Mass production

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Mass production of Consolidated B-32 Dominator airplanes at Consolidated Aircraft Plant No. 4, near Fort Worth, Texas, during World War II. Consolidated TB-32 production line.jpg
Mass production of Consolidated B-32 Dominator airplanes at Consolidated Aircraft Plant No. 4, near Fort Worth, Texas, during World War II.
A modern automobile assembly line Hyundai car assembly line.jpg
A modern automobile assembly line

Mass production, also known as flow production or continuous production, is the production of large amounts of standardized products, including and especially on assembly lines. Together with job production and batch production, it is one of the three main production methods. [1]

Assembly line manufacturing process

An assembly line is a manufacturing process in which parts are added as the semi-finished assembly moves from workstation to workstation where the parts are added in sequence until the final assembly is produced. By mechanically moving the parts to the assembly work and moving the semi-finished assembly from work station to work station, a finished product can be assembled faster and with less labor than by having workers carry parts to a stationary piece for assembly.

Job production, sometimes called jobbing or one-off production, involves producing custom work, such as a one-off product for a specific customer or a small batch of work in quantities usually less than those of mass-market products. Together with batch production and mass production it is one of the three main production methods.

Batch production

Batch production is a technique used in manufacturing, in which the object in question is created stage by stage over a series of workstations, and different batches of products are made. Together with job production and mass production it is one of the three main production methods.

Contents

The term mass production was popularized by a 1926 article in the Encyclopædia Britannica supplement that was written based on correspondence with Ford Motor Company. The New York Times used the term in the title of an article that appeared before publication of the Britannica article. [2]

Ford Motor Company automotive brand manufacturer

Ford Motor Company is a multinational automaker that has its main headquarter in Dearborn, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. It was founded by Henry Ford and incorporated on June 16, 1903. The company sells automobiles and commercial vehicles under the Ford brand and most luxury cars under the Lincoln brand. Ford also owns Brazilian SUV manufacturer Troller, an 8% stake in Aston Martin of the United Kingdom and a 32% stake in Jiangling Motors. It also has joint-ventures in China, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, and Russia. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and is controlled by the Ford family; they have minority ownership but the majority of the voting power.

The concepts of mass production are applied to various kinds of products, from fluids and particulates handled in bulk (such as food, fuel, chemicals, and mined minerals) to discrete solid parts (such as fasteners) to assemblies of such parts (such as household appliances and automobiles).

Food any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for the body; form of energy stored in chemical form

Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for an organism. It is usually of plant or animal origin, and contains essential nutrients, such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, or minerals. The substance is ingested by an organism and assimilated by the organism's cells to provide energy, maintain life, or stimulate growth.

Fuel any material that stores energy that can later be extracted, in presence of a oxidizer or a catalyser, or under the effect of a tool, but which is not conserved after the reaction

A fuel is any material that can be made to react with other substances so that it releases energy as heat energy or to be used for work. The concept was originally applied solely to those materials capable of releasing chemical energy but has since also been applied to other sources of heat energy such as nuclear energy.

Mining The extraction of valuable minerals or other geological materials from the earth

Mining is the extraction of valuable minerals or other geological materials from the earth, usually from an ore body, lode, vein, seam, reef or placer deposit. These deposits form a mineralized package that is of economic interest to the miner.

Mass production is a diverse field, but it can generally be contrasted with craft production or distributed manufacturing. Some mass production techniques, such as standardized sizes and production lines, predate the Industrial Revolution by many centuries; however, it was not until the introduction of machine tools and techniques to produce interchangeable parts were developed in the mid 19th century that modern mass production was possible. [2]

Craft production factory where products are hand-made

Craft production is the process of manufacturing by hand with or without the aid of tools. The term Craft production refers to a manufacturing technique applied in the hobbies of handicraft but was also the common method of manufacture in the pre-industrialized world, such as in the production of pottery.

