Secrets to Boosting Competitiveness with Post-Press Machinery – Part 1: The Complete Guide to PDM Software

Secrets to Boosting Competitiveness with Post-Press Machinery – Part 1: The Complete Guide to PDM Software

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    Preface

    One of the world’s most renowned investors, Warren Buffett from the United States, believes that “a person’s success is related to the choice of spouse.” Applying the same principle from a corporate perspective, SBL Machinery holds that a company’s success is closely tied to the selection of tools and software. With over fifty years of expertise in the post-press packaging equipment industry (Die Cutting Machine, Folder Gluer Machine, Hot Stamping Machine), SBL Machinery aims to unveil these “secrets to enhancing competitiveness” through this series of articles. This not only helps the audience understand how SBL stands out by employing certain methods but also encourages them to contemplate how their own companies can improve competitiveness through similar means! Without further ado, let’s dive straight into the main topic of this article – The Complete Guide to PDM Software.

    1. What is PDM Software?

    PDM (Product Data Management), as the name suggests, is a tool software for managing and optimizing a company’s product data and process information. It aids companies in more effectively controlling the product design and manufacturing process, thus enhancing product quality, reducing manufacturing costs, and shortening time to market. For instance, SBL Machinery utilizes Solidworks PDM system.

    The PDM system can track and manage the following product information:

    1-1. Part Data

    This includes all relevant data for the parts, components, and assemblies of products, such as part numbers, descriptions, dimensions, materials, etc.

    1-2. Document Management

     Managing documents related to the product, including technical documents, specifications, drawings, design documents, test reports, etc.

    1-3. Version Control

    Ensuring changes to product data are tracked and managed, along with maintaining a historical record. This includes tracking different versions of parts, documents, etc.

    1-4. Change Management

     Tracking and managing changes to the product, including change review, approval, implementation, and documentation.

    1-5. Project Management

    Monitoring the progress of product development and production, including task assignment, schedule management, milestone tracking, etc.

    PDM software is widely used in many industries, especially those requiring precision design and complex processes, such as automotive manufacturing, aerospace, high-tech electronics manufacturing, medical equipment manufacturing, and mechanical engineering. Companies in these industries often need to manage large amounts of product design and process data and continually update and improve products, hence the significant demand for PDM systems.

    2. How Does PDM Software Address Pain Points in the Equipment Industry

    In today’s fiercely competitive market, equipment manufacturers are all seeking ways to enhance the efficiency and quality of their product development processes, aiming to shorten time-to-market, reduce production costs, and maintain a competitive edge. However, traditional product design and file management methods often suffer from issues such as data chaos, lack of version control, inefficient workflows, and resource wastage, all of which significantly impede a company’s progress.

    This is where modern Product Data Management (PDM) software comes into play. PDM software offers manufacturers a centralized product database, stringent change control, and automated workflows, among other powerful capabilities, effectively addressing these challenges and boosting a company’s competitive advantage.

    2-1. Finding the Correct Version of Engineering Drawings Quickly

    2.1_Finding the Correct file

    In traditional decentralized data management, since data is scattered across personal computers or network shared folders, locating the latest or correct version of engineering drawings is actually quite challenging. Typically, the file server stores the final version of the drawings. PDM software, on the other hand, offers a centralized product database where all versions of drawings are managed centrally, allowing for quick access to the latest correct version, significantly enhancing work efficiency.

    2.2 Understanding the Revision History of Engineering Drawings

    In traditional modes, the revision history of engineering drawings often lacks records and control. Once issues arise, it’s difficult to trace who made the modifications, when, and what changes were made. Take SBL Machinery as an example: “A certain cover plate originally had 2 holes, which were increased to 3 holes due to design changes.” Firstly, modifying the design drawing requires prior application. Secondly, the reasons for increasing the number of openings also need to be explained in writing (e.g., for accommodating sensor installation), for future engineers to reference when querying or making further design changes.

    2.3 Ensuring Editability of Shared Drawings

    2.3_Ensuring Editability of Shared

    In traditional CAD environments, drawings are typically shared in file format stored on local or network disks. Once opened by someone, the file gets locked, preventing others from editing. PDM software provides advanced file management features, supporting multiple users to concurrently edit the same drawing. Changes made are automatically merged, avoiding traditional mode editing conflicts, while also speeding up development schedules.

    2.4 Understanding the Revision History of Engineering Drawings

    2.4_Understanding the Interconnectedness of Drawings

    In product design, many drawings are interconnected. Once one undergoes a change, related drawings also require corresponding modifications. In traditional modes, due to a lack of effective control means, omissions and inconsistencies are easily triggered. PDM software establishes drawing relationships, automatically identifying all related drawings once a modification occurs, ensuring consistent change propagation.

    2.5 Transparency in Drawing Review Processes

    2.5_Transparency in Drawing Review Processes

    Design review is a crucial stage in product development. In traditional modes, the drawing review process often lacks standardization and automation, leading to inefficiency and difficulty in tracking PDM.

    3. Conclusion

    Imagine, for instance, SBL Machinery, where a seemingly singular-function device like the Die Cutting Machine is actually assembled from over 2,000 precision parts. Each part undergoes meticulous design and manufacturing to ensure the machine’s smooth operation. However, merely completing the design and manufacturing of the machine itself is only a small part of the picture. What’s even more crucial is the equipment’s maintenance and after-sales service, requiring a high level of technical expertise and professional knowledge, supplemented by advanced Product Data Management (PDM) software.

    Regardless of the stage in the machine’s lifecycle, whether it requires routine maintenance or upgrades, SBL Machinery stands ready to provide exceptional service support. One of its core advantages lies in implementing centralized and efficient management of product data using software like PDM. Thanks to the robust data management capabilities of PDM, SBL’s Die Cutting Machines, Folder Gluer Machines, Hot Stamping Machines, and other equipment not only boast outstanding manufacturing quality but also retain high value in the secondary market, akin to that of Toyota automobiles, approaching the value of brand-new equipment.

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