Maintain Technically Challenging ProjectsMay 1, 2009
Many a stamping company is undergoing severe restructuring in this economic meltdown. Yet, there are signs that some firms are maintaining a lit candle of hope through their ongoing technology improvements. Here and there I see technical process enhancements, albeit on a small scale.
We need to maintain our skills. For some shops this means quick-die-change (QDC) procedures that truly are 2 min. or less, as is the case with Marwood Metal Products in Ontario, Canada, which recently posted on the web a video of QDC. For others it is a steady pace of die-sensor implementation toward a fully protected set of progressive dies, as is the case with Gecom in Kentucky and Indiana.
In this column I ask that you keep the technology-innovative spirit alive and not jettison it along with all of the necessary cutbacks in personnel and expenditures.
Think small, but state-of-the-art. Small but technically challenging projects must be kept alive so that your technical personnel’s mental prowess does not atrophy. Technical people must be technically challenged on a continuous basis.
This may mean that your sensors and controls personnel are working on several projects, but each one of these programs is relatively small and inexpensive. In some shops, where downsizing is severe, mistake-proofing personnel are being asked to help out with production and tooling issues on the shop floor.