You might be familiar with the term GD & T. This is an acronym for the term Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing. It is a practical way of communication of engineering tolerances and designs in manufacturing. GD &T is an international language that is used to convey the aspects of a part. The language consists of well-defined symbols, definitions, conventions and rules to be followed to describe the aspects of a design that includes size, shape, layout, location, orientation and tolerances. Let us check the importance of this international language and its importance for a mechanical engineer/ product designer.
Importance and Benefits GD & T Training Program
As discussed, GD &T is a standard language. So, this applies to all manufacturing industries. It will give an exact and clear understanding of the specifications when compared to the earlier methods. As it is a language that uses numbers and symbols, the message conveyed is specific and not generic. This avoids ambiguity in the interpretation of the design.
When it comes to the activities to be carried out by the production engineer, GD &T plays a vital role in helping the engineer plan the process in the best way. Relevant details along with feature control frames help the production engineer or product designer to decide on how to handle each component for the operation. It also helps the engineer to hold the components at every stage.
Tooling and References
Tooling is another area where GD &T plays a vital role. The specifications provided in the language help the tooling engineer and designers to manufacture the tooling with the perfect references. The language helps in the identification of the primary, secondary and tertiary references and also gives guidelines for holding, clamping, locating a component for the machining process.
Inspection Effectiveness& Bonus Tolerances
GD &T training also facilitate inspection and reduces the losses incurred by bonus tolerances. The references used to specify the design helps the inspection officers perform their activity quickly and effectively. The usage of bonus tolerance allows the designers to include any component that was rejected before without further modification and loss of material.
If we categorise by the field of engineering also, this language helps a lot of engineers and not just the mechanical department. Electrical engineers are also now making use of designing tools to design prototypes and parts for production. Even chemical engineers are consulted to verify the tolerance values used. A chemical engineer with good knowhow of GD &T will be able to support the production team with the right tolerance values.
The other areas where GD &T comes handy are the drafting department, purchasing department, the mold and die makers and even the managers. All the mentioned activities will need knowledge of GD &T and tolerances.
The quality department can confirm the quality of the work by the references and tolerances provided by GD &T. People with good knowledge of GD &T and tolerances can easily serve as a quality analyst. Managers with knowledge of GD &T can approve the good designers and ask for a new design if it is not up to expectations.
Smooth Operation, Ease of outsourcing, Computer Aid
As GD &T maintains the same rules, part of the work can be outsourced to any external agency. The GD &T can be incorporated in any of the computer-aided design tools like CAD, Solidworks, etc. and can be used to design the part and complete the product.
The design software that are usually recommended are
- SolidWorks (Dassault)
- Creo (PTC)
- Catia (Dassault)
- Inventor (Autodesk)
The language GD &T, mastery over the set of rules to be followed, tolerances, etc along with the knowledge of the designing tools mentioned above will make anyone a mechanical engineer in demand. The passage describes which all areas use GD &T and which all areas it makes the work easy. From drafters to managers, GD &T should be known to all in the manufacturing industry. So, if you have a GD &T training and certification and the right skills, you can grab a job in any of the top mechanical engineering-based industries.