Sandvik Coromant is a worldwide supplier of tools, tooling solutions and know-how
to the metalworking industry. Sandvik Coromant in Gimo is manufacturing various
models of carbide inserts for metal cutting. The majority of the inserts are coated to
create a unique combination of toughness and wear resistance, even in complex
The inserts are transported through the coating process in a charge, the charge
almost completely consists of graphite materials of various design e.g. load carriers.
The graphite material will eventually wear out and must be replaced with new
graphite. Sandvik puts through several charges per day which makes the consumption
of graphite great. The graphite material is relatively expensive and Sandvik therefore
spends large amounts of money each year on new graphite.
Unclear structure in the operation of the order and management of new graphite
materials have led to e.g. unnecessary inventories, at times material shortages and
uneven loading of the coating ovens. The aim of the thesis has been to investigate and
analyze current way of working regarding ordering and handling of graphite materials
and to come up with a concrete proposal for improvement of the working methods.
The project was divided into two phases, a situation analysis and a design phase.
Phase one was to make an overall situation analysis to create a clear picture of how
the work is done today (May 2016) and find out areas for improvement. Current
situation analysis was based on interviews and practice with operators, technicians
and the production manager for the concerned department.
Phase two was the design of an improvement proposal for a new way to work. It was
initiated by a literature study to find ideas, possible concepts and a firmer relevant
foundation of knowledge. In order to define the project, a decision about the projects
boundaries was made with the department manager, production manager and the
supervisor. The design was then created through a workshop / meeting with
operators in the department. The workshop was coordinated to go through the
problem and get perspectives and views on how a new way of working could be
The result was a proposal for a new way of working for ordering graphite material. It
is based on having a system that uses kanban card to visualizes when the order are to
be made and initiates the order process. The proposed approach organizes the
inventory better, thereby reducing inventory levels for new pin carriers by 40%. It
also means a possible reduction of the inventory of graphite storage at the supplier,
the storage at the supplier could be reduced by 43%.
2016. , 55 p.