Well organized by our Prof. Dr. Thun, our MiM group paid an impressive visit to John Deere’s tractor factory in Mannheim, Germany on 10th June 2016.
John Deere is an American corporation that manufactures agricultural, construction, and forestry machinery, diesel engines, drivetrains (axles, transmissions, gearboxes) used in heavy equipment, and lawn care equipment.
As the hub of John Deere tractor production in Europe, Mannheim factory produces 30,000 tractors a year which are exported to 100 countries across the world, all from its launching pad, Mannheim Harbor, just a few kilometers away on the Rhine River.
There’s no better way to experience the company culture of John Deere than a trip to John Deere Pavilion. It’s all here: The machines, the history, the technology and the innovations. It’s full of fun and educational.
Another inspiring part of the visit is the assembly line without question. It is well designed to fulfill the production and testing. Every part of the resemble line runs efficiently and flawlessly. You can feel the tempo of harmony that floors through the whole manufacturing process.
Mannheim also builds gearboxes used on machines within the factory and shipped to other John Deere facilities across the globe and acts as a major center for research and development for John Deere’s mid-range tractors from 70 to 250 horsepower. After the manufacturing process, gearboxes are tested at one of three test stands before being delivered to the tractor assembly line.
Orders were made according to demand，because the specifications and the requirements of our customers are totally different. Each tractor is different in specification and we have a mix of different tractors on the assembly line: smaller tractors, larger tractors, US specification, and German specification.
After the tractors have been completed and tested, they are shipped by truck to the River Rhine harbor, where they are loaded on to ship decks. The boats take the tractors to Belgium or Netherlands, from where they are exported across the globe. 90 per cent of the tractors produced at Mannheim were exported. Almost half of sales go to Western Europe, with other major markets including North America, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, Eastern Europe and North Africa and the Middle East.
The visit offers me a great chance to put what I learned in class into practice. We came, we saw, we informed. At the end I learned far beyond written theories and kept a forgettable memory in my life.