世界上最小的焊装线/ 1982

The Foundation of an Automotive Facility
本田汽车制造的开始

Honda began producing the T360 mini truck at Saitama Factory (currently Saitama Factory's Wako Plant) in June 1963, with production of the Honda Sports S500 beginning at Hamamatsu the following August. With the production of these models, Honda had at last achieved its dream of becoming an automobile manufacturer.

本田于1963年6月开始在埼玉县工厂(现在是埼玉县工厂的和光车间)生产微型卡车T360,接下来的8月小型跑车S500也开始在滨松生产。伴随着这些车型的生产,本田终于实现了汽车制造商的梦想。

Figure-1.JPG

The welding line for the L700 light van, which debuted in September 1965. The line operators performed their work using bulky welding guns and auxiliary cables.
在1965年9月轻型货车L700的焊接生产线首次亮相,生产线操作员使用笨重的手工焊枪和辅助电缆来完成焊接工作。

Initially, the white bodies of these models - the welded and assembled body prior to painting - were comprised of medium- to small-sized pressed sections. Although such pressed parts were easy to make, they added to the steps required for welding and assembly. Soichiro Honda's philosophy on manufacturing was "the fewer the steps involved in a process, the higher the quality and efficiency." In keeping with that philosophy, the company sought to manufacture quality vehicles while demonstrating the efficiency it needed to compete with well-established automakers. Therefore, Honda adopted a new "building block" system for white-body production. Designed to build car bodies with large, one-piece formed panels, the new system was the embodiment of Mr. Honda's original concept for the new N360.
最初,这些白车身(涂装前焊接及组装而成总成体)——由中小型冲压件焊接和装配组成。虽然说这些小的冲压零件容易制造,但它们增加组成白车身过程中焊接和装配的步骤。
本田宗一郎(Soichiro Honda)的制造理念是“制造流程中涉及的步骤越少,质量和效率就越高”。本着这一理念,该公司追寻制造高质量的汽车,同时表现出与知名汽车制造商竞争所需的汽车生产效率。因此,本田采用了一种新的“积木”系统的白车身生产线。新生产线设计初衷是用大型整体式车身覆盖件制造车身,这一生产理念最先体现在本田新N360上。
The accompanying welding line began with a subassembly welding process in which various body parts such as the side panels, roof, and floor were assembled. Next, the main assembly welding process combined these parts into an integrated body, and an additional welding process was performed on the assembled unit.
接下来白车身焊接线从一个个小的分总成焊接开始,在此过程中,各种分总成部件,如侧围、顶盖和地板被焊接装配起来。接着在主焊接线上将这些分总成组合成一个整体,并对其进行一系列的焊接工艺。
Then, in 1967, Honda introduced a new body-welding system to the line at Sayama Factory (now, Saitama Factory's Sayama Plant) which was intended as a production facility for the N360. That system consisted of PW (press welder) welding machines and a GW (general welding) machine. These were responsible for the subassembly process and main assembly process, respectively. Both machines were designed for enhanced accuracy and quality in body welding, along with a reduced cycle time. However, the press welders of that time had poor welding efficiency and the operators had to correct many of the machine-welded points by hand.
在1967年,本田引入了一个新的车身焊接系统,在早山工厂(现今斋田工厂的早山车间)的生产线,打算作为N360的生产设施。该系统由压焊机和普通焊机组成。他们分别负责分总成焊接过程和主线焊接过程。这两台种设备都是为提高车身焊接的精度和质量而设计的,同时缩短了焊接节拍。然而,当时的压焊机焊接效率不高,操作人员不得不手工校正许多机器焊接点。
The general welder was by comparison a highly efficient, integrated system capable of building the entire body frame in a single process and at a high level of quality. Still, it had the inflexibility of a dedicated welding machine, and as such, it required a setup of several hours for the N360 or any of the LN360 series models each time the settings were changed.
相比之下,普通焊机是一种高效、集成的系统,能够在一个单一的过程中以高质量构建整个车身框架。尽管如此,它任具有专用焊接机的灵活性,因此,每次设置更改时,N360或LN360系列的任何车型都需要几个小时的设置。
The additional welding process was one in which the line was covered with a number of portable welding guns hanging down from the ceiling via bulky auxiliary cables. Each operator, having to work with one of these heavy units, would continually grapple with the cables. It is no wonder, then, that they often referred to their workplace as "the portable jungle."
另一个焊接过程是用一些便携式手工焊枪通过笨重的辅助电缆从天花板上垂下覆盖在生产线路上。每个操作人员,操作这些重型设备,将不断与电缆抓斗。因此,难怪他们经常把自己的工作场所称为“便携式丛林”。
The N360's anticipated monthly production volume was 5,000 units per month when the line first went into operation. However, the car was such a hit upon its March 1967 release that Honda had to implement several dramatic changes to the line in order to meet the demand.
当N360车型生产线首次投入使用时,预期月生产量为5000台/月。然而,这个车型在1967年3月的发布中受到极大的欢迎,以至于本田不得不实施几项巨大调整来满足市场需求。
"Dedicated (welding) lines like the one created for the N360 required considerable investment each time the production volume for a target model was changed," recalled Nobuji Maezawa, who as technical adviser at Sayama Factory's Second Plant was in charge of the design of welding machines. "We used to argue that the new welding lines we were designing would have to accommodate the inevitable expansion of Honda's model line," he said.
Sayama基地第二工厂负责焊接机设计的技术顾问Nobuji Maezawa回忆说:“每次目标车型的产量发生变化时,例如N360车型的专用焊接生产线,都需要大量投资。”我们设计的新焊接生产线必须适应本田所有车型,避免进行盲目的扩张。”
Personnel from Sayama's Second Plant (formerly the Manufacturing Machinery Plant) and the H1300 Special Planning Office got together in 1969 in order to collaborate on modifications to the subassembly press welder. Their purpose was to better equip Suzuka Factory in producing the Honda 1300. The result of that effort was a new sliding general welder developed for the main assembly process. The system employed a modular structure for increased flexibility in the production of multiple models, permitting the separation of the main unit and fixture jig (which facilitated the welding). The new machine made it much easier to change settings from one model to the next, shortening the changeover time to 15 minutes.
1969年,来自Sayama的第二工厂和H1300车型特别规划办公室的人员聚集在一起,共同对白车身分总成压焊机进行改造。他们的目的是让铃木工厂生产H1300车型更为先进的焊接设备。这项工作的结果是为主焊线的工艺开发了一种新型滑动通用焊机。该系统采用模块化结构,增加了多个车型生产的灵活性,允许分离主机和夹具(这有助于焊接)。这台新设备使从一种车型到另一种车型的切换生产,将切换时间缩短到15分钟。

