How It Works

All of our services and products we offer are designed and developed to add more value to our customers’ processes or organizations. Generally, the work we perform at Blackwater is half custom fabrication and half contract manufacturing. The customer fabrication is low volume and the contract manufacturing is high volume. The systems we have developed over the years allow us to manage both of these types of production. And by coupling our design engineering and fabrication skills sets together make for a complete package we offer to our customers only at the best fabrication shop TX has to offer.

At Blackwater we strive to offer turn-key services for our customers. This means when a customer sits down for the very first time, they leave the meeting with a complete understanding of how Blackwater is going to manage their contract manufacturing or custom fabrication project. You will always get this attention to detail at the best fabrication shop TX has to offer. During high volume or contract manufacturing projects, the Blackwater engineering group will engineer the product from start to finish. This means from the conceptual design till we are shipping the product to your facility, all aspects are throughout and executed in a manner that eliminates waste and adds value. Some of the ways we do this,is by creating complete drawing packages with part numbers and production checklists to ensure all aspects of quality are being met per the customer standards.

There is a time and place for when engineering needs to be involved on high volume or low volume projects. At times, it is not cost effective to 100% engineer a low volume project due to delivery schedules and cost of materials. Generally, our rule of thumb for low volume projects is to create a conceptual model if needed for the customer and proceed with executing the fabrication drawings as quickly as possible. During the design time, supply chain is working very closely with engineering to make sure all of the parts are accounted for and lead times are being watched closely. While in engineering, their maybe intermittent releases of certain files for production to get moving on. For example, if there is flat plate that needs to be burned out, some aspects of the model may get finalized than others by engineering so that production can start their pre-fabrication operations by burning and forming the plate. Likewise with machining, machining can take longer than most parts because of the variety of machine work that is required. In summary, low volume projects at times require more attention in production and involving engineering 100% of the time can slow the project down. Here at the best fabrication shop TX has to offer, we focus on efficiency.

During some projects, it is worth its weight in gold to follow the theory “if you’re going to fail, fail fast!” During rapid prototype or low volume work, customers need to know very quickly if their concept is going to work. This does not mean it will work 100% right off the muscle, but they need to know if their overall design theory or idea is actually going to work. These types of exercises with the fail fast theory, will help business owners or entrepreneurs determine a business case in order to justify purchasing capital equipment, launching a product, starting a business, and/or crushing the competition. This exercise is not limited to business owners or entrepreneurs. Engineers need help all the time understanding a visionaries idea by proof of concept. It is through these proof of concept exercises that ideas get streamlined and cheap mistakes are made, rather than costly mistakes that occur after the product has been launched.

High volume or contract manufacturing can justify having a completed engineering package. For the most part, engineering is at the tip of the spear with all processes. Engineers go to school to understand theories and various disciplines in order to design products and processes that in general improve our everyday life. High volume products are generally not as expensive to build as a low volume product because of the amount of engineering that is involved. At Blackwater, the best fabrication shop TX has to offer, we go down the path of developing a product for a customer. we call this “front loading” the production system. This means that engineering is creating part numbers for every single part that makes up the initial concept. In return, our supply chain is working closely with engineering to locate these parts and obtain all the specs on them. The supply chain team will set up micro-inventory systems to accommodate these high volume projects. This helps stream-line our receiving and inventory tracking processes because every part has a part number. These parts have suppliers or manufacturers that have been vetted and/or their information is directly recorded on the released engineering drawings. Inside these micro-inventory systems are bin locations with part numbers on them so that shipping and receiving can store these away in the correct shelf. And so that production can come by with their “shopping” cart and pick the parts per the assembly or fabrication drawing they have. This removes and simplifies the part tracking process, and removes one to two people from being directly involved with issuing parts. The accuracy of our inventory system is more robust this way because the parts have been selected by an engineering group and supply chain group. Not one single department is making the call on which part numbers or suppliers to set up, it is a group effort to make sure at the end of the day the decision is adding value to the customers project, not waste.

It is important to work with a fabrication company like Blackwater because of our extensive engineering, supply chain, and fabrication experiences. This experience allies us to be the best fabrication shop TX has to offer. Unlike some fabrication companies, we do buy a wide variety of products and have a large network of strategic suppliers. We treat our suppliers like our customers because without them, we would not receive our products on time or have the ability to deliver quality products to our customers. Blackwater is committed to adding value to our customer projects, high or low volume types. We understand some of these projects are complex and can have multiple step production processes in order to complete the unit. With the help of engineering, quality checklists and work instructions are created based on our or customers’ drawing package. The quality forms ensure that we continually eliminate quality issues, inventory shortages, main assembly and more only at the best fabrication shop TX has to offer.