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Lately, GotWay's seemingly below average quality standards in combination with the risk exposure merely from the high speed these beasts allow, became the catalyst for a more generic discussion about Quality Management and Quality Assurance. As this is relevant for all EUCs regardless of brand, I suggest collecting our thoughts on this topic in a separate thread. To prevent a wild mishmash of ideas (and risking to loose sight of some important ones), I also propose to separate EUC Quality Management (Assembly / Production) - in this thread here, and EUC Quality Management (Product Design / Change Management) - in another thread. In this place I suggest to collect and discuss all measures we expect any responsible EUC manufacturer to apply to his production of any given (i.e. readily designed) EUC model to prevent Failure of the wheel to keep the rider in balance when operating the EUC inside the advertised margins, Secondary risks, like fire hazards, Failure of the wheel to complete a planned trip, Failure of advertised functionality/properties (e.g. Bluetooth, water resistance) Poor production quality reducing the lifespan of the EUC or its components (e.g. by corrosion), Poor assembly impacting the serviceability of the wheel (e.g. by using glue instead of screws), Incomplete delivery (missing/wrong parts, screws, etc.), Cosmetic imperfections. Is this list complete? Do you agree with the sequence of priorities? Once we settled on a common list of goals for production Q-management, what can we do directly and short term to make it happen? At least: to start a dialog with manufacturers and come closer to finding and implementing the desired balance between QA efforts and price impact for each of the brands we love? My suggestion: we develop a questionnaire for manufacturers listing concrete QA measures and ask for the current way they operate, their willingness to implement the measures, expected price impact and comments. Next, we appoint one Q-spokesperson per brand we love and care about out of our membership. If we find more than one candidate for a brand, we vote. If there is no candidate for any particular brand, tough luck, you're out. Personally, I would not exclude anybody (except manufacturers and their employees of course). An elected Q-spokesperson can be a dealer, "fanboy", accident victim or anybody else who cares enough about production quality and feels able and is trusted to communicate effectively with a manufacturer. Those Q-spokespersons present our questionnaire to their respective manufacturer, explain the context and the weight and reach of this forum they represent (5000 members and probably >50.000 readers; @John Eucist can you help with some impressive stats?) and collect their respective brands responses for us. Dealers may utilize this dialog to negotiate production of special Q-Edition wheels incorporating quality improvements defined by this process under the condition, that they may reserve exclusive rights for distribution for max. 6 month - after that, any special Q-Edition wheels need to be available to all sales channels. Does this approach make sense to you? Is it fair? Any more promising suggestions to move things quicker? Would you even consider being a Q-spokesperson, if so: what brand? Manufacturer Questionnaire: this will become a multi-page list of questions and must try to include all the "crowd intelligence" from our members. Just to get things startet, let me try to write up 3 examples: Quality Measure: Written/pictured Work Place Instructions Do you have written/pictured work instructions for every step of the assembly of every currently produced EUC model available for all assembly workers? Do those instructions clearly show, what parts to use? Do those instructions show, what tools to use and what the correct settings are (e.g. torque setting for electric screw drivers; pressure setting to fill tires, soldering temperature)? Do those instructions include cabling plans and show exactly, how cables must be routed? Do those instructions clearly show, which parts need to be secured for vibration or humidity with sealant, glue or tape and how it must be applied? Do those instructions include decision making, which parts are fit for assembly and how to identify parts, which are not? Do those instructions include measures against ESD damage to electronic parts (like wearing a ground strap)? How do those instructions prevent high current sparking during assembly? By enforcing a sequence of steps, which ensure equal levels of battery charge status and proper sequence of connection. By requesting the worker to charge the batteries to equal level? What is an assembly worker expected to do, if something "does not want to fit" according to plan? Make it fit? Ask a co-worker for help? Ask an engineer/manager for help? Do you maintain a "white list" of parts/components, which may be repaired when faulty (e.g. connectors, incorrectly seated tires)? If no, do you maintain a "black list" of parts/components, which must not be repaired (e.g. straightening of a bent motor axis; exchange of a single battery cell)? Do you agree to show the existing work place instructions to our Quality Spokesperson? Do you require a NDA for that? For those suggested measures, which are not in use yet: do you plan or consider introducing them? Quality Measure: Single Item Tracking Data Do you keep complete records, which assembly worker performed which assembly tasks per EUC serial number? Do you keep records of all parts and modules purchased from suppliers with the respective supplier batch IDs? If so, do you keep records of which parts from which supplier batches were used to build which EUC by serial number? Do you record all failed parts prior to assembly, during assembly and after (i.e. in complete units)? For every supplier batch consumed completely, can you evaluate the number of good vs. rejected/failed parts? If so, can you differentiate failed parts by EUC model, they had been consumed into (e.g. failed MOSFETs in model A vs. failed MOSFETs of same source/type/batch in model B)? Can you differentiate the above by firmware revision used in the affected EUCs? If so, is such an analysis possible with little effort or does it require substantial manual work? Do you agree to show these records (without price information) to our Quality Spokesperson? Do you require a NDA for that? For those suggested measures, which are not in use yet: do you plan or consider introducing them? If so, in the form of paper records or as an IT solution? Quality Measure: Incoming Goods Inspection Do you have a process in place that requires an explicit internal release before any incoming goods may be used for production? If so, what is the qualification of the person in charge of the release? Do you receive complete manufacturer batch information along with the goods delivered to you (i.e. can you tell precisely, which items have been produced in which production run)? Do you receive trustworthy documentation along with incoming goods about the quality category of the parts/modules (e.g. "automotive grade" certification)? Do you perform a technical inspection of incoming goods before release? If so, by visual inspection (100% or % of sample size)? by non-destructive functional testing (100% or % of sample size)? by destructive testing (% of sample size or number of items per batch)? What test setups are available to you (e.g. motor test stand; circuitry for main board stress testing, metering equipment for sensors or battery capacity)? If so, own equipment on site or option to rent/test externally? Do you keep manufacturing batches of incoming goods separated until consumption in assembly? Do you agree to show inspection and test protocols to our Quality Spokesperson? Do you require a NDA for that? For those suggested measures, which are not in use yet: do you plan or consider introducing them? If so, what testing rigs do you plan to introduce? ... to be improved/completed! Obviously there are more questions to ask, like own quality checks by the manufacturer during and after assembly ...
Ian just published a very helpful video of disassembly and re-assembly of a Msuper V3: Again, this is Ian's video - not mine. So, if you appreciate his work, please head over to Youtube to give him some credit. Thanks!