DEARBORN - When Ford Customer Service Division (FCSD) approached the Dearborn Engine and Fuel Tank Plant about producing service fuel tanks to shore up inventory back in March 2011, there were some obstacles to overcome.
“Most of the engineers had transitioned out of the plant or were in the process of leaving” said Paul Brewer, project leader, LAP.
The hourly workforce was now producing the 2.0 GDI engine and the most critical manufacturing line, which produced Ford Escape fuel tanks, had been demolished two years earlier.
A plan was developed to revive the various fuel tank manufacturing lines, which had been idle for 12 months, with production occurring on weekends.
Escape fuel tanks would be produced from remaining equipment.
Additionally, suppliers needed to locate obsolete tooling and produce components for the project.
“There were customers with vehicles down, so we were working pretty much every weekend,” said Frank Topolovec, Welding engineer , LAP.
Production began in November 2011, concluding on March 9, 2013.
Other members of the team included Mike Hamdan, Controls engineer;Dave Sanchez, Product Design engineer, Supervisors Larry Cassar and Angela Ward, Josh Frenkel, MP&L manager, Michelle Brown, Quality coordinator and Darius Randolph, Team manager.