A Gage R&R Study assesses the variability in your measurement system so that you can be sure you can trust your data. It’s a method most quality practitioners need to learn. Instructors who teach Gage R&R Studies often want to use practical examples from industry. But these real-life cases can intimidate learners. It’s not always easy for a student to focus when they’re imagining their jobs could be on the line. Because statistics can be overwhelming enough, it’s worth thinking about how to ease those fears. Enter the gummi bears. Candy creates a spirit of fun that motivates trainees, even those who don’t have a sweet tooth. You need just a few items: . 10 gummi bears (plus extra to eat) . 1 ruler . 2 popsicle Sticks . 1 pencil . 1 rubber band . Volunteers to measure the bears STUDY THE PROCESS We’re going to study the output from launching the gummi bears from catapults because, well, it’s fun. First, build a small catapult out of the popsicle sticks, pencil, and rubber band (shown). Then, launch a few gummi bears. Ten is common, but adjust for the time your volunteers have. The bears serve as the parts to measure. The launching shows the range of outputs from the process. Next, each person measures the launch distance at least twice. Randomize the measurement order and have trainees measure all of the bears before they do a repeat. Trainees will begin to learn how easy it is to introduce variation as they determine how to take the measurements. What part of the gummi bear will they measure to? Who gets to eat the extra gummi bears? (Okay, that last part won’t affect measurement variation.) CONDUCT THE ANALYSIS Once the trainees have their data, they can study the measurement variation. If your trainees are using Minitab, they’ll be surprised how simple it is to get the results. Minitab’s Assistant provides a simplified interface that makes sure that all of the information you need to provide is front and center. You’ll never have to struggle through nested menus or click buttons hunting for the right options. Once the analysis begins, your trainees also won’t have to sift through output hunting for pertinent statistics or worry about misinterpreting the results. Minitab’s Assistant provides 3 reports with everything that they need. THE SUMMARY REPORT The fastest way to determine whether your measurement system is as sweet as a gummi bear! (Shown on previous page) If the slider bar is in the green part of the bar, the measurement system is ready to go. Need to make improvements? The blue bars tell trainees whether to focus on repeatability, reproducibility, or both. THE VARIATION REPORT To look deeper into the study results, look no further. (Shown left) Information by part and by operator help you easily spot important points or patterns. THE REPORT CARD For those who need to know that they dotted every i and crossed every t. (Not shown) This report assesses whether your results are reliable and warns you if your analysis is suspect. GO FORWARD WITH CONFIDENCE Accurate measurements are critical for improving quality. Practicing Gage R&R with gummi bears gives trainees hands-on preparation for the serious work of process improvement. It also helps them to see that taking the measurements is only half the battle. To make good decisions, they still have to analyze and present the data. The right tools make every task easier, and Minitab’s Assistant is a powerful tool that makes it easy to understand what your data are trying to tell you.
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