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Impact of Uniform Finishing Policies

Impact of Uniform Finishing Policies

(OP)
Our company has several different customers that require their parts to cleaned and "polished" to differing degrees. 95% of our orders have only 5 different types of finishing requests. We use jitterbugging and scotch-brite pads to achieve the proper finish, and depending on the customer different grits and tools are used. To streamline the finishing process would it be best to hold all finished parts to the highest requested finish from our customer? The initial benefits as some people see would cut down costs on material, save time when training new employees, reduce setup time on different machines and hold ourselves to a higher quality. However the trade off would be having higher lead times and impacting our run rates effecting the overall cost of the part.
Are there any other tradeoffs that we're not seeing? Does anyone know of any case studies of this being a benefit or ending up being a giant headache?

RE: Impact of Uniform Finishing Policies

If it's not automated, surface finishing is 99 pct labor; it makes no sense to put in more than you need.

Five different processes should be manageable.  

Produce videos for training. That ensures that everyone gets trained the same way and you don't leave anything out.  The videos might also highlight glitches in your workflow.  Consider farming the video production out to professionals.

There are probably opportunities to save time in each process by exploring more advanced abrasives; do this with the knowledge and participation of your customers, to avoid surprises in the product.


 

Mike Halloran
Pembroke Pines, FL, USA

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