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Problem Solving Efforts Are Yielding Immediate Results


Phillips Tube Group, Inc., is the leading provider of innovative tube component solutions. It is a woman-owned business headquartered in Middletown, Ohio, with Ohio divisions in Middletown (Middletown Tube Works) and Shelby (Phillips Manufacturing & Tower Co.) 

Family-owned and operated since 1967, Phillips Tube Group (PTG) recently celebrated 55 years as a reliable partner for welded steel tube in several industries including the automotive, HVAC, RV, construction, and logistics markets. 

PTG employs over 250 people across its divisions, with more than 80 employees in Shelby, its flagship location. The company is highly sought after for its reliability in producing the highest quality welded steel tube available in today’s marketplace.

The Challenge

Management was interested in getting problem solving training for its management team. The initial engagement was aimed at scrap reduction. This led to analyzing the issues on the mill line that had the worst scrap rate as a test case for issue resolution. 

A second problem solving initiative was started regarding optimizing storage of WIP and finished goods. Materials were being driven all over the plant and current storage locations were not being utilized efficiently. In addition, plans were being made to add another mill line which would impact the available space.
TechSolve was easy to work with, had a high knowledge base, and provided tools to help with 5S and problem solving.
— Marvin Phillips, VP of Innovation

MEP's Role

During the first initiative, TechSolve - part of the Ohio MEP and the MEP National Network™ - determined that the mill had not had a thorough PM in many years. A program was set up to refurbish many key points on the mill line that affected tube alignment. Currently, the identified modifications are still being implemented, although initial improvements had favorable results. 

In the storage initiative, a proposed layout was developed that would improve the material flow and locate WIP positions in the most favorable positions to the required flow. The plan included minimizing trips across a busy highway which divides the main buildings as well as rearranging some equipment and better utilization of a warehouse facility.
Created January 20, 2023, Updated April 3, 2024