CONVERSION for WAR - Influence of Automotive Mass-Production Methods 420104
IN a discussion of the difficulties that are being overcome in converting automotive plants to the production of war equipment with virtually no new machine tools, Mr. Geschelin emphasizes the difference between the production requirements of an automobile engine and a modern airplane engine by pointing out that:
The connecting rod of the Allison airplane engine requires 93 operations compared with 25 for the Cadillac passenger-car engine; the Allison crankshaft requires 80 operations, the Cadillac crankshaft 62; and the Allison cylinder block has 17 pieces compared with a single block for the Cadillac engine.
After calling production know-how, “the major contribution of the automotive industry,” Mr. Geschelin draws attention to the fact that the automotive industry also is largely responsible for bringing American production machinery to its present high state of development. Without the automotive industry's demand for mass production and encouragement of invention, he contends, the machine-tool industry would never have reached its present stage of development and expansion. He goes on to show definitely how the industry has fostered advancement in machine tools, metallurgy, materials handling, surface finish, gear practice, heat-treatment, and shot blasting.
In the remainder of his paper the author explains - naming product, company, process, and machine - how automotive mass-production methods are influencing the production of such war equipment as airplane engines, military airplanes, Ordnance materiel, and military vehicles.