Distributed manufacturing also known as distributed production, cloud producing and local manufacturing is a form of decentralized manufacturing practiced by enterprises using a network of geographically dispersed manufacturing facilities that are coordinated using information technology. It can also refer to local manufacture via the historic cottage industry model, or manufacturing that takes place in the homes of consumers.

Industrial Revolution Mid-20th-to-early-21th-century period; First Industrial Revolution evolved into the Second Industrial Revolution in the transition years between 1840 and 1870

The Industrial Revolution was the transition to new manufacturing processes in Europe and the US, in the period from about 1760 to sometime between 1820 and 1840. This transition included going from hand production methods to machines, new chemical manufacturing and iron production processes, the increasing use of steam power and water power, the development of machine tools and the rise of the mechanized factory system. The Industrial Revolution also led to an unprecedented rise in the rate of population growth.

Overview

Mass production involves making many copies of products, very quickly, using assembly line techniques to send partially complete products to workers who each work on an individual step, rather than having a worker work on a whole product from start to finish.

Mass production of fluid matter typically involves pipes with centrifugal pumps or screw conveyors (augers) to transfer raw materials or partially complete products between vessels. Fluid flow processes such as oil refining and bulk materials such as wood chips and pulp are automated using a system of process control which uses various instruments to measure variables such as temperature, pressure, volumetric and level, providing feedback

Centrifugal pump

Centrifugal pumps are a sub-class of dynamic axisymmetric work-absorbing turbomachinery. Centrifugal pumps are used to transport fluids by the conversion of rotational kinetic energy to the hydrodynamic energy of the fluid flow. The rotational energy typically comes from an engine or electric motor. The fluid enters the pump impeller along or near to the rotating axis and is accelerated by the impeller, flowing radially outward into a diffuser or volute chamber (casing), from where it exits.

Screw conveyor

A screw conveyor or auger conveyor is a mechanism that uses a rotating helical screw blade, called a "flighting", usually within a tube, to move liquid or granular materials. They are used in many bulk handling industries. Screw conveyors in modern industry are often used horizontally or at a slight incline as an efficient way to move semi-solid materials, including food waste, wood chips, aggregates, cereal grains, animal feed, boiler ash, meat and bone meal, municipal solid waste, and many others. The first type of screw conveyor was the Archimedes' screw, used since ancient times to pump irrigation water.

Automatic process control in continuous production processes is a combination of control engineering and chemical engineering disciplines that uses industrial control systems to achieve a production level of consistency, economy and safety which could not be achieved purely by human manual control. It is implemented widely in industries such as oil refining, pulp and paper manufacturing, chemical processing and power generating plants.

Bulk materials such as coal, ores, grains and wood chips are handled by belt, chain, slat, pneumatic or screw conveyors, bucket elevators and mobile equipment such as front-end loaders. Materials on pallets are handled with forklifts. Also used for handling heavy items like reels of paper, steel or machinery are electric overhead cranes, sometimes called bridge cranes because they span large factory bays.

Bucket elevator material-handling equipment

A bucket elevator, also called a grain leg, is a mechanism for hauling flowable bulk materials vertically.

Loader (equipment) heavy equipment machine

A loader is a heavy equipment machine used in construction to move aside or load materials such as asphalt, demolition debris, dirt, snow, feed, gravel, logs, raw minerals, recycled material, rock, sand, woodchips, etc. into or onto another type of machinery. There are many types of loader, which, depending on design and application, are called by various names, including bucket loader, front loader, front-end loader, payloader, scoop, shovel, skip loader, wheel loader, or skid-steer.

Overhead crane material-handling equipment

An overhead crane, commonly called a bridge crane, is a type of crane found in industrial environments. An overhead crane consists of parallel runways with a traveling bridge spanning the gap. A hoist, the lifting component of a crane, travels along the bridge. If the bridge is rigidly supported on two or more legs running on a fixed rail at ground level, the crane is called a gantry crane or a goliath crane.

