The four components to make the wrapping process work are
- the wrapping machine
- the product
- the wrapping material
- the operator and mechanics
Seems pretty simple doesn’t it?
But most people forget the impact of changing just one component on the whole process.
No question but our FA-ST servo overwrappers are complex machine with lots of customization specific to the product being wrapped. This complexity creates lots of room for tweeks and adaptations in the plant that were unforeseen when we designed and built the machine, there is also opportunity for other unforced errors.
Scenario 1- Film
The mechanic on the line calls and says “My overwrapper does not work.” We say, “Did you change anything?” “No,” says the voice on the other end of the line. “Are you sure nothing changed?” we say. “All we did was put on a new roll of film and now the machine wraps terribly,” says our customer.
It turns out that the purchasing department bought “the same film” at a lower cost from a new vendor, but it wasn’t the same film and it did not run the same way. Proof of that is usually when the original film is put back on and the machine runs well.
Scenarios 2 – Multiple Shifts
The shift supervisor calls and says, “The machine is running terribly. it ran fine yesterday and I cannot figure out what happened.” Did you change any settings on the over wrapper?” we ask. “Only to correct things,” comes the response.
In this case, it seems the shift supervisors had different ideas about the settings on the machine. Both thought they were right and neither was speaking to the other. In one extreme case, a customer managed to break a casting this way. An easy solution is for shift supervisors and mechanics to agree on settings and not change them without consultation. We sometimes find ourselves in the position of arbitrator, but it is better if the folks in the plant agree on their own and use us as consultants.
Scenario 3 – Untrained Operator
The phone rings and the voice on the other end says” I need help.” ” What kind of help do you need?” we say. “I am new to this machine. I adjusted it and it is not running right,” the voice says. “Do you have the manual handy?” we ask. “Oh no,” the voice says, “it might be in my boss’s office, but I am not sure.” “You made changes on the machine but you didn’t use the manual?” we yelp.
Please train your operators and mechanics if they were not trained by us at time of installation. We worked hard to create our manuals, to add pictures and illustrations and to make them complete. It is your first resource in understanding what should be done and how to diagnose a problem. We are happy to come back and do more training if you want.
To make the wrapping process work, think about all four components. While it is sometimes the overwrapper, it is often one of the other four components.