Small parts trouble Kanban - Problems with the common small/bulk parts

P

Pinball

#1
Hello Everybody!

Even I spent the last days reading through all kinds of threads about LEAN, WIP, KANBAN,... I was not able to think about a proper solution for my problem:

We assemble different kinds of our product at about 30 production lines whereas some production lines have up to 10 projects, some have only two. Every product has about 28 parts (small and big parts). The output per shift is about 300 pieces/production line. We want to implement Kanban because of the limited space and the current disorder when ordering parts by phone or elsewise. Therefore we chose one line to be the prototype. It has two projects; high runner (4 days a week) and a low runner (production 1 day/week).

Problems with the common small/bulk parts:
Within this factory several production lines (often the same customer) are combined into one Store Location (SAP). As such the factory consists out of five store locations. The store location that includes the prototype line has about 10 common parts (a screw, a rubber, ...), but not every one out of the ten uses every common part!
Whenever common parts are released to one production line by SAP, it will only release further material if the "old" material is used up. If the worst comes to the worst (one production line stops and another would need the same part), operators would have to move common parts from one line to another. Right now, only 5 lines are operating. Since we want to use Paper Kanban that has includes an WIP ID which identifies the location in the material shelf, the Kanban cannot leave the production line! Otherwise the information on the Kanban would not be right anymore.


We came up with the following ideas:

->"A moving, shared supermarket": Setting up a table, sized 1x1m, visualizing all lines and common parts within one store location. This table would be located between warehouse and production for the material handlers. We would use magnets to indicate the location of the common parts box within the store location. In this case the material handlers can track the box to its origin. When they move the box, they would remove the "old" Kanban to the material shelf(every line has a small shelf for small parts) of the production line and replace it by the new Kanban that came from the production line, ordering parts. And as such he would transfer the box to the line. All involved workstations have a buffer for these parts that lasts about half a day (+/- not all of them have the same buffer).

->We drop all the small parts and push to the line and only use Kanban for about 5 of the 28 parts to continue the habbit.
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I see the whole project in danger. I am convinced that it would be the best solution to implement Kanban as a whole and not chopped nevertheless the system is flexible in its realization.

Thanks to everybody who wants to share the burden and puts on the thinking cap!!!!
:thanks:

Have a nice weekend!
 
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W

wmarhel

#2
The problem doesn’t seem to be with kanban or even implementing kanban. The problem appears to be in the way SAP is currently being used to manage your inventory and the changes you want to make. There are typically two ways MRP/ERP handles transactions; they can allocate ,which looks like what your doing where material is assigned prior to it hitting the floor, or they can backflush. When it comes to lean and kanban, backflushing is a preferred method. The only caveat with backflushing is that your products need to have reasonably short cycle times (less than a day), so that material consumption is relieved from inventory. Longer periods start to dramatically impact the ability to replenish, or will ultimately cause you to carry higher levels of inventory.

Your issue stems from assigning "WIP ID’s" to small bins of parts that are going to sit on a line. I typically make items such as hardware “expensed items” since trying to account for every screw, nut, or bolt will drive a person crazy. These items are usually designated as “C” items anyways (if your using the ABC method of inventory control which SAP is likely to have pre-configured). You are going to need to have a serious discussion with your inventory/materials manager, and possibly someone from the accounting department (since they typically drive ERP issues where cost is perceived to be involved) to get this resolved.

The mechanics are the easy part. It is typically some other aspect that makes the implementation harder than it should be.

Regards,

Wayne
 
P

peacewong

#3
I suppose you understand KanBan very well in your mind. It seems that you have to implement KanBan in your store firstly. And you should prepare 5 elements before you want to use KanBan the lean method controls production system. And the card is not limited to paper card, can use computer to create electric message instead paper card just like in Automaker plants, Toyota, GM, and VW.
Welcome you to discuss the implementation in detailed in your company with me through telephone, email or MSN.
 
T

TamTom

#4
Hello,

I don't wont to open a new thread so I ask my question here:

We have a Kanban System, I think in theory it is OK, we have problems that the stocks are not filled properly, and that is because the first process the casting is produces not only parts for the KANBAN system, so they have partly a "normal" product planning and then 10-20 % Kanban parts and when ever the pressure of the "normal" parts are high, Kanban resources are go down, and a week later the pressure of Kanban parts get up again -> and so on.

We could have used the actual crisis with lower demands to fill up the storage once, but these means storage costs and work time nobody is paying directly for.

