Ranger Job: Cooktops
Since I became a Ranger I have been to the cooktop making area two times. To the best of my knowledge, we have three basic cooktops. Ceran top which is a smooth glasstop that is tempered so you can cook on it. The second is the regular electric cooktop which has four burners made like the traditional kind which has metal bowls placed around each burner. Thirdly, we have cooktops that are fueled by propane gas and it is similar to the coil electric models.
My carpooling friend, Stacy is the one who keeps them supplied with the parts they need to build their cooktops. When I’m in that area just about every time I see her she’s has her head stuck in some big tote pulling out parts to stock with. She doesn’t get much help from others except for Shelley who has done her job in the past. She keeps pretty busy and can fall behind if someone wants her to fill their position while they take a bathroom break.
Stacy’s job can really get tough when we have to suddenly and unexpectedly change to a different model. Once when this happened she had already stocked 500 heating element for the next run. (It was a five burner range.) She would have to take them all out, put them back in their containers and restock for the new run. Plus she had to keep her basic supplies continuously stocked. She told me she started to cry from all the frustration (for the first time) when she saw Eric, the forklift driver and he, frustrated too, looked at her and they both started laughing because the situation was getting too ridiculous. Stacy said that was the worst day (a Thursday) for uexpected changeovers she had ever seen.
There are about 12 people on the team. As I learn the different positions, other members of the team have been helpful to answer any question I have. Right now the leader of the team is Cheryl. She’s great. She’s constantly focuses on doing her job thoroughly. Even when others aren’t cooperative. (Listening to the frustration in her voice I get the impression this happens alot.) She is trying to move to another area.
The toughest job in this area is putting the cooktop on the range as it is on the main assembly line. As I did this my main goal was to not press the hold button. This first time I did it Cheryl had someone helping me and the model was not the most difficult. The second time I did it, I probably pressed the hold button three times. There happened to be a gap ever so often which would help me catch up.
Cooktops are mostly wiring. Just like in other wiring areas the wires are organized in color groups of five or six wires. The colors and the shape of the end connection you plug in most likely have a good reason for why they are like they are. I’ll have to ask around to see if someone knows. Two of the senior member of the team may know, Shelly or Kan.