Figure-2.JPG

The sliding general welder installed in Suzuka Factory in May 1969 for use in production of the H1300. Once the body was set, the machine clamped it with the welding jigs on both sides to perform general welding. (Photograph courtesy of Yuji Ikeda).
1969年5月在铃鹿工厂安装了用于H1300生产的滑动通用焊机,车身部件一经定位,设备两侧的焊接夹具夹紧,进行焊接。(照片由池田裕二提供)
An improved sliding general welder (GW) was introduced to the line at Sayama in 1970. This unit was equipped with a changeover mechanism that could automatically change the dedicated welding jig attached to the main unit. Such an addition would enable the Sayama and Suzuka factories to handle the same models on each of their welding lines.
1970年,一种改进的滑动通用焊机(GW)被引进到Sayama生产线。该设备配有转换机构,可自动更换连接在主机上的专用焊接夹具。这样将使早滨和铃鹿的工厂在他们的每条焊接线上可以生产同一车型。

Honda's First Industrial Robot
本田的第一个工业机器人

The 1970s were a time in which Japan's various industrial sectors began introducing sophisticated facilities incorporating industrial robots and computer control technologies. In particular, several machine-tool manufacturers began selling welding robots, thus promoting the automation of spot welding. In response, the carmakers absorbed robotics technologies into their welding lines. Still, the industrial robots available to auto manufacturers in those days were fairly large and cumbersome.
20世纪70年代,日本的各个工业部门开始引入包含工业机器人和计算机控制技术的先进设施。特别是,一些机床制造商开始销售焊接机器人,从而促进了点焊的自动化。作为回应,汽车制造商将机器人技术吸收到他们的焊接线中。尽管如此,当时汽车制造商可用的工业机器人相当庞大和笨重。
Moreover, they offered a relatively limited range of functionality.
此外,它们提供的功能范围相对有限。
Honda, however, was already at work studying the latest robotics methods in Europe and the U.S. The Manufacturing Machinery division (currently Honda Engineering) was in charge of production facility development for Honda's factories, and based on its findings, Honda was in 1973 able to develop its first robot, the HRB600. It was not an effective application, however, and only one unit was installed on the hood-welding line at Suzuka. The HRB600 simply imitated the operations traditionally performed by hand, and as such merely extended the line. It could not provide the solution Honda needed in order to make its line more self-sufficient.
然而,本田已经开始研究欧洲和美国的最新机器人方法。制造机械部门(目前是本田工程公司)负责本田工厂的生产设备开发,根据其调查结果,本田于1973年就能够开发出第一台机器人HRB600。不过,这并不是一个有效的应用,只在铃木的引擎盖焊接线上只安装了一台设备。 HRB600只是简单地模仿传统上手工操作,因此只是扩展了焊接工艺线路。它无法提供本田所需的解决方案,以使其生产线更加自动化。
Subsequent forays into robotics eventually led to the development of robots having unique functions. These units would in fact play an essential role in the new welding system the company later developed for multiple-model car production.
后来对机器人学的探索最终导致了具有独特功能的机器人的发展。事实上,这些机器人将在公司后来为多车型汽车生产开发的新焊接系统中发挥重要作用。

Pursuit of Highest Efficiency Creates Multi-Function Robots
追求最高效率创造多功能机器人

