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Technical Line Review Yields Improved Parts and Assembly Process

Observations and Solutions

During a technical line review of a customer’s facility, the Field team observed the components and methods of manufacturing used to assemble a railcar. The following observations were made with corresponding solutions:

  • The Field team observed several fasteners extending farther than necessary beyond the rear nut
  • Increased cost of fastener due to extra material
  • Takes extra time to assemble the fasteners

Solution: Shorten the lengths of 3 of these fasteners

TOTAL OPPORTUNITY: 242 labor hours and $5000 in annual fastener costs

  • Current practice is to tack weld eyebolts to prevent them from being removed
  • Tack welding offers uncontrollable heat distribution that could weaken the metal
  • Weld splatters can occur in undesirable area

Solution: Replace the tack welded threads with a drilled hole and drive pin

TOTAL OPPORTUNITY: $48,000 annually

  • Current practice is to use a cross pin design to secure eyebolts that are then tack welded
  • Tack welding a bolt can have an adverse effect on the mechanical properties of the bolt

Solution: Replace cross pin design with a safety collar design

TOTAL OPPORTUNITY: $12,000 annually


The Field team recommendations provide improved quality and reduced total costs through:

  • Reduced assembly time
  • Reduced material costs
  • Improved mechanical stability
  • Simplified field maintenance
  • Part standardization

Total Annual Savings Opportunity: $65,000 and 242 labor hours