Reflection on Engineering Placement
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Published: Tue, 01 Aug 2017
CAREER EPISODE 3
As a student of second last semester of Bachelor’s Degree, I prepared a work report as an individual on a title called ‘Continuous Improvement in Production of Lamination Department’. This last career episode describes about this work report completed at the faculty of work placement 2, Jayco, 1 Jayco Dr., Dandenong, Australia. The project was accomplished in 8 weeks from Oct 2015 to Nov 2015. I pursued my Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering Technologist and specialized in Mechatronic from Chisholm Institute, Australia. I got constant support from Daniel and Jeffery and gained training from them.
CE 3.2 Nature of project
Jayco Australia, had some issues arising in their lamination department, it was leading to time wastage of labor and cost. Jayco is a recreational vehicle products manufacturer in Australian market. They wanted to rectify the issue, for this purpose I had documented a report based on some of these issues. The report was document to record the tasks performed at the work placement in lamination department of Jayco. I had to understand the position and role I was going to contribute to the company based on the way the company runs. I was introduced to the company and my duties, task, timing, and department was assigned to me. I understood its organizational structures and responsibility and the manufacturing processes that took place in lamination department. Problem statements were identified after detecting the issues and the cause of its occurrence.
Lamination process consists of 4 major stages. They are:
Stage 1 – Welding (Framing) – involves cutting the rails of aluminum or ply, welding them together, grinding the surfaces and writing chassis number for identification.
Stage 2 – Filming – fill the frames with Styrofoam, Gal strips and blocks.
Stage 3 – Pressing – apply adhesive to attach the frames and put it under press machine.
Stage 4 – Routing – here, it is trimmed and excessive spots are removed out from the lamination.
CE 3.4 Objectives
The primary objective of the project was to address the issues arising in the production and to give a possible and suitable solution that would help to rectify the problem and help in improving the efficiency of the production specially in the Saws and Lamination department. It would also augment the cost. My project is divided into three different objectives and goals, that is based on some topics arising in the company after understanding the its role. A stepping stone is taken forward towards my primary aim by completing one of these three goals.
Objective 1 – Full description to PM (Preventive/Proactive Maintenance) from RM (Reactive maintenance) and CLPR (Cut List per Run) from BOS (Bulk Ordering System)
Objective 2 – recommending and suggesting updates on the drawings.
Objective 3 – Rectifying the misalignment between the plan, drawings and cut lists.
CE 3.5 The chart of organizational structure
The below chart shows my position for my work report. It is with respect to my university supervisor and the departmental manager of JAYCO.
CE 3.6 Duties
- In-depth research and studies was carried out on lamination process.
- Based on my study, I planned various possible solution that matched the requirements.
- Presented my objectives and roles to the company manager for approval.
- Layouts and work plans were made.
- Mathematical calculations were needed for deciding the sizes of each part/component.
- Learnt how CNC shield is operated and G code is programmed.
- Performed online and practical testing on the operating machine.
- Compared various components before selecting them.
- Prepared various engineering drawing for implementation of my project with the help of engineering tools.
- Task was divided into small parts for achieving higher accuracy.
- Kept good relations with supervisor.
- Reporting the development of the project to the lab supervisor and coordinator.
- Regular meetings were kept with the manager to get feedback of the progress.
PERSONAL ENGINEERING ACTIVITY
I started to work on my first objective where the issue was that the constant disorder in inventory of the blocks was causing wastage in labor time and cost. I identified that the problem was related to the Saws department and filling section. To rectify this issue, I suggested full transition to PM from RM and CLPR from BOS. To investigate the issue, a reverse tracking process was applied of the root cause. I prepared a process chart that described all the processes it involved. Machine down time was noted in the Saws department fur to reactive maintenance, it was causing delay in schedules. Then the blocks were not getting delivered on time, so ordering of blocks was needed in BOS in lamination department, and in filling section, because of the type and way of delivery, there was wastage in labor time and cost.
I then started my research on what exactly BOS and CLPR are and its function. So basically, from my research work and notes, I came to a point that BOS displays limited amount of information in general and CLPR is more data specific and focuses importantly on each run. In the current block production system in the Saws department is making use of BOS i.e. bulk order system which is the major concern. In such situation, the ideal mode of production would be using CLPR. I prepared a flow model for the functioning of CLPR.
From my investigation and survey, it was found that the Saws department transitioned from RM to PM and block production of CLPR to BOS. CLPR increased the focus of importance per Run and reduces the scrap. It also optimized the production cost and saves time along with discarding of manual processes such as stock monitoring, ordering process and paper work flow. And by using PM maintenance type, it minimizes the risk of production delay, and gives more accurate information. It was found that the employees still suggest RM for use rather than PM at its on early stages.
For my second objective, there was a suggestion on updating the plans as they were too old. So, I decided to go with that, and it was found that there was wastage of materials and awning blocks on door side frames. So, I tried to analyze the issue and find the solution to increase the efficiency of the production. I made few drawing using engineering tools to understand the basic functioning of the side frame and the reason of awning of the blocks.
It was found that there was full length of awning of the blocks at the front and the rear part. And there was blocks in combination of full length along with top and bottom. On understanding the situation, it could be summarized that there had to be an update in the drawings related to the ongoing activity and the company had started taking those suggestions. The possible solutions could be still done by offering the customers the option of attaching the electric awnings.
Thus, after proper research and development on each task and issues, various suggestions were recommended. For objective 1, I suggested to arrange a system that records the details of the machine down times and whenever detected it should be resolved to avoid disturbance in the flow of production. Pareto diagram can be established as per the findings of the machine down times and can be made use to find and optimize the PM structure. Considering the objective 2, by organizing a structure that would determine the extent of blocks can be eliminated and comparisons can be made between the actual requirement of the block and measurements for complete unit per Run. By this way, possibility of wastage can be reduced and the workload can be minimized which results is efficient and cost effective production. And in case of objective 3, there was a gap of communication between the departments which can be rectified by optimizing the solid communication system and troubleshooting it by minimizing the human errors that occur at the planning stage.
While, there was a transition period of block production system, and the blocks were reported at the filling section wit wrong specifications. To resolve this, was my third objective. For this purpose, a thorough troubleshooting was required so that the misalignment between CLPR, drawings and the plan can be solved. I studied a sample case and noted my observations and findings from that. It was found that there was an issue with the dimensions. They were calculated and corrected. The wrong specification was reported and planned for the best possible solution and given to the concerning department to fix the misalignment issue.
I had successfully completed the training and pleased the company by giving my findings and recommending them various possible solutions. I constantly reported them about my progress and maintained a healthy professional relationship with them. I utilized various engineering knowledge that I learnt from my degree course, like project management, engineering mathematics, engineering CAD etc. these subjects became the base for my research work. It helped me understand various concepts easily, so I could suggest new innovative solutions. This work placement experience gave me a corporate experience and enhanced my technical skills. I presented a PowerPoint presentation and final work thesis that described in details about my findings and research work.
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