From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Spehro Pefhany)
Subject: Re: Chassis Hell
Date: 12 Oct 2002 22:51:22 -0700
NNTP-Posting-Date: 13 Oct 2002 05:51:22 GMT
"Richard Soennichsen" wrote in message news:...
> I have a small volume product that alsmost ready for market. The
> software is robust, the hardware is solid, and now I need a chassis. This
> product is for small aircraft and will mount in the panel like a modern car
> stereo. That is, The chassis is an alluminum box the slides and locks into
> a square sleeve. The front of the box contains a VFD display (2x24), an
> encoder shaft, and a pushbutton switch. I also need to have a plastic face
> plate on the front. The whole thing must look clean and professional.
> If I thought debugging the software/hardware was hard that was because I
> hadn't tried to do the chassis yet! I am having a Hell of a time lining
> this up, in small quantities anyway. Has anyone dealt with this?
It sounds like this product will never be made in large quantities. In
case I suggest you use a good CNC metal firm to fabricate the
Try to use someone LOCAL to you and go in there with samples and so
Don't expect them to design it, but they should be able to show you
similar products they have built and you WILL get ideas on how to
the housing. Ask questions and more questions, including cost and
cost for all the options.
Forget about molded plastic panels unless you have deep pockets (the
isn't so much the low quantity, it's that the up-front cost is
relatively large, typically $10-$20,000 USD. The parts are cheap, and
setup isn't much
either. If you only make 500 pieces, though, you're paying $30/unit
for the tooling. You can probably get CNC plastic or aluminum
and anodized aluminum plate is nice for an instrument). You may have
two, three or four companies to get the various parts you need. You'll
readable drawings for the parts, so get a ME type to help with that.
Spehro Pefhany (currently in H K)