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Improving Jet Engine Turbine Assembly Convenience and Ergonomics

A jet engine manufacturer had an existing workbench used by technicians assembling interior sections of an engine turbine. Modified extensively in-house, the bench included features not found in commercially available equipment. Needing additional workstations, the customer came to Workplace seeking a purpose-built solution that would meet their requirements.

The existing custom bench had two working levels: a top surface and an extendable lower tray. The engine unit being assembled sat on the lower tray. As the technician added additional parts and material, the load on the lower tray grew to almost two hundred fifty pounds.

The existing assembly bench had four areas of concern:

  1. The extendable lower tray could tip the entire bench under heavy loads.
  2. To pull out the lower tray, the worker had to kneel on the floor and awkwardly grab the tray’s edges to move it.
  3. The handles for moving the bench to another location interfered with being able to extend the lower tray.
  4. Moving the bench with the heavy unit on the lower tray was difficult.

The Customer and Workplace Collaborate on an Improved Workstation Design.

Workplace engineers visited the factory to fully understand the bench requirements. Working together, the customer and Workplace defined five requirements for the purpose-built bench:

  1. The two-level workstation required a lower pull-out tray.
  2. The two-level workstation required a lower tray that could be pulled out as needed.
  3. Both the top work surface and the lower tray each had to support 250 pounds.
  4. Eliminate tipping when the lower tray was extended when the engine unit was sitting on it.
  5. Enable the technician to pull out the lower tray in an ergonomically safe way.

Workplace engineers used this information as well as incorporating durability and aesthetics in their proposed design. The design satisfied Workplace’s purpose-built criteria: provide a level of engineering that leverages the basic stock product together with accessories that meet the specific customer requirement.

What does “Purpose Built
Workstation” mean?

  “Purpose-built” does not mean “custom-designed
and then custom-built from the ground up.”

  A purpose-built workstation includes a level of engineering
using a base platform and a unique combination of accessories
to adapt it to a specific use.

  A purpose-built workstation is still completely recognizable
as the standard product on which it is based.

The Workplace Purpose Built Solution.

The customer approved the design (and quoted price) based on Workplace’s Standard platform and ordered four workstations. The purpose-built bench satisfied all the defined requirements:

  1. The top worksurface and the lower tray each have a 250-pound capacity.
  2. The reinforced lower tray with ball-bearing slides mounted to the bench frame is fully extendable with a 250-pound load.
  3. The lower tray features an anti-tip floor brake to prevent tipping when extended.
  4. Ergonomic grab bars attached to the lower tray eliminated the need to kneel on the floor.

5 Conclusions About Purpose Built Workstations.

  1. Purpose-built workstations keep employee health and safety as a top priority.
  2. Workplace purpose-built workstations offer an engineered design integrated into a standard platform with a unique combination of accessories to meet specific task requirements.
  3. A successful purpose-built workstation depends on close collaboration between the customer and Workplace engineers.
  4. Purpose-built workstations offer greater value and faster delivery than in-house or custom-built designs.
  5. Workplace engineers and design specialists are ready to discuss your unique purpose-built requirements.

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