Improving The Stripping Grain-Harvesting Machine Without TRIZ

G. L. Filkovsky,
Nomura Securities International,
New York, USA
e-mail:Gfilkovsky@us.nomura.com

In their article [1] the authors claim that they improved the Machine by using VEA and TRIZ. It certainly is interesting to see TRIZ in action - as oppose to "after a fact" case studies regularly published by the TRIZ Journal - and for that purpose I'm ready to drag myself through engineering and grain-harvesting details. Unfortunately, my efforts were fruitless: TRIZ was nowhere around.

The Machine design, according to the authors, has had three disadvantages: a large weight, a large size and an increased loss of grain. The authors simply claim, without explanations or examples, The attempts to eliminate the design disadvantages by traditional design methods did not give the expected result. What are these traditional design methods? Isn't at least VEA, if not TRIZ, one of them? What result did they give? Who and how made these attempts? Why did they fail? Wouldn't it be interesting to compare the result of VEA+TRIZ with the result of the traditional design methods? The only explanation, why there is no a word more about this from the authors is, it'a a BLUFF.

Is common sense a traditional design method? Let's apply it to the mentioned disadvantages. How would one try to decrease size and weight of a machine? By eliminating unused space, packing parts more compactly, eliminating some parts and combining there functions, etc. - all these are well known and widely used: in cars, airplanes, computers, buildings, everywhere. One doesn't need to call it idealily and convolution, these methods are very much traditional, and that's exactly what the authors have proposed at the end. Using VEA+TRIZ for this is a BLUFF.

How would one try to minimize falling off of the plant heads back to the ground? By finding the "holes" and eliminating them, closing them, minimizing their size, setting parts closer to each other, etc. One doesn't need to call it a law of coordination - discoordination, it's a common sense and that's exactly what the authors have proposed at the end. Using the laws of engineering systems evolution to do this is a BLUFF.

The bottom line is: the improving of the grain-harvesting machine is achieved by the authors using very traditional design enhancements, has no element of invention (a "level 1", at best), has no application of basic TRIZ concepts (no contradiction whatsoever) and using VEA+TRIZ to achieve it, is a BLUFF. As is the article reviewed.

R E F E R E N C E S:

  1. Peter Chuksin, Alexander Skuratovich, Nikolay Shpakovsky, Using Value-Engineering Analysis + TRIZ Method For Improving The Stripping Grain-Harvesting Machine, The TRIZ-journal, September 2003.