One of the good things about getting items calibrated is the information the process provides. The bad news is some folks don’t know how to deal with that information. Far too many buyers of calibration services only scan the reports and, in the absence of red flags, file them in case an auditor wants proof of calibration.
I’m surprised at some of the ideas that drift down from the loftier realms of the corporate world in the endless quest to reduce costs. In many cases, the assumption is that a philosophy that appears to work in one area of a company’s operations can be applied to all areas.
There are two approaches to take regarding temperature changes and the effects they have on measurement. The first is to control the shop or lab environment to such an extent that, whatever temperature variations remain, they will have no significant effect. The alternative is to control and correct the key items involved-the gages and the product being measured. The simplest method for most folks is to control and correct.
Many industry sectors are complaining about offshore competition and its effect on North American manufacturing. To avoid a “protectionist” label the complaints are directed to a concept called the “level playing field.” What this implies is that the offshore folks are cheating at the game somehow or not following the same set of rules that we in North America have to follow.
I also urged folks who use outside sources for their calibration to get a list of the elements that will be inspected and reported in order to make a proper comparison between competing facilities. Or ask for copies of reports a lab has issued for the types of items you’re thinking of sending them with the recipient’s name blocked out to maintain confidentiality.