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Old 5th July 2013, 17:59   #31
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

Thanks Moralfibre and Saket77 for the inputs. I guess my way of describing the frames was a
bit hard for a car forum, regret if felt that way.

All I was trying to say the frames could have been edited to correct the tilt before posting.
I think that adds to the quality of the forum.

I still appreciate the effort of capturing the frames in such cramped environment.
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Old 5th July 2013, 18:10   #32
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

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Originally Posted by himadrimondal View Post
my way of describing the frames was a
bit hard for a car forum, regret if felt that way.
Ah! I see where you are coming from! Just went through your profile after looking at your nice avatar! Now I understand, these comments were from a photography buff!

Regards,
Saket
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Old 5th July 2013, 19:26   #33
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

Wow! There cannot be a better tour for a petrol-head, than visiting a manufacturing unit.
Nice photos and detailing. I personally feel Tata motors has much more potential, Expertise & Equipment, which are manhandled by poor management.
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Old 6th July 2013, 16:52   #34
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

Great job MoralFibre!

I think you have captured a LOT of the total assembly operations. I must comment on your accuracy of picture - operation title score, it is perfect! Were you taking down notes / recording the narration to ensure to remember the stage names?

Now, I see a lot of concerns raised for Safety of Trim line operators. I would like share something with my fellows bhpians-

The Trim Chassis Fitment (TCF) lines of Tata Safari and Tata Sumo Grande were my career's first ever 'job desk'. Being in the Production Department, let me tell all here that Tata Motors' guiding principles are SQDCME - with the very first letter 'S' denoting 'Safety'.

With the peril of making it sound as an excerpt from my CV, one of my daily tasks involved in ensuring each and every one of the 120 odd operators in my shift had the following Personal Protective Equipment or PPE:
  1. Safety Helmets, or Shelmets, worn with appropriate chin strap taughtness.
  2. Transparent Safety Goggles covering front and side eyes with nil scratches.
  3. Safety Boots with steeltoes.
  4. Hand Gloves, (aka 'glows' in local lingo. )
for each operator.

Operators in welding area (Body in White / BIW) shouldve have worn helmets! How was such a grave lapse allowed? Were the supervisors out for lunch? Hint: Hung-up helmets! (LOL)


I think they have discontinued the practice of making operators wear helmets while working INSIDE the car (for better operator comfort in the enclosed confines of a car?) All pictures of Trim line (Trim Line 1) show no helmets.

But all operators on the Chassis line (Trim Line 2), which has all fitment work located above the operator's head and shoulders, are seen wearing all of the above 04 pts.



The Line managers have ZERO ACCIDENT targets as part of their daily production meetings and mind you, even a small cut of 2mm on the body would entail an 'accident report and analysis'. A lot of the production lines in Tata Motors proudly displayed multiple months/years of Zero accidents!

Yes, even I agree that unbuttoned/ hay wire attire is not acceptable. Well I can only attribute that to an individual discipline issue rather than a company culture.

Its not an easy environment to work at all. The cleanliness, orderliness and structured stacking of materials/ tools/ work instruction charts/ quality control check points on the side is part of their standardization structure and is controlled. The importance of SQDCME/ BIQ/ PPE / 5S principles are re-iterated daily via shift meetings.

Being a noob to an industrial environment, the stringent norms were pressumed unnecessary and annoying at times for me. Yeah! But today having moved to other organizations - and to much more unsafe work environments, I am apalled to see the manner in which some of the TS:14001 certified companies work. I have only learned to appreciate the extend to which Tata Motors cared and planned about operator safety. I am in no way contracted in their promotion, but I just thought the pictures above should not reflect badly on the production practice of a company with such a deep - rooted sense of Operator Safety.

I hope this enlightens the knowledge of the readers. I am sure other members like Viju, who have had first hand experience of working in an automobile assembly plant, could also shed some more light on daily working of such a workplace. Intrigued?

Cheers!
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Old 7th July 2013, 15:24   #35
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

Great report Moralfiber. Feels nice to have a detailed look of the plant where your car was produced.
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Old 8th July 2013, 00:08   #36
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

Nice report that! Had seen some exotic car manufacturing plants on tv shows etc. but its really nice to have a peek inside a plant in my own backyard!
After seeing the entire process, the machinery, the effort, the investment and all related stats, it must be really heart-breaking for a car manufacturer if the product is not accepted by buyers!
Btw moralfibre, how much time does it take to roll out a car from end-to-end of the assembly line, lets say Indigo?
The entire process is not stream-lined I guess and happens in separate batches?
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Old 8th July 2013, 04:05   #37
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

Great walk-through moralfibre. One thing I want to ask though is about the dyno testing.

