Page 53 - 2019 How-to-Specify E-Book
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manufacturing; the tooling used to make those components benefits as well. Printing injection molds and inserts can greatly reduce the lead-time for injection molded components, making it possible to get a concept and custom connector solution up and running quickly. As such, connector manufacturers with in-house additive manufacturing capabilities are rapidly changing the way many OEMs consider custom connector solutions.
3-D printing is one additive manufacturing technology that is changing the way OEMs view custom connector solutions.
Strong relationships between developers and manufacturing partners are critical to bringing products to market faster in this global economy. OEMs need to have good communication skills and work effectively with partners who can handle global projects.
Partnering with connector suppliers with proven experience in customized solutions can be beneficial in multiple ways, including reduced development timelines. Development processes for standard products are much different than those for custom products. OEMs can’t wait for a process that gathers market needs and then revises and validates a concept through customer feedback. Such a process could take months or years to finalize a concept, and a custom connector development should take weeks, not months. OEMs must find a connector supplier that understands this, can adjust the development process during concept stages to meet critical timelines, and can provide budgetary proposals quickly and with a high degree of accuracy.
Misperception: Custom connectors are too expensive.
When looking at the unit cost of commercial connectors, a customized solution might be higher. However, design concessions must be considered as well. High-density, office-grade connectors can’t withstand the temperatures, shock, and vibration or deliver the plating thicknesses and, in many cases, the ingress protection needed in

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