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Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) Marking Automation on BIW Line

HomeSuccess StoryVehicle Identification Number (VIN) Marking Automation on BIW Line

Background

Vehicle Identification Number Marking is a critical task. Although not a very complex process, it is very important in view of future maintenance of the vehicle as well as statutory or regulatory aspects. The numbers marked must comply with stringent guidelines with respect to size, depth of mark, number of characters and their shapes.
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The prevalent practice on BIW line is to carry out this task manually using a marking machine. With the Manual marking the process was prone to several risks such as incorrect marking, blurring of the number, damage to vehicle body etc.

Therefore, our client, a leading Automotive manufacturer wanted to automate the VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) marking process. The Client aimed to eliminate manual intervention and use a single system for multiple models to be manufactured on the same BIW line. That’s where Fine Handling’s team got in action.

VIN marking is carried out on BIW welding line, where the vehicle body is presented on a conveyor. The Client wanted a system that achieves a cycle time of fewer than 90 seconds and ensures the correct number is used for the vehicle. The marked number was to adhere to regulatory norms, and systems should perform the operation without any damage to the vehicle, machine or conveyor.

Fine Handling suggested two options to the customer. First, an Industrial Manipulator based system. Second, Special Purpose Machine with slider arrangement mounted with VIN marking machine. The customer chose the second option as it involved minimum or no human intervention.

Challenge & Innovations

Quick sliding arrangement

Fine Handling

SPM

SPM was designed in a way so as to ensure the marking machine moves ahead quickly to align and clamp itself on the vehicle body. Pneumatic cylinders and LM guides were used for the slider.

Integration with Client’s PLC

Fine Handling

Perfect Sync

Once the Bar code on the vehicle body is scanned, the VIN is to be acquired from the Client’s PLC system. To achieve a seamless process, SPM’s PLC was integrated with the Client’s PLC. The systems worked as one during the marking process by seamlessly verifying the barcode and acquiring unique VIN.

Achieving cycle time of 90 seconds

Fine Handling

A detail study

Fine Handling’s design team did a detail study, to adjust the speed of the movement of slider considering site conditions to achieve final cycle time of 85 – 88 seconds was achieved.

Addressing the Reactive forces

Fine Handling

The Clamping Fixture

At the time of marking, the pressure applied to achieve the depth results in a reactive force from the vehicle body.  Fine Handling developed a clamping fixture that will create a firm hold on vehicle body to eliminate the adverse impact of reactive forces.

Achieving VIN that adheres to statutory or regulatory norms

Fine Handling

Setting up Marking Machine

Though the Marking machine was a brought out item, setting it up a posed a lot of challenges. Proving the process involved extensive trials at Fine Handling’s state-of-the-art workshop. The team understood and took all the care to ensure VIN was marked to comply with RTO norms.

Key Features

Inbuilt multi model system to enable marking of VIN on various models of same BIW lines

Systems can be customised to suit various marking requirements on assembly as well as machining lines

Similar solutions can be provided for marking and numbering requirements in auto as well as non auto

Fine handling can integrate laser marking machines for laser marking on components

Benefits

After the marking is complete, the machine comes back to the home position stays ready for the next cycle.
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