Since years production has been facing problems with squandering resources, working time and money sank into spare parts. The lean manufacturing conception is coming to the industry’s assistance. The idea of lean manufacturing helps to lighten the whole production process load and to take care of costs. 3D printing might become the contemporary answer for factory’s and company’s challenges linked to lean management.
What is the production industry confronting with?
First of all, there are a lot of losses related to resources and spare parts storage. The process of production requires the permanent access to materials and spare elements of machines and whole production lines. Companies usually keep more resources than they are able to use in the given moment because they cannot have a standstill in the production process.
It means freezing of funds and additional costs linked to renting warehouse area.
The traditional production process is also connected with the gathering of post-production waste which is very difficult to convert them or reuse them. And this is not everything
Expensive personalization and troublesome prototyping
The consumer’s needs are rising and companies are becoming more and more engaged in being capable of doing it. However, in case of conventional production processes, it is not easy. The line modification and new machines setting are time and resource consuming. In other words, it is just unprofitable. The manufacturing we know is based on massive production but although it is still standing as a fundament of industry performance, it is not able to match for demands of a consumer of the 21st century.
The introduction of innovations is also not easy. Every work on new product version sometimes requires several trials of creating the prototype. It is related to corrections, modifications, adaptations to demands or redesigning production line. It causes the stoppages in daily production work. That is why it is difficult to prepare few offers of new products from which the most functional and the most personalized one can be chosen.
Helpful lean manufacturing
Lean manufacturing was about answering for a part of those challenges. It is a concept which assumes the break with wasting resources, time and money. It was introduced for the first time after the II World War in Toyota factory in Japan. It brought very fast and spectacular results. In a nutshell, meager production supposes manufacturing new product faster with the usage of smaller amount of tools, space, and human work.
The introduction of lean manufacturing idea requires precise observation of all processes which take place in the factory, resource flows, orders processing etc. On that basis, the steps of reducing waste might be taken. Usually, in this task, new technologies are helpful – first of all, IT solutions. But industry won a new ally to fight with excesses and losses in production processes – 3D printing.
3D printing support
How might 3D printing support “slimming” of production? First of all, it allows omitting the necessity of storage, mainly spare parts storage which are not any more useful. They can be printed at the moment when they would be needed. Secondly, 3D printing also speeds up and simplifies work on new products. Because of the fact that that 3D printing process is even several times faster than traditional production process, it is possible to print prototypes considerably quicker and cheaper. What is more, there is also an opportunity for dealing with necessary corrections as they arise. It is also manageable to propose a few different projects and to choose one of them which fulfills most of producer’s and client’s expectations.
3D printing also allows to create a small product series or even designing and personalizing product according to the given target need. It means, 3D printing brings industry in 4.0 era. 3D technology is ecological and it does not generate as many wastes in the production process. What is more, with SLS method, not seared powders might be reused for printing. Currently, some projects are being created in the world about producing filaments for printers from needless plastic. How does it work?
Pure Power Sources – how to produce more effectively and more beautifully
Pure Power Sources is a company which produces dies from plastic and steel and details from elastomers. They are mainly used as product line elements.
Before buying 3DGence printers the company had been facing with few challenges. In case of dies Pure Power Sources had very huge competition which was using similar technologies, consequently, it was causing that prices were very close to each other. Prototypes of details from elastomers were created on millers which were expensive and the process of producing them required the usage of machines which should have been engaged in other commissions. The costs did not allow to produce small product series.
All has changed when the enterprise Pure Power Sources invested in 3D printing. Today the company prints durable and resistant to damages dies in any shape. It also prints the prototypes of details which is cheap, which reduces production costs and which speeds up this process. Thanks to it, individual orders became viable. It all caused that the numbers of orders increased and the company began to be more competitive. The firm is offering products which are not available in other firm’s portfolio with similar business activity now.
3D printing increases production effectiveness
3D printing is changing the production industry and it supports the concept of lean manufacturing. Thanks to the implementation of additive manufacturing technologies, the enterprises save time, money and human resources.
They produce faster, cheaper and with the usage of a lower amount of raw materials. It is all true to principals of “slim” production which got in 3D printing new ally to fight against the waste in enterprises.