Honda established Honda Engineering (EG) in July 1974 through the consolidation of its production engineering and pre-production operations. Under EG's leadership, various measures were rapidly implemented for the purpose of achieving greater cost-effectiveness and quality, the keys to Honda's growing international competitiveness. Particularly, the enhancement of body-welding systems was given top priority, given that the company was working hard to restructure its product-mix by shifting emphasis from mini cars to compact cars.
1974年7月,本田通过整合生产工程和预生产业务,成立了本田工程公司(Honda Engineering)。在EG的领导下,迅速实施了各种措施,以实现更高的成本效益和质量,这是本田不断增强国际竞争力的关键。特别是,考虑到该公司正努力将重点从微型车转向紧凑型车来重组其产品结构,因此改进车身焊接工艺被列为重中之重。
EG, endeavoring to develop a more rational, compact welding system, worked to reduce the size of clamp guns incorporated in the subassembly welders and fixtures for the general welders. As a result, there was much greater integration throughout the welding process.
EG努力开发一种更合理、紧凑的焊接工艺,努力减小夹枪的尺寸,将焊枪安装在定位焊夹具和普通焊接夹具中。因此,在整个焊接过程中有更大的集成度。
Honda developed a more rational, TT-type (tabletop) welding machine in 1975, intending that it would replace the PW unit. This was in preparation for an anticipated increase in production demand for the Civic and subsequent model developments, as well as for enhanced efficiency in subassembly welding. Subsequently, the TT welder was adapted to the subassembly processes at Suzuka and Saitama Factory's Sayama Plant. However, the effect of the new machine was not such that it could eliminate the portable jungle from the additional welding process, where operators continued their manual welding. Moreover, the development of new car models and increased production volumes required more dedicated jigs per model. Invariably, this led to a more exclusive investment for each model.
本田在1975年开发了一种更合理的TT型(台式)焊接机,打算取代普通焊机。这是为提高生产产量和随后的车型发展,以及提高效率的白车身焊接做准备。随后,TT焊机被改装成铃木和琦玉工厂的Sayama工厂的焊接工艺。然而,这台新机器的效果并不能消除焊接过程中的便携式丛林,因为操作员需要继续手工焊接。此外,新车型的开发和产量的增加,需要每款车型配备更多专用夹具。为此,这导致了每一款新车型都要有更多额外投资。
In December 1976, EG developed a simple, yet efficient function robot specifically for the welding of floors. A "function robot" is one designed to serve one specific function. The new robot was designed to eliminate the need for the operators to carry a heavy welding gun down the line in order to weld the floor of the car body. However, this robot had neither a long arm nor a shape resembling the human body. Instead, its main characteristic was the ability to move in linear fashion according to the floor contours, and this allowed it to spot-weld more sections in a shorter time than could the operator. The army of new robots, which were placed along the line for floor subassembly welding, earned the descriptive name "floor multi-robot welding station machines." As such, they were the first step in Honda's development of a robotic welding system.
1976年12月,EG开发了一种简单而高效的功能机器人,专门用于焊接地板。 “功能机器人”是设计用于服务于一个特定功能的机器人。新机器人的设计旨在消除操作人员将重型焊枪沿线拉下以焊接车身底板的需要。然而,这个机器人既没有长臂也没有类似于人体的形状。相反,它的主要特征是能够根据地板轮廓以线性方式移动,这使得它能够在比操作员更短的时间内点焊更多的部分。沿着地板总成焊接线放置的新机器人军队获得了描述性名称“地板多功能机器人焊接站机器”。因此,它们是本田开发机器人焊接系统的第一步.

