CASE STUDIES

Lean Management Case Studies

Case Study Lean Production: Setup optimisation using SMED


Lean-Starterpaket 2022

Project period: End of 2017 - Beginning of 2018

Automotive supplier in North Rhine-Westphalia

Number of Consultants involved: 1

Initial Situation

Like all automotive suppliers, the manufacturing companies are confronted with rising customer requirements in terms of variant diversity and falling batch sizes. Due to this, the production organisation is faced with the task of optimising all setup processes or making them more flexible so that the setup process ties up very little capacity.

The motto is exchange setup time for production time for as many variants as possible.

The goal of the Lean Consultancy:

In order to optimise setup time in the long run, the work processes and contents on a welding robot were to be analysed and waste methodically eliminated in an SMED project (SMED = Single Minute Exchange of DIE).

Approach

During the Consultancy project, the following methods were used:

  • SMED
  • 5SPronciples
  • Brainstorming
  • Ishikawa
  • Nominal group technique
  • Spaghetti-Diagramm
  • Cost-benefit analysist
  • PDCAaction plan
  • Time data determination
  • Further methods of industrial engineering

Actual situation

The analysis of the actual situation revealed the following weak spots:

  • Material trays are in the way during setup
  • Setup process not structured
  • Lack of tool provision
  • Unnecessary distances to be travelled by the setter
  • Poor setup tools (wrench, foot-pumped hydraulic system)
  • Tool rack cannot be fully used.
  • release process while machine is at standstill
  • Lack of work standards
Lean Experte

Obstruction of setup process: tools must be lifted across material depots

Lean Consulting

Spaghetti diagram of paths travelled during setup: approx. 750 meters travelled.

Lean Management

Tool rack is not fully used: Due to limited lifting height of the hydraulic carriage, the rack can only be used up to and including the second level. As a result, tools remain on the floor (left hand side of the picture).


Optimised setup process

During the consultancy, the team developed an optimised setup process. An action plan and a standardised setup instruction made the actual implementation in the factory easier.

For example, all material depots can now be moved aside within the machine, and the setup process can be carried out without obstructions.

Shorter setup times also result from the fact that the needed devices are now provided by the conveyor directly at the machine on setup trestles. Internal times have been converted into external times.

Furthermore, by using a suitable forklift, the tools can be placed on the racks in all places. The previously used spaces next to the rack are now available for setup trestles and trolleys.

Due to the use of closure clamping devices, special setup tools are not necessary.

By placing tools on setup trestles, they only have to be lifted and lowered a few centimetres.

Lean Management Consulting

Setup trestles allow for a minimum of vertical movement when retooling.


Conclusion

The setup optimisation reduced the setup time at the welding robot from 64 minutes to 5 minutes. This equals a time saving of more than 90 %. With the measures successfully implemented here, the setup times of two more welding robots can now be reduced as well.

Setup trestles allow for a minimum of vertical movement when retooling. Conclusion The setup optimisation reduced the setup time at the welding robot from 64 minutes to 5 minutes. This equals a time saving of more than 90 %. With the measures successfully implemented here, the setup times of two more welding robots can now be reduced as well. If the annual setup time saving on one unit alone equals already 132 hours, a time saving of 396 hours ( = 49,5 shifts) is achieved with three optimised machines. In this project, it meant a significant reduction in additional shifts on Saturdays.

Thanks to the time savings, an average of7425 more parts can be produced per year. For three workstations, it means 22.275 parts more than before the optimisation.

Alternatively, at an hourly machine rate of 75€, a yearly saving of 9.900 € for one unit is possible, or 29,700€ for all three workstations.

The expenditure for the setup optimisation is manageable: four closure clamping devices of 75€ apiece and three setup trestles made by the locksmith`s shop for approximately 1000€ apiece.

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Bettina Dirks
Bettina Dirks
Coordination Consulting
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