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Metex Airbag Filter

Bringing Work Back Home

Our Customer had a problem. The volumes for a small automotive air bag component were growing exponentially as cars were transitioning from single driver air bags, to driver & passenger air bags and finally to driver, passenger and side curtain airbags. The customer was initially making the component manually & semi-automatically in Mexico. They quickly realized that scaling up production in Mexico would require additional equipment, floor space and lots of additional manual labor. Quality was also an ongoing problem.
      The customer approached us about making a fully automatic machine that would address all their problems and concerns. They also wanted to reduce the manufacturing cost of the component, gain more of the market share and relocate the production site from Mexico to the USA.
TPD designed a unique solution that addressed each of the customer’s concerns and contributed additional desirable features as well. The machine was designed to closely duplicate the manual process so our customer did have to “re-qualify” the process with their customer. The machine also inspected each part and directly loaded the customer’s shipping cartons with a precisely known quantity of parts.
      The new machine turned out a part every 4.5 seconds and only required a part-time operator to oversee the machine. The operator (while tending other machines) keeps the machine loaded with raw materials, removes finished cartons of product and performs a random sampling. The machine freed up 8-10 employees for other tasks.
     Our Customer was so successful in increasing quality, reducing costs and capturing market share, they eventually purchased a second machine and then a third - all run by a single operator! We were negotiating for a fourth machine when the recent market down turn occurred.
 

" It's not too often where a piece of equipment is so efficient and cost effective that we can bring the work back in the US"
-Jim Leobratten , Engineering Director Metex Corp.