Here my question, can Kanban work in a process that do both serial production and single part production??
Have someone experience and can give my some help?


Regards,

TamTom
 
W

wmarhel

#5
Hello,

I don't wont to open a new thread so I ask my question here:

We have a Kanban System, I think in theory it is OK, we have problems that the stocks are not filled properly, and that is because the first process the casting is produces not only parts for the KANBAN system, so they have partly a "normal" product planning and then 10-20 % Kanban parts and when ever the pressure of the "normal" parts are high, Kanban resources are go down, and a week later the pressure of Kanban parts get up again -> and so on.

We could have used the actual crisis with lower demands to fill up the storage once, but these means storage costs and work time nobody is paying directly for.

Here my question, can Kanban work in a process that do both serial production and single part production??
Have someone experience and can give my some help?
Absolutely it can work. I've seen three common problems in this scenario:

1) Incorrect or insufficient quantity. This might be either in the form of not enough kanban, or the quantity of parts on each kanban is incorrect.

2) There is no clearly defined trigger on when the kanban should be released for production. (Search the forum and you'll find an example of a kanban production board)

3) The misunderstanding that kanban isn't the sole solution. The reality is that kanban itself is a form of waste. It is simply inventory that is there due to a disconnect between two or more processes.

Any areas where kanban is implemented are ripe with opportunity. Look at items such SMED (Single-Minute Exchange of Die), TPM (Total Productive Maintenance), etc. Kanban signals when material is required, but it also the trigger for potential improvements. If a person or organization never reduces their kanban levels, shame on them. It means that they are doing nothing to improve, and that is true focus of kanban...a means to drive improvement.

Wayne
 
S

sixsigmais

#6
So, you are worry on the Kanban information not telly and you come out a new idea as per below
We came up with the following ideas:

->"A moving, shared supermarket": Setting up a table, sized 1x1m, visualizing all lines and common parts within one store location. This table would be located between warehouse and production for the material handlers. We would use magnets to indicate the location of the common parts box within the store location. In this case the material handlers can track the box to its origin. When they move the box, they would remove the "old" Kanban to the material shelf(every line has a small shelf for small parts) of the production line and replace it by the new Kanban that came from the production line, ordering parts. And as such he would transfer the box to the line. All involved workstations have a buffer for these parts that lasts about half a day (+/- not all of them have the same buffer).

->We drop all the small parts and push to the line and only use Kanban for about 5 of the 28 parts to continue the habbit.
Any new idea shall go for test run before implementing to the production. Test run will confirm the effectiveness and test run always come out some problem, that's why test run are needed.

If the idea come out just for solve the WIP ID problem, then better just break down the WIP ID, that's common used on manafacturing. However, if the idea is for other improvement propose, then go ahead
 
T

TamTom

#7
Hello,

so I sum up: "Kanban is not a good system"? :truce:

I thought it was that very idea what make Toyota one of the more sucessful automotive companies?

And I still think, that with a production cycle of 8-9 weeks, and we should be able (by contract) to deliver in week, the idea of Kanban is not so bad. But there must be clear rules and everybody need to follow, here is our problem. :mad:

Greetings,

TamTom
 
W

wmarhel

#8
Hello,

so I sum up: "Kanban is not a good system"? :truce:

I thought it was that very idea what make Toyota one of the more sucessful automotive companies?
Kanban is a great method. The challenge for many though is in the application. Yes, kanban did help make Toyota what it is today, but it was also because Toyota was highly disciplined and had a laser-like focus on what they wanted to accomplish.

Kanban is a rules based system, and as such, those rules need to be adhered to by EVERYBODY. Otherwise the system will collapse.

Wayne
 
G

gorillaBob

#9
Hi,

I was faced with the dilemma of whether Kanban works or doesn't myself. We've started to use it in the software dev. business I work with and for a long time it seemed to make sense. But then something happened, which resulted in all of us thinking this is a flop.

As I had some money invested in the software we were using for our Kanban, I cared to make it work and did some additional reading on the subject, among others, kanbantool.com/blog/problems-with-kanban this one, and realized they are right. Kanban will work, as long as you apply a little TLC to it, keep it up to date and stay focused on making it stick.

The popular Kanban Tool services that are widely available today, often promote setting up own processes, which can very well include various stages of "done" within one process, allow for recycling of the cards and definitely make it possible to follow a non-linear process, like software development, with the use of Kanban.
It just calls for a little effort, that's my opinion.
 
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