Re: GEMA plant tour
- From: Cliff <Clhuprich@xxxxxxx>
- Date: Mon, 15 Aug 2005 04:39:22 -0400
On Sun, 14 Aug 2005 23:28:18 GMT, "Gary H. Lucas"
>Two weeks ago I was in Dundee Village, Michigan. We're installing a waste
>water treatment plant for the GEMA (Global Engine Manufacturing Alliance)
>plant being built by Chrysler. I got a brief tour of the plant from one of
>the mechanical contractors. The plant has three machining lines, blocks,
>heads, and crankshafts. I guess all the other small parts are done by
>vendors. Each line consisted of an initial conveyor where block, head, or
>crankshaft castings or forgings were manually removed from a pallet and
>placed in a fixture. Then an overhead robot system delivered the part to
>the first set of machines, in cells of 3 to 7 identical machines. The
>number of machines was based on how much time each operation takes. The
>overhead robots then keep jumping the part from cell to cell. The line was
>U shaped so the part wound up back at the center of the plant where they
>accumulated in an automatic storage unit. There wasn't much machining to
>see being done, a tiny little window on each machine and lots of coolant.
>The assembly of the engines was done on a long serpentine conveyor and the
>engine was riding on a pallet the whole time. There were robot bolt
>inserters but it appeared that most assembly work was still done manually.
>The robots were all custom made, single purpose devices. I was surprised
>ant that, I had expected more generic type robots with specialized end
>The plant is still in the debugging phase, a few technicians but no
>production people yet. I'm heading back out to the area again on the 22nd
>so I hope to take another look.
I've seen GM's engine plant in Romulus, MI and Holden's
Engine's in Port Melbourne, Australia (also their on-site
Iron foundry to cast the parts).
I wonder how they compare.
IIRC The cost of the Romulus plant was over a billion US dollars
...... but my recall may be off.
Looks like ~380 million for that one.
The plant will assemble a universal, small four-cylinder engine that
will be used in a number of subcompact and larger vehicles made by the
three automobile manufacturers.
That may explain a bit of it. IIRC The other plants I mentioned
build at least two different engines each.
Romulus also was named the 'Most Productive V8 Engine Plant North
America' in The Harbour Report. It currently runs two shifts for
assembly and three shifts for machining and produces the 4.3L V6, 4.8L
V8, 5.3L V8 and 6.0L V8. It is the second largest GM engine plant in
the world, behind Tonowanda, NY, producing 1.2 million engines
Production of Holden's Family II-designated four-cylinder engines
began in 1981, and today's average daily production rate of 1200
engines is largely made up of four-valve, double overhead camshaft
(DOHC) engines of 2.0 litre and 1.8 litre displacement. The range is
available in 1.6 litre SOHC and 1.8 litre, 2.0 litre and 2.2 litre
SOHC and DOHC variants, adaptable to customer requirements.
They also make the "Engine: 5.7-litre, 16-valve, Vee-eight cylinder"
- GEMA plant tour
- From: Gary H. Lucas
- GEMA plant tour
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