In the fiercely competitive automotive market, OEMs are under intense pressure to improve quality and reduce cost of ownership all while meeting challenging EPA efficiency guidelines. Through our long-standing partnership with a leading car maker, at Plastikon, we embarked on a project to redesign a fan shroud assembly with the intent of optimizing space, weight, and cost within the scope of lean manufacturing objectives.
The existing design consisted of dual assemblies, the fan shroud and reservoir bottle, which required separate fastening steps to mount inside the chassis. Our team of product development specialists and design engineers systematically explored and refined alternative designs that would assure the best quality, reliability, and safety while optimizing manufacturability, material usage, and assembly.
Our final, integrated design featured a reservoir bottle hot-plate welded into the fan shroud system. Hot plate welding gave us precise control of the melt temperature for producing molecular-bonded welds with outstanding strength. Featuring injection molded, black and natural polypropylene construction, the new fan shroud, when completed, measured 666.4 mm in length x 577.9 mm in width and was produced to within ± 0.1 mm tolerances.
The net results were exceptional. Engineered with four less parts, it requires 8 less handling steps and avoids having to use an assortment of clips, brackets and screws to assemble it into the vehicle. It’s lighter, stronger, and costs 23% less to manufacture than the original. This customer respects us as a catalyst for waste reduction and a partner for implementing Kaizen strategies for continuous improvement.
If you are interested in learning more, please contact us directly. We welcome the opportunity to discuss your next project.
Highlights of Automotive Fan Shroud Development and Engineering
- Fan Shroud Redesign
- Current Fan Shroud has a Separate Bottle that is Mounted on the Assembly Line.
- Prior design had separate Fan Shroud and Reservoir Bottle requiring chassis assembly.
- New design integrates the Fan Shroud System by hot-plate welding the Reservoir Bottle to the Fan Shroud. Eliminates and reduces assembly and component mudas such as clips, brackets, and screws.
- Product Development
- Materials Selection and Application
- Feasibility Studies
- Kaizen & Cost Reduction
- Part Manufacturing
- Plastic Injection Molding
- Hot Plate Welding
Equipment Used to Manufacture Part
- Injection Molding, Hot Plate Welding, Leak Tester
Overall Part Dimensions
- 666.4mm x 577.9mm
- Base: PP-TD40 (TSM 5601G-3A) – Black
Cover: PP(TSM5514G-3A) – Natural
In process testing/inspection performed
- Functionality Testing
Industry for Use
- 150,000,000 Annual
- 8 Weeks for Prototyping
- Customer Specifications