Keeping production at Sheffield running around the clock requires a considerable network of support operations, such as 24hr maintenance cover, on-site tool design and manufacture, detailed materials analysis and timely materials handling.
Manned 24 hours a day the maintenance technicians provide around the clock support for all production machinery on site. The technicians cover a broad base of skills from electricians, mechanical fitters, and hydraulics & pneumatics experts to specialised technicians who help to design and maintain the control programs associated with the many assembly lines. Site maintenance is also managed within the team with collaboration with an external cleaning contractor.
The tooling and fixtures used on the many assembly and machining cells are manufactured in-house by a team of highly skilled technicians, using CNC lathes, milling and grinding machines, from designs produced by our on-site tool designers. The tool department maintains close links with local engineering firms which provide great flexibility during periods of high workload but more importantly gives access to specialised machining processes deemed too expensive to do in-house.
A vital requirement to ensure the high quality of parts leaving the factory at Sheffield is to ensure the material entering the site is of the correct standard. Cast iron pressure plates and housings for both tractor and passenger car clutches are checked for their conformance to LuK’s stringent quality standards (e.g. Brinell material hardness and material composition). In 2010 LuK Sheffield installed a new facility to test parts in a purpose-built metallurgy laboratory. The facility comprises of a fully-equipped preparation area where samples are cut and polished, and a clean laboratory environment for analysis of material microstructure using specialist devices.
Keeping all production lines fed with the right materials and components delivered at the right time is the role of a dedicated team of material planners and stores personnel. Working closely with our many customers, the material planners are key to the smooth running of the assembly lines, through clear levelled scheduling of customer demand. Material and components are moved throughout the 17500m2 by the stores personnel who operate a variety of reach, counter-balance and narrow aisle fork lift trucks. The main central stores area has over 4000 storage locations, each controlled by an impressive stores management system.