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Is this ethical?

Is this ethical?

Is this ethical?

The company where I work has asked me to take a suppliers drawing and copy the content onto our companies drawing boarder to supply to the customer?

RE: Is this ethical?

The GD&T forum is probably not the best place for this post.. we do, after all, have a topic called "Professional Ethics in Engineering".

With that said.. in my opinion this is a gray area.

Companies do this A LOT.

In my experience, the most common scenario for this type of work is when a customer needs specific dimensions of a part, so you need to provide a drawing, but you don't want them to know the OEM's part number so that when they need spares, they can't go around you and you don't sacrifice the markup you get from spare parts sales.

I have refused to do this in the past, and I have done it without refusing- depending on the situation.

RE: Is this ethical?

Yup, most companies have their own print for a purchased part so engineering can control changes to incoming parts. Supplying a customer with your print for someone else's part is common practice to protect the parts' business.

RE: Is this ethical?


What sort of drawing is this? If this is a dimension, interface and/or installation drawing, I do not see any ethical issues. Maybe your boss wants to conceal your supplier. There usually is a note on official drawings stating what you are allowed to do with the drawing. What does it say?

If you are copying fabrication drawings and sending them out to your vendors, then I can see some ethical issues.


RE: Is this ethical?

19Racks... be carful...

Many vendor's are cagy: they supply a 'sales drawing' with enough details/information to successfully use the component... but not enough info to actually make it! Occasionally You can get the engineers to discuss elements... but many vendor engineers already know how-far to step without actually giving-away the farm.

IF in-fact You have a fully detailed drawing, then there are often PROPRIETARY USE notations on the face of the drawing or within the agreement/contract that allowed Your company to actually receive/use the detailed drawings for business purposes. Violating this protocol can be legally/ethically damaging.

Also... and my company is brutally efficient at this... corporate drawings contain specifications, notes, features, etc that are well established/understood to that company... such as in-house process specs, parts, codes, tests, certifications, etc, etc. Likewise fabrication sequence/details/quirks are well established 'no-brainers' to the in-house Fab Planners and approved vendors. OFTEN, these features are inscrutable/unknowable to the untrained-eye. I'm asked to help translate these inscrutable features to our USAF customer engineers so they REALLY understand the drawing intent... and sometimes interpolate/update obsolete information. In any case I have to remind the USAF guys regarding limits on data usage and procurement.

CAUTION. Testing/qualification requirements that the vendor were forced to under-go many years prior may also feed into their design without having been fully documented. A sample part/component and overhaul/maintenance manuals will help... but only to the degree where details are present. IF qualification was a critical or intimate element to becoming the supplier of the part/component, then YOU-TOO may have to qualify, same as the OEM.

IF You really want to procure this part/component independent of the original vendor, then there is the practices of legitimate reverse engineering. REFER to MIL-HDBK-115 (latest Rev C) US ARMY REVERSE ENGINEERING HANDBOOK (GUIDELINES AND PROCEDURES) for a deeper understanding of this topic.

Regards, Wil Taylor

o Trust - But Verify!
o We believe to be true what we prefer to be true. [Unknown]
o For those who believe, no proof is required; for those who cannot believe, no proof is possible. [variation,Stuart Chase]
o Unfortunately, in science what You 'believe' is irrelevant. ["Orion", Homebuiltairplanes.com forum]

RE: Is this ethical?

Thanks Wil for the MIL-HDBK-115 (latest Rev C) US ARMY REVERSE ENGINEERING HANDBOOK tip, never knew that existed.


The Help for this program was created in Windows Help format, which depends on a feature that isn't included in this version of Windows.

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