Mass production is capital intensive and energy intensive, as it uses a high proportion of machinery and energy in relation to workers. It is also usually automated while total expenditure per unit of product is decreased. However, the machinery that is needed to set up a mass production line (such as robots and machine presses) is so expensive that there must be some assurance that the product is to be successful to attain profits.

One of the descriptions of mass production is that "the skill is built into the tool" [ citation needed ], which means that the worker using the tool may not need the skill. For example, in the 19th or early 20th century, this could be expressed as "the craftsmanship is in the workbench itself" (not the training of the worker). Rather than having a skilled worker measure every dimension of each part of the product against the plans or the other parts as it is being formed, there were jigs ready at hand to ensure that the part was made to fit this set-up. It had already been checked that the finished part would be to specifications to fit all the other finished parts—and it would be made more quickly, with no time spent on finishing the parts to fit one another. Later, once computerized control came about (for example, CNC), jigs were obviated, but it remained true that the skill (or knowledge) was built into the tool (or process, or documentation) rather than residing in the worker's head. This is the specialized capital required for mass production; each workbench and set of tools (or each CNC cell, or each fractionating column) is different (fine-tuned to its task).

History

Pre-industrial

Standardized parts and sizes and factory production techniques were developed in pre-industrial times; however, before the invention of machine tools the manufacture of precision parts, especially metal ones, was very labor-intensive.

This woodcut from 1568 shows the left printer removing a page from the press while the one at right inks the text-blocks. Such a duo could reach 14,000 hand movements per working day, printing around 3,600 pages in the process. Printer in 1568-ce.png
This woodcut from 1568 shows the left printer removing a page from the press while the one at right inks the text-blocks. Such a duo could reach 14,000 hand movements per working day, printing around 3,600 pages in the process.

Crossbows made with bronze parts were produced in China during the Warring States period. The Qin Emperor unified China at least in part by equipping large armies with these weapons, which were equipped with a sophisticated trigger mechanism made of interchangeable parts. [4] Ships of war were produced on a large scale at a moderate cost by the Carthaginians in their excellent harbors, allowing them to efficiently maintain their control of the Mediterranean. The Venetians themselves also produced ships using prefabricated parts and assembly lines many centuries later. The Venetian Arsenal apparently produced nearly one ship every day, in what was effectively the world's first factory which, at its height, employed 16,000 people. Mass production in the publishing industry has been commonplace since the Gutenberg Bible was published using a printing press in the mid-15th century.

Industrial

In the Industrial Revolution simple mass production techniques were used at the Portsmouth Block Mills in England to make ships' pulley blocks for the Royal Navy in the Napoleonic Wars. It was achieved in 1803 by Marc Isambard Brunel in cooperation with Henry Maudslay under the management of Sir Samuel Bentham. [5] The first unmistakable examples of manufacturing operations carefully designed to reduce production costs by specialized labour and the use of machines appeared in the 18th century in England. [6]

A pulley block for rigging on a sailing ship. By 1808, annual production in Portsmouth reached 130,000 blocks. PulleyShip.JPG
A pulley block for rigging on a sailing ship. By 1808, annual production in Portsmouth reached 130,000 blocks.

The Navy was in a state of expansion that required 100,000 pulley blocks to be manufactured a year. Bentham had already achieved remarkable efficiency at the docks by introducing power-driven machinery and reorganising the dockyard system. Brunel, a pioneering engineer, and Maudslay, a pioneer of machine tool technology who had developed the first industrially practical screw-cutting lathe in 1800 which standardized screw thread sizes for the first time which in turn allowed the application of interchangeable parts, collaborated on plans to manufacture block-making machinery. By 1805, the dockyard had been fully updated with the revolutionary, purpose-built machinery at a time when products were still built individually with different components. [5] A total of 45 machines were required to perform 22 processes on the blocks, which could be made into one of three possible sizes. [5] The machines were almost entirely made of metal thus improving their accuracy and durability. The machines would make markings and indentations on the blocks to ensure alignment throughout the process. One of the many advantages of this new method was the increase in labour productivity due to the less labour-intensive requirements of managing the machinery. Richard Beamish, assistant to Brunel's son and engineer, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, wrote:

