Mechanical Verification of Customer Interfaces in Automotive Component Manufacturing 2001-01-0376
The best efforts to create a highly engineered, technologically advanced, and elegant automotive component will be lost if the component does not physically fit into the customer's vehicle at the assembly plant. One of the principles of mechanical verification (also called poka-yoke or error proofing) is that every part is verified every time. Mechanical verification is not based on statistical sampling, and it is not the same thing as, nor is it designed to reintroduce, incoming inspection. In this paper we will discuss some of the methods used at Delphi Delco Electronics to mechanically verify customer interfaces without adding labor or processes to the production line. Most of the methods used are very “low tech,” and they are based on common sense. We will also go beyond the verification methods used and discuss the process we used to implement a mechanical verification system. One of the key points to successful implementation was starting very early in the product development cycle. Another key was involvement of people from many different backgrounds, including our customers and suppliers. A detailed description of a mechanical verification matrix is included in the paper. This matrix is the main tool and scorecard used during the development of our mechanical verification system.