Production quality is a constant battle between efficiency and cost. After all, ensuring perfection in your manufacturing process is impossible. The real question is how close can you feasibly get? Inspection helps make sure poor-quality products never reach the customer. On top of that, it helps find faults and weak points in your process. On some level, inspection is essential to a successful business. Unfortunately, inspecting can be expensive. Having workers who inspect products can be incredibly inefficient, especially if faults are rarely detected. This exactly when inspection machine basics can be so valuable.
Inspection Machine Basics
Inspection machines are a powerful answer to the constant question of how to cut inspection costs. In highly technical industries like automotive manufacture, they’re basically essential.
Speaking broadly, an inspection machine is exactly what it sounds like. These are machines designed to (often quite rapidly) examine a part, product, or substance. They then quickly detect possible problems, allowing you to discard or more thoroughly inspect as you see fit.
Exactly how they can help depends on exactly what machine you’re using and for what purpose. However, they can help the productivity of almost any business with factories or heavy machinery. We’ll highlight three of the biggest ways they tend to help companies here:
Productivity Benefit #1: Better Preventative Maintenance
Preventative maintenance (PM) is maintenance for the purpose of stopping what might be a much more expensive problem down the line.
Faults aren’t always immediately apparent to human eyes or even more basic machine detection. Very often, the earliest faults don’t even cause notable issues with your day-to-day business.
These tiny weaknesses are then slowly exacerbated by normal use. Cracks widen, metal wears. This is when issues can then sometimes affect business and may become obvious during normal inspection.
PM theoretically allows a business to solve these problems before they become critical. If a pipe completely gives out, for example, it may be extremely expensive and even dangerous. Daily operations may have to stop for potentially days as repairs are made.
What you need to bear in mind is that multiple minor repairs are almost always cheaper than fixing a total breakdown. Unfortunately, minor issues are also easier to miss than big ones.
Quality inspection machines help ensure minor issues are caught before they cause major delays, injuries, and more. They can quickly make up their installation cost in savings, especially if installed on known weak points in your operations.
Productivity Benefit #2: Save Time
Paying an employee or contractor to inspect any part of your operations costs you time and money. It’s also no secret not all the time you’re paying workers is necessarily spent wisely.
In many cases, workers won’t necessarily be able to inspect all that thoroughly either. The human body has limits, and we tend to zone out when faced with monotonous tasks.
Checking hundreds of products or thousands of feet of wire is tedious. Workers can lose focus and miss details. The moment an important detail is missed, the entire point of the inspection is essentially void.
This is yet another place specialized machines can help. They can rapidly improve an employee’s ability to find problems and in some cases may remove the need for a human inspector completely.
There also tasks that require machines. If precise measurements, tight spaces, or dangerous chemicals are involved, you probably just can’t use human hands and eyes to check things out.
While machines can’t do everything on their own, they tend to be much faster at the tasks they can manage. Inspection machines may literally save dozens or even hundreds of hours each week in terms of inspecting time, all while producing results far more reliable than what a human could produce on their own.
The benefits go even further though. Time gets saved on the back end as well. You will get fewer returns and fewer production delays due to missed problems.
Productivity Benefit #3: Raise Your Production Ceiling
Inspection capabilities can be a major bottleneck in high volume businesses. It can be even worse if your failure rates are high or if failure represents a serious threat to employees and/or customers.
At the end of the day, every benefit of an inspection machine comes down to one question: What improves if inspection can suddenly be done rapidly and accurately?
One benefit that can’t be overlooked is that suddenly your business will probably be able to handle a much bigger workload, at least where inspection is concerned. You’ve essentially removed a bottleneck.
A key part of running a business is identifying what’s stopping profitable expansion. Inspection machines help make sure that the inspection process isn’t such an obstacle.
The only caveat is that one cannot cheap out when purchasing and installing inspection machines. There isn’t much point in removing part of a bottleneck, only to leave the rest. That way you can streamline your inspection process while also keeping your inspections thorough.
The logistics of this upgrade process can be a challenge. If your team doesn’t have experience with this type of technology, hire someone who does. Companies like Sanritsu America can help make sure corners aren’t cut.
Streamline Inspection Without a Drop in Quality
Inspection machines are basically all benefit. Once you’ve paid for the initial purchase and installation, they’re going to vastly improve the speed and accuracy with which your company can identify issues.
If you want to make sure you purchase the machines you need and install them right, contact us at Sanritsu America. We’ve worked with cars, machine tools, electronics, and more. Whether your enterprise is big or small, we can help!