The Challenge: Integrated, High-Density Welding
挑战:高密度集成的焊接

Various studies were underway at EG regarding the development of a new welding system. The project team was made up of personnel having expertise in different aspects of welding, including welding guns, jigs, and total systems. Ryo Niikawa, then an engineer in the Second Engineering Block, was appointed to the post of PL. He recalled having doubts about the new welding system at the start of its development.
EG正在进行各种研究进行新焊接工艺的开发,项目团队由具有焊接不同方面专业知识的人员组成,包括焊枪,夹具和整个工艺系统方面的工程师。 Ryo Niikawa,当时是第二工程区的工程师,被任命为PL的职位。他回忆说,在开发新焊接工艺之初,他对该工艺存有疑虑。
"Mr. Ishikawa (Fujio Ishikawa, then the senior managing director at EG) asked us if we could achieve half-size production'; that is, halving every aspect of production from facility and space to processing and personnel. To be honest about it, I wasn't sure we could do such a thing."
“Ishikawa先生(当时EG高级常务董事Fujio Ishikawa)询问我们是否可以实现半自动化生产”,也就是说,将生产的各个方面从操作设备到物流人员的数量减半。老实说,我不确定我们能不能做这样的事。
The development team began its research regarding the new welding system with a detailed study of the subassembly, main and additional welding processes, employing as its basis a series of drawings and models. Their findings were then used to outline a rational concept for process configuration and facilities.
开发团队开始研究新的焊接工艺,详细研究了白车身分总成,焊装生产线的所有焊接工艺,并以一系列图纸和模型为基础。然后,他们的研究结果用于概述工艺流程配置和设施的合理概念。
A conventional welding line based on the building-block system employs component parts that have been welded and assembled in the subassembly line for forwarding to the general welder. Thus, the development team reviewed the GW's program of operating times in order to study the flow of the overall welding process. In main assembly the side-panel setting jigs attached to the right and left sides of the GW would retreat once general welding was completed, sending the body downline to the next process. The machine would then perform and complete positioning of the new body fed from the previous process and prepare for the next welding operation. Next, the jigs used to set the right and left side panels would advance, and the general welding operation would begin. Therefore, with this in mind, the development team established its target. They decided to utilize the interval during which the right and left side panel setting jigs would wait while the new body was being fed.
基于积木系统的传统焊接线采用已经在分总成焊接线中焊接和装配的部件,以便转发给普通焊工。因此,开发团队审查了GW的运行时间计划,以研究整个焊接的流程。在白车身总成中,一旦完成一般焊接,连接到GW的右侧和左侧的侧板夹具将退回,从而将车身输送到下一个工位的过程。然后,夹具将输送过来的车身主体进行定位,并准备下一个焊接操作。接下来,用于夹紧右侧围和左侧围夹具将前进,并且开始焊接操作。因此,考虑到这一点,开发团队确立了目标。他们决定利用右侧和左侧的侧围夹具在等待下一个工位车身主体进入的时间间隔。
Specifically, they thought that integrating the GW's side-panel setting jigs with the side-panel inner/outer welding jigs used on the subline and allowing subwelding to be completed during the free interval would allow the integration of steps within the overall cycle time. To realize such a facility concept, the team came up with an innovative idea. They would turn the general welder's side-panel setting jigs outward and directly set side panel inner/outer to the jigs, then perform the welding while the jigs were turning inward, thus finishing the job before the jigs returned to their original positions.
具体而言,他们认为将GW的侧围夹具与分拼线上使用的侧围内/外焊接夹具集成并允许在自由间隔期间完成分总成焊接,这将允许在整个循环时间内整合步骤。为了实现这样的工艺概念,团队提出了一个创新的想法。他们会将普通焊工的侧围夹具向外转动,并将侧围内/外板直接到合拼在夹具上,然后在夹具向内转动时进行焊接,从而在夹具返回其原始位置之前完成工作。
Two key issues had to be resolved, however. The first was to develop a mechanism and jigs that would allow subwelding to be completed while the jigs were turned inward, and then guide the panels into their correct positions on the GW for welding via the main assembly. This meant the team was able to devise a workable solution based on an existing technology.
但是,必须解决两个关键问题。第一个是开发一种机构和夹具,允许在夹具向内转动的同时完成焊接,然后将侧围引导到GW上的正确位置,以便和车身主体进行焊接。这意味着团队能够基于现有技术设计出可行的解决方案。
The clamp-gun positions presented the second challenge, in which combining the existing work clamp and welding point specifications would result in interference among the clamp guns. However, most of the welding points were intentionally allocated to welding machines on the main and subassembly lines in order to remove some of the burden from operators during the additional welding process. Accordingly, changes in clamp-gun positions could affect the concept of the entire line. But seeing the issue from a different perspective, the development team decided to relegate the welding points to a high-efficiency, high-density robot station that was being developed for the additional welding process. In this, the idea was that the transfer of welding points would minimize the total number of welding points in the main and subassembly processes, integrating several steps in the process.
焊钳位置是第二个挑战,结合现有的工装夹具和焊点规范,焊钳之间会产生干扰。然而,为了在焊接过程中减轻操作员的一些负担,大多数焊点被有意分配给主线和分拼线上的焊机。因此,焊钳位置的变化会影响整条线的概念。但是从不同的角度来看问题,开发团队决定将焊接点降级到一个高效率、高密度的机器人工作站,该工作站开发用于焊接过程。在这一点上,想法是焊点的转移将使白车身主体和分总成焊接过程中的焊点总数最小化,在焊接过程中集成几个工艺步骤。

