3279. Weight Reduction Process – Saving Money While Saving Weight


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Gale Armstrong: 3279. Weight Reduction Process – Saving Money While Saving Weight. 2002.



Weight reduction ideas are easy to identify in the engineering world today. The difficulty is implementation! Teams generate long lists of weight reduction roadmap ideas, but never have time to deliver on those ideas. Engineers today are too busy to run dual path programs; roadmap ideas sit on an opportunities list until they run out of time and then fall off the list.
This paper will describe a Weight Engineering Workshop process implemented at Ford Motor Company that drives weight reduction ideas into program assumptions.
What is a Weight Engineering Workshop? A one-day workshop held to help teams engineer a system or component to remove weight and create the maximum value for the customer. The workshop focuses heavily on removing weight while maintaining its functional integrity. The workshop will also focus on ‘Overcoming the Inhibitors to Implementation’.
The weight engineering workshop process is currently being used to optimize the weight of vehicles, but can be utilized on any commodity ? similar to the Value Engineering Process conducted by most large companies.
The weight engineering workshop results are:
? Weight Reduction Ideas Recommended
? Variable Cost and Investment
? Weight savings
? Cost per pound of weight saved
? Technical confidence
? Work plan for each recommended idea
Ideas are also evaluated against all program attributes and sub-attributes to insure the design functions of the component are not compromised.
A management report-out meeting is conducted following the workshop. The report-out meeting is designed to secure management buy-in for implementation of the recommended weight reduction ideas.


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