ArvinMeritor establishes new processes at Indiana reman facility

ArvinMeritor, Inc. Commercial Vehicle Aftermarket (CVA) group has established new remanufacturing processes at its U.S. remanufacturing facility in Plainfield, Indiana, to create the heavy-duty trucking industry's most complete resource for quality reman aftermarket parts.

The process improvements also enhance the company's efforts to provide superior customer service. The QS-9000 certified facility supplies parts under both Meritor and Euclid brand names.

Meritor reman product offerings include axle carriers, brake shoes, transmissions and Lucas brake cylinders. Euclid reman products include brake shoes, hydraulic brake cylinders and calipers.

"We've been in the reman business since 1985 with axle carriers and have a valid reputation for the most established brand portfolio in the industry," said Harry Howard, vice president and general manager of CVA, which is a part of ArvinMeritor's Commercial Vehicle Systems business group. "Now, with these efficient processes in place in Plainfield, we are demonstrating to the industry that we're living up to heightened customer expectations every day. The result is that our customers prefer ArvinMeritor because they want a partner, not simply a parts supplier."

With the introduction of Lean Manufacturing techniques, plant wide productivity has increased 20 percent at the facility and fill rates are at record levels. The Plainfield facility processes 35 percent more remanufactured Class 8 brake shoes annually than previously possible. This is especially important from February through May, traditionally regarded as the busiest season of the year for brakes. For instance, if you lined up the reman brake shoes produced in one year, they would stretch from the Plainfield plant to New York City (700 miles).

In addition, recent process improvements in the 275,000-square-foot facility have resulted in a savings of 25,000 square feet of space, which now can be devoted to other functions, including additional capacity or new product lines. Additional improvements planned for this year will make another 16,000 square feet available for new business opportunities.

"Remanufactured components are a growth market right now," said Howard. "Customer demands for these products have resulted in increased production of our reman parts. We offer a no-hassle core program that gives benefits to both the customer and the environment. For example, because of core reuse, we recycle over 93,000 pounds of steel every day, which helps to keep it out of landfills and allows resources for new products."

According to Howard, customers now understand that a remanufactured brake shoe provides solid value compared to a relined or new product. Brake shoes are remanufactured with an OE-genuine core lining and hardware and are not simply relined or rebuilt. From tractors to trailers, from on-highway to construction and refuse vehicles, many different friction formulas are offered, each designed to accommodate different truck operators' needs.

Key Commercial Vehicle Aftermarket facilities include Florence, Ky.; Cleveland, Ohio; Zurich, Switzerland; Sao Paulo, Brazil; and Sunshine Australia. A second remanufacturing facility is in Brampton, Ontario, Canada.

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