Category Archive: Blog

Why Work With an Overseas Manufacturing Company?

Outsourcing your manufacturing processes can provide ample benefits to your company, saving money and time while increasing efficiency in bringing your product to market. With some research on your part, you can find the right manufacturer and navigate the request for proposal process to find an outsourcing solution that meets your needs.

What Is Outsource Manufacturing? What Are the Benefits of Outsourcing?

Outsourcing manufacturing means partnering with an outside company to produce your product or product components. Outsourcing can help your company remain competitive by keeping up with high demand, lowering labor costs, and eliminating the struggle to find skilled labor. Working with a manufacturing and outsourcing company provides immediate expertise in your needed field.

Outsource manufacturing also provides access to state-of-the-art equipment without investing your resources. The manufacturer already has the machinery as well as safety and quality standards in place. The outsource manufacturer should be able to scale operations to fit your needs, even if they change over time. While all of this is occurring as part of a consolidated, efficient process with the outside manufacturer, your company can instead focus on your core business and what you do best.

Finding an Outsource Manufacturer

When looking for an outsource manufacturer, research carefully to find a company with mutual interests that will protect the quality of your brand. Consider the following:

  • Available services. The manufacturer’s capabilities should fit your project’s requirements.
  • Budget. Determine the cost per part to see if the outsourcing partner can meet your budget and reduce overall costs.
  • Equipment and technology. Inspect the manufacturer’s current machinery and processes, and ask if they are willing to upgrade if needed.
  • Lead times and delivery. Review the manufacturer’s ability to consistently produce and deliver products on time.
  • Licenses and certifications. Contract with manufacturers that hold the correct legal documentation to conduct business.
  • Minimum orders. Confirm if the manufacturer requires a certain minimum order and if that fits with your business plan.
  • Point of contact. Find out who your point of contact would be to ensure their communication style meets your expectations.
  • Quality standards. Request a sample product to inspect the manufacturer’s work.
  • Scale. Examine the manufacturer’s ability to produce your product at the current volumes as well as larger or smaller future production runs.
  • Testing. Ask if the manufacturer tests the final product and how they handle defects.

Navigating the Request for Proposal Process

When you have found a suitable manufacturer, the next step is to draft a request for proposal (RFP). An RFP is a procurement document that goes out to bidders to outline your project and company needs as well as the criteria you will use to determine a winning bidder. Drafting a detailed, precise RFP takes time, but the process will also save time by helping to ensure that your product will be manufactured as intended once production begins.

Start planning your RFP by selecting your team, generating a timeline and a list of the planned bidders, developing the requirements for your project, and determining the winning criteria. When the planning is complete, you will draft the document formally for the team to review, ensuring it includes all necessary information. After any improvements based on the team’s feedback, the RFP goes to the primary stakeholders for approval.

Once the RFP is final, the team sends it to the bidders, allowing them the opportunity to request an RFP conference and submission support, if necessary. When the bidders’ responses are in, you will evaluate them based on the criteria set in the planning stage. After you choose the ideal proposal, you can announce the winner and draft a Statement of Work for the winning bidder so that manufacturing can proceed.

Integrated Solutions’ (ISI) Outsourcing Solutions

Outsourcing your manufacturing can be an advantageous venture, but it is vital to find a manufacturer that meets your unique needs. Integrated Solutions Co. has been delivering manufacturing solutions to companies in the United States and Canada since 2002. As an overseas outsourcing company, ISI can reduce your labor costs and produce consistent, high-quality parts, regardless of the material or industry. We offer standard machine shop services, including turning and milling; machined components made of various materials like fiberglass, rubber, and plastic; and even language support.

Let our experts save you time and money with a seamless outsourcing process. Contact us to learn more, or request a quote today.

CNC Turning and Milling vs. Manual Turning and Milling

Turning and milling are two types of machining processes that remove excess material from a workpiece to change it into a specific shape or part. Computerized numerical control (CNC) machinery can control both turning and milling tasks, or they can be manual operations. While both have common uses in a wide variety of machining projects, the difference between CNC turning and milling is that they use different techniques to shape the product. Learn more about the similarities and differences between turning and milling methods as well as the advantages of both CNC and manual options.

CNC Turning and Milling vs. Manual Turning and Milling

What is Turning? How Does the Turning Process Work?

In turning processes, the cutting tool holds in a fixed position, and the workpiece is attached to a rotating, mobile spindle. The workpiece moves relative to the cutting tool to cut precision strokes in the workpiece. Because the piece is rotating throughout the cutting process, the cuts themselves are generally identical across the entire circumference of the workpiece relative to the axis of the rotation. The machinery determines the RPM, or the speed at which the workpiece rotates, and the stationary arm can hold lathes and cutting tools of various shapes and materials depending on the demands of the design.

Advantages of Turning

Some of the key advantages of turning include:

  • Speed. Turning processes can be faster than other CNC alternatives, making production runs more efficient and cost-effective.
  • Control. Turning commonly creates very small components as well as cylindrical parts because the process allows for more minute control of the workpiece.

What is Milling? How Does the Milling Process Work?

Milling processes are similar to turning, but they use a nearly reversed set of operations. Rather than having a stationary tool and a rotating workpiece, milling uses a rotating tool up against an immobile workpiece. The cutting tool is fixed to a spindle, which can move across multiple axes around the workpiece to cut it from virtually any angle. Milling tools can have multiple different surfaces and come in various shapes to best form the workpiece based on the design specifications.

Advantages of Milling

Some of the key advantages of milling include:

  • Size and shape options. This process is ideal for large, flat, or square-shaped components.
  • Versatility. Milling can create products with more diverse shapes and features. It can also provide more complex parts.

CNC Machining vs. Manual Machining

Not only are there different machining processes available based on the needs of your product design, but you can also choose whether those cutting operations are automated CNC processes or manually completed by an operator. Each option provides distinct advantages.

CNC Machining

CNC machines use computer-aided design (CAD) technology to translate design files into a set of instructions the machinery can follow step by step to complete the product. Because the process is handled almost entirely by machines, the parts are highly precise and uniform, even in high-volume orders. There is also minimal intervention from human operators, reducing labor costs, safety hazards, and the risk of human error.

Manual Machining

Manual processes are fast and cost-effective for small orders. The production team doesn’t need to have programming experience to translate the designs or encode the turning or milling process. Instead, however, manual machining relies on skilled experts to manage the procedure, adding specific workforce requirements for team members. Also, there is a risk of human error even with the most skilled laborers.

Turning and Milling at Integrated Solutions (ISI)

At Integrated Solutions Co., we specialize in creating high-quality milled and turned components. Our CNC and manual milling tools are suited to both metals and plastics to create a wide range of product options for the aerospace, architectural, and electronics industries, among others. Product quality is our top priority. We have a team of skilled machinists and programmers who can build your products to your exact specifications to ensure you have reliable parts within your budget. We also have local contacts within our service areas to ensure the success of each project.

Contact us today to learn more about our milling and turning capabilities or request a quote for pricing details.