One-Piece-Flow: Assembly Vibratory Plate Drawbar Head

High lead times are almost always associated with negative consequences for companies. They make it difficult to respond quickly and flexibly to market changes, tie up capital and drive up delivery times. Reducing lead times is therefore an effective method of meeting customer requirements and achieving a sustainable competitive position.

One way of doing this is the so-called one-piece flow concept. This is an innovative form of flow production that not only promises high efficiency with minimum lead times, but also reduces space requirements and is characterized by ergonomic workstation design.

Based on the tiller head assembly of a vibratory plate from rossbach-wojtun GmbH & Co. KG, the advantages of the one-piece-flow principle are clearly evident.

Fact sheet:

  • Industry: Industrial services, assembly of components, management consulting
  • Implementation: 2020
  • Project duration: 6 weeks
  • Project objective: Increased productivity due to short throughput times and reduced space requirements
  • Materials:
    • CREFORM tube Ø 28mm
    • Metal connector
    • General accessories

The starting position

For the production of the first sample drawbar heads, Jörg Wojtun, Managing Director of rossbach-wojtun GmbH & Co. KG, chose a manufacturing process that can be described as a disguised line production. Individual assembly stations were created in the form of workbenches lined up next to each other, at which the material to be assembled was positioned in small load carriers and cartons. At each assembly position, small batches of the semi-finished parts were first produced and buffered before the next work step took place at the following position.


Unclear material flow & long walking distances

The individual assembly steps were carried out independently of each other at separate workbenches. As a result, each assembly had to be picked up and put down several times. The result: long walking distances between the individual buffer zones, an unclear material flow and undefined quantities of bound materials. The logistical effort required to transport the small batches from one station to the next also stretched the throughput time.


The solution: Increase value-added shares, reduce waste shares

As a part-time lecturer in lean management and consulting, Managing Director Jörg Wojtun was aware from the outset that the manufacturing process had to be optimized for the start of the commissioned series. Together with CREFORM, an individual solution was developed that was tailored to the production conditions on site: The conversion of the assembly line from line production to the one-piece-flow principle.


Efficient & ergonomic: control head assembly in the O-P-F cell

The assemblies are now assembled in what is known as a one-piece flow cell, where each component is machined within an assembly process until it is completed.



New CREFORM One-Piece Flow Cell.

New CREFORM One-Piece Flow Cell.

New CREFORM One-Piece Flow Cell.

The main advantages assembly in the one-piece flow cell

  • Stocks of semi-finished products fall
  • Material transport between the various assembly stations is eliminated
  • Throughput and manufacturing times are significantly reduced
  • Ergonomic design of workstations
  • Increased employee motivation
  • Less space required
  • Value added per employee increases
  • Significant increase in productivity

An employee starts the assembly process on the right-hand side of the cell arranged in a U-line and accompanies a component continuously from station to station. Work is done counterclockwise so that the right hand can pick the materials arranged in process sequence. This direction is easier for the human organism because the heart is located on the left side.

The required tools are also positioned at the stations. At the end of the cell, the finished control head is placed in a grid box and the process starts again.

Ergonomic assembly cells

By designing a universally pivoting fixture to hold the control head housing, positioned on a mobile assembly cart, it is now possible to guide the control head housing through the assembly cell from start to finish while managing all assembly operations to the highest degree of ergonomics.


By rearranging the assembly line according to the one-piece-flow principle, CREFORM and rossbach-wojtun GmbH & Co. KG jointly succeeded in finding the optimum manufacturing process for series production of the tiller heads. With the help of the O-P-F cell, throughput time was significantly reduced and productivity significantly increased.


You want to increase the efficiency and quality of your production?

Feel free to contact me! Together we will develop the right solution for you!

Christian Schäffer

Head of Sales Europe North

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