The Birth of Honda's Original Monkey/Crab Robot
本田原创猴/蟹机器人的诞生

The development of a new welding machine thus under way, the staff members who had been working on robotics began examining a robot station with which to control the additional welding process, based on the overall concept of the new welding system.
随后开发了一种新的焊接机,一直致力于机器人技术的工作人员开始检查一个机器人工作站,根据新焊接系统的整体概念,用来控制的焊接工艺。
"Instead of making robots that would simply copy work that would usually be performed by humans," said Sakae Takaishi, then on the Board of Directors at EG, "we tried to identify the forms of process or operation suitable for robots. We believed the development of robots wouldn't benefit us unless we understood those particular characteristics.
“而不是制造简单复制通常由人类执行的工作的机器人,”当时在EG董事会上的Sakae Takaishi说,“我们试图找出适合机器人的工艺或操作形式。我们相信除非我们理解这些特定的特征,否则机器人的开发不会使我们受益。
"Men can't work while hanging from the ceiling upside down, like monkeys. It's also very painful to crawl under the cars like crabs and work for hours while lying on our backs. On the other hand, machines can operate just as efficiently even when they are suspended from the ceiling or placed face-up under the car. This was the underlying concept in the new phase of Honda's robotics development."
“工人不能像猴子一样从天花板上倒立下来工作。也不能像螃蟹一样在车下爬行,仰卧工作几个小时,工人也很痛苦。可是,即使当机器悬挂在天花板上或向上放置在汽车下面时,机器也能同样有效地运转。这是本田机器人发展新阶段的基本概念。”
The new robots had to be small, lightweight and capable of high-speed operation. To achieve these goals, the team members began by reducing the size of the transformer in order to facilitate integration of the robot and gun. One particular problem was the auxiliary cables connecting the gun and transformer, which with their bulk and length resulted in considerable current loss, thereby limiting the robot's movement. And of course the cables necessitated a larger amount of installation space. Moreover, the auxiliary cables were easily damaged because of the impact the cables exerted upon themselves by bouncing up and down each time the power was supplied. Accordingly, the loss of durability was a concern. For these reasons the team members set as their prime objective the elimination of auxiliary cables. At the time they would work on reducing the size of the clamp guns incorporated in the fixtures of GWs, PWs and TT welders. The team confirmed that these cables could be eliminated by using the technologies and know-how they had so far obtained.
新机器人必须小巧轻便,能够高速运转。为了实现这些目标,团队成员首先通过减小变压器的尺寸来促进机器人和枪的集成。一个特殊的问题是连接枪和变压器的辅助电缆,它们的体积和长度导致相当大的电流损失,从而限制了机器人的运动。当然,电缆需要更大的安装空间。而且,辅助电缆很容易损坏,因为每次供电时,电缆通过上下弹跳而对电缆施加的冲击。因此,耐久性的损失是一个问题。出于这些原因,团队成员将消除辅助电缆作为其主要目标。当时他们将致力于减少GW,PW和TT焊机固定装置中夹钳的尺寸。该团队证实,通过使用迄今为止获得的技术和专有技术,可以消除这些电缆。
Therefore, in regard to the overall investment in and efficiency of the new welding system and robot station, the team confirmed that the target requirements could be met. Accordingly, they wrapped up their basic research on the overall system and shifted to the next phase.
因此,在新焊接工艺的机器人工作站的总体投资和效率方面,该团队确认可以满足目标要求。因此,他们结束了对整个工艺的基础研究,并转向下一阶段。

