The Importance of Quality Dies, Jigs, and Fixtures in Manufacturing Operations
02 December 2019
Clients look for a handful of qualities when they’re establishing a partnership with a manufacturing operation. If there are several likewise-thinking services in the local area, they’ll have a wealth of options to consider. However, if a sought-after company is needed to tackle a particular manufacturing niche, then the options narrow. With quality die manufacturing in the balance, there can be no such gambles. If necessary, a customer will even import the requested fitting from another country.
Quality Dies from Reliable Manufacturing Partners
There’s a lesson to be learnt from the above teaching moment. Long story short, if a client comes looking for a die, for a quality assured cutting, stamping or stripping tool of any description, the chosen manufacturing operation had better be capable of delivering the goods. That means a tool must be geometrically and dimensionally spot-on. Made to the highest possible engineering tolerances, the dies may be fabricated out of the toughest carbide and duplex steels available to man, but that’s no excuse to use a shoddy fabrication system. If a client specifies a set of dimensional and material tolerances, all of which require fatigue and impact-resistant materials, then those project specs must be observed. Remember, if a customer isn’t satisfied, they will go to another manufacturer, one that’s perhaps located in another state or country. At the end of the day, there really is no substitute for quality.
Who Takes Care Of Jigs And Fixtures?
Here’s a somewhat strange question. Who repairs the tools of toolmakers? Who fixes and calibrates the equipment used to maintain a manufacturer’s tools? Let’s make this a little clearer, then. If a company who specializes in manufacturing workpiece-holding fittings experiences an equipment failure, they’ll require someone to service and repair the gear, someone who knows all the ins-and-outs regarding this area of expertise. A jig, the tool type being referred to here, is a type of bench retaining mechanism. Advanced jigs hold and orient workpieces. They also provide smooth planar surfaces and additional tooling features, including guides and fine adjustment controls. If jigs and fixtures don’t do their job properly, well, an accompanying tool, be it a drill bit or a cutting blade, won’t perform its tool stroke as intended.
Whether a client is responsible for a small machine shop or a 100m long production line, the same level of quality-assured manufacturing excellence should always be applied to your dies and fittings. Tool-dense dies need to be formed precisely. Likewise, jig and fixture blocks, whether they’re built to function as simple bench vises or to operate as mounting mechanisms for 5-axis CAD workstations, they must be serviced to the very highest repair standards, as made possible by a top-notch engineering operation.
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