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Layout Assistance in New Facility

Industrial Resource Center: Catalyst Connection

Quality Mould Inc., manufactures a variety of products out of a range of traditional and modern materials, including stainless steel, cast iron, ductile iron, D2, A2, tool steel, inconel, aluminum, aluminum-bronze, and soft steel. Located in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, with around 30 employees, Quality Mould’s product manufacturing experience includes precision parts, custom fabrications, and molds for a diversified customer base.

“Catalyst Connection helped us completely re-think and rearrange our manufacturing process. Since learning Lean Manufacturing techniques, we streamlined all of our equipment, avoided costly mistakes, and are well prepared to launch efforts to new markets. We are very pleased to have Catalyst as part of our manufacturing processes.”

DJ Danko,
President

Situation

Quality Mould had to reinvent their business model when the glass industry that accounted for nearly all of their business moved overseas. The company owners spent seven years formulating and implementing diversification strategies to enter new sectors, including the power generation, oil and gas, aerospace and defense, mining, transportation and medical industries. The diversification strategies required substantial investments in machinery for new industry applications. The company needed larger manufacturing facilities and equipment to accommodate the new markets, and the owners turned to Catalyst Connection, a NIST MEP affiliate, for assistance.

Solution

Catalyst Connection sent a Senior Continuous Improvement Consultant, Eric MacDonald, to facilitate a session with Quality Mould management and staff. The goal of the training was to document the process flow for the new 33,000 square-foot facility. Catalyst Connection provided a solid foundation in basic Lean principles and 5S workplace organization (Sort, Set-In-Order, Shine, Standardize and Sustain) for Quality Mould employees. The customized training and coaching also included opportunities for hands-on experience with a focus on improving visual controls across the facility. The team learned how to use Lean techniques to maximize the value-added flow of materials and minimize travel distances, and developed a drawing during the process to allow for operator input or feedback. After investing over $2 million into the new facility, Quality Mould began providing services to the power generation, oil and gas, aerospace, and medical robotics industries. The company achieved FDA compliance and began the ISO certification process to broaden its potential for new customers and contracts.

Results

  • Invested $2,075,000 into the new facility
  • New customers in power generation, oil and gas, aerospace, and medical robotics, FDA regulated components and defense sectors
  • ISO Certification – December 2016 opportunity to develop new customers, capabilities and products