''Do you want to give your product an enhanced aesthetics?" Obviously...and you are not alone....everybody wants their product to be perceive appealing to their customers .... But why they are not able to achieve it? Due to low volume production and less investment cost for their business, they could not go for tooling and ended up with compromising on the appearance and switching to alternative materials and processes.
Have you ever thought? What if there is no need for customized tools to give your low scale product the desired look and feel ...yes, it is possible for a company to provide a beautiful piece of machine without making high investment on tooling.
Importance of an Aesthetic look for a product:
Sometimes, a good functionally sound product is not very well accepted in the market due to its look. Hence, an Aesthetic design is critical for consumer acceptance and the market success of the product.
Low-Volume part production needs are usual in some industries such as Medical equipment, Aerospace, Defence, Instrument, Shipbuilding and also in prototyping of a new product development.
Aesthetics plays a crucial role in the perception of the product which directly associate with the overall satisfaction of a customer and it also substantiate the innovation, quality and reliability of the product. So, from the initial stage of development itself, the product aesthetics should be kept in mind and work towards achieving that.
Using Sheet metal for product development:
Sheet metal is metal formed by an industrial process into thin, flat pieces. It is one of the fundamental forms used in metal working and can be cut and bent into a variety of shapes and thicknesses. (source: Wikipedia)
Because of its characteristic features like pliability, malleability, ductility, temperatures tolerance, collision resistance and long life span, etc., today, sheet metal applications are huge and present in many kinds of industries with a variation in the uses.
But then what is the problem with sheet metal?
When we use plastic, it can be easily molded to give the desired look and feel to the product. But the metal components are not that easy to manufacture. It must go through die-cast, sand cast, or forged, where sheet metal is stamped into complex forms, and this results in a very expensive tooling.
If the sheet metal is needed to be bent it has to go through common die hence, can form only sharp 90º curve bend. To get the desired shape the die tool has to be customized and made which can cost you lakhs for tooling.
So, sometimes to save money from customized tooling, a good part turns into a scrap metal and the machine looks nothing but a box because of only 90º curve bends in it.
And to deal with this problem, Srushty offers the desired curve bend with progressive bending technique to get the ideal curved shape without customizing any tools.
Progressive bending by Srushty
Ways to get an Aesthetic design:
In prototyping, the innovative products are made by mostly focussing only on the functionality, but not in the look and feel. The reason is the cost involved in providing an aesthetic look by tooling is too high and unfeasible for low-volume production.
But in Srushty, this legacy belief has been broken by making an aesthetically pleasing product with sheet metals by using the methods such as Hydraulic pressing, 3D acrylics, print acrylics, metal powder coating, bending without customized tooling, CNC router, Laser cutting etc., to bring the same aesthetic as it is done for the mass production.
"From a sheet of metal to an ornamental looking machine without spending on tooling"
It is a computer-controlled cutting machine related to the hand held router used for cutting various hard materials. A CNC router is very similar in concept to a CNC milling machine. Instead of routing by hand, tool paths are controlled via computer numerical control which enable the machine to function. CNC routers reduce waste and increase productivity, producing various items in a much shorter amount of time than using other machines.
A CNC router can reduce frequency of errors, and the time for taking the finished product to market.
Laser Cutting gives a high-quality surface finish. It is used to cut complex shape with perfect finish and even for a smallest cut this process is very precise and uses less energy. Also avoids the need for a Blanking tool which is otherwise necessary for sheet metal fabricated parts.
It is a device which uses a hydraulic cylinder to generate a compressible force. Hydraulic presses are commonly used for forging, clinching, molding, blanking, punching, deep drawing, and metal forming operations. (Source: Wikipedia)
Acrylic print used directly for metal finish to give high gloss and color retention. Acrylic print is very durable and ideal for the materials which cannot be heated. It provides a wider range of colors options, and result into a very light and thin finish.
Metal powder coating:
To give the aesthetic look to the product, it is powder coated at the end of part development in which a coating is applied electrostatically to a surface as a free-floating dry powder after which heat is used to melt the powder and completes the coating process. The coating is thick and more durable than spray paint and gives an even finish to the product.
Some of the successful and beautiful products manufactured by Srushty.
In this vending machine, not only the purpose of the machine has been achieved but also the aesthetic look which is given by vinyl stickers, acrylic fixture and powder coating to give the machine a beautiful ornamental look.
