Group 4 - DeWalt 1/2 in Hammerdrill (Corded)
For this project our group chose to analyze, dissect, and reanalyze the DeWALT DW511 Hammerdrill. Throughtout this project we will investigate the design, answering questions about functionality, aesthetics, manufacturing, and other engineering decisions. In doing so, we will explore the global, societal, environmental, and economic factors which shaped the final design. By reconstructing the lifecycle of this product and considering the customer requirements, design specifications, and manufacturing processes used to produce it, we are able to better understand the decisions that led to its development, otherwise known as the product's archaeology. In addition to performing the product archaeology, we are required to manage the project ourselves. This includes project planning tasks such as decomposition of the project tasks and identifying internal deadlines. We also had to complete group management tasks, including assigning roles, resolving conflicts, and internal communication.
Gate 1 - Group 4: Preparation and Initial Assessment
Gate 2 - Group 4: Excavation (Dissection)
Gate 3 - Group 4: Evaluation
Gate 4 - Group 4: Explanation
By working as a strong, communicative group, we familiarized ourselves with the DeWalt DW511 Hammerdrill to a great extent. Throughout the different gates we learned the benefits of group management and effective communication, while simultaneously increasing our mechanical knowledge of the drill, learning how it functions, and discovering ways to improve its design.
In Gate 1 we assessed our team, established roles, researched our product, and documented an assessment of our product before dissecting it, to make predictions of what we would learn in future gates. We also made accurate predictions of ease of assembly. Although we had an idea through intuition how the drilling motions were created, we were stumped as to what made the hammering action. Feeling prepared for Gate 2, we began the dissection process and documented each step with pictures, detailed descriptions, and tools used (if any). With the product taken apart, the functionality of the drill began clearing up. We learned how components interacted with one another, and finally, how the hammering action was created by a clutch that would be engaged from an external switch. In Gate 2 we also discovered which of the parts weren't meant to be disassembled further, and learned the relationships between subsytem components. Gate 3 continued the analyzation of the hammerdrill at a deeper level. We documented a further evaluation, starting with creating a parts list, then analyzing individual components by discovering their function, form, interaction, and method of manufacture. Next, we produced a solid-model assembly drawing of the gear system and wrote up an engineering analysis on it. By doing so we learned more about how the gear train works, and how the motor shaft rotates approximately ten times faster than the output shaft. Gate 3 was concluded with suggstions for revision including the replacement of the power cord with a rechargeable battery, and the addition of an LED light, a knuckle guard, and an internal chuck key storage compartment. After a satisfying evaulation of our product, we began to reassemble it in Gate 4. Taking under a half hour, this process was also documented. We were then able to make a few detailed conclusions about our product. First was a discussion about the major mechanism found inside; the gear train. We explained how it worked, and used diagrams to show how the gears 'stepped down' the RPM's from the input to the output. The second conclusion we drew was that we could suggest recommendations for improved design at a system level, including the addition of a high/low gear setting switch, and also a variable clutch. This concluded our project, and we all benefited from the work we put in. Through the analysis of a simple hammerdrill we gained a new set of skills as we were forced to think like designers and engineers.