Short Lead Times - APQP and PPAP - Commercial Product Mix

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T

Tom Hedworth

#1
APQP / PPAP


I have run into a situation that has really got me run against a wall. My company is QS 9000. We have a new plant that does very little automotive work but still needs to be regestared to QS. Most of the business is of a commerical nature not automotive. The problem is that we can't get enough time to do the APQP due to the short lead times. Our customers want product many times the next day. We can service the customer but can not do the APQP and a PPAP book. The customers in this case don't even know what the letters stand for. Is there a way where we can service our customers and still be in complaince to the QS requirements?
 
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Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
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#2
The key to this (I think) is your comment that "Our customers want product many times the next day." This says you provide non-specific parts - that is to say your parts go into many things. Off-the-shelf is possibly the best description.

I would have a serious talk with your customer. Especially if, as you say, they don't "...know what the letters mean..." QS is only required of tier 1 suppliers but everyone is 'passing down' the requirement blindly.

If you want to leave some more detail in a reply here - what your company makes, etc.- maybe we can provide a more precise answer.

The bottom line for you is that if you do go QS you will have to do the APQP dance during development of your product.
 
#3
Mark,
We are in the same sort of situation. We are custom die cutters. We do about 15% automotive work. Most of our business is low volume make me 4 rings kinda work. We don't design our own products rather go from a customer designed blueprint (or sample or sketch, etc .. but the customer definately handles the design). Do you have an comments how we would handle the APQP process without adding a ton of overhead for parts and processes that don't require it.

Danke,
joe
 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#4
APQP is just what you do in your business as planning for your processes. You start out taking an order or receiving an RFQ. Start asking yourself, "What do we do?" Including how you qualify your processes. Bear in mind the APQP manual (and related process qualifications within) are aimed at high volume producers. You wll have to look at APQP with a special eye to your situation.

I might suggest that when you respond to an RFQ you include some type of disclaimer which says, for example, that for volumes of less than 100 you will do certain things and you might specify things you will not do. An example is a 300 piece capability study. If you're only making 100 pieces, even the 50 piece study is pretty much a joke.

However - if you are making dies, you're subject to the T&E supplement. Let me take a look at the supplement - I may have brought it with me here to Nerw York - and I'll try to get back to you on this by Saturday or Sunday. Long day of driving and a long day tomorrow. I'm gonna sink in my hotel room bed.
 
T

Tom Hedworth

#5
Marc, Thank you for your reply concerning my problem of not having time to do PPAP's.

We make airconditioning and refrigeration componets for OEM and aftermarket use. Only a few are automotive related. We have hundreds of customers and can offer thousands of variations. Most times just a hole size or length difference. Most parts are very much the same. We pride ourselves in being able to give the customer (non automotive) what they need. They come to us because we can adapt to their needs quickly.

I personally see little need to perform a PPAP on every variation. I would like to consider families of porduct and do a PPAP on the families. The variation in design, per our customer request, would have little to do with the function or relibility of the porduct.

I was considering creating a check sheet for each family and note the variation within each. Asking the team to consider each variation on it's own and determine if a PPAP would be required. If the variation fell within a definition (yet to be worded) the team wuld simply check a column stating that no PPAP is necessary. If the product fell outside the definition a PPAP would have to be carried out for the product.

My interpretation of the standard is not one of wasting time, but one of having a system to assure product quality for our customers.

How would you interpret this proposed system of handling the problem?
 
#6
Marc,

Thanks for the reply. Don't worry about the T&E supplement for us .. we do supply actual products.

Thanks for the clarifying. The hardest part to this QS-9000 thing is to make sure we aren't doing dumb stuff that doesn't make business sense for the whole business.

Another question. You said the APQP is for planning out processes. Our actual production process is the same. We don't create a new line for each product. We switch a die to form a different shape but the process is the same. Of course we have a way to notate special characteristics, special notes, etc. In this case is the APQP really not applicable in the sense the big 3 meant it? Or i mean we have to do it once to think out the process we use but its not something we have to do individually for each product?

This thread gets printed and filed for future reference

joe
 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#7
Tom,

I hate to say this, although I do a lot, check with your registrar. If it was up to me a common PPAP would not be a problem as you describe. I have reservations in critical characteristics category, however...

You get some real stupid interpretations on things like this. Your reasoning seems sound to me. Maybe barb will stop by and chime in with her 2 cents worth on this.

PPAP is being requested of some suppliers for stupid reasons, or so I believe. One supplier I spoke with was being asked by GM to do capability studies and PPAP, etc. and the supplier only provided 400 to 600 parts for specialty vehicles a year. In part, I have to say that many company purchasing reps (or supplier QA) are blindly flowing down requirements. GM also wanted this supplier of 400 to 600 parts a year to become QS9000 registered. To me this is pure BS.

