How irritating is it when your components arrive from the engineering company and they don’t match the CAD drawings?

You know they have been manufactured incorrectly and the inevitable reworking causes delays that inevitably work their way downstream.

It could even cause trigger penalties if you miss your deadline!

So why is it that your finished  complex components don’t match those CAD drawings? What’s happening with your precision engineers?

There’s a number of ways it can all go wrong. But when your engineering supplier keeps messing up, there are two things you should consider:

This is not rocket science…

Have They Got The Right Equipment?

It goes without saying really, but you should check whether the software and machinery being used is actually suitable for the job. 

The easiest way to check is on your supplier’s website – most precision engineering companies will make it easy for you to check out their set-up

You should check that both their machines and their software are adequate for your project. Read more about this critical relationship here.

If this information is missing or hidden on the website, it may mean they are cutting corners. Low quality machines, software or a combination of both are making the more complex projects a struggle.

But, if their set-up is fine, high quality machines and software, then you might have a problem with the engineers themselves…

What About Expertise?

Well, the mismatch (finished components failing to match the CAD Drawings) could be down to the expertise (or lack of it) of your supplier. It’s an obvious reason for why the quality of the finished components is inadequate and contributes to late delivery too.

Adequate machines or no, an inexperienced engineer often lacks the expertise to produce your components to the required standard. Period!

They have to be able to use them to their true potential. Sadly, 5 axis machines are used with a 3 axis mindset.

In the image below, illustrates an example of when experience really matters:


When a tiny flaw was noticed by a quality control manager, our engineers solved the problem with the tool length and reproduced the component without the blemish.

Both quality control and engineer experience saved the day for this component by allowing us to identify, discuss and solve the issue.

What To Do About Inconsistent Components

If you find problems keep cropping up with your orders, then it could be time to consider changing your supplier.