Deconstructing the Things We Use

Last Updated:
June 14, 2024
Brian Wallace

Sometimes we don’t think about the components of the things we buy, ride in, and use every day. So many parts are involved in helping us live our daily lives. For example, coffee machines include components like a rocker switch, foamer head, adapter, and O-Ring while cars include components like an alternator, bracket, switch, and sensor. Industrial designers and engineers spend many hours designing these products, but selecting and sourcing these parts is not always easy. 


The products we use are a blend of components that manufacturers make and buy, so engineers need to figure out which supplier to get their parts from as they design. They have a few options to choose from. One is redrawing the parts made by supplier manufacturers, which helps the engineer get their preferred format but with slower revision and turnaround time. Requesting data from the manufacturer is another option, however, this also results in slower turnaround and revision time as well as limited formats and selection of brands. 


Engineers can choose to download user-generated resources that provide a large selection of products, except the content is usually generic and user-generated. They can source design files from the manufacturer as well. This provides very accurate data, current content, quick turnaround and revision time, and a large selection of formats with the only downside being the limited brands available to compare. 


The best option today might be to download from component search engines as they have a large selection of brands and products as well as manufacturer-certified product data that is always up to date. These search engines have instant turnaround and revision along with hundreds of formats to choose from. 

Almost 50% of design engineers spend hours per day looking for component details. Sourcing from a component search engine could help make the process faster and easier. Learn more about using a 3d search engine looking through deconstructing the things we use in the infographic below:

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