A Quickcoder success story.
The automotive industry can't do without coding, that is a simple fact.
Quality assurance may be the most obvious example, but tracking and
tracing of car and truck parts is also the key to avoid expensive warranty
claims. And unlike any other industry the automotive business wants to
close out counterfeit products.
Billions of automotive parts are being produced every day to be part
of the 213.000* cars and trucks that are leaving the assembly lines
– every single day!
All these parts are manufactured at hundreds of thousands companies
around the world and - contrary to what we are used to in our business -
they are often handled individually by machines or even by hand.
Coding or marking these parts takes place in countless different situations,
from simple in-line coding like on door rubber profiles, up and to complex
testing stations that are built around the coding device.
Although there are a number of coding systems available on the market
that can do this task perfectly, albeit at a higher cost, a surprisingly vast
range of applications can be simply solved with the
Kortho Hot Quickcoder.
Our German office, located in automotive manufacturing country # 4 of
the world, has sold over 1.500 Hot Quickcoders, by far most of them
to the automotive part suppliers.
The Hot Quickcoderhas clearly some unique selling points, which
makes this device so attractive for the automotive industry:
Extremely small foot print, easy to install on, or in various handling
or testing machines. In any position!
► 8 (standard) bright colours, for the best contrast on any substrate.
In case more opacity is required, the optional double or triple print
function provides a repeat print on the same spot.
► Absolutely no consumption of consumables in idle mode.
Even if only one print a day is made, no liquids are wasted
(like CIJ systems) And where liquid ink-dot markers may dry
over time when not activated he first print is just perfect!
► Change of colour in a matter of seconds! In particular the
rubber profiles need a colour change frequently.
No flushing, no waste of consumables!
►The absence of odours (no solvents, liquid inks) make it a
very non-hazardous and non-offensive solution for everyone
working with the Hot Quickcoder.
► Prints or marks are dry instantly, at low or high speed,
small or big volumes.
► The only contact marking device that prints equally easy on
continuously moving, or intermittent products! (*: figures of 2010)
Having said that, which are these applications in the automotive industry
that we have sold the Hot Quickcoder to? As stated, there are umerous
manufacturers of car and truck parts that use
testing machines for quality assurance. When the product is approved,
a simple dot or (other shape) indicates that.
A colour may tell which line it was tested on, or which person
was the operator.
Some assembly lines consist even of several handling stations,
producing subassemblies which are all marked then with
a different colour dot.
A finished product may have up to four different marks, indicating
the machine operator that all stations have been passed o.k.
Quality assurance is the no. 1 issue in this industry.
Another good example (literally hundreds of Hot Quickcoders have
been sold worldwide) are the various rubber profiles as found as
door seals in cars, for example. All 8, sometimes up to 10 different
colours are used to print marks on the rubber, which are then
detected during the production by colour mark readers to cut
the profile to a desired length. Equally, marks are applied where
later on little holes have to be made for deflation of the door
seal (when closed).
A similar application are the pictured "braided cable sleevings",
where during production small defects may occur.
The Hot Quickcoder prints a white or yellow mark, indicating
the start and end of such a defective part of the sleeve.
Later on in the process, these marks are then recognized
and the rejected part is cut and discarded. In some applications
the Hot Quickcoder keeps printing in continuous mode,
until the end of the defective zone.
Other parts, like the wishbone suspension part, are
produced in a left and right version. As the difference is
minimal, swapping the parts during further handling can
easily occur. Which can then have serious consequences.
To avoid using the wrong part in the next assembly
step, they are simply marked with a different
colour dot or a character.
A manufacturer of very exclusive brake discs
(just dozens per day) cannot afford to discard parts that
are not meeting their quality standard. These parts are
marked with a small sign, only to be reworked. But once
the product is approved and sent to the car manufacturer,
absolutely no traces of any mark are allowed. In this case it is
an advantage that the print can be removed with,
for example, penetrating oil.
As assembly assistance the small colour marks are printed
onto lock-nuts. Those nuts come in the same width,
but vary slightly in height. To help the worker later on
during the truck assembly to use the correct one,
the difference is made visible in this simple way.
The well-known brake pads are also tested and then
marked with a simple colour stripe.
Of course not only Hot Quickcoders are being sold to
the Automotive industry.