Questions You Should Ask Your Custom Hinge Manufacturer
Not all hinge manufacturers are created equal; and it’s important to know some key pieces of information regarding a hinge manufacturer’s quality of craftsmanship as well as its dedication towards maintaining the highest level of customer satisfaction.
Here are a few questions you should ask any hinge manufacturer:
1: Are you ISO-9001: 2008 Certified?
Asking any hinge manufacturer if it is ISO 9001: 2008 Certified is, perhaps, one of the most important questions out of any. ISO 9001: 2008 Certification has everything to do with quality and integrity. To begin with, ISO-9001 is the most-recognized quality management system for any organization, anywhere in the world, regardless of a company’s size. ISO is an acronym for International Standards Organization which develops and publishes International Standards. It is the ISO-9001 which targets four vital, quality-management areas for any type of organization: quality planning, quality assurance, quality control and quality improvement. Within these four components, a myriad of more-detailed arenas are addressed such as environmental management, bribery management, and occupational health & safety, to name only a very few.
The extent to which quality measures are met is not determined by ISO-9001, but rather by an independent entity which provides Certification, as well as conformity evaluations. All ISO standards are assessed every five years.
Being ‘ISO-9001: 2008 Compliant’ is all about a business or industry’s dedication towards reaching optimized product and service quality for respective clients or consumers. Optimized product and service quality is achieved via very strategic ISO tools that are introduced, studied and ultimately implemented. Companies which embrace ISO 9001: 2008 are passionate about maximally meeting customer needs and expectations; and those needs are met when the quality within the enterprise’s operations reflects a progressive, robust and insightful quality-management system.
LaDeau Manufacturing is an ISO-9001: 2008 certified World-Class manufacturer of all types of hinges: precision industrial hardware, custom and mil-spec hinges & pins, and continuous hinges – spanning a diverse range of industries including industrial, aerospace, commercial and military sectors, around the globe.
2: Where do your materials come from? Are your components manufactured in the USA?
Depending on where materials for hinges come from and whether or not hinge components are actually manufactured in America- the overall quality and durability of any hinge product can be affected. At LaDeau, most of its materials are melted or sourced from the USA – hinges that are manufactured and assembled by American craftsmen, and immediately available. It is important to note that almost all hinge manufacturers which claim their products are “Made in the USA” provide, in reality, imported materials, where one should expect far-lesser quality.
LaDeau is relentless with its passion to offer unparalleled American-product excellence in precision manufacturing, coupled with its commitment towards innovation and on-going improvement. All office, tooling and manufacturing (save finishing) are in-house, resulting in minimized downtime and maximized supply availability.
3: What is your ‘Acceptance Rate’?
Acceptance Rate is a measure of quality, and follows a simple mathematical formula: Number of shipments not rejected for quality/Total number of shipments.
Acceptance rate is a vital and telling attribute for any hinge manufacturer; and it reflects a manufacturer’s commitment to superior products and services. In the end it will, by default, reflect a consumer’s ultimate satisfaction. LaDeau is extremely proud of its coveted Acceptance Rate of 99.63%. LaDeau Manufacturing encompasses a 68-year history and uses that expertise to continue to ensure fast turn-around as well as quickly adapt and deliver in today’s very competitive global markets.
4: Are you familiar with DFAR, ITAR, or ROHS?
DEFAR (Defense Acquisition Regulations), ITAR (International Traffic in Arms Regulations) and ROHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances) represent a number of certifications related to environmental and societal responsibility.
DFARS – DFARS is a supplement to the FAR (Federal Acquisition Regulations) which provides the Department of Defense specific acquisition regulations. For example, specialty metals must be melted in the US or a qualifying country, such as Australia or Canada.
ITAR – Export Controlled Material, known as ECM, deals with mandates such as ITAR which is a set of US Government regulations dealing with the export and import of defense-related articles and services dealing with munitions or missile technology. The ultimate purpose of ITAR is to ensure that defense-related technologies do not end up in the wrong hands or those of an adversary. Being ITAR-compliant means an export license has been provided where the US Government has granted permission for a company to transport or sell potentially-dangerous items to foreign countries or entities. The US Government requires all manufacturers, exporters and brokers of defense articles, defense services or defense technical data to be ITAR compliant. Companies in the ITAR industry must not violate ITAR compliance regulations, and are expected to be fully educated in ITAR regulations.
ROHS – ROHS is a directive that restricts the use of six hazardous materials in the manufacture of electronic and electrical equipment. Through ROHS, huge amounts of electronic waste is vigorously addressed, via, the compliance of collection, recycling and recovery of electrical goods. Interestingly, 90% of electronic equipment ends up in landfills!
LaDeau Manufacturing fully conforms to DFAR, ITAR and ROHS mandates.