The Innovative One-Pack SM System
创新的One-Pack SM系统

EG began designing/building the main GW in February 1979 with the intent that it would become part of the new welding system they were planning to introduce to the mass-production line. The mechanism of the system was as follows: A carriage jig was used to position the floor assembly welded on the subline and feed it into the main GW. Then, the inner and outer side panels were introduced from the sides of the GW and placed in the welding jigs. The parts were then welded as the jigs turned inward, upon which they would be transferred to the carriage jig. Subsequently, the roof, upper dashboard and rear tray were assembled from above the GW and simultaneously spot-welded at approximately 150 points. This mechanism facilitated the completion of the white body in just one process. Jig changeover was completely automated (around five minutes), making it ideal for the production of multiple models. The system was known as the SMGW, with SM standing for the initials of subassembly and main assembly, since it integrated the subassembly and main assembly of side panels.
EG于1979年2月开始设计/建造主要的GW,意图是它将成为他们计划引入大规模生产线的新焊接工艺的一部分。该系统的机制如下:使用托架夹具来定位焊接在分拼线上的地板总成并将其馈送到主GW中。然后,将内侧围和外侧围从GW的侧面引入并放置在焊接夹具中。然后在夹具向内转动时焊接这些部件,然后将它们转移到托架夹具上。随后,车顶,仪表板和衣帽板从GW上方组装,同时在大约150点进行点焊。该方案仅在一个过程中促进了白体的完成。车型转换完全自动化(大约五分钟),使其成为生产多种型号的理想选择。该系统被称为SMGW,SM代表子组件和主组件的首字母,因为它集成了子组件和侧围的主要工位。

Figure-3.JPG

The robot station, which makes up a part of the one-pack SM system. The robots shown in the upper portion of the photograph are called monkey robots, while those shown on the bottom right and left are crab robots. (Photograph courtesy of Genzou Fuse)
机器人工作站,构成单个SM系统的一部分。照片上部显示的机器人称为猴子机器人,而左下方显示的机器人是蟹机器人。 (图片由Genzou Fuse提供)

The development of Honda's new robot station began in April of that year. Based on the station concept of integrating robots programmed for different operations, the team worked to design small, lightweight robots having the optimal dimensions and structures for their respective sections, including door and window openings along with general body surfaces. Four types of robots were conceived for different welding operations, and flexible installation positions were adopted according to the sections to be welded. For example, the floor-welding robots were placed at sides, while those used to weld window areas were suspended from above. This contributed to a reduced requirement for installation space. These robots were called "function" robots.
本田新机器人站的开发始于当年4月。基于集成为不同操作编程的机器人的站点概念,该团队致力于设计小型轻量级机器人,这些机器人具有各自部分的最佳尺寸和结构,包括门和窗口以及一般的车身表面。针对不同的焊接操作构思了四种类型的机器人,并且根据待焊接的部分采用灵活的安装位置。例如,地板焊接机器人放置在侧面,而用于焊接窗户区域的机器人从上面悬挂。这有助于减少对安装空间的需求。这些机器人被称为“功能”机器人。
功能机器人包括焊接过程。

