The U.S. Department of Defense DoD has a “Lean Six Sigma” (LSS) in place to boost readiness at lower costs.
For example, U.S. Army Forces Command (FORSCOM) applies LSS methods and analysis skills to achieve efficiencies, save time and money.
LSS focuses on process improvement to eliminate problems, remove waste and inefficiency, and improve working conditions to provide the best possible product for customers both inside or outside your organization.
It improves performance by systematically removing waste and reducing variation. It typically focuses on 8 types of waste: Defects, Over-Production, Waiting, Non-Utilized Talent, Transportation, Inventory, Motion, and Extra-Processing.
For military aircraft – aerospace in general really – substantial costs are incurred at purchase and during the product's lifecycle for operation/maintenance. Hence, there is pressure to reduce costs – to lower the delivery price from the OEM and the operational costs once acquired.
Small Process & Component Change Can Save Millions
A new grommet eliminates waste in the process. Grommet edging protects aircraft wiring from chafe that can result in arcing, sparking and fires. The legacy SOP for this task was to use a glued-in nylon grommet.
Switching from the legacy grommet MS21266 to Spring-Fast M22529/2 can save at least 49% of total install costs. This results in big savings. For example, estimated lifetime savings for the CH-53K were $3.34 million based on direct labor and materials.
Why the Savings Are So Significant
The nylon MS21266 grommet has core process issues as installation is a costly, labor intensive, multi-step process:
- Multiple items for application & technician safety had to be gathered in the preparation phase.
- Edge prep is needed: abrasion with Scotch-brite & cleaning with IPA/acetone wipe.
- MS21266 has no inherent retentive strength so has to be glued to the edge using Pliobond. In almost all cases to ensure adhesion, it has to be “fixtured” with masking tape to hold it in place until the adhesive cured.
- Excess adhesive after cure is cleaned with a MEK solvent and elbow grease.
- Frequent dis-bonding often means the work has to be redone, adding to the cost of poor quality.
This might have been state-of-the-art in the 40’s and 50’s, but now it is outdated as well as slow, messy, and costly.
In contrast, M22529/2 features drive a far lower direct labor install cost:
- Snap in place installation without adhesive
- Superior retentive strength without adhesive
- Immediate wire/harness routing – no fixturing or cure time delay
Grommets are a small component in aircraft, but their impact on the EWIS is far larger than their size. NAVAIR data have shown that when aircraft were designated as AOG (Aircraft on Ground) or NORS (Non Operational Ready Status), the biggest single reason – 37% – was wiring discrepancies due to chafe.
M22529/2 –The Better Way
- A polymer coating on an ultra thin CRES substrate that snaps into place with finger pressure.
- A caterpillar grommet – opposing castles create a compression force/static friction for retention without glue.
- Passed 20/20/20 G static load tests even when 4 castles are removed to provide clearance for clamps or clips.
- Significantly cuts the nylon grommet FOD footprint of shop consumables (gloves, cheese cloth, adhesive, tape).
Why not see for yourself? Order some free samples today.
We can also send you a worksheet to compute your own savings. Please call us at (508) 229-2000.