concurrently, (draft) angles—an angle incorporated into a wall of a mold so that the opening of the cavity is wider than its base—are needed so that a plastic part can be released from the mold without damage.
In addition, design minimizing assembly directions. Electronic products should be assembled from one direction— ideally from above. This way gravity works with you during the assembly process as opposed to slowing down assembly by having to compensate for its effect.