APL has been involved in providing parts for the automotive industry since the mid-70’s, shortly after our inception in 1972. As a supplier it is crucial that we produce products that meet exact specifications and are approved by customers. This requires producing product at a consistent quality and at an agreed rate of production. The automotive injection moulding process is one that requires extreme precision and exact planning and we leave nothing to chance. We recognise the importance of complying with established quality procedures and practices for all our clients.
We use a stringent automotive injection moulding process when working with customers to supply a part and this is known as the Product Part Approval Service (PPAP). It is a quality assurance process that is tailored to ensure the very best end-product. It provides evidence that all customer requirements and design specifications are properly understood by those involved in the manufacturing process. Its purpose is also to illustrate that the manufacturing process that has been established potentially meets every requirement during a real production run and delivers the required output at the rate that has been quoted.
We make every effort to make sure that this process has been adhered to rigidly. It is a procedure we take very seriously and it is an essential part of pre-production planning.
This process consists of four stages;
- ISIR Studies.
- Control Plan Development
- FWEA’s (Failure analysis)
- Gage R &R’s
The first part of the process is the ISIR report. This stands for Initial Sample Inspection Report. It is a document that details the initial state of a sample. Any non-conforming characteristics will be highlighted here. All parts or materials must be compliant to the specifications outlined in the blueprint.
Secondly the organisation must develop a Control Plan that defines all methods and customer specific requirements. This is signed off by both the customer and APL and it contains a list of potential issues. It provides step by step details on how the process is controlled according to product specifications and how to respond to potential problems in the event of non-conformance.
The third stage is the FWEA or failure analysis. This part of the plan highlights the “cause and effect” of each failure, the severity of each failure and how to address the issues raised. And it highlights the fact that potential failures have been addressed – to eliminate and minimize their effects, usually through product improvements and/or design changes.
The design process is strengthened by the inclusion of this failure analysis. The end result of the analysis is that each process is given an RPN number. RPN stands for Risk Priority Number and it serves as a way of calculating which areas of a process need to be looked at in greater detail and where we need to take action.
The Gage R & R is a combined estimate of measurement. The R’s stand for Repeatability and Reproducibility. This measures errors in repeatability; we need to be able to get the same measurements under the same testing conditions. An error in reproducibility is the inability to get the same results from repeated measurements made under various conditions under different inspectors.
These are the four main stages in the process and each serves to assure the customer that the end product will meet their requirements.
This is a procedure that ensures thorough planning and it helps to maintain design integrity. It also improves the overall quality of the product and ultimately it delivers customer satisfaction. It re-assures clients that all necessary preliminary steps are being taken to ensure that the products will be delivered to the highest quality standards. It is a core process for the team at APL and we adhere to it rigidly, for the benefit of all.
If you would like to find out more, call now – we’d be delighted to provide samples of work or quote on your requirements. Follow this link or ring 00 353 402 38231.