News & Events

Value Streaming Workshop – Dearborn

Apr 13, 2017

On February 14th and 15th, several members of the LINK North America Test Operations met for a two-day Value Stream Mapping workshop. A System Matter Expert in lean operating principles from the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center was on hand to facilitate the event and to lead in the training of the VSM techniques. These techniques are helpful in organizing and clarifying work flow processes, help in the identification of waste in the execution of those processes, and with the ultimate goal of streamlining the work flow. Successfully done, the result is the ability to shorten lead times, improve customer satisfaction, improve quality and employee satisfaction. The MMTC training makes the bold statement that typically 95% of total lead time is non-value added! With this in mind, the team dug in to see if reductions in the effort and time required to execute a portion of the business process was tackled.

The team examined the current process of sending our customers accurate and timely invoices for testing services provided. The process began with the completion of a test request, followed by the ability to forward an invoice to the customer for services rendered. Once the team outlined the current process in the standard format of a value stream map, they were able to identify areas of waste. These are classified as one of the following: defects, overproduction, waiting, non-utilized talent, transportation, inventory, motion, and extra processing.

Focused on identifying waste in the current state, our team collectively identified how to reduce or even eliminate the wasted efforts and time in the current process. The objective was to standardize the processes between the various groups involved, and to streamline the process as much as possible. At the end of the dedicated two-day session, steps were identified that would allow for an 88% reduction in the lead time required in this phase of the business process!

The event was highly successful. Not only was the objective at hand met, but with the training and better understanding of the value stream mapping technique, other elements of the business can be examined in a similar manner. LINK is dedicated to customer satisfaction and exceeding their expectations, while driving for solid business results. By continuing to look for ways to pursue and implement lean principles we will continue to learn and improve day by day. Many thanks to all the participants and our facilitator from MMTC.

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Type of TestTest HighlightsEquipment UsedExample Procedures
Chemical TestingMeasurement of copper, asbestos and other elements in brake friction materialsICP-OES / PLMJ2975
Materials TestingPhysical properties including quality control for friction, wear, compressive strain, shear strength, corrosion resistance, swell and growthChase Machine / Compressibility Machine/ Shear Machine / Corrosion Chamber / Environmental Chamber / OvenJ661, ISO 6310, ISO 6311, ISO 6312, ABNT NBR 9301, ABNT NBR 5505, ABNT NBR 5537, ASTM B117
Frequency ResponseComponent Frequency ResponseLaser Vibrometer Test StandSAE J2933, J3001, J2598, L-4375
Structural Fatigue and
Breaking strength, cyclic fatigueServo Hydraulics, Torque FlexJ2995, C419, C441, GMW18022
Caliper FingerprintingCaliper characteristics such as knockback, rollback, fluid displacement, deflection...Caliper Test Bench / Brake DynamometerL-4177, PF.90257
Brake Drag and DTVResidual drag, disc thickness variation, brake feel and vehicle fuel mileageOff Brake Drag Stand / Brake DynamometerJ2923, GMW14926, GMW14351, PF.90257, L-13080
PerformanceHydraulic, air and electric brakes, friction levels, stopping distance, corrosion, cleanability, brake torque variation, rotor cracking, regulation, stability control, coastdownBrake Dynamometer, Model 4000 DASJ2784, J2928 IS026867, GMW14985, PF.90210, PF.90244, L-405, FMVSS 121, FMVSS 122, FMVSS 105, FMVSS 135, FMVSS 126, FMVSS 136, ECE R13H, AMS
WearRotor wear, drum wear, lining wear, DTV, durability, city traffic, suburban trafficBrake Dynamometer, Model 4000 DASJ2707, USCT, L-423, PF.90244, Los Angeles, Detroit, Phoenix, Birmingham, Marquette
NVHBrake squeal during drag and decel events at different temperatures, pressure and torque levelsNVH Brake DynamometerJ2521, L420, 1430, GMW17427, PF. 90244
Brake EmissionsBrake dust particle size, count, concentration and massBrake DynamometerWLTP, CARB, Duty cycle


