Welding time models for cost calculations in the early stages of the design process
Vartiainen, Mika (2000)
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Acta Universitatis LappeenrantaensisURN:ISSN:1456-4491
It is generally accepted that between 70 and 80% of manufacturing costs can be attributed to design. Nevertheless, it is difficult for the designer to estimate manufacturing costs accurately, especially when alternative constructions are compared at the conceptual design phase, because of the lack of cost information and appropriate tools. In general, previous reports concerning optimisation of a welded structure have used the mass of the product as the basis for the cost comparison. However, it can easily be shown using a simple example that the use of product mass as the sole manufacturing cost estimator is unsatisfactory. This study describes a method of formulating welding time models for cost calculation, and presents the results of the models for particular sections, based on typical costs in Finland. This was achieved by collecting information concerning welded products from different companies. The data included 71 different welded assemblies taken from the mechanical engineering and construction industries. The welded assemblies contained in total 1 589 welded parts, 4 257 separate welds, and a total welded length of 3 188 metres. The data were modelled for statistical calculations, and models of welding time were derived by using linear regression analysis. Themodels were tested by using appropriate statistical methods, and were found to be accurate. General welding time models have been developed, valid for welding in Finland, as well as specific, more accurate models for particular companies. The models are presented in such a form that they can be used easily by a designer, enabling the cost calculation to be automated.
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