Design & Equipment Placement

Daniel Penn - Case Study

Supporting a Facility’s Design, Equipment
Placement and Production Flow

Client
A global supplier in the design, manufacture and support of high technology forging applications. The company’s facility utilizes hydraulic, mechanical and cold trim presses that produce closed die and hand forgings from titanium, nickel-based alloys, alloy steels, stainless steels and other standard and exotic materials. The company supports its customers with metallurgical analysis and design services.

Situation
Space limitations and equipment layout in its current facility limited the company’s ability to improve cycle time and create efficiencies. With no standardization of processes, non-value-added time was also laden with waste.

Overall Goal
Daniel Penn Associates was tasked with designing a production flow that would inform space requirements and equipment layout and flow for new hammers, trimmers and ancillary equipment in the company’s yet-to-be-built facility, originally projected to require 17,500 square feet.

Objective
To provide the facility’s design architect with space and flow requirements for installation of five new drop hammers, trimmers and ancillary equipment, it was important to engage company employees in a Kaizen event that would tap their experience and know-how.

DPA Kaizen Leader Sal Santangelo worked closely with two employee teams to map out processes that would improve safety and minimize travel between steps and speed the movement of materials. The teams identified the current production flow process, duplication of effort, and non-value-added activities. They then brainstormed, tested and made time-and-movement comparisons for alternative processes and equipment layout scenarios.

Tasks
Using the company’s parking lot as a canvas, the employee teams used sheets of cardboard within the proposed area of the new facility, plotting different alternative workflow options that would influence equipment positioning, production and materials, storage requirements and material transport.

Findings
Based on its work with the company’s employee teams, the future state layout DPA proposed for the new facility projected a total space utilization of 8,375 square feet, leaving a balance of 9,125 square feet of plan footage from the original 17,500 projected. Additionally, under the proposed layout (and with new processes in place) lines of production movement would be reduced from 36 to 23; a 36% improvement which would also contribute to the plant’s safety.

Actions and Results
As a result of the smaller space requirements projected by DPA’s team, the company re-examined its original plan to determine if it would use the balance of the facility’s planned footage, or build a smaller facility.