Earth to barb - Comments please!

[This message has been edited by Marc Smith.]
 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#8
jcl:

To start please remember the key:

APQP = RFQ Stage to Begin Production and really continues through to end of production (see AIAG's APQP Manual).

You ask:

--> Another question. You said the APQP is for planning out
--> processes. Our actual production process is the same. We
--> don't create a new line for each product. We switch a die to
--> form a different shape but the process is the same. Of course
--> we have a way to notate special characteristics, special
--> notes, etc. In this case is the APQP really not applicable in
--> the sense the big 3 meant it? Or i mean we have to do it once
--> to think out the process we use but its not something we have
--> to do individually for each product?

First I want to say I lied when I said APQP was only for planning out processes:

--> ...the APQP is for planning out processes.

As I said above:

APQP = RFQ Stage to Begin Production and really continues through to end of production (see AIAG's APQP Manual).

APQP is to ensure you have a planning system and that the system involves communication with the customer. There are details to this - for example there are required design reviews (not to mention contract review), so I do not mean to over simplify what APQP is.

In my humble opinion (IMHO) the key here for you is that your process design is essentially done with the exception of the die.

This in essence means you have gone through some elements of APQP prior to the customer order which eliminates some of the typically required customer timing communications and elements.

For example - with a press for injection molding. Your process is known and stable with certain molds. With metal forming it may be simplier (I doubt it), but with injection molding there are many dynamics of the mold. Temperature, thickness (in many areas different, seldom consistent throughout), etc. I am sure there are similar criticalities with metal forming (both press and machining), but I don't have the intimate background to discuss metal forming specifics. BUT - this is just a part of APQP. What about Contract Review?

My point in all this is that some parts of APQP are specific to your product and processes - Others are not.. When you have a process where you are only changing a die, my concern would be limited to the areas of change - contract review, the aspects of the die, etc.

I would like to see your APQP procedure to see what it consists of. It may be that you are going beyond what is neccessary for your business.

APQP is a general requirement which you really have to think about. Remember there are a lot of different types of parts producers who have to go through with it. And - you must remember that it actually starts at the RFQ stage. Your arguement addresses things that come down the line a bit - parts of the APQP process.

If you take a look at http://Elsmar.com/pdf_files/ - Look for AQP_Matr.pdf Simple APQP Matrix - you will see a simple outline of the things one company goes through in its APQP process. Compare it to the APQP Manual from the AIAG. This is from several years ago and auditors are being a bit more picky but it passed in 1996. The Design Procedure addressed design reviews in this case. My point with this is some things will be redundant and they can thus use existing documents. Examples are the Process FMEA, Review Suppliers and Process Review. On the other hand some line items are applicable. An example is Critical Characteristics.

Summary: Ask yourself what changes with each new order. Those items you have to address.

Have I confused you (and everyone else)??? HeHeHe....

Now I'm waiting for barb's response...

barb - Are you there???

[This message has been edited by Marc Smith.]
 
C

Christian Lupo

#9
Are we talking about APQP, Control Plans, or PPAP here? Control plans are a part of APQP, and APQP culminates in a PPAP.

In the 12/1/97 version of the IASG sanctioned interpretations a question was asked (by a company using dies to cut parts) if they had to complete a PPAP (the culmination of the APQP process) for each combination of die changes. In this case the process was the same the only thing that changed was the die combination. The IASG replied that a PPAP for each combination was required (interpretation C98 page 35). However the IASG went on to encourage the company to ask their customer to see how PPAP should be handled, which is the best advice of all. (Maybe they would waive the requirement) My company has a similar situation, we have automotive and non-automotive customers, many products that can be produced with different combinations; but the process is the same for each product. We only PPAP the products that are produced for automotive customers. Since the product is the same the only thing that changes in the PPAP is the warrant, and the samples. There were minor changes in the process control plan and FMEA, but it didn't create intolerable overhead. The flowchart remained the same the design records remanined the same, and since we used the same process control equipment the MSA's remained the same. Basically we copied the information from the first PPAP for each variation in the product (with minor changes).

Back to my original point, we did create a PPAP for each variation of a specific product, but since the process of creating our product didnt change significatly, after we created the first PPAP, it was easy to make changes to address the different variations. Same PPAP, same APQP process (with minor changes), same control plan (with minor changes) Does that help or am I way off base?
 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#10
Christian,

Well, we started out on "How can I get out of APQP (and thus PPAP), but as sometimes happens (especially for me - short term memory shot) conversations (even in text) drift.

As far as APQP and PPAP go (what do you have to do) - You explained it simpler (and probably better) than I. My point was APQP is a set of elements or parts and events. Once you do certain ones they are done. But others are specific to that specific part. Yup - once you do the basics most of your work is done.

Well done, Christian! Thanks!
 
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