So that ten men, by the aid of this machinery, can accomplish with uniformity, celerity and ease, what formerly required the uncertain labour of one hundred and ten. [5]

By 1808, annual production from the 45 machines had reached 130,000 blocks and some of the equipment was still in operation as late as the mid-twentieth century. [5] [7] Mass production techniques were also used to rather limited extent to make clocks and watches, and to make small arms, though parts were usually non-interchangeable. [2] Though produced on a very small scale, Crimean War gunboat engines designed and assembled by John Penn of Greenwich are recorded as the first instance of the application of mass production techniques (though not necessarily the assembly-line method) to marine engineering. [8] In filling an Admiralty order for 90 sets to his high-pressure and high-revolution horizontal trunk engine design, Penn produced them all in 90 days. He also used Whitworth Standard threads throughout. [9] Prerequisites for the wide use of mass production were interchangeable parts, machine tools and power, especially in the form of electricity.

Some of the organizational management concepts needed to create 20th-century mass production, such as scientific management, had been pioneered by other engineers (most of whom are not famous, but Frederick Winslow Taylor is one of the well-known ones), whose work would later be synthesized into fields such as industrial engineering, manufacturing engineering, operations research, and management consultancy. Although after leaving the Henry Ford Company which was rebranded as Cadillac and later was awarded the Dewar Trophy in 1908 for creating interchangeable mass-produced precision engine parts, Henry Ford downplayed the role of Taylorism in the development of mass production at his company. However, Ford management performed time studies and experiments to mechanize their factory processes, focusing on minimizing worker movements. The difference is that while Taylor focused mostly on efficiency of the worker, Ford also substituted for labor by using machines, thoughtfully arranged, wherever possible.


In 1807, Eli Terry was hired to produce 4,000 wooden movement clocks in the Porter Contract. At this time, the annual yield for wooden clocks did not exceed a few dozen on average. Terry developed a Milling machine in 1795, in which he perfected Interchangeable parts. In 1807, Terry developed a spindle cutting machine, which could produce multiple parts at the same time. Terry hired Silas Hoadley and Seth Thomas to work the Assembly line at the facilities. The Porter Contract was the first contract which called for mass production of clock movements in history. In 1815, Terry began mass producing the first shelf clock. Chauncey Jerome, an apprentice of Eli Terry mass produced up to 20,000 brass clocks annually in 1840 when he invented the cheap 30 hour OG clock. [10]

The United States Department of War sponsored the development of interchangeable parts for guns produced at the arsenals at Springfield, Massachusetts and Harpers Ferry, Virginia (now West Virginia) in the early decades of the 19th century, finally achieving reliable interchangeability by about 1850. [2] This period coincided with the development of machine tools, with the armories designing and building many of their own. Some of the methods employed were a system of gauges for checking dimensions of the various parts and jigs and fixtures for guiding the machine tools and properly holding and aligning the work pieces. This system came to be known as armory practice or the American system of manufacturing , which spread throughout New England aided by skilled mechanics from the armories who were instrumental in transferring the technology to the sewing machines manufacturers and other industries such as machine tools, harvesting machines and bicycles. Singer Manufacturing Co., at one time the largest sewing machine manufacturer, did not achieve interchangeable parts until the late 1880s, around the same time Cyrus McCormick adopted modern manufacturing practices in making harvesting machines. [2]

Mass production benefited from the development of materials such as inexpensive steel, high strength steel and plastics. Machining of metals was greatly enhanced with high speed steel and later very hard materials such as tungsten carbide for cutting edges. [11] Fabrication using steel components was aided by the development of electric welding and stamped steel parts, both which appeared in industry in about 1890. Plastics such as polyethylene, polystyrene and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) can be easily formed into shapes by extrusion, blow molding or injection molding, resulting in very low cost manufacture of consumer products, plastic piping, containers and parts.