Figure-4.JPG

The function robots comprising the additional welding process.
The development team systematized these original Honda function robots and installed a total of fourteen units. Eight units were positioned at the first station in the additional welding process, while six were placed in the second station.
开发团队将这些原装的本田功能机器人系统化,并安装了总共十四个单元。在焊接过程中,第一个工位安装了8个单元,而第二个工位则放置了6个单元。
The robots were called "monkey" and "crab" robots, according to their points of installation. The monkey robots, installed on the ceilings and walls around the robot station, were mainly used to weld areas around door openings and front/rear windshield mounts. The crab robots, placed on the floor, were used to weld body floors. Since the monkey robots and crab robots were placed three-dimensionally above and below, and to the right and left of the line, they gave rise to the allusion "monkey and crab war," which became a popular phrase at EG. Unlike the famous Japanese "Monkey and Crab War" folktale, which is basically a story of vengeance, the "monkey and crab war" here referred to a joint attack by a united army of monkey robots and crab robots, which performed additional welding of various body sections at once from all directions: above, below, right, left, front and rear. These robots eliminated the portable jungle from the welding line, further enhancing the integrity of body welding and assembly.
根据他们的安装点,机器人被称为“猴子”和“螃蟹”机器人。安装在机器人站周围的天花板和墙壁上的猴子机器人主要用于焊接门洞和前/后挡风玻璃支架周围的区域。放置在地板上的螃蟹机器人用于焊接车身地板。由于猴子机器人和螃蟹机器人被三维地放置在线的左上方和下方,它们引起了“猴子和螃蟹之战”,这成为了EG的流行语。不像日本着名的“猴子和螃蟹战争”民间故事,这基本上是一个复仇的故事,这里的“猴子和螃蟹战争”是指由猴子机器人和螃蟹机器人联合攻击,进行了各种各样的焊接。从所有方向一次性的身体部分:上方,下方,右侧,左侧,前部和后部。这些机器人从焊接线上消除了便携式丛林,进一步增强了车身焊接和装配的完整性。

The use of a teaching function also allowed each of the function robots to learn the different operations employed for different models. Switching between these settings was automatic, creating an effective system that was conducive to multiple-model production.
示教功能的使用还允许每个功能机器人学习用于不同车型的不同操作。在这些设置之间切换是自动的,创建了一个有助于多车型生产的有效系统。
Installed along the newly developed welding system were the subassembly machines, which were dramatically downsized through the use of process integration, and the robot stations, both of which were placed close to one another. The completed line was much smaller than conventional welding lines of the period. This system is generally called the one-pack SM system.
沿着新开发的焊接工艺安装的是通过使用工艺集成大大缩小的分拼焊接设备和自动化机器人工作站,两者都彼此靠近放置。完成的生产线比当时的传统焊接线要小得多。该系统通常称为单包SM系统

