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CONTINUOUS PRODUCTION
V. Ryan 2005 - 2023
 

If a design is to be manufactured by continuous production (sometimes called LINE production) the factory / production line will operate continuously day and night. In this way thousands of the product can be manufactured. All machines are arranged on the factory floor so that the product is passed from machine to machine.

   

CASE STUDY - CAR BODY CONTINUOUS PRODUCTION

   

Take time to look at the body of a car. It is a complex piece of engineering. It is designed to be strong, light and to prevent rust even in the worst weather.

 
1. SHEET STEEL, WHICH HAS BEEN CUT TO THE CORRECT SIZE, IS PLACED IN AN HYDRAULIC PRESS. THE PRESS EXERTS IMMENSE PRESSURE ON THE SHEET STEEL.

A MOULD / DYE HAS BEEN FITTED TO THE PRESS. IT IS THE MOULD / DYE, THAT FORMS THE SHAPE OF THE VAN DOOR.

WHEN THE VAN DOOR IS REMOVED FROM THE PRESS, IT IS INSPECTED FOR DEFECTS, BEFORE IT MOVES ON TO THE NEXT STAGE OF PRODUCTION.

 
 
 
 
2. THE NEWLY PRESSED VAN DOOR, IS PLACED IN A ‘SAND GRIT BLASTER’. THIS REMOVES ANY GREASE / DIRT FROM THE DOOR, IN PREPARATION FOR THE NEXT STAGE OF PRODUCTION (THE GALVANISING PROCESS).

INSPECTION OF THE VAN DOOR TAKES PLACE, AFTER IT IS REMOVED FROM THE ‘GRIT BLASTER’. IT MUST BE IN PERFECT CONDITION FOR THE NEXT PROCESS TO BE SUCCESSFUL.

 
 
3. THE VAN DOOR IS GALVANISED. IT IS GIVEN A ZINC COATING, HELPING TO PREVENT RUST IN THE FUTURE.
ALSO, IT ACTS AS A PERFECT SURFACE FOR THE TOP COAT OF PAINT.
 
 

4. THE VAN DOOR IS WASHED TO REMOVE ANY RESIDUE, LEFT FROM THE GALVANISING BATH. THE WATER IS FILTERED AND RECYCLED FOR REUSE.

5. VAN DOOR CAREFULLY INSPECTED.
 
 
 

6. THE VAN DOOR MOVES DOWN THE PRODUCTION LINE TO THE SPRAY BOOTH.

THE TOP COAT IS APPLIED BY ROBOTIC ARMS, SPRAYING A UNIFORM THICKNESS ACROSS THE ENTIRE SURFACE OF THE DOOR.

 
 
7. THE DOOR MOVES TO AN INDUSTRIAL OVEN. THIS BAKES THE TOP COAT, PRODUCING A TOUGH AND DURABLE FINISH.
 
 
8. THE DOOR IS THEN INSPECTED - QUALITY CONTROL.

THE DOOR WILL BE REJECTED, IF THERE ARE ANY FLAWS IN THE SURFACE FINISH.

 
 
 
 
9. THE COMPLETED VAN DOOR MOVES TO THE ASSEMBLY LINE, WHERE IT WILL BE FITTED TO THE VAN BODY.
 
 

10. THE SMART ARM ALLOWS MOVEMENT IN SEVERAL DIRECTIONS AND IS FULLY ADJUSTABLE, MAKING IT EASY FOR THE OPERATOR TO USE.

11. THE VAN BODY, NOW FITTED WITH IT’S DOORS, MOVES TO THE NEXT PRODUCTION LINE, FOR COMPLETION. ENGINE FITTING AND ASSOCIATED COMPONENTS / PARTS.

 
 
 

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Question:

In each of the boxes of the flow chart shown below, write the key words representing each stage.

 

A design team will take months to design a car body. Prototypes will be made and tested to ensure that they can withstand extreme conditions like rough roads and to ensure that they will not rust.

A car body is made from steel sheet. To help prevent it rust it is coated with zinc. Rolled steel sheet is ‘dipped’ into a number of zinc plating cells after it has been cleaned. This is a continuous process.

Once coated with zinc, the steel is pressed into panel shapes for various parts of a car body. The ‘press’ is very powerful and is kept behind safety cages so that people cannot get close. When a sheet of steel is pressed into a shape it is automatically moved out of the way.

Panels are usually made up of two sides. They are joined by glue and then pressed together.

Robots are used to weld all the panels together. This is done with great precision and can be carried out twenty four hours a day. The robots do not get tired and only need maintenance occasionally.

The car body is cleaned very carefully before it can be painted. At this stage the body is called ‘the body in white’. Without careful cleaning the paint will not take to the steel body properly and it will have a poor finish.

Question:
1. Explain the difference between continuous production and batch production.

2. Do employees who work in factories that batch produce items have different skills to those who work in factories that use continuous production techniques ?

   
   

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