Reprinted from Coil World magazine, May/June 1997

EASI-DOCKING STATION BASE

D and D Manufacturing and Electronic Accessory Specialists International have worked to develop a high quality, innovative product which is being catered to the lap-top computer industry. This product is marketed under the product name "Easi Dock" and serves to lend flexibility in enabling and disabling the connection of printer, modem, LAN and communication ports when utilizing lap-top computer units. Currently this product is being sold to major lap-top manufacturers such as IBM, Compaq and Toshiba.

The "Easi Dock" unit was originally designed and developed to be produced via a metal stamping process consisting of various blanking and forming stations and subsequently submitted for a complete post powder finishing operation. D and D Manufacturing has since changed the specifications of the base material to a pre-painted powder coated steel (SAE 1010 CRS/metal substrate) provided by MSC.

Numerous advantages can be found both from an economic and an aesthetic standpoint as a result of this change in material/powder specifications. D and D Manufacturing has been able to significantly reduce their piece part costs as a result of the elimination of a secondary process (i.e. post powder). The incremental cost to procure pre-powder coated materials is much more cost ettective than the former post powder process. Additionally, quality assurance procedures need only be performed once (i.e. after producing the parts via the precision tooling) as opposed to the further quality checks which are required in a post powder scenario. Needless to say, lead-time on this product has also been significantly enhanced.

The use of the Powderbond pre-painted material has improved the uniformity of the finish. The powder coat is capable of withstanding the forming and blanking pressures applied in our tooling and moreover render a resilient and aesthetically pleasing finish for the dock station unit assembly.

D and D Manufacturing is actively proposing the use of this pre-powdered material in its future stamping applications in which the properties of this product fit. They are currently engineering projects for both a computer and radio chassis where this pre-powdered alternative should serve as a substantial competitive advantage.