Type of TestTest HighlightsEquipment UsedExample Procedures
Wheel BearingWater intrusion and durability when exposed to mud and saltBearing Test StandLINK Hub and Bearing, GMW16306, GMW16310
Passenger car, sport/performance and open bed vehicle wheel bearing spallingBearing Test StandGMW16311, GMW16308, GMW16309
Brinelling resistance validates long-term reliability/durabilityBearing Test StandGMW16305
Rotary fatigue lifeRotary Fatigue MachineGMW16325
Wheel HubRotary bending fatigue life characteristicsRotary Fatigue MachineGMW14249
Hub/BearingEvaluate hub and bearing performance, durability, seals and NVH when exposed to extreme environmental effects such as temperature and mud/salt solutionBearing Test Stand/Rotary FatigueTIP-000037A, LINK Hub and Bearing, SAE J1095, LINK Impact
Hub FatigueHub fatigue using biaxial loadingBiaxial Test StandSAE J2562


Type of TestTest HighlightsEquipment UsedExample Procedures
ChemicalEvaluates filiform corrosion on painted aluminum wheels and painted aluminum trimICP-OESASTM E3061
Wheel Corrosion and CoatingsEvaluates filiform corrosion, tape adhesion, degree of rusting on painted aluminum wheels and painted aluminum trimCorrosion ChamberSAE J2635, ASTM B368, ISO 9227,
ISO 2409, ASTM D3599,
ABNT NBR 11003, ASTM D610,
ASTM D1654
Wheel FatigueLoad simulation test of aluminum alloy wheelsBiaxialBMW QV36026, SAE J2562, FORD
L-307, GMW14340
Dynamic Cornering Fatigue and Dynamic Radial Fatigue - Steel wheelsEccentric Mass and RadialABNT NBR 6750
Rotational fatigue, Radial load fatigue and biaxial load fatigue of steel and aluminum wheelsEccentric Mass, Radial and BiaxialABNT NBR 6751
Dynamic Cornering Fatigue and Dynamic Radial Fatigue and Impact resistance of temporary use and normal highway use aluminum wheelsEccentric Mass, Radial and Drop TestABNT NBR 6752
Wheel Radial FatigueRadialGMW14909
Wheel ImpactWheel Inboard Rim Flange Vertical ImpactDrop TestGMW15321
Wheel radial impactDrop TestCETP 04.04-L300
Wheel Lateral ImpactDrop TestGMW14910, SAE J175
Wheel StiffnessFrequency Response Function (FRF)Frequency ResponseGMW14876
Deformation of the wheelServo HydraulicsJ2315
Center cap heat
Center Cap deformation under elevated temperature conditionsBench TestBrake Heat Center Cap


Type of TestTest HighlightsEquipment UsedExample Procedures
Parking ForcesAllows proper sizing of power steering componentsForce and MotionLINK Parking Forces
Tire FootprintDetermines the contact patch geometryForce and MotionTire Footprint
Tire Modeling
Determine tire inertia which is then used Ftire and other models and simulationsInertia MachineLINK Tire Inertial Properties
On-center parking effort test for Ftire inputForce and MotionSWP
Determine static stiffness (X, Y, Z, Alpha) for Ftire inputStatic Stiffness MachineSAE Static Stiffness
Determine how the tire envelopes an obstacleCleat MachineJ2731
Measure the forces and moments generated at a high frequency response spindle when the tire impacts a cleatCleat MachineJ2730
Braking and Cornering PerformanceDetermine the straight line braking performance of a tireForce and MotionJ2673
Determine the free rolling cornering properties of a tireForce and MotionSAE TIME, J1987, SWP
Measure the combined cornering and braking performance of a tireForce and MotionJ2675
Tire StiffnessMeasure rolling vertical stiffness of a tire at speedRolling Vertical Stiffness
Rolling ResistanceMeasure tire rolling resistance using a drumForce and Motion, Rolling ResistanceJ1269, J2452
Tire WearAssess tire wear in the labForce and MotionLINK Wear Test
Tire NVHTest tire sizzle, cornering noise, pass-by noise, steering wheel dither, freeze crack impacts, high speed uniformity and imbalance sensitivityForce and Motion, Dynamometer, Model 4000 DASNoise, Vibration, Harshness