33,000 Pounds in a 21 Day Window

Jul 13
2010

 Vacation is upon us and after this week Royal Master shuts down manufacturing for two weeks. You can still call and get parts and if I never told you that we were shut down you probably would never have known. Lori stills answers the phone and we all answer our  e-mails as if it was business as usual. On Friday our shipping manager Glen pointed out that we only had 21 working days before we ship IMTS when we get back from vacation. Maybe he was hinting to leave him a long list of things to do while he worked over shut down, or looking for me to say “ that’s plenty of time “.

With 21 days left there is a whole lot to do, but we are in pretty good shape. Skids are built according to the jigsaw puzzle that we call a truck layout, machines are all on line and most are finished. We are just waiting on some feeding components from vendors.

The truck layout is one of the most fun things associated with the planning of the show. It has been called fitting 10 pounds of  “candy” in a 5 pound bag . Trucking is expensive and a source of stress. Having everything out of our control after pain staking working on the machines for 3 months is a minor part of the stress, but then when you think about it, a stranger taking over 2 million dollars of equipment hurdling down Route 80 at 70 mph can give anyone a chance to pause for more than a second.

Setting up the layout for the truck is like a jigsaw puzzle, everything fits, and has a place. Put it in the wrong place and you have a bad case of the head scratches while you figure it out.  Fitting 7 machines, a tradeshow display, support materials for a weeks in a 8’ x 48’ space is  just plain old fun. We actually build the skids to fit the truck dimensions to minimize any empty voids. The record for empty space was in 2006 with a whopping 6” of empty room at the back of the truck. I will admit that we tape out the truck in the parking lot the day before to make sure all 33,000 pounds fit in all 384 square feet of truck deck.

Very Small Parts

Jul 02
2010

Our overseas agent recently sent us an inquiry to grind parts for an experimental grind. His only details that he gave is that they are very small and they might be hard to handle. In working with guidewires which go as small as .001” in diameter, I thought, “ no challenge here”.

Wow was I wrong. Not only are these parts small in diameter, but short in length. The 1000 parts that they sent in are shown here. The handling of the part, not the grinding will be the challenge. This is a patience job, and a job that even our competitors will say, “just call Royal Master”

In replying back to our overseas agent, he gave me an “oh by the way” with the customer wants to autofeed them. In the back of my mind I assumed that this would have to be the case as I cannot see anyone on a production basis handling these parts, but I also kind of hoped that they had a plan already in place for inserting and removing from the wheels.

I will keep you posted as to the progress as we grind them in our Experimental lab. If you have a part that is more of a challenge, give it to us and you can win a $100 Best Buy Gift certificate. Closing date for Entries is August 15th.

I look forward to your tough job, what would challenge us?