Production setup

Start of production learning
When the prototype proved its performance and refinements are made, its time to freeze the design for production. During this stage the product data is finally transferred from design stage to the production. Every technological operation shall become clear and fixed with proper documentation behind. CNC programs are in place, tools are selected, jigs and auxiliary equipment are operational. Supplier components and its logistics are clear with scope, costs and delivery time. The production staff start their on-job training with the purpose to define remaining issues and areas of improvement and optimization. Time for every operation, productivity of tools and staff becomes clear. Project is ready for product transfer, if it is defined so by product development roadmap.
What shall be done during production setup:
Production process
Entire production process shall be described, starting from procurement of raw material up do assembly, packing and shipping. Every manufacturing stage shall have clear input and output. Manufacturing areas layout with product flow shall become available.
Every technological operation, describing particular manipulations with materials, parts, tools, manual and automatic processes shall be documented. Safety instructions shall be part of documentation.
CNC tools shall be equipped with number of programs. All necessary jigs, supports, hand tools shall be available alongside with manufacturing infrastructure, such as water, electricity, compressed air, HVAC, waste collection system and personal protective measures.
Number and roles of production personnel shall be clearly defined with instructions and responsibilities. Personnel qualification and basic competence requirements shall be documented as well. Basic health and safety procedures shall be established.
Incoming supplies process shall be established with parts and materials tracking, store and management system, personnel shall become familiar with necessary tracking operations.
Quality assuarance
Quality requirements shall be established for every stage and operation: starting from incoming material check and manufacturing processes, to final assembly quality. Checklists and test protocols shall be part of quality system. HSE aspects are important part of the quality assurance.
Understanding of productivity is one of the key element of drone costs and further production ramp-up. We need to understand what are the tools limitations, what time and resources are spent on every operation, what can be optimized now and what can be or shall be improved later.
Knowing machines productivity, staffing requirements, material and supplies costs we can finally have entire picture of drone production costs. This is one of the key outcome of design stage and the most important economic parameters of your drone project.
Finally, the manufacturing documentation shall be completed with all data developed and acquired during production setup. In the case of product transfer the manufacturing documentation is the basis for establishment of offshore drone production. Specifics of target manufacturing place (logistics, available tools, personnel and materials) shall be taken into account when preparing product transfer documentation.
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