“Minamoto Sekkei®”, or “Dynastic product engineering”

How to reduce the product engineering lead time and avoid errors in contract work

In the industries where work follows some customer’s specific requests, very often the product engineering phase provides for drawings made  anew also for parts that do not need customization.

This is what happens at Project Based enterprises workin on business modales commonly acknowledged as called Design-To-Order (DTO) or Engineering To Order (ETO), depending on whether the product should be completely redesigned or only (re)engineered by few adaptations. A few examples are in the following business domains:

  • Oil & Gas (where temperature and type of liquids affect components),
  • Big plants (requiring adaptation to the customer layout),
  • Equipment, etc.

The challenge for the said businesses consists in containing the variety generated by the ever-changing needs of customers.

On developing a new product for the market, such makers cannot be aware in advance of all possible variations and custimization requests, so that drawings cannot include all possible variations, too. What often happens is that engineers practice variations as adaptations based on some previous contract, with the risk to incur in the “re-invented wheel syndrome”, that is, with no awareness of feasible or optimal solutions possibly found out in similar cases, years before (for which the CAD models are porbably available in the corporate DB).

The method owes its name to the basic idea of considering the first prototype as the “forefather” of a “dynasty” of products to be adapted to the specific customer requirements.

The Japanese name for this technique is Minamoto Sekkei® (源 設計= design going back to the source), or “dinastic product engineering”, where the parent engineering (drawing) is the source of a basic design aimed at minimizing customization and eliminating any possible risks of error. Starting from situations such as the one described above, the Dynastic product engineering applies the VRP® technique’s principles in 6-steps. 

JMAC Europe has assisted many a development team and introduced this methodology in several operational sectors: production of industrial machinery, bottling lines, steel plants, Oil & Gas / Energy plants, etc.

Some examples of results achieved:

  • Reduction of the annual costs related to rework or technical changes due to incorrect derivation: -40% (without taking into account the cases of contract products not accepted by the customer to the Final Acceptance Test)
  • Number of fixed parts between one job order and another: from 29% to 85%
  • Hours of engineering necessary to order customization: – 55%.


JMAC Europe ha affiancato operativamente molti team di sviluppo, introducendo questa metodologia in vari settori : produzioni di macchinari industriali, linee di imbottigliamento, impianti siderurgici, impianti Oil&Gas/ Energy etc.

Alcuni esempi di risultati raggiunti:

  • Riduzione dei costi annui legati a rilavorazioni o modifiche tecnica imputabili a errata derivazione: -40% (senza considerare i casi di prodotti a commessa non accettati dal cliente al Final Acceptance Test)
  • Numero di parti fisse tra una commessa e l’altra: da 29% a 85%
  • Ore di ingegneria necessarie alla personalizzazione a commessa: – 55% .