This machine is engineered with beautifully curved edges with powder coating to give it an adorn look and feel with the mechanism to perform its desired functions.
This Machine is very aesthetically pleasing and capable of performing several medical diagnostic tests. The bend curves of sheet metal are sublimely finished by progressive bending and with the methods such as CNC laser cutting, powder coating and silk screen printing, etc., it results in an elegant piece of work.
In Srushty, we give the best engineering solutions without compromising on the aesthetics of the machine, in spite of low volume requirement for the product.
Can we Make in India? Yes, we can :-)
Last February I visited China with two missions, one to visit a large factory to establish collaboration to build our client’s Healthcare Kiosk, with the engineering design improvements that Srushty was working on. Second to source a cost-effective Sheet Metal Laser Cutting machine, to complement our CNC Laser Bending Machine.
My visit to the Chinese factory was inspiring, they are literally the sole supplier of all type of kiosks of China’s domestic needs. They almost cover all the global needs with very sophisticated infrastructure with vast amount of expertise and experienced technical staff.
Next, I was at the vendor site of the low-cost sheet metal laser cutting machine that we were sourcing, to inspect the machine that would be delivered to Srushty shortly. It was comparatively far less sophisticated and about 10% less than the cost of the average machine, I saw at the large Chinese manufacturer.
I felt our infra is like a sand dust in the Himalayan foot hill, when I compared the infra at the large Chinese manufacturer to ours. It had more than 50 high end machines and other matching infrastructure
My mind went viral with mirage of confused thoughts and questions.
- Why India is far behind China when it comes to manufacturing?!
- Why we lack focus in building products of best quality in India?
- What makes these Chinese manufacturers produce such wonderful high-quality products?
- What Infra difference India lacks to make similar success in product manufacturing?
- Can we, personally, Can I achieve similar fete with the minuscule infra that I have at Srushty?
- What is the real, I am mean the real core difference, to "Make in India", a reality?
The only meaningful answer that I could get in my mind was “THE INTENT”, we just need the intent.
The burning desire in my mind soon become a very focused INTENT to achieve here in India what I saw in China.
Now, less than 12 months from my visit, thanks to Satyender Goel, CEO, India Health Link Pvt Ltd, deciding to fuel my INTENT with his commitment to this Make in India Dream, we now have our First Made in India unit, shipped out of our facility :-)
The Hardware Design Team, which meticulously re-engineered the Mechanical and Electrical aspect of the product to meet DFM requirement based on the capability of Srushty’s Manufacturing Infrastructure.
The Manufacturing Team, which put their heart and soul to ensure we meet high quality and finish, second to none, with the minuscule manufacturing infrastructure with which we started this dream.
The Software Team, which had been working for long and hard to bring the Software Architecture redeployed to Indian needs, and migrating to Indian Servers and Indian User Experience needs
The Management and Administration Team which worked tirelessly to meet every day demands from souring to all infra and resource challenges.
The extended Srushty-IHL team which brings the spirit behind the success of this great milestone.
The last but not the least, the confidence and the reassurance, that a real INTENT can help stride against the odds, the team Srushty is now ready to promise to our customers that we can help you Make in India.
A Date with Epitome of Humanity
I had the great privilege of meeting Dr. S. S Badrinath, Founder, Emeritus Chairman of Sankara Nethralaya, and spent over 2 hours sharing the Vision of Srushty to the Vision Man of India.
Needless to say, I was really touched by the great man’s simplicity, vision, passion, patriotism, and philosophy behind building one of the greatest health care institutions in India.
It was a significant milestone for our journey over last 6 months with team Sankara Nethralaya, understanding Sankara Nethralaya’s vision of serving India and the world with their social conscious approach towards affordable and high quality eye care. And it was humbling to know how Engineering & Innovation can greatly help in their endeavour, and how eager the organization is to embrace Engineering Innovation.
Today team Srushty could share some early prototypes of Vision Care products, and get some of the ideas appreciated by Dr. Badrinath himself which is really a proud moment.
To crown it all, as part of wrap-up of the discussion, Dr. Badrinath’s summary highlighting that “Goals of Sankara Nethralaya and Srushty are well aligned” is truly equal to the highest award I could have imagined and a great acknowledgement of the very idea of Srushty and our mission towards “Make in India”.