An influential article that helped to frame and popularize the 20th century's definition of mass production appeared in a 1926 Encyclopædia Britannica supplement. The article was written based on correspondence with Ford Motor Company and is sometimes credited as the first use of the term. [2]

Factory electrification

Electrification of factories began very gradually in the 1890s after the introduction of a practical DC motor by Frank J. Sprague and accelerated after the AC motor was developed by Galileo Ferraris, Nikola Tesla and Westinghouse, Mikhail Dolivo-Dobrovolsky and others. Electrification of factories was fastest between 1900 and 1930, aided by the establishment of electric utilities with central stations and the lowering of electricity prices from 1914 to 1917. [12]

Electric motors were several times more efficient than small steam engines because central station generation were more efficient than small steam engines and because line shafts and belts had high friction losses. [13] [14] Electric motors allowed also more flexibility in manufacturing and required less maintenance than line shafts and belts. Many factories saw a 30% increase in output just from changing over to electric motors.

Electrification enabled modern mass production, as with Thomas Edison’s iron ore processing plant (about 1893) that could process 20,000 tons of ore per day with two shifts of five men each. At that time it was still common to handle bulk materials with shovels, wheelbarrows and small narrow gauge rail cars, and for comparison, a canal digger in previous decades typically handled 5 tons per 12-hour day.

The biggest impact of early mass production was in manufacturing everyday items, such as at the Ball Brothers Glass Manufacturing Company, which electrified its mason jar plant in Muncie, Indiana, U.S. around 1900. The new automated process used glass blowing machines to replace 210 craftsman glass blowers and helpers. A small electric truck was used to handle 150 dozen bottles at a time where previously a hand truck would carry 6 dozen. Electric mixers replaced men with shovels handling sand and other ingredients that were fed into the glass furnace. An electric overhead crane replaced 36 day laborers for moving heavy loads across the factory. [15]

According to Henry Ford: [16]

The provision of a whole new system of electric generation emancipated industry from the leather belt and line shaft, for it eventually became possible to provide each tool with its own electric motor. This may seem only a detail of minor importance. In fact, modern industry could not be carried out with the belt and line shaft for a number of reasons. The motor enabled machinery to be arranged in the order of the work, and that alone has probably doubled the efficiency of industry, for it has cut out a tremendous amount of useless handling and hauling. The belt and line shaft were also tremendously wasteful – so wasteful indeed that no factory could be really large, for even the longest line shaft was small according to modern requirements. Also high speed tools were impossible under the old conditions – neither the pulleys nor the belts could stand modern speeds. Without high speed tools and the finer steels which they brought about, there could be nothing of what we call modern industry.

The assembly plant of the Bell Aircraft Corporation in 1944. Note parts of overhead crane at both sides of photo near top. Airacobra P39 Assembly LOC 02902u.jpg
The assembly plant of the Bell Aircraft Corporation in 1944. Note parts of overhead crane at both sides of photo near top.

Mass production was popularized in the late 1910s and 1920s by Henry Ford's Ford Motor Company, [17] which introduced electric motors to the then-well-known technique of chain or sequential production. Ford also bought or designed and built special purpose machine tools and fixtures such as multiple spindle drill presses that could drill every hole on one side of an engine block in one operation and a multiple head milling machine that could simultaneously machine 15 engine blocks held on a single fixture. All of these machine tools were arranged systematically in the production flow and some had special carriages for rolling heavy items into machining position. Production of the Ford Model T used 32,000 machine tools. [18]

The use of assembly lines

Ford assembly line, 1913. The magneto assembly line was the first. Ford assembly line - 1913.jpg
Ford assembly line, 1913. The magneto assembly line was the first.

Mass production systems for items made of numerous parts are usually organized into assembly lines. The assemblies pass by on a conveyor, or if they are heavy, hung from an overhead crane or monorail.