Exporting the One-Pack SM Systems
导出One-Pack SM系统

Honda made an important announcement in January 1980, saying it would build a new automobile plant in the Midwestern state of Ohio, U.S.A. In May of that year, prior to its planned introduction in the new plant, which was to operate under Honda of America Manufacturing (HAM), the one-pack SM system was put into operation at Suzuka Factory. Initially, though, the system caused disturbances in production due to malfunctioning jigs and guns, in addition to poor yields arising from deformed bodies, etc. However, the engineers from EG worked with factory staff to devise creative countermeasures, leading to improved jigs and guns and greater accuracy throughout the welding process.
本田于1980年1月做出重要声明,表示将在美国俄亥俄州中西部建立一个新的汽车工厂。那年5月,计划在新工厂引进之前,该工厂将在本田美国制造公司运营(HAM),单包SM系统已经在铃鹿工厂投入运行。但最初,该系统由于夹具和焊钳故障而导致生产受到干扰,此外还有由于不同车型车身结构等导致低产量。然而,EG的工程师与工厂工作人员合作设计创造性对策,从而改进了夹具和焊钳。整个焊接过程中的精度更高。
EG began assembling the system for HAM in August 1980. Concurrently, the local staff sent by HAM stayed at EG to receive an orientation in system operation and maintenance procedures via hands-on training. Through their involvement in mass-production trials, the American staff were able to produce a dramatic increase in skills. Thus, the HAM production line turned out its first Accord in November 1982. Thanks to the one-pack SM system, the new plant was able to produce vehicles with the same high accuracy of body welding as were the Japanese factories.
EG于1980年8月开始为HAM设计工艺系统。同时,HAM派出的当地工作人员留在EG,通过实际操作培训接受系统操作和维护程序的指导。通过参与大规模生产试验,美国员工能够大幅提高技能。因此,HAM生产线于1982年11月推出了第一款雅阁。由于采用SM系统,新工厂能够生产出与日本工厂一样的高精度车身焊接的车辆。
A year later, when the Accord underwent a minor model change, and when the three-door model was introduced, HAM was able to start the new line with a shorter lead time, using dedicated jigs for the new model brought in from Japan, where they had been verified for mass production.
一年后,当雅阁经历了一次小型改装,并且在推出三门车型时,HAM能够以较短的交付周期启动新生产线,使用的专用夹具是从日本引进的,新车型专用夹具他们已经过大规模生产验证过。
And here one of the key benefits of the one-pack SM system was demonstrated. Compared to the former 77 steps required by a conventional welding system, the new welding line had just 29 steps. Moreover, the percentage of automated tasks among all spot-welding work had increased from approximately 74 percent to 89 percent.
这里展示了单组装SM系统的主要优点之一。与传统焊接工艺所需77个步骤相比,新焊接线仅有29个步骤。此外,所有点焊工作中自动化任务的百分比从大约74%增加到89%。
Since the robots used the teaching function to memorize the transitions from one model to the next, the amount of investment required for dedicated fixtures in model changeovers dropped, as well. Finally, in 1984, in order to eliminate the remaining 10 percent of manual spot-welding tasks, EG developed a final spot robot (FSR) that could travel along the ceiling. As the number of FSR robots increased, the automation ratio approached 100 percent. Accordingly, an effort was made to further simplify the changeover process during production.
由于机器人使用示教功能来记忆从一个车型到下一个车型的过渡,因此车型转换中专用夹具所需的设备投资也下降了。最后,在1984年,为了消除剩余10%的手工点焊任务,EG开发了一种可以沿着天花板行进的最终点焊机器人(FSR)。随着FSR机器人数量的增加,自动化率接近100%。因此,努力进一步简化生产期间的转换过程。
The one-pack SM system brought a new kind of innovation to Honda's welding lines, achieving a significant degree of rationalization along with greater intermodel flexibility. In fact, the SM method -accurately described as a highly integrated, high-density body welding system- went on to win the Okouchi Memorial Award for Production in 1986.
单包SM系统给本田的焊接生产线带来了一种新的创新,实现了很大程度的合理化和更大的模块间灵活性。事实上,SM方法——准确地描述为高度集成、高密度的车身焊接系统——在1986年赢得了大口町纪念奖。
The one-pack SM system is still in use today at Honda's key production bases in Japan and overseas, being an important element in car production. Designed for enhanced efficiency in multiple-model, small-volume production through rapid response to changing conditions of production, the system is recognized as the world's smallest welding line. It has without doubt been a key element in Honda's evolution as a global competitor of unmatched technical capability.
目前,本田在日本和海外的主要生产基地仍在使用单包SM系统,这是汽车生产中的一个重要因素。该系统旨在通过快速响应不断变化的生产条件,提高多车型、小批量生产的效率,被公认为世界上最小的焊接生产线。毫无疑问,这是本田作为一个拥有无与伦比技术能力的全球竞争对手的演变过程中的一个关键因素。
The foundation of Honda production technology is the unending dedication to integrity in manufacturing. This ideal has been kept alive by generations of Honda engineers, going back to the establishment of the company half a century ago. It is an ideal that has provided the fortitude to face and endure tough logistical issues, no matter how difficult they might have seemed. In the process, they employed their youthful energy, passion and intellect, striving through daily challenges for the betterment of themselves,the company and its products. It was just that spirit of challenge that enabled Honda to create the world's smallest welding line.
本田生产技术的基础是在制造业中始终不渝的诚信。这一理想在本田公司半个世纪前成立时就已经被一代又一代的工程师保留了下来。这是一个理想,提供了勇敢面对和忍受艰难的后勤问题,无论他们看起来多么困难。在这个过程中,他们利用自己年轻的精力、激情和智慧,通过每天的挑战,为自己、公司及其产品的改善而奋斗。正是这种挑战精神使本田创造了世界上最小的焊接生产线。