Analyzing non-productive time:
Today’s OEM manufacturers and job shops often experience high mix low volume fabrication production requirements. In this environment it is critical to look at the non-productive time it takes to setup each job. Setup time is always important of course, but even more so when it becomes a significant portion of your production costs relative to the actual machine processing costs. The idea is to have more machine processing time and less non-productive setup time.
Setup time is highly visible on machinery such as press brakes because of the nature of the different tooling setups and variety of programs that must be loaded each day. Reducing these non-productive aspects of the job is critical to profitability and reducing the overall cost per part.
Incorporating offline programming:
The most important aspect of reducing the non-productive time on press brakes is the incorporation of offline programming capabilities. Years ago press brake operators would program at the machine. In today’s high mix low volume environment that is not feasible. Press brakes must be able to transition from job to job without the interruptions of programming directly at the control. When an operator uses a press brake control for programming, he takes away valuable processing time and produces less parts per day. This is also a capacity issue in that there is a reduced capability to process other jobs on the press brake. Transitioning to offline programming is the single most effective way of reducing setup times and ensuring that you maintain profitability and capacity in a high mix low volume production environment.
By Frank Arteaga, Head of Product Marketing, NAFTA Region
Bystronic Inc., Elgin, IL – Voice.firstname.lastname@example.org