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Customer Requirements - Request customer change their drawing to match the dimension

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  Post Number #1  
Old 12th November 2003, 02:07 PM

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Question Customer Requirements - Request customer change their drawing to match the dimension

I have an issue and would like some feedback from the experts.

If we have a product that requires assembly and the customer drawing states that the diameter of the hole must be xx but we can not assemble that product properly unless the hole diameter is yy and we request that the customer change their drawing to match the yy measurement and they do not are we creating a nonconformance by manufacturing the product so that it can be assembled?

Note: we have never received a complaint from the customer regarding this issue and from what I understand, we have been doing this for a LONG time.

I hope the question is clear.


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  Post Number #2  
Old 12th November 2003, 02:21 PM
ralphsulser's Avatar

Total Posts: 1,573
Another option is to obtain a signed waiver or deviation for that dimension which allows use of the proper dimension to facilitate assembly. If this is denied, then someone in your top management needs to commincate this to your customers top management to get it resolved. On the other hand, you are supplying an assembly, not individual components. If the assembly is acceptable as is, and historically has been, and you have data to support this, then your top management may have to issue an internal deviation if the customer refuses to cooporate. However, the responsibility is with your top management. Is your customer a large, long term customer with no history of complaints? is this dimension of major importance, or just to satisfy assembly?
These are items you have to address, and be proactive.
Hope this helps
  Post Number #3  
Old 12th November 2003, 02:23 PM
BadgerMan's Avatar

Total Posts: 698
If I were in that situation, I would request a "pre-delivery variance" for each shipment to cover my backside for the out of spec condition (I am assuming it is an out of spec condition). If they have to grant a "PDV" to cover each shipment, they might consider a drawing change to be a lower cost alternative.

Just my two cents.
  Post Number #4  
Old 12th November 2003, 02:28 PM
CarolX's Avatar

Total Posts: 2,168

Any ideas why this discrepancy exist.

I have run into that a lot here. A customer wants a .225 x .540 slot, and the only tool we have is a .218 x .550. And we have made the part since the dawn of time, without a question...but, everytime we run the part, we have to stop what we are doing and track down the engineer to ask if the parts are ok as is.

  Post Number #5  
Old 12th November 2003, 02:35 PM

Total Posts: n/a
We manufacture domes for the cctv industry and all dimensions are reference dimensions. They do not specify the exact hole size. We have put an internal deviation in the customer file and changed our manufacturing specifications. My concern is that the drawing and the spec requirements do not match. In most cases we do test for form, fit and function using their mating hardware. It is my understanding that these are the items that are critical to the customer however, we still have a product drawing that references dimensions.

We can show historical data that there have not been any issues with this part. In fact, we have not had a customer complaint from any of our customers this year about anything. This company is structured to manufacture only top quality parts. The quality expectation is so hight that we have refused business because the customer (potential customer) wanted us to manufacture a lower quality part and we would not do it because our operators are aleady conditioned to produce top notch products.
  Post Number #6  
Old 12th November 2003, 02:39 PM
CarolX's Avatar

Total Posts: 2,168
I guess I would say "Don't sweat it". As you say..the dimensions are reference, so you are covered.

  Post Number #7  
Old 12th November 2003, 02:40 PM

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Assuming you are ISO 9001 or equivalent registered, the intent would be for this type of issue to be resolved on the front end (i.e. contract review per 7.2.2c). Since we are not in a perfect world and it appears that you have in good faith attempted to communicate and resolve the issue with the customer to no avail, I would do the following:

1. Document your request to the customer and response (or lack thereof). I would even go so far as to document something you send them directly to state that you cannot meet their requirement and state what you can meet and if they have any issues with it, to communicate back to you. This should cover you in an audit since you have something on file stating your intentions. Sometimes we don't always get the customer feedback that we need for our internal systems.

2. Define critical dimensions that the customer actually requires. Is this an interim step where it really doesn't matter? By defining the critical ones, you can give yourself some leeway in the others.

3. Tolerance the dimension such that yy would meet the xx spec. This is not preferrable but like #2, your documentation should reflect how you interpret the customer drawings.

Hope this helps!
  Post Number #8  
Old 12th November 2003, 02:50 PM

Total Posts: n/a
We are not ISO registered but I am in the process of building the system and we hope to gain registration in 2004. I just want to make sure that this is not going to be a thorn in my side later.


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