Ford and flexible manufacturing

Ford and Flexible Manufacturing The automotive industry is a highly competitive market where brand loyalty is only as strong as the latest gizmo and horsepower upgrade.

Ford and flexible manufacturing

Currently, two families of engines are produced at the DDC. The first of these are the 1. The engine is also used in Mazda and Volvo vehicles. The second engine family — the Lion — comprises the 2.

It was a change that was handled very easily, says Payne, with only a week between the decision being made and its implementation.

Ford and flexible manufacturing

At present the line is producing a total of ten variants of the two Tiger engines. The current products conform to the Euro 5 emissions legislation requirements and have been coming off the line for around 18 months, though the company is now gearing up to start production of engines that will comply with the more stringent Euro 6 demands.

Around workers, divided into roughly a dozen teams, are needed on the shop floor for a full shift. Assembly team self-management The ethos, confirmed by Tiger area manager Mike Thompson, is very much one of self-management at the team level.

It is entirely the responsibility of the team leaders to approve particular projects and no formal quota for them to meet is set from above.

Conveyor transport The line itself is a mix of purely automated cells and semiautomated operations involving human operators, with the former concentrated at the front end and the latter for the final sequence of operations.

One feature that runs throughout the two and a half hours it takes an assembly to move from the start to the finish of the line is transport via conveyor. While routine for, say, car bodies, Payne says this technique is still unusual for engine assembly. The crucial distinction is that that the latter type gives operators the ability to stop the platen carrying a particular assembly if needs be, though normal procedure is for assembly operations to be carried out with the platens in — admittedly very slow — motion.

The platens and their associated fixturing are also more interesting than they appear. Payne explains that the main platen is a standard type used at Ford plants worldwide but above it is a fixture for holding the assembly that is a mix of standardised and customised elements.

The former essentially match the geometry of its underside, enabling it to mate to the plate, while the latter comprise the shape of its front face that supports attachment to the engine assembly.

Specifically, the front face carries a couple of protrusions that are designed to slot into holes in the engine body and it is a point of principle that all variants of a particular engine type must be capable of mating with the same fixturing. Payne says that ensuring this continuing compatibility is a primary concern in all product and manufacturing engineering development activities, which are carried out simultaneously by multifunctional teams.

Joint working between the two areas of expertise starts from day one of any new product or existing product variant development project which may be as much as four years before the start of production in the first case or half as much in the second.

Day-to-day features Overseeing the day-to-day operation of the line is the responsibility of senior maintenance coordinator Craig Black, who appropriately, given the self-management philosophy described by Payne and Thompson, has advanced to the position from an original role on the shop floor.

A feature of the line, he points out, is the visibility, quite literally, of its efficiency. Illuminated overhead display boards at various points carry data relating not just to overall team performance but to that of individuals, with each operator represented by a neat green square icon.

Another feature, again quite literally, is at floor level; the fact that all the conveyor elements sit on the floor rather than being sunk in.

The reason for that is nothing to do with any logistical or manufacturing considerations but the marshy nature and hence high water table of the site in its undeveloped state. One of the vehicles that has its access facilitated in such a way is a pedal-powered tricycle.

The very start of the line combines both manual procedures and high-end automation. Before leaving the cell, the blocks are also engraved with a unique code to ensure that they are traceable at all points along the line and in service.

Storing improvements All production lines embody features that represent distinct and deliberate corporate philosophies and in this respect the Dagenham TDCi line is no exception. One of the most distinctive is probably the way that it approaches the issue of on-line buffer stores.

Black says there are eight in total and they are regarded not as an evil to be tolerated but much more creatively, as a means of facilitating the empowerment of the shop floor teams and even the introduction of new products.

On the first of those points Payne is emphatic: He says that the use of buffer stores allows the manufacture of prototype engines to be integrated into day-to-day production schedules in a way that smoothes the way for their eventual full-scale production.

Quite simply there is enough room for a batch of prototypes to take their place alongside current production units and be sent down the line as required. Hence the technique operates at a practical level to provide feedback to the design operation as an aid to design-for-production and to help familiarise shop floor operators with products they will have to assemble in the future.

Payne says the tactic has proven highly successful. Right now, she adds, the same approach is being implemented to prepare for the introduction of engines that will be compliant with Euro 6 requirements.

Essay title: Ford and Flexible Manufacturing

Stockholding and production planning A similar pragmatism is evident where stockholding is concerned. As it is, there is an approximate production plan as far as a month ahead and detailed schedules are issued on a daily basis.

But not every operation takes place directly on the line.Essay on Ford and Flexible Manufacturing Words 5 Pages The automotive industry is a highly competitive market where brand loyalty is only as strong as the latest gizmo and horsepower upgrade. The Lean Way Forward at Ford. I’ve been reflecting on the latest retreat by the Ford Motor Company as part of its “Way Forward” campaign.

Ford and Flexible Manufacturing - Research Paper

While reflecting, I have found it useful to think about the history of lean thinking at Ford, going back nearly years. Flexible manufacturing has already put Ford on the right track. Costs have been decreased by 3. 2 billion dollars and have pushed Ford into the black with profits of 1.

4 billion in Ford now has the ability to make nine different vehicles at the same time and can change manufacturing platforms with much less downtime and costs.

BREAKING DOWN 'Flexible Manufacturing System - FMS'

Ford and Flexible Manufacturing This Research Paper Ford and Flexible Manufacturing and other 64,+ term papers, college essay examples and free essays are available now on Autor: review • February 13, • Research Paper • 1, Words (5 Pages) • Views4/4(1).

Powertrain Manufacturing Ford College Graduate. Through the FCG program, Molli is proud to have earned the opportunity to work on an engine for the model year. John Savona Director of Manufacturing for Assembly. John knows that veterans’ training and discipline can be a huge asset at Ford.

New Goals for Advanced, Flexible Manufacturing. As today marks the th anniversary of the moving assembly line invented by Ford Motor Company under the leadership of Henry Ford, the company is building on its legacy of innovation by expanding advanced manufacturing capabilities and introducing groundbreaking technologies that could revolutionize mass production for decades to come.

Ford and flexible manufacturing
The Lean Way Forward at Ford