We stock a full range of tools and equipment for the proper application of all of our products. Suppliers of timber and composite boat building materials, marine paints and antifoulings, adhesives and resins, as well as moulding and casting materials.
Back in 2009, KCTS starting blogging about Total Productive Maintenance which has been a core system within KCTS since it started in 1998. A number of techniques are used to get the involvement and change in standards which are needed to deliver better results. Ownership of problems is only possible when people within the area, or activity, where the problem occurs can be involved in its elimination. 6.    Select Autonomous Maintenance and Professional Maintenance or Quality Maintenance as an improvement tool when there are Sporadic problems. When working with a customer recently on 5S, they asked about taking the next steps after successfully completing 3S’s (Sort, Set-in-order & Shine) for the first time. I explained my perspective to this customer, the Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle is a crucial element of sustaining all improvements. This had not been their perspective, but they were convinced once we discussed their next continuous improvement strategies. The next steps for the customer related to fully integrating the changes across their 3 shifts. They were persuaded that reviewing the standards was not failure but in fact part of the process. My customer is now excited that Standardising allows them this baseline to move forward and that Sustaining is all about supporting the next cycle of Sort, Set-in-order & Shine by capturing enthusing the teams to use and report their finding every day on the standards in their area. If you would like to know more about delivering change everyday through your own people, please contact us here. Engineering Workshops come in all shapes and sizes and varying degrees of tidiness and organisation, however, most are not fit for purpose. If you would like to know more about how you can start 5S in your engineering workshop, please contact us here.
To control the quality of your products it is necessary to have an excellent understanding of the processes within your business. Judging process performance of your systems can be measured externally and give you benefits, and it can be measured internally and give you different benefits. Self Assessment is the process of allowing you to use a standardised audit to measure your process against an aspiration. Recently I have had the privilege to work with a customer on converting an external Self Assessment, supplied by KCTS, into an internal Self Assessment aligned to the company’s aspirations for the next 2 years. The resulting internal Self Assessment also has clear scoring criteria to allow every person within the area to understand and judge their current performance within the process.
To summarise, external assessment allows you to be compared to others but when written correctly Self Assessment allows you to compare yourself against your own aspirations.
5S may be introduced by itself, but for quick wins I suggest you include the introduction of Standardised Work in conjunction with your 5S programme. When applying Sort for the first time you can have a number of benefits quickly whether using Standardised Work or nor. By having Standardised Work where all tools and necessary materials are accounted for, the red tagging leads to either faster removal of unnecessary items or improved Standardised Work.
Once you try to remove any item using red tagging and Standardised Work, the real use of that item is quickly revealed.
Based on the Japanese words that begin with ’S’, the philosophy of 5S focuses on effective work place organization and standardized work procedures. 5S is a methodology for organizing cleaning, developing, and sustaining a productive work environment. You must evaluate the number of necessary items, the locations of those items and also evaluate what you need to do your job.
Once you have eliminated junk and clutter and identified necessary items you are ready to take the next step: clean the work area. Once the first three steps of 5S are implemented focus must be put on standardizing the best practice in the work areas. This video shows how 5S can help you implement Lean training in your workplace, using simple tools and techniques to drive and maintain excellent workplace organisation.
The course is designed to create 5S practitioners who can lead, or be involved in, the day-to-day 5S activities in their own business or factory.
We are main Dealers for many of the leading brands of Power Tools including Bosch,  Delta, DeWalt, Dolmar, Electra-Beckum, Fein, Makita, Metabo and many more. We want you to to be 100% happy with your purchase , so please do not hesitate to contact us, with any queries you may have before purchasing. In the unlikely event you are not satisfied with your goods on arrival please let us know immediately so that we can rectify the situation.
Hammer is a tool for error correction of short read datasets with non-uniform coverage, such as single-cell data. In particular, Hammer does not make any uniformity assumptions on the distribution of the reads along the genome. It is based on a combination of the Hamming graph build from the set of k-mers and a simple probabilistic model for sequencing errors.
TPM is about involving everyone in creating and sustaining the necessary standards in their own areas. This demonstrates that the techniques all aim to reduce Losses & Wastes, often measured by OEE, and apply to any organisation no matter the structure or products. This can be an extremely tough target for some losses, but ultimately satisfying for the people where the losses occur when achieved.


