Original Date: 10/27/2003
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Information : Computer Numeric Control Programming
Auto-Valve, Inc. uses a standardized Computer Numeric Control programming interface which allows operators to program all machines. The operators receive ownership of the Computer Numeric Control process, which results in a more refined program, simplified operations, less special tooling, and low start-up costs.
To program Computer Numeric Control (CNC) machines, Auto-Valve, Inc. (AVI) used the system of “tribal knowledge,” where the shop manager programmed the CNC machines as needed. This left the operators with a lack of understanding of the CNC software. Moreover, edits became an onerous task because of the lack of the operator’s knowledge. Without the operator’s full programming control, parts were made in a single, inefficient operation with multiple tools and fixtures, and frequent disagreements on methods and tooling. This resulted in high start-up costs for new parts, which discouraged more complex designs. In 1999, AVI proved only 78 new programs.
Now, AVI has standardized the CNC programming function. Operators are certified to program all machines using the Mazatrol Conversational control, and all programming is done on the shop floor. When it is time to generate the CNC program, the operator writes the program, selects the tools, contributes to process planning, edits, and suggests process improvements. The results have been simplified operations and less special tooling. Because the operator now has ownership of the CNC process, morale is high and process improvements are continuous. New program start-up costs are considerably lower, and customer requirements are often exceeded. In 2003, AVI proved 350 new programs a 349% increase since 1999.
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