In a factory for a complex product, rather than one assembly line, there may be many auxiliary assembly lines feeding sub-assemblies (i.e. car engines or seats) to a backbone "main" assembly line. A diagram of a typical mass-production factory looks more like the skeleton of a fish than a single line.

Vertical integration

Vertical integration is a business practice that involves gaining complete control over a product's production, from raw materials to final assembly.

In the age of mass production, this caused shipping and trade problems in that shipping systems were unable to transport huge volumes of finished automobiles (in Henry Ford's case) without causing damage, and also government policies imposed trade barriers on finished units. [19]

Ford built the Ford River Rouge Complex with the idea of making the company's own iron and steel in the same large factory site as parts and car assembly took place. River Rouge also generated its own electricity.

Upstream vertical integration, such as to raw materials, is away from leading technology toward mature, low return industries. Most companies chose to focus on their core business rather than vertical integration. This included buying parts from outside suppliers, who could often produce them as cheaply or cheaper.

Standard Oil, the major oil company in the 19th century, was vertically integrated partly because there was no demand for unrefined crude oil, but kerosene and some other products were in great demand. The other reason was that Standard Oil monopolized the oil industry. The major oil companies were, and many still are, vertically integrated, from production to refining and with their own retail stations, although some sold off their retail operations. Some oil companies also have chemical divisions.

Lumber and paper companies at one time owned most of their timber lands and sold some finished products such as corrugated boxes. The tendency has been to divest of timber lands to raise cash and to avoid property taxes.

Advantages and disadvantages

The economies of mass production come from several sources. The primary cause is a reduction of non-productive effort of all types. In craft production, the craftsman must bustle about a shop, getting parts and assembling them. He must locate and use many tools many times for varying tasks. In mass production, each worker repeats one or a few related tasks that use the same tool to perform identical or near-identical operations on a stream of products. The exact tool and parts are always at hand, having been moved down the assembly line consecutively. The worker spends little or no time retrieving and/or preparing materials and tools, and so the time taken to manufacture a product using mass production is shorter than when using traditional methods.

The probability of human error and variation is also reduced, as tasks are predominantly carried out by machinery; error in operating such machinery, however, has more far-reaching consequences. A reduction in labour costs, as well as an increased rate of production, enables a company to produce a larger quantity of one product at a lower cost than using traditional, non-linear methods.

However, mass production is inflexible because it is difficult to alter a design or production process after a production line is implemented. Also, all products produced on one production line will be identical or very similar, and introducing variety to satisfy individual tastes is not easy. However, some variety can be achieved by applying different finishes and decorations at the end of the production line if necessary. The starter cost for the machinery can be expensive so the producer must be sure it sells or the producers will lose a lot of money.

The Ford Model T produced tremendous affordable output but was not very good at responding to demand for variety, customization, or design changes. As a consequence Ford eventually lost market share to General Motors, who introduced annual model changes, more accessories and a choice of colors. [2]

With each passing decade, engineers have found ways to increase the flexibility of mass production systems, driving down the lead times on new product development and allowing greater customization and variety of products.

Socioeconomic impacts

In the 1830s, French political thinker and historian Alexis de Tocqueville identified one of the key characteristics of America that would later make it so amenable to the development of mass production: the homogeneous consumer base. De Tocqueville wrote in his Democracy in America (1835) that "The absence in the United States of those vast accumulations of wealth which favor the expenditures of large sums on articles of mere luxury... impact to the productions of American industry a character distinct from that of other countries' industries. [Production is geared toward] articles suited to the wants of the whole people".

Mass production improved productivity, which was a contributing factor to economic growth and the decline in work week hours, alongside other factors such as transportation infrastructures (canals, railroads and highways) and agricultural mechanization. These factors caused the typical work week to decline from 70 hours in the early 19th century to 60 hours late in the century, then to 50 hours in the early 20th century and finally to 40 hours in the mid-1930s.