Autonomous Maintenance and Professional Maintenance can eliminate sporadic problems by getting reliability back into the process, the area or the activities. TPM focuses people on creating and updating standards to share learning and tackle common problems.
The way that people are involved is crucial and standards must be written by those who work within the area, or activity. In their eyes, all they needed to do was write up the standards on what to keep, where to keep it and how often to clean and that was job done. We must plan the physical changes and plan the documentation changes, just as they had, and then execute these plans. The people involved in the changes were from a single shift and whilst they had committed to the changes made, both physically and via the upcoming documentation, what about those with less involvement? A workshop that always looks dirty clearly needs 5S, but what If you see rows of shiny red tool boxes and clean benches, surely this does not need 5S? Clearly, there is always a lot of history, but this should not discourage you from ploughing onwards and making a start, history does not always dictate how a future 5S workshop will be organised, only the current required functions and operations can do this. Engage as many engineers as possible is an open discussion about what the workshop is used for.
During the Set In Order, make sure that work flow into and out of the workshop is the top priority in the proposed new layout and that there will only be one main workbench for everyone. What really makes the workshop function is having procedures and systems documented for everything; cleaning, work orders, tool storage, work-in-progress storage, dedicated cell tasks and Red Tag clearance. External audits can be objective, observation based and external audits measure a process compared to proven practices and experience.
Externally supplied Self Assessments allow you to measure your own progress against industry-standard aspirations or philosophical aspirations.
This allowed the language of the audit to be altered and the direction given by the company to be woven into the questions.
Standardised Work is a subject entire books are written to describe and I shall endeavour to discuss it regularly whilst I blog.
In addition to the removal of obviously unneeded items and engagement of allowing people to set their own standards at work, the biggest opportunities come from red tagging. If you don’t have any Standardised Work, you should start writing how to work in an area whilst applying Sort as it helps you know what items are needed. The item may now need to be included within a revised Standardised Work document or it inclusion agreed through a trial, or the item may need disposal and the proven standards reinforced. 5S reduces waste and non value added activities, simplifies work environment and in the mean time improves quality efficiency and safety.
Effective ways to set in order can be such as painting floors, using shadow boards, modular shelving and cabinets for frequently needed items etc.
The delegates should have responsibility for delivery of improvements clearly agreed before attending the course. The standards must continually challenge the organisation to get better results as fast as possible. Each technique has a number of Key Steps which need to be done to get the involvement and change in standards which are needed to deliver better results. Quality Maintenance will improve reliability of the process further to reduce quality defects. These standards must be communicated and reviewed by the other people who also work within the area, or activity.
As I explained, the write up of such standards is very important but how were they to sustain, and even improve, these standards?
They had executed the physical changes and had yet to complete the documentation changes required for their first cycle of 5S. Check-Act gave an opportunity for them to become involved, the next cycle could build upon the areas where they continued to have ambiguous or missing standards. The consultation method on items locations, which we had agreed before executing the plan, had not been as thoroughly used as they would have been preferred. Each team can find ways to improve the standards they use every day once Plan-Do-Check-Act is embraced.
Keep the focus on identifying current losses in those tasks; time to find, waste materials, cleaning time, task time. These are often owned by the Engineers personally and there is a lot of emotion attached to them. For the weekly and month repeat tasks, create dedicated work cells laid out with tools and can bans for local spares.
Internal audits can allow a much deeper understanding of the health of a process by assessors who use the process as part of their daily life.
Internal Self Assessments, especially when written yourself, allow you to measure the success of a process against internal aspirations. This particular Self Assessment dealt with 5S, a subject close to my heart, and related to whether the process was truly embracing the Plan-Do-Check-Act philosophy needed to sustain and improve 5S within the workplace. Self Assessment requires discipline to ensure that the score does not rise based on a need to show progress as openness must be the priority whenever Self Assessment is deployed. All five should be applied together in sequence using Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) to drive a virtuous circle of improvement. But as a start, the principle behind Standard Work is that if all people complete repetitive tasks in the same way each time they complete it and describe their methods so that others can do it identically then everyone who follows that method will have the same problems in executing it perfectly. Red tagging can be done using actual red tags or anything that you agree identifies items which may not be required. Whatever the outcome, if positive discussion and experimentation is used in the spirit of PDCA, progress is being made towards perfection.


