SMED in Lean Manufacturing Techniques

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charlesap in Coopersville, Michigan

107 months ago

Of all the companies I've been associated with as a career contract manufacturing engineer I rarely see much emphasis on quick tooling changeovers. Most companies seem to be content with shifting inventory turnover savings into increased costs for setups. Am I missing something here? Shouldn't SMED be put in place before setting up kanbans and general inventory reduction? That's a rhetorical question.

Any thoughts out there on this subject?


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Dan McAuley in Stratford, Ontario

97 months ago

The tool change over time is critical as this down time is non-productive. Wherever possible tooling should be designed such that it interchanges without the use of tools or with a tool in a defined position. Tools such as guides, dies etc should be error proof by design so that they will only go into position in the correct orientation etc. These are the fundementals of achieving repeatable production changeovers and maximizing use of equipment.Sure inventory costs and turns are huge but if you don't manage the cost to get it that far then you are limiting the plant overall efficiency.If you have an idle workforce doing non-productive work eventually the set-up costs will get you. So in a nut shell both are important but I would say that a focus on process uptime and effectivness will always yeild dividends (increased capacity,greater return on invest., process stability etc.)

Just my 2 cents...


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