FRC and Lean Manufacturing

As the build season is coming to an end, I wanted to ask something that I’ve been mulling over a bit recently. Are there any teams here that have adopted any principles of lean manufacturing into how they run things?

As a little bit of background, I currently work for a small manufacturing company that is beginning to adopt practices like 5S and setup reduction, and I’ve been giving some thought as to how some of these ideas could transfer into an FRC build environment. I can see how 5S could definitely transfer over pretty easily as an organizational tool, but some others seem geared too much towards volume production to apply, so I’m curious as to whether any teams have tried any lean processes, and how they’ve been adapted to the high school shop environment. If not, maybe it’s worth discussing for future seasons? I’m curious to see what some of the more experienced mentors have to say on the topic

I started reading about 5S…and gave up with a hearty guffaw. That’s pretty much the opposite of how we actually work.

But it’s a great goal

I’d have to agree on both points. However, going through the process of actually starting it, it’s interesting how people start to get into it and make it their own. Out of all the process changes you can make, it’s probably the least threatening and the quickest to show noticeable results. I’m actually considering bringing it up with my team after build for their pit layout

Pit layout…now there’s an excellent idea. And we actually did that last year at Champs, we sorted out just what we needed, then fit everything in the crate with the robot, under 400 lbs, and made do with it.

I should talk with our teacher, and see if I can get him interested in at least the sorting part for the next month or two. It would be a great project for our students.