Italian robots are building the Ducato, are Mexican robots building the PM? - Ram Promaster Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 10-02-2015, 02:14 AM Thread Starter
Dave's not home
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Italian robots are building the Ducato, are Mexican robots building the PM?

Found this video showing the extent of the use of robots to build the Ducato.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PXF5SmylexM

I wonder if the factory in Mexico has this level of automation?

Dave
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post #2 of 10 Old 11-16-2016, 05:18 AM
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Yes, and probably more because it's a newer plant. That video is 6 years old now....

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post #3 of 10 Old 11-16-2016, 09:38 AM
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FCA spent 1.1 Billion to build it. I’d bet it is fully robot.

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post #4 of 10 Old 11-16-2016, 11:59 AM
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I'd had the RAM commercial salesman tell me the PM chassis did not receive a submerged application of primer/sealer... 0:53 in the video shows the base frame/cab assembly getting the 'dip'...

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post #5 of 10 Old 11-16-2016, 12:05 PM
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That video is of the Sevel plant in Italy but I would think with the upper US and Canada the dip would be important here. If sprayed on it seems to being doing a good job as we hear no reports of premature rusting and with the first PM vans now 3 years old it would be showing up.

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post #6 of 10 Old 11-17-2016, 03:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave's not home View Post
Found this video showing the extent of the use of robots to build the Ducato.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PXF5SmylexM

I wonder if the factory in Mexico has this level of automation?

Dave
If you've not had a chance take a tour of a auto factory sometime. Most manufactures have a tour at at least one of their plants. I toured the Audi factory in Ingolstat and they had every variation of A3 including custom orders and plug hybrids all coming off the same line at 300 cars per day. The robots in the body plant are amazing to watch and makes you realize where all the manufacturing jobs really have gone. There was about 4 people milling around checking on the robots or refilling supplies and that was it. The final assembly had a lot of people working there bolting in parts but I can see as robots become more dexterous with improved machine vision even those jobs will go away.
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post #7 of 10 Old 11-22-2016, 04:11 PM
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Pretty cool video but I'm in the automation business, so they always are. The level of automation seen here is pretty standard in the automotive industry nowadays.

The "dip" is part of a multi-step process called e-coating. That's the basic, first level of corrosion protection, and the idea with the dip is to get it into every crevice, some of which aren't accessible to the following spray applications.
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post #8 of 10 Old 11-22-2016, 06:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Brian P View Post
...
The "dip" is part of a multi-step process called e-coating. ...

I was under the impression from adds that the frame and body were galvanized (zinc coated) like my real Ram van.
When I told my wife I wanted to buy a Fiat, she said, "NOO Fix It Again Tony's"
Then when I told her it was "Made in Mexico" she said, "Are you kidding or are you crazy?"


Man, I do NOT want to hear "I TOLD YOU SO!"

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post #9 of 10 Old 11-22-2016, 07:00 PM
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In SoCAl the rust problem will not be an issue, in fact with some manufacturer's history of trying to keep paint on that galvy you may be better off. Your wife might recall that Tony..... expression came about at the same time British cars were so bad you couldn’t keep 'em on the road and Lucas was known as the “Prince of Darkness”! LOL My VWs of that era had to be jacked up and have the king pins greased every 3000 miles and at the same time I changed the oil and did a tune up! My Plymouth Valiant (a better than average car for the time) would eat a set of points every 5000 miles and no one ever found the reason! Now Mexico is where lots of “Real” Ram trucks are made. How time changes!
Show her this:
http://fortune.com/2015/07/20/fiat-c...best-new-cars/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...sler_factories
I am still laughing! Thanks

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Last edited by RDinNHandAZ; 11-22-2016 at 07:06 PM.
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post #10 of 10 Old 11-22-2016, 07:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skaggydog View Post
I was under the impression from adds that the frame and body were galvanized (zinc coated) like my real Ram van.
When I told my wife I wanted to buy a Fiat, she said, "NOO Fix It Again Tony's"
Then when I told her it was "Made in Mexico" she said, "Are you kidding or are you crazy?"


Man, I do NOT want to hear "I TOLD YOU SO!"
It is galvanized!

Normal process these days is like this ...

Galvanizing comes on the raw material - it's on the coil going into the stamping presses already. Usually not all of the parts are galvanized, or it may only be on one side. (depends on the application of each part)

Welding destroys the galvanized coating at every weld, though, so you can't rely solely on the galvanizing. Some parts have sealer applied before welding - the heat from subsequent operations cures the sealer. The sealer seals the area between the two metal parts surrounding the spot-weld.

Outer door skins are usually attached by adhesive and hemming. A strip of adhesive goes around the outer edge of the door skin, then the door skin is placed against the inner structure and the edge of the outer skin gets folded around the outer edge of the inner structure - this is called "hemming". Look at the inside of your door edges ... you can see where this has been done. This is to avoid exposed visible spot welds. Hoods, tailgates, etc are the same way.

So, after the body is all welded, bolted (door hinges, fenders), or otherwise stuck together, the next step is e-coat, which is itself a multi-step process, to first clean and degrease and then apply the electrostatic coating. This coats every metallic surface inside and out and gets into all the crevices.

After drying, the next step after that is primer, then colour coat, then clear coat (if it is not a single-stage paint). All of these are applied robotically using electrostatic spray guns. The electric charge gets it into more nooks and crannies than you could normally get to by just straight spray painting and it greatly reduces overspray and gives a more even paint layer.

Galvanizing has traditionally caused trouble for paint adhesion ... but with this process, the paint doesn't have to stick to the galvanizing. The e-coat has to stick to the galvanizing, the primer has to stick to the e-coat, and the colour coat has to stick to the primer.
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