Systematic Troubleshooting Frequently Asked Questions

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Do it yourself training course teaches how to troubleshoot machines and processes
and includes a real machine for hands-on practice.

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About this troubleshooting course

How does a MIMIC machine help in learning troubleshooting?

Learning materials included in the troubleshooting course

Instructor On A Disk Package

Troubleshooting course contents

What users say about Systematic Troubleshooting

FAQ's (Frequently Asked Questions) about the troubleshooting course

Microcontroller-Based systems details

Circuit Boards and Digital Circuits

Curriculum for
community colleges

Mechatronics for community colleges

Links to information about maintenance and troubleshooting

IDEAS! on training and troubleshooting

About the creators of these courses

Available packages and preview materials

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How long does the course take?
The basic course presented in the classroom takes about 12 hours. An additional 2- to 3-hour session that applies the principles in the course to equipment in your own plant is also recommended. For good long-term results, it is beneficial to continue these sessions on your own equipment after the basic concepts have been learned.

How long are typical class sessions?
Sessions may be one-day, half-day or two-hours to suit your work schedules.

What changes can we really expect in our people if we just conduct the basic workshop?
This program changes their attitude.

It convinces them, without a shadow of doubt, that troubleshooting without a thorough knowledge of the equipment is futile. They also know how to get that information and put it in a form they can use.

They can narrow their search for causes to specific systems.

They understand the importance of thinking of all the possible causes and the value of working with others in different trades to do this.

They know that all the facts are needed to reduce the number of possible causes.

They understand the principle of checking the lowest cost items first.

They know how to link individual facts with possible causes to provide evidence on which causes are most likely.

Is this a course on troubleshooting electrical or electronic equipment?
No. This is a course for all trades, mechanical as well as electrical and for experienced as well as new people. Activities in the class and the MIMIC machine do not require any knowledge of electricity or electronics. (Although participants will gain a bit of working knowledge of these disciplines by the time they complete the workshop.)

How do we apply the concepts in the course to our own plant?
By continuing your involvement beyond the basic session, selling the concepts throughout the plant and coaching employees on the job. The Manager's Planner is directed toward accomplishing these goals.

The Troubleshooting Action Guide, a form that teaches analystical thinking, can be used to determine how people solve problems on the job. The forms and sketches taught in the course can be used as a basis for building files on the equipment they maintain in your plant.

Is this course just for manufacturing maintenance?
NO. It is for anyone in any trade who troubleshoots machines or processes. That includes people in field service, service technicians and customer service people. In fact, some field service organizations are using the course as part of their certification process.

Is this a self-study course?
YES and NO. You can have it either way, self-study or instructor-led. The course includes a self-study text-workbook that may be studied by a person working independently. They use the MIMIC to set-up and complete problems themselves and evaluate their own results. However, as a practical matter, most companies prefer to use the course in a classroom atmosphere. In this case, self-study in the workbook can be assigned with group sessions for answering questions and doing application activities. The text-workbook is also useful for the instructor in learning the material prior to leading a class.

What should the manager do to help make the course a success?
First you need to decide on what would constitute success for you. Then, depending on your answer, you would involve yourself and your company to insure that these goals are achieved. Specific guidelines for this important process are provided in the Manager's Planner.

What if the instructor prefers notes to a full script?
The Presenter's Notebook is for the person who likes a concise guide rather than having every word scripted. All the instructor needs in the classroom is this guide and the Activity Books. The Prenter's Notebook also includes an alternate presentation sequence, interesting additional activites and the author's latest ideas on course presentation.

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