Just imagine how much time the employees waste every day looking for the proper tools for a maintenance activity. This step will create ownership and build pride in the workers that they have a clean and clutter-free work area.
All the workers area if given an opportunity can be a valuable source of information regarding their work.
Practitioner training gives delegates the understanding of why a tool is used, what the key principles are, and most importantly exactly how to apply the tool within their business or factory using KCTS processes to deliver results.
Other parts of TPM that can eliminate chronic problems include Focused Improvement, 5S Workplace Organisation and Training & Education. This model can be applied to any area, real or virtual (such as when applying to IT systems rather than work places). They also noted that there was much that could still be found around the entire area to improve. If there are time and motion issues, keep the discussion on track to “just for a short period, while we see how better it is to work”.
This was true when they were purchased, however, they are only worth the scrap metal weight as you don’t have the connections to sell them.
There are two stages to this, in stage 1 start by opening up the boxes and taking each tool in turn and asking honestly when it was last used. As soon as new tasks are identified, have the engineers write the procedures for these tasks. My customer was at first keen to include specific documentation audits as a way to assess the success of the 5S processes, but as we discussed 5S processes and Plan-Do-Check-Act the need to evolve the processes became evident.
Describing the method including symbols, drawings and photographs it is known as Standardised Work. We are ensuring only that which is required within the workplace is kept within the workplace by applying Sort.
This will also help the people notice changes in equipment and the production area such as: leaks, vibration, misalignment, breakage etc.
You will have improved safety, improved moral, improved productivity, and improved maintenance. Not when using Plan-Do-Check-Act, the Check-Act part requires us to review the results achieved from executing our plans and then act to attain more results, including better standards and better adherence to standards. The power of 5S is that you can continue to improve results without increasing the complexity of the model, no further training, nor confusion over tools, but merely focusing on more detail within the area.
As with all 5S, you have to start at the beginning and ask what tasks are performed in the workshop and how is it used as a base for engineering work elsewhere? If items are spares, put them in the stores system, then they can be easily found and used. Sort into three piles, one for in the last month, one for six months and the third pile for over six months. Finally, train out the procedures to all the engineers and include checks for them explicitly in the 5S audits.
This internal Self Assessment must look for the evidence of delivery of the process more than restricting it to a documentation checklist. As we strive for perfection in the method we can try to both understand and solve the problems involved in reaching perfection. Plus, we reinforce Standardised Work and continue to highlight problems which in turn can be solved by ensuring only needed items are kept in an area. If these abnormalities are left unattended they can lead to serious equipment failure and loss of quality, speed, production etc. All too often you have spares for large items of equipment, but engineers who have been with the company for less than 5 years don’t know where to find them. Self Assessment allows reflection on whether the processes or the personalities are driving successes. Every time we solve a problem, we update the Standardised Work with the improved method and train everyone who uses it to ensure the maximum benefit from the improvement is felt. In some simple but effective 5S programmes, the red tags will be cleared by quick discussion some that should be kept are disposed of and many that are not required will be kept, and perhaps shared to other departments within the organisation.
As more problems are identified and solved, everyone benefits – KPI’s increase and work satisfaction improves as we strive for perfection in Standardised Work by eliminating problems. Occasionally used items are moved to a more organized storage location outside of the work area while unneeded items are discarded.
Document the contents of each pile of tools, get the engineers to take the third piles home.
It is the fastest way to create a learning organisation where everyone’s problem solving is targeted for everyone’s benefit. This can form part of the virtuous circle of PDCA, but for a quick win from Sort you should use your Standardised Work to drive removal of red tags. Sorting is an excellent way to free up valuable floor space and eliminate such things as broken tools, obsolete jigs and fixtures, scrap and excess raw material.  This step will also help with the „just in case” attitude.
The first and second piles are placed back in the toolbox, the under a month pile at the top where they can easily be found.
After a few months working in this way, start stage 2, open the tool boxes again, document the tool use again to ensure there are no unneeded items. 3 for 12 engineers to share across four shifts, buy the tools as per the combined lists and place laminated check lists inside the lids of the tool boxes.



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