Mass production permitted great increases in total production. Using a European crafts system into the late 19th century it was difficult to meet demand for products such as sewing machines and animal powered mechanical harvesters. [2] By the late 1920s many previously scarce goods were in good supply. One economist has argued that this constituted "overproduction" and contributed to high unemployment during the Great Depression. [20] Say's law denies the possibility of general overproduction and for this reason classical economists deny that it had any role in the Great Depression.

Mass production allowed the evolution of consumerism by lowering the unit cost of many goods used.

See also

Related Research Articles

Factory facility where goods are made, or processed

A factory or manufacturing plant is an industrial site, usually consisting of buildings and machinery, or more commonly a complex having several buildings, where workers manufacture goods or operate machines processing one product into another.

Mechanization process of changing from working largely or exclusively by hand or with animals to doing that work with machinery

Mechanisation is the process of changing from working largely or exclusively by hand or with animals to doing that work with machinery. In an early engineering text a machine is defined as follows:

Every machine is constructed for the purpose of performing certain mechanical operations, each of which supposes the existence of two other things besides the machine in question, namely, a moving power, and an object subject to the operation, which may be termed the work to be done.

Machines, in fact, are interposed between the power and the work, for the purpose of adapting the one to the other.

Machine tool Metalworking machine

A machine tool is a machine for shaping or machining metal or other rigid materials, usually by cutting, boring, grinding, shearing, or other forms of deformation. Machine tools employ some sort of tool that does the cutting or shaping. All machine tools have some means of constraining the workpiece and provide a guided movement of the parts of the machine. Thus the relative movement between the workpiece and the cutting tool is controlled or constrained by the machine to at least some extent, rather than being entirely "offhand" or "freehand".

Second Industrial Revolution phase of rapid industrialization in the final third of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th

The Second Industrial Revolution, also known as the Technological Revolution, was a phase of rapid industrialization in the final third of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th. The First Industrial Revolution, which ended in the early to mid 1800s, was punctuated by a slowdown in macroinventions before the Second Industrial Revolution in 1870. Though a number of its characteristic events can be traced to earlier innovations in manufacturing, such as the establishment of a machine tool industry, the development of methods for manufacturing interchangeable parts and the invention of the Bessemer Process to produce steel, the Second Industrial Revolution is generally dated between 1870 and 1914.

The American system of manufacturing was a set of manufacturing methods that evolved in the 19th century. The two notable features were the extensive use of interchangeable parts and mechanization for production, which resulted in more efficient use of labor compared to hand methods. The system was also known as armory practice because it was first fully developed in armories, namely, the United States Armories at Springfield in Massachusetts and Harpers Ferry in Virginia, inside contractors to supply the United States Armed Forces, and various private armories. The name "American system" came not from any aspect of the system that is unique to the American national character, but simply from the fact that for a time in the 19th century it was strongly associated with the American companies who first successfully implemented it, and how their methods contrasted with those of British and continental European companies. In the 1850s, the "American system" was contrasted to the British factory system which had evolved over the previous century. Within a few decades, manufacturing technology had evolved further, and the ideas behind the "American" system were in use worldwide. Therefore, in manufacturing today, which is global in the scope of its methods, there is no longer any such distinction.

Henry M. Leland American businessman

Henry Martyn Leland was an American machinist, inventor, engineer and automotive entrepreneur. He founded the two premier American luxury automotive marques, Cadillac and Lincoln.

The American system of watch manufacturing is a set of manufacturing techniques and best-practices to be used in the manufacture of watches and timepieces. It is derived from the American system of manufacturing techniques, a set of general techniques and guidelines for manufacturing that was developed in the 19th century. The system calls for using interchangeable parts, which is made possible by a strict system of organization, the extensive use of the machine shop, and quality control systems utilizing gauges to ensure precise and uniform dimensions. It was developed by Aaron Lufkin Dennison, a watch repairman who was inspired by the manufacturing techniques of the United States Armory at Springfield, Massachusetts, which manufactured identical parts, allowing rapid assembly of the final products. He proposed using similar techniques for the manufacture of watches. Before the American system of watch manufacturing was developed, watchmaking was primarily a European business. It involved making certain parts under the roof of a factory while obtaining other parts from piece workers who used their own cottages as workshops.

