Work Cells in Process Plants: Virtual or Pretend?

Via Scoop.itCellular manufacturing

In the latest issue of the AME’s Target magazine, Peter King explains how he has applied the cell concept in process plants, but his cells are virtual, meaning that their implementation does not involve relocating equipment.   In the case of synthetic rubber at Dupont’s plant in Louisville, KY he reports decreasing scrap and lead time by 28%, and decreasing finished goods inventory by 50%. There is no mention of improvements in Productivity, WIP and Raw Materials inventory, or Space Requirements.

While these improvements are substantial and respectable, they are  not up to cell benchmarks: reductions of 80% to 90% in lead time, inventory and defect rates, with a 30% to 50% increase in productivity, all in 25% to 30% less space. But that cannot be achieved without moving equipment…

If you can’t move the equipment, I prefer to call it managing monuments than implementing cells. Since you can’t get from managing monuments the order-of-magnitude performance boosts that you get from cells, I prefer to keep the distinction in sharp focus rather than blur it by pretending that “virtual cells” are cells.   Where cells apply, they are wonderful, but they are not a panacea. Even in discrete, mechanical manufacturing plants, there are often a few areas like, Heat Treat, Electroplating or Painting, where cells are difficult or impossible for now, and the skill of managing monuments is necessary.
Via www.ame.org

Cellular Manufacturing versus Group Technology

Via Scoop.itCellular manufacturing

Arif Nurrahman’s article presents Cellular manufacturing (CM) as an application of Group Technology (GT). This is the view of GT experts like Burbidge in Production Flow Analysis, for example, but is at odds with the Lean approach, as explained, for example, in Sekine’s One-Piece Flow, or in Lean Assembly. Group Technology creates product families based on feature similarity, ignoring the demand structure.   The Lean approach is to make it easiest to do what you do most often and therefore starts by classifying products as Runners, Repeaters and Strangers based on demand. Runners are few in number but have a sustained demand high enough to justify dedicated lines. At the opposite end of the spectrum are the many Strangers with low, sporadic demand that you make in a job shop. In-between are the Repeaters, for which you use Group Technology to arrange into families for which you build flexible lines.
Via manufacturers.blognotions.com

What is chaku chaku? definition and meaning

Via Scoop.itCellular manufacturing
The definition of chaku chaku in the online business dictionary is missing the concept of machines with automatic unloading and incorrectly states that the line must encompass the entire production process, which is not a requirement.

Via www.businessdictionary.com

Chaku-Chaku lines covered in the Manila Times today — When in the US press?

Via Scoop.itCellular manufacturing

Chaku-chaku lines are the second generation of cells, allowing a single operator to run15 or even 20 machines. The key concept is for all the machines to have automatic unloading, so that the operator focuses on validating each step through go/no-go gauges and loading the workpiece into the next machine. It’s a concept that deserves more attention than it has received so far outside of Japan.
Via www.manilatimes.net