After the recent crisis in September, Garland based Garret Metal Detectors responded quickly and successfully to the increased orders of their walk-through metal detectors because of their relationship with several Texas Manufacturing Assistance Center (TMAC) staff.
Garrett Metal Detectors in Garland manufactures walk-through and hand-held metal detectors. The company has been in business for over 15 years. Garrett is the vendor of choice for providing security equipment for the International Olympic games: LA’84, Seoul ’88, Barcelona’92, Atlanta ’96, Sydney 2000 and Salt Lake ’02.
Ready for Change
In August 2001 Garrett contacted TMAC to provide manufacturing support for redesigning their walk-through metal detector operations. Garrett was bringing on-board a new production manager and wanted to incorporate changes to make them more competitive. After a brief tour of the assembly process TMAC identified some major improvement opportunities in their assembly methods.
Upon completion of Lean Manufacturing training the team identified how to balance assembly operations by flowing the product through the process. One non-value operation that was eliminated included walking over 150 yards to deliver materials from a stock table to an assembly station.
In addition to the Lean Manufacturing training, Garret is also working with TMAC staff to implement an ISO 9000 Quality System. ISO forces companies to look at what they are doing and find ways to simplify and streamline flow. The implementation of Lean Manufacturing techniques was the logical place to continue to identify improvement opportunities. After just one day using the new assembly methods this team produced more units than ever thought possible. Production output can now meet the 300% demand placed on Garrett to provide security units around the country. The cycle time to produce one unit went from days to less than a few hours! Garrett stated; “TMAC provided us the leadership for both the “believers” and the “non-believers”. As a result of this work we were able to take full advantage of an unusual business spike”.
- Reduced cycle time by 75%.
- Increased production by 300% with the same number of people.
- Reduced required floor space by 33%.
Industry: Electronic Manufacturing & Assembly
Services Provided: ISO 9000 and Lean Manufacturing
System Training & Implementation