Application of Design for Manufacture to the Development of a New Front Suspension System 922124

This paper deals with the applications of the Design for Manufacturing and Assembly (DFMA) process to the development of a new front suspension system in the PL Small Car Platform at Chrysler Corporation. At the very early stages of the program timing schedule, it was found necessary to introduce a structured DFMA program to bring together a cross-disciplinary team from within Chrysler as well as from the supplier companies. The major objective of this simultaneous engineering activity was to optimize all the design, manufacturing and assembly factors of the front suspension system. The Qualitative spreadsheet was created as one of the efficient tools in the DFMA program to perform the analysis and continuously track the DFMA issues.
The specific examples in the paper demonstrate how the process optimizes the relationship between design, manufacturing and assembly factors in the development of a product. The results of the suspension system DFMA process are presented by summary tables showing net benefits, cost/weight and investment gains as well as assembly plant man-hour improvements. The paper should be of immense interest to practicing engineers desiring to incorporate the DFMA technology in their design operations.


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