2018/11/26   |   Bad Waldsee   |   Germany

Machine Monitoring as basis for a cultural change

The HYMER plant in Bad Waldsee is no typical automotive production facility, where mobile homes, caravans and camping-vans are produced.

Our main goal in using MMR was to considerably increase the proportion of value-adding processes carried out by the machinery.

Pascal Dittus, team leader in production planning

An article of the möbelfertigung 07/2018. Read the article online here.

And these have highly individual furniture installations, which are also produced within the production facility in Baden-Wuerttemberg. Since 2003 HYMER relies on CNC-machine centers by HOMAG as well as on the software “MMR”.

The vision of the Erwin HYMER Group is to allow people worldwide a unique experience of leisure and mobility. Therefore, the HYMER Group unites numerous caravan and motor home fabricators, specialists for accessories and many more under one umbrella. In the meantime the number has grown up to 24 strong brands. One of these is the HYMER GmbH & Co. KG with the headquarter in Bad Waldsee. Due to the customer-specific configuration of motor homes, camping-vans and caravans individual camping dreams can be fulfilled – for customers with a small and big wallet.

To optimize the production, the HYMER GmbH & Co. KG relies on the tracking, evaluation and analysis of production data. Thereby, the Software “MMR” of HOMAG for data tracking and evaluation helps.

The HYMER plant in Bad Waldsee is no typical automotive production facility. A large proportion of the area is used for furniture production, because the interior fittings of the camping vehicles are produced in-house at HYMER. Kitchens, bathroom furniture, wardrobes and seats are manufactured according to the individual client’s configuration. In the wooden part production, components are formatted and drilled on 10 nesting CNC machines. Subsequently, the wooden parts are finished on machining centres or edge banding machines. A major portion of the shop floor in Bad Waldsee is equipped with HOMAG machines.

HYMER relies on the MMR software by HOMAG for data collection and evaluation. The basic software module is installed as standard on all machines manufactured since 2010. Production data and condition of each machine, as well as the number of workpieces produced, operating times, maintenance instructions, etc., are automatically recorded by MMR Basic and logged in the machine database.

With the procurement of a new HOMAG CENTATEQ P-500 (previously BMG 511) nesting machine in 2017, HYMER made a conscious decision in favour of purchasing the supplementary MMR Professional. In addition to the functions of MMR Basic, the operator can add further information directly at the machine. This improves data quality because machine conditions are explained, key figures and machine conditions are evaluated, and error messages are analysed.

Currently, production data is only sporadically evaluated at HYMER. “Even if we are not yet using the data to a great extent, when procuring the new HOMAG nesting machine, we didn’t want to miss the opportunity to be able to access machine data and evaluations as quickly as possible”, says Pascal Dittus, explaining why HYMER opted for the purchase of MMR Professional.

Dittus describes the current situation in production as follows: “It is like driving without a speedo: You are caught speeding five times because you don’t even know how fast you are going. And this is exactly the kind of dashboard we are still missing”. A more comprehensive use of MMR should change that. Manufacturing is expected to control itself in the future based on specific and current key figures.

“From MMR, we are expecting a reliable database by means of which we can make current actual figures available to the different hierarchical levels with the smallest possible expenditure”.

With the additional MMR Office module, key production figures, such as primary and secondary operation of the machine, malfunctions and maintenance activities are evaluated and visualized to facilitate decision-making. This enables both management and production staff to keep an overview of the latest production status, and therefore provides them with a dashboard. “Using the evaluations as a basis, it is possible for us to define measures together. Decisions are no longer made top-down, but rather each staff member contributes to the development”. However, this requires a change of corporate culture. “My boss once said: It is better for 500 people to take one step, than for one person to take 500 steps”, Dittus reports. And this is exactly what HYMER would like to achieve: Each employee should be given access to the figures that are relevant to them to be able to independently deduce the appropriate measures. The wooden part production is the pilot area for the change ahead, with one objective in mind: to inform employees and to motivate them with transparency to do even better work. “By giving feedback we would like to hold up a mirror for our employees to reflect upon the work accomplished. Then we can either say, ‘Great, keep up the good work!’, or we can look for causes of non-conformance together”.

It will still take some time to introduce the change across the entire company but with MMR, the optimum database, the ground has been laid for this endeavour in wooden part production.

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