Brother Industries Reduces Rework by


Using XVL



Integrating XVL into the “Brother Value Chain Management” Initiative provides

benefits to departments downstream from design.


Solution Areas Covered: Design Review, Assembly Process Validation, Technical Illustrations,    Technical Documentation, Electronic Spare Parts Catalogs


Corporate Profile


Brother Industries, Ltd is a leading electronics manufacturer headquartered in Japan. Its products include printers, computers, and computer-related electronics. 


Business Challenges and Objectives


To optimize processes and create new value, the Brother Group developed a management system called the “Brother Value Chain Management” (BVCM) which connects their three value chains


 1. The Demand Chain (Product Planning and R&D)

 2. The Concurrent Chain (Design and Product Engineering

 3. The Supply Chain (Logistics, Sales, and Service).


Over the last 10 years, through BVCM, Brother has installed XVL company-wide and has been sharing 3D models across all their departments. They are using a wide variety of XVL products including XVL Studio, XVL Converter, and XVL Player.


As one example, XVL Player was deployed as a viewer for sharing 3D models throughout the processes of product design, parts design, mold design, mold production, and QA of molded parts.


Mr. Eguchi of Brother explained the reason why they chose XVL Player as the 3D viewer: “We are using 3D CAD in the design department; however, the high-performance PCs required for CAD are not available in the downstream departments. XVL Player can be used even in downstream departments since it runs on standard PCs.”


Business Objective: Reduce Rework


Brother focused on “activities that reduce rework” which aimed to minimize rework that could significantly delay the product release schedule and increase production costs. During this effort, they discovered that rework often resulted from failing to account for subtle differences caused by design changes. For example, mold designs were not always updated when the design changed, and this error was not discovered until later in the process, resulting in rework of the mold design.


How Brother Accomplished the Reduction of Rework


Brother used XVL Studio with Difference Check Option to address the issue of needing to rework the mold design. Mr. Isoya of Brother explained, “Specifically, we reduced rework by comparing models before and after design change using XVL Studio with Difference Check Option, prior to mold design. Just viewing two models does not allow us to find subtle differences. XVL Studio with Difference Check Option highlights the differences, which enabled us to easily detect potential mold design issues and helped us reduce rework significantly.”





When first deployed, the XVL Studio Difference Check Option helped the pilot team discover errors in six out of 13 parts in the early design stage. As the process was applied to other products, it resulted in the detection and correction of thousands of errors.


XVL Studio Difference Check Option enabled the team to reduce rework by five days per part. Most printer parts are molded plastic, so if a plastic part has an error, the supplier must update the mold, a process that can take up to five days. The cost is even higher for issues discovered during assembly and QA – these issues can result in a 10-day delay on average. Utilizing XVL Studio Difference Check Option not only reduces production issues; it also keeps assembly and QA on schedule.


Due to these results, Brother plans to reduce rework even further by applying XVL Studio Difference Check Option even more products. 




Brother Industries is a good example of a Japanese manufacturer that has

adopted XVL. By applying XVL downstream from the design department and

throughout the organization, they have been able to reduce the rework needed

for mold creation. They have also been able to shorten delays to the product

release schedule and decrease production costs.

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