Can this be manufactured?

I have never worked for a manufacturing company, but most of you in this forum have. So I figured you might be able to confirm something
for me.
I have recently developed a better SWR meter for amateur radio. I thought my idea could be manufactured, but I'm now having serious doubts. Certain parts will need to be customized for EVERY individual unit. If these parts are not customized, my device will lose its accuracy under certain circumstances and be just as crude as the other SWR meters available on the market. This seems to fly in the face of the concept of interchangeable parts, which is the key requirement of mass production. If my doubts are correct, then this would explain why MFJ, TenTec, and other amateur radio manufacturers have not done this.
Does the required customization of each individual meter kill the prospects of manufacturing it? Is it time for me to pitch the idea I could earn serious money selling it, especially given the modest size of the amateur radio market? Do I have any flicker of hope of earning a serious income from this, or is there a better chance that Ozzy Osbourne will win a Nobel Prize?
Jason Hsu, AG4DG usenet@@@@jasonhsu.com
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Jason Hsu wrote:

If you are adjusting something then it should, in principle, to build the units without the variations that you are correcting with adjustments. Making it manufacturable may involve learning more about what causes the variations in operation in much more detail.
Then there is a possibility that you can include a microprocessor that makes measurements and records adjustments in digital pots or EEPROM to control other circuits driven by digital to analog converters so that he adjustments are automated, even though it makes the schematic more complicated.
--
John Popelish

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On Wed, 10 Sep 2003 05:22:01 GMT, the renowned John Popelish

Further, having adjustments is often used in commercial products, just because it's cheaper to have someone adjust a trimmer cap or pot while they are checking it out anyway than to buy unobtainium parts and materials that would "guarantee" the accuracy (and you'd still have to test it to be sure the manufacturing didn't damage a part or you didn't get a bad batch, or they didn't put the thing together wrong, or purchasing didn't buy a bad substitute etc. etc.

Yes, it also provides some protection against copying otherwise unprotectable products. Usually there's some trade-off in using digital adjustments- for example you may sacrifice a bit of the range of an ADC to allow digital calibration and zero adjustment without needing (yuk) digital pots for such DC purposes. In the US, the DMCA may provide extraordinary protection, if you can afford to pursue legal remedies.
Perhaps you could save us from guessing by telling us what you mean by "customized" in your original message.
Best regards, Spehro Pefhany
--
"it's the network..." "The Journey is the reward"
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On 10 Sep 2003 11:52:59 -0700, the renowned jason snipped-for-privacy@my-deja.com (Jason Hsu) wrote:
Best regards, Spehro Pefhany
--
"it's the network..." "The Journey is the reward"
snipped-for-privacy@interlog.com Info for manufacturers: http://www.trexon.com
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The economies of scale generally refer to the reduction in labor possible because large runs can justify better setups. If you must tune and match diodes in a trial and error method, then you will quickly lose any advantage, unless perhaps you can automate the diode checking, give each diode an exact value, sort by that value, and then pick up the right matched pair.
The level of customization as you present it would preclude large scale production at first. You might be able to have most of the unit made in large scale, then finish and tune each one individually as needed.
Michael
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jason snipped-for-privacy@my-deja.com "Jason Hsu" writes:

[%X]
You may have underestimated the size of your potential market. Not only the Hams but also the Professional Radio Engineering market should be considered. What might be expensive "nice to have" in one area is the other's "cheap but good" product. However, if all you are looking at is a superior SWR meter then what is your USP when compared to some products that are already available in the professional range.
You may need to do a bit more market research to evaluate whether or not you have aproduct that is worth developing.
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Paul E. Bennett ....................<email:// snipped-for-privacy@amleth.demon.co.uk>
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It isn't impossible. Remember to charge accordingly for the device.
If your customization is a "standard" customization, you could automate the process to some extent. Make as much of the device as standard as possible. Make the customizations as easy to do as possible.
Consider manufacturing 2 models, regular and precision. The latter would be tweaked and expensive, the former would be the same thing (different color, perhaps), but not tweaked, and less expensive.
Michael
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Sounds to me like you need better and more consistent parts, as suggested before, and maybe need to use DSP to process your signal after that stage. Are looking at a signal out of a bridge?

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