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Old 06-14-2013, 09:45 AM   #1
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A thought about Quality Control.

I see many references about poor Quality Control in threads on these forums.

I'm not sure what is meant here by the term Quality Control. If you mean inspection of each unit off the floor for defects in workmanship (100 % inspection) that is not a good way to go. 100% inspection is only 85% effective. So for every 100 defects 15, on average, will get out to the dealer. This is a statistical fact. It's better not to blame Quality Control for not catching the defect but to instruct the assemblers how to do it right in the first place. Granted not all problems are due to poor workmanship some are defects in supplied parts to the factory by outside vendors. These problems should be handled by QC. Put the burden of Quality on the people doing the work not on the QC inspector who may miss a defect some of witch are hidden. In other words, build it right in the first place, don't rely on someone catching the hundreds of mistakes that could be made in building a complicated modern RV.

-BC-

This is a touchy subject with many different opinions I don't want to start a debate. It's just my opinion. I posted this in the Columbus factory support thread but this is not just a Columbus problem but common in all brands so I also posted it here.
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Old 06-14-2013, 10:01 AM   #2
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Since the majority of us do not know the process of inspection during the manufacture of these trailers this would appear to be a mute subject.
But having said that I do agree that 100% inspection of a finished product will not return a 100% perfect product, I do believe that if inspection is carried out at various stages of production then final inspection should be able to return a perfect product, the problem is that corporations do not want to pay for this when they can get away (quite successfully) by not doing Quality Control. I can also add that I have witnessed this process being successfully carried out.
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Old 06-14-2013, 10:33 AM   #3
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Having worked 10 yrs in QC for Lockheed Martin, I agree 100%, the best inspectors are the assemblers in the next station on the assy line. Foremen should be spot checking constantly for assy problems & procedural improvements instead of sitting at desks trying to look busy. Workers should write the work instructions as they know how to do the job better than a tech writer/industrial engr in the office. 99.5% of the American workers want to do a good job if management would just let them do it. Just instruct them on the proper way of performing the job and get out of their way and let them do it.

In all our audits of suppliers, we found the bean counters and upper management were the biggest culprits in preventing quality products being delivered. As the prime contractor, we had a 'big stick' and could force them to change. As rv buyers, we're at a definite disadvantage.
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Old 06-14-2013, 10:37 AM   #4
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Having spent many years as a Director of Quality Assurance in the medical device industry, I have some knowledge of the subject.

It needs to be understood that quality CAN NOT be inspected into any product. In general, the RV industry as a whole has no concept of proper quality processes. The problems stem from the appalling lack of detailed construction drawings and specifications.

Joel
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Old 06-14-2013, 11:09 PM   #5
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IMHO people on the assembly line should build a product as if they were going to be the purchaser. Doesn't matter what the product is.
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Old 06-15-2013, 12:24 AM   #6
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The people on the assembly line are not the problem. The real problem is that there is no assembly line. The assemblers have an idea as to what the finished product should look like, but the have no detailed specifications ant no written procedures to follow.

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Old 06-15-2013, 12:33 AM   #7
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It would appear to a casual observer that the workers who build these units simply don't care. They leave debris and garbage in the units and build around it. Very strange - maybe there is a high turnover? Or they are paid so poorly and mistreated that they perform poorly on purpose to punish their employer?
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Old 06-15-2013, 12:42 AM   #8
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Detailed specifications.... detailed drawings, detailed written instructions on many aspects of an RV...which these days include many electronic components and systems... Does it occur to anyone besides me...that the majority of RV factory workers boast an eight grade education and choose not to live with electricity in their homes? Could a mismatch of education and values be part of the quality problem? Just wondering. Furthermore, I have heard so much of the debris problem, this can't be a "worker only" problem. It can't be news to the management....it's all too common. So, who decided that this is acceptable?
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Old 06-15-2013, 08:19 AM   #9
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Ironic that "There's*never*enough*time to do it right, but there is always enough time to do it again”.
If your going to do something, do it right the first time or don't bother doing it.
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Old 06-15-2013, 09:10 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bodzcampers View Post
Detailed specifications.... detailed drawings, detailed written instructions on many aspects of an RV...which these days include many electronic components and systems... Does it occur to anyone besides me...that the majority of RV factory workers boast an eight grade education and choose not to live with electricity in their homes? Could a mismatch of education and values be part of the quality problem? Just wondering. Furthermore, I have heard so much of the debris problem, this can't be a "worker only" problem. It can't be news to the management....it's all too common. So, who decided that this is acceptable?
The workers can only use the tools they have. I would bet that they are not supplied with vacuum cleaners,

Unfortunately, the RV manufacturers are still trying to save money by scrimping on quality control. They have yet to come to understand that quality control is free.

The trouble is the accountants. Every dime spent on quality control shows up on the balance sheet. Money saved from a problem that didn't happen doesn't show up anyplace.

The RV industry is in the same state that the U.S. auto industry was in back in the '50s, until the Japanese auto industry showed them the way. Ironically, in the '40s and early '50s, saying "made in Japan" was synonymous with saying "junk." They brought in an American quality guru who was being ignored by our industry W. Edwards Deming - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Within a few years, Japanese autos had the best quality in the world.

I still hope that the RV industry will eventually wake up.
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