At the University Colorado Denver, a manufacturing process design course was specifically created to raise the level of the as constructed senior design projects in the department. The manufacturing process design course creates a feed forward loop into the senior design course, while the senior design course generates a feedback loop into the process design course. Every student and student project has the opportunity to utilize CNC mills and lathes where appropriate. Specific emphasis is placed upon the interfaces from solid models to CAM models and subsequently the interface from CAM models to the machine tool. Often the construction of many senior design projects approaches the level of blacksmithing due to time constraints and lack of fabrication background. Obviously, most engineering students have neither the time nor the ability to become expert fabricators. However, the wide incorporation of CNC machining in the program allows, an opportunity to not only raise the quality of their prototypes, but also to immerse in the hands on experience of living with the ramifications of their own design decisions in manufacturing. Additionally, some of the art of fabrication is turned into the science of fabrication. The focus of this paper will be primarily on examining the effect of formal incorporation of the manufacturing process in the capstone design course.

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