Difference between "Production Trial Run" and "Run at Rate"


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Hi all,

May some one describe me what is the difference between "Production Trial Run" and "Run at Rate"?
As I know, Production Trial Run (or significant production run as mentioned at APQP clause 4.1) is a production run for near one shift which is used to validate process, product, MSA, etc.
I think that Run at Rate is a study on line capacity which should be implemented during production trial run. The problem is here that usually Run at Rate is done after PPAP while Production Trial Run is implemented before PPAP.
your explanation would be appreciated.



Looking for Reality
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I don't know if my experience is "typical"...I've found that is usually isn't...
We did a partial shift "production trial run" and gathered R@R data at that time.
While R@R data was submitted later (if ever), it was gathered at the same time as production trial.

Likely unique, but since we charged the customer for the material made in these trials...the customer typically let us do an hour or two rather than a full sheet...and often skipped the production trial altogether.

Jim Wynne

A "production trial run" has no normative definition in automotive work, but typically it's done towards the end of the APQP process when things might not be settled. It may or may not include all of the intended production tooling, gages and fixtures, and frequently it's done with a particular purpose in mind.

"Run at Rate" is done after PPAP approval and is frequently witnessed by a customer representative. It might involve witnessing production on all shifts, and the purpose is to confirm that the production rate attested to by the PPAP is accurate.

The PPAP "significant production run" is done using all of the tooling, gages, fixtures and machines that will be used in normal production. MSA should be done well before this run, as if it hasn't' been, you're not ready for production. MSA may be done using parts from earlier trial runs. The parts yielded from this run are saleable and the customer should be paying for them.


A Sea of Statistics
Super Moderator
echoing Jim's above post, and adding another acronym...PDR (Production Demonstration Run) is also synonymous with production run or run at rate...ideally (exceptions as approved by the customer before hand) the process one is demonstrating MUST BE production intent, tooling processes, personnel (i.e. no installing "A" Team just for purposes passing the PDR), etc, no deck stacking...and ideally the output of the PDR should feed the PPAP LAB and DIM activities. I use "ideally" judiciously...for in the real life many times the APQP process and specifically PPAP get perverted or compressed, necessitating "exceptions"


A Sea of Statistics
Super Moderator
this parameter tends to be or can be customer specific (CSR), usually dictated by the device or product and the finished product's projected life span and program plan...i.e. how many variants of the finished product do we plan on introducing over the base programs life...I am most familiar with two (2) hours worth of production of 300 pieces...again these are guidelines and are always subject to customer revision


Haste Makes Waste
The Ford PSW has a capacity section that must be completed before the STA Engineer signs for approval. The run at rate is part of the info to determine if your plant has capacity to provide parts as scheduled. So, run at rate is part of the Ford PPAP.


Registered Visitor
Many automotive OEMs require Production Trial Runs as a final requirement after PPAP - to ensure the part (or changed part) runs smoothly in their production line.


Involved In Discussions
Both run at rate and PPAP production is done for new product and new projects, which are AIAG official term in APQP manual. However Production Trial Run ( or called PTR) is not that specific. In GM procedure and GM requirements, PTR is done to validate the product after a product or process change .


Involved In Discussions
From what I know and have experienced run-at-rate starts or is basically PPAP 0 and is written like that in Ford PPAP req. There should be at least one production stream operating at the production cycle times to support APW/MPW capacity requirements. FORD req. say you need to produce at least 300 parts, which later are to be used for PPAP 1 (quality verification). I never came to see 300 produced parts in my practice during run-at-rate. Even sometimes the first produced parts are during PPAP 1, especially for small programs with low take rate, whereas the production trial run I understand is what I call "mfg. line acceptance". During this activity the team verifies MSA equipment and jigs are in place. Also checking design of equipment and lay-out, testing, inspetion gates, are standards distributed to operators and understandable, environment and all other process elements.
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