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'Design For Assembly is a process by which products are designed with ease of assembly in mind.' This is how Wikipedia begins the page on Design For Assembly (DFA). DFA recognizes the need to analyze both the part design and the whole product for any assembly problem early in the design process. Companies have been practicing DFA for a long time, mainly as a set of guidelines for designers to follow. Geoff Boothroyd developed a method for estimating the time and cost for assembly, and then proposed a method to minimize the number of parts in a product.
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