Production line set of sequential operations established in a factory

A production line is a set of sequential operations established in a factory where materials are put through a refining process to produce an end-product that is suitable for onward consumption; or components are assembled to make a finished article.

Interchangeable parts are parts (components) that are, for practical purposes, identical. They are made to specifications that ensure that they are so nearly identical that they will fit into any assembly of the same type. One such part can freely replace another, without any custom fitting, such as filing. This interchangeability allows easy assembly of new devices, and easier repair of existing devices, while minimizing both the time and skill required of the person doing the assembly or repair.

Ford Piquette Avenue Plant former car factory and National Historic Landmark in Detroit, Michigan.

The Ford Piquette Avenue Plant is a former factory located within the Milwaukee Junction area of Detroit, Michigan, in the United States. Built in 1904, it was the second center of automobile production for the Ford Motor Company, after the Ford Mack Avenue Plant. At the Piquette Avenue Plant, the company created and first produced the Ford Model T, the car credited with initiating the mass use of automobiles in the United States. Prior to the Model T, several other car models were assembled at the factory. Early experiments using a moving assembly line to make cars were also conducted there. It was also the first factory where more than 100 cars were assembled in one day. While it was headquartered at the Piquette Avenue Plant, Ford Motor Company became the biggest U.S.-based automaker, and it would remain so until the mid-1920s. The factory was used by the company until 1910, when its car production activity was relocated to the new, bigger Highland Park Ford Plant.

Factory system

The factory system is a method of manufacturing using machinery and division of labour. Because of the high capital cost of machinery and factory buildings, factories were typically privately owned by wealthy individuals who employed the operative labour. Use of machinery with the division of labour reduced the required skill level of workers and also increased the output per worker.

Line shaft power driven rotating shaft for power transmission

A line shaft is a power driven rotating shaft for power transmission that was used extensively from the Industrial Revolution until the early 20th century. Prior to the widespread use of electric motors small enough to be connected directly to each piece of machinery, line shafting was used to distribute power from a large central power source to machinery throughout a workshop or an industrial complex. The central power source could be a water wheel, turbine, windmill, animal power or a steam engine. Power was distributed from the shaft to the machinery by a system of belts, pulleys and gears known as millwork.

Machine shop facility where machining is done

A machine shop is a room, building, or company where machining is done, which is a form of subtractive manufacturing. In a machine shop, machinists use machine tools and cutting tools to make parts, usually of metal or plastic. A machine shop can be a small business or a portion of a factory, whether a toolroom or a production area for manufacturing. The parts produced can be the end product of the factory, to be sold to customers in the machine industry, the car industry, the aircraft industry, or others. In other cases, companies in those fields have their own machine shops.

Manufacturing Engineering is a branch of professional engineering. Manufacturing engineering requires the ability to plan the practices of manufacturing; to research and to develop tools, processes, machines and equipment; and to integrate the facilities and systems for producing quality products with the optimum expenditure of capital.

Productivity improving technologies

This article is about the important technologies that have historically increased productivity and is intended to serve as the History section of Productivity from which it was moved.

Machine industry

The machine industry or machinery industry is a subsector of the industry, that produces and maintains machines for consumers, the industry, and most other companies in the economy.

Machine factory

A machine factory is a company, that produces machines. These companies traditionally belong to the heavy industry sector in comparison to a more consumer oriented and less capital intensive light industry. Today many companies make more sophisticated smaller machines, and they belong to the light industry. The economic sector of machine factories is called the machine industry.

"Electron" Corporation is a diversified, public company and a legal entity in Ukraine, with more than 20 thousand shareholders. No state in the share capital.

References

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    From old price tables it can be deduced that the capacity of a printing press around 1600, assuming a fifteen-hour workday, was between 3,200 and 3,600 impressions per day.
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Further reading