Tool Design: Concept and Meaning, Objective, Types

In this article, we will learn what is tool design? Its concept and meaning, objective, types, and so on.

In the realm of tool production, a significant 80% of the product’s quality is determined during the tool design phase, with the remaining 20% being shaped in subsequent stages such as production, inspection, assembly, etc.

Therefore, the pinnacle factor influencing product quality lies in the caliber of tool design. The primary responsibility for the product’s success lies squarely on the shoulders of the tool designer.

As a result, the role of the tool design engineer becomes pivotal in ensuring the triumph of the product and, by extension, the prosperity of the company.

Read also: Are PET Bottles Safe for us and the environment?

To delve into tool design, it’s crucial to first grasp the concepts of design and tool, enhancing our comprehension of the intricate world of tool design.

What is design?

Design is a process.

In the conceptualization phase, initial sketches are crafted, prototypes are generated, and samples are created for subsequent testing. If the tests yield positive results, conclusive drawings are then prepared.

Following the blueprint, the die, mold, and fixture are meticulously designed. The product undergoes assembly and is subsequently introduced to the market.

Customers engage with the product, providing valuable feedback. This feedback, in turn, prompts iterative changes to the design, highlighting the dynamic and continuous nature of the design process.

What is Tool?

A tool is defined as a component or device employed in the manufacturing of other components. The umbrella term “tools” encompasses all machinery and equipment utilized in the production process.

In the realm of engineering, tools encompass a wide spectrum, ranging from machine tools and cutting tools to specialized tools like jigs, fixtures, dies, and gauges, all integral to the production process.

What is Tool Design?

Tool design is a comprehensive process involving the creation and refinement of tools, methods, and techniques aimed at enhancing manufacturing efficiency and productivity.

This intricate process encompasses the design of various tools, including jigs, fixtures, and other accessories. The focal points during tool design are the anticipated quality and quantity of parts to be produced, the requisite machinery (such as lathe machines and milling machines), available workspace, and operator safety considerations.

Read also: Types of Cutting Tool Materials and Their Properties

In contemporary settings, these machines have evolved to be fully automated, employing CNC machining for streamlined and precise operations.

Concept and Meaning of Tool Design

The workpiece drawing serves as a blueprint, indicating the machining requirements and specifying the operations necessary to fabricate the desired product.

Following this, the selection and design of appropriate equipment for the machining operations are determined to fulfill the specified requirements.

Distinct tools are essential for holding and guiding cutting tools, and these tools also require meticulous design. Similarly, various measuring instruments and gauges employed for inspection purposes need to be designed.

While readily available cutting tools like single-point cutting tools, drills, milling cutters, as well as standard tools such as vices, chucks, locating pins, micrometers, and verniers can be sourced from the market, specialized tools like jigs, fixtures, gauges, dies, etc., are crafted for specific tasks. The intricate design of these specialized tools falls under the purview of tool design.

Objective of Tool Design

  1. First Time Right Decision 
  2. Commitment-Delivery 
  3. Cost Reduction 
  4. Implementation of Creative Ideas 
  5. Adherence to Company, National & International Standards 
  6. Coordination 
  7. TPM – Total Productive Maintenance

Types of Tool Design

There are following types of tools are designed:
  • Die Design
  • Mould Design
  • Fixture Design
  • Pattern Design
  • Gauge Design
  • Template Design
See in the figure one of the types of tool design that is a pattern tool design.
Tool Design Concept and Meaning, Objective, Types
Tool Design Concept and Meaning, Objective, Types


Is the Tool Design Perfect?

No, any tool design is perfect.  
Tool design inherently involves making compromises. For instance, one designer might prioritize strength when creating a tool, while another might emphasize cost-efficiency. The preferences in design can vary, with some focusing on aesthetic considerations.
Similarly various aspects like:
  1. Compact design
  2. Ease of assembly 
  3. Ease of manufacture
  4. Fault proofing
  5. Life
  6. Handling ease 
  7. Comfort ergonomics, etc. 
So there is always a scope for improvement.
I trust I’ve addressed all aspects of “tool design.” If you have any lingering doubts or questions about this subject, feel free to email me or inquire in the comments—I’ll be sure to respond. If you found this post helpful, consider sharing it within your circle to disseminate knowledge.

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