Quote:
A dyno used to ensure the car is built to spec on the roll and brake tester:
Does this whole point of running-in (esp. of engines) still hold good after the very initial stress given to each engine on the dyno?
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Old 8th July 2013, 07:21   #38
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

All very good - but the fact remains that TATA makes crappy cars.

The way their sales are falling are ample proof that the Indian consumer no longer accepts the sub optimal and mediocre TATA products.
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Old 8th July 2013, 08:31   #39
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The factory walk through is detailed and well written. I feel indian customer has matured a bit which explains the lack of interest in tata products. I visited the tata motors showroom here a couple of weeks back. I was the only customer. The centralised ac had failed so we were sweating in heat. However the SA was nice and he was giving a nice introduction of vista d90. However I feel that word of mouth has damaged the tata brand immensely.
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Old 8th July 2013, 09:57   #40
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

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Does this whole point of running-in (esp. of engines) still hold good after the very initial stress given to each engine on the dyno?
It does because the car is not run for over 2-3 minutes on the dyno. The dyno run in particular is only used to ensure engine and brakes are working as expected.
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Old 8th July 2013, 10:26   #41
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Default Re: Pics: Visit to the Tata Motors Factory. Assembly of the Indica and Indigo eCS

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Any idea what happens to the old 'dies'/moulding machines? Like the Marina, Sierra etc? Can they be recommissioned? .
Usually, the old dies are scrapped once the life cycle (no of stampings done) is over. In some cases, depending on the design, the dies can be reclaimed through reconstruction welding but this does affect the quality aspects in most of the cases. As mentioned, the costs are really prohibitive and hence in earlier years, the MNCs like Ford were launching older models in India (Astras, Escorts etc) in which cases, in all probablities, the used dies may have been imported from the factories abroad where the model was no longer running in the market.
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Old 8th July 2013, 12:49   #42
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Default Re: Pics: Visit to the Tata Motors Factory. Assembly of the Indica and Indigo eCS

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Originally Posted by GrammarNazi View Post

Any idea what happens to the old 'dies'/moulding machines? Like the Marina, Sierra etc? Can they be recommissioned?
The dies need to be kept for producing spares parts and some of them can be modified for launching facelifts. The huge investment on dies is the basic reason behind keeping all metal panels intact while launching a facelift.
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Old 8th July 2013, 17:10   #43
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

All in all, a great walkthrough indid. Seeing an automotive plant in full operation is really something.
And the Tata's have come a long way from the earstwhile 'Telco' days when the story was quiet different. I remember the operations in the Truck assembly plant and the Sumo manufacturing sections. They were way different than the current state of afairs as explained amply here. In fact at that time also, the new Indica assembly line was totaly saperated from the rest of the plant in the same premises and the entry to that perticular assembly line was restricted to the curcerned people only. Same with the design studio where Indica related developments were going on.
But even then the story was comparitively better than the Mahindra assembly oprations it seems. I have heard horrar stories from my friends who have worked in the Igatpuri plant where it seems, the night shift assembly work had some interesting lapses like not following the torquing sequence of the engine screws etc. So it was supposedly safer to take a engine which was assembled in the day shifts.
I'm sure M&M have also made great strides on these fronts given the product line up that they have now and the efforts they are taking towards the ASS aspects.
Would be great to have a walkthrough of that place also.
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Old 9th July 2013, 07:11   #44
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

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I'm sure M&M have also made great strides on these fronts given the product line up that they have now and the efforts they are taking towards the ASS aspects.
Would be great to have a walkthrough of that place also.
Access to Engine Assembly and Paintshop is restricted due to various quality and safety issues. The engine assembly is supposed to be performed in dust free environment. In case of Paintshop, the dust/dirt is considered as a main culprit for majority of the quality issues. In addition to this, there are a number of chemicals and machineries are being used. It requires additional safety precautions.
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Old 9th July 2013, 09:03   #45
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Default Re: PICS: Tata Motors Factory! Detailed report on making of the Indica & Indigo eCS

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Originally Posted by MaxTorque View Post
Access to Engine Assembly and Paintshop is restricted due to various quality and safety issues. The engine assembly is supposed to be performed in dust free environment. In case of Paintshop, the dust/dirt is considered as a main culprit for majority of the quality issues. In addition to this, there are a number of chemicals and machineries are being used. It requires additional safety precautions.
Agree fully. I think the Indian assembly shops are also covering up the distance rapidly with their european mass producers. The fact that the european shops have been operating next door now has contributed immensly to this I believe. All the more gains for the customers.

It was mentioned that the crash test and NVH level testing facilities were the first ones in this part of the region. Are these facilities available for testing of products by other suppliers also in case the comprehensive setup is not available elsewhere ?
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