Continued Evolution of the Toyota Assembly Line

Toyota LogoToyota is one of the the most visionary car makers with respect to its manufacturing. They continuously and radically evolve and update their production system. Recently I learned about their new “flexible assembly line.” Now, you’ve probably heard about Toyota’s flexible assembly lines producing multiple products on the same line. That is old hat; they’ve done that for thirty years. Their new flexible assembly line involves a completely different aspect of flexibility, with which Toyota surprised me (again). Let me show you …

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Structured Approach to Material Supply for Assembly – Part 1

Supplying material for assembly operations can be quite a challenge. After describing the challenges in the previous post, I would like to show you in two posts what you need to consider when you want to create an assembly location. This is a somewhat structured approach on how to set up a material supply for your assembly operations, although you will still need some iterations to achieve a good solution. After that I will have a post focused on what to do if you are running out of space at your assembly location.

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The Challenges of Material Supply for Assembly

Assembly of multiple parts into one bigger part is a common process in manufacturing. It is also the most challenging one for supply logistics. If there is only one part that gets milled, drilled, coated, formed, or other wise processed, logistics is much easier. But if you have dozens or hundreds of parts that have to come together in different variants, it becomes much more of a challenge. In this post I will look at the challenges of supplying material for assembly. In subsequent posts I will show ways to address these challenges.

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