Where JD Combines Come From
Jan 14, 2009
In my view, one of the best parts to my job of writing about farm equipment is being invited on factory tours. The manufacturing process is fascinating.
Leave it to cable television to provide the next best thing to walking a factory floor. The National Geographic Channel has a show for those of us who loves to see where machines come from. Ultimate Factories goes inside the manufacturing process and follows the assembly line from raw material to finished product.
On Saturday, I received a phone call alerting me to John Deere’s Harvester Works being featured on the show. Of course, I tuned in.
Here’s a quick recap of John Deere Harvester Works and how they make STS Combines:
- More than 2000 employees
- Factory is divided into three sections and a total of 30 assembly line stations
- More than 8.5 miles of overhead track
- 49 robotic welders
- 8 laser cutters
- 60,000 tons of steel is stamped, pressed, cut and welded a year
- 17,000 parts and components that go into a single machine
- 400 tons of welding wire used each year
- 3.2 million parts are created in a year by the programmed laser cutters
- 200 sheets of steel are used in a single shift
- Lasers can run without human interference for three days