Author Topic: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)  (Read 3957 times)

rlw68

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Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« on: December 10, 2018, 03:17:16 PM »
After reading the CRG report, I find it interesting that the body number sequence was reset in August 1969 because of the extended model year (my undergrad degree is Computer Science).  The body/order# range appears to have been ~100,000 to 400,000.  That would allow for 300,000 orders.  At the end of July 200,282 had been built (CRG end of month VIN report, LOS and NOR combined).  Its odd that ~1/3 of the order numbers were not assigned.  Maybe a COBOL program with some serious issues :)

My 69 is a Norwood 02D with a Feb 28 production date (NCRS, VIN also ~30 from the last). Subtracting the total units built to date (LOS+NOR) and the initial order# (100000) from its body# is ~32,000.  (264782 Fisher# - 132,552 built - 100,000 = 32230 ).  The order# for this car is ahead of number of Camaros built to date.

I checked some other dates combining the CRG end of month VIN report with some available trim tag body#.  Working with limited data there appears to be ~10K unused order# per month that accumulate.  Having spent more time than may be prudent on this, I would like to know if the group has any insight on why this occurred.  Some of my sample data is below.

Thanks
Rob


                                Prod
Month  Tag Date    Body#       To Date     Body#-Prod-100K
JAN     01C        233660       109967        23693
FEB     02D        264782       132552        32230
MAR     03D        295460       151695        43765
APR     04D        329868       167261        62607
MAY     05C        335317       180478        54839
JUN     06A        360307       195034        65273
JUL     07A        373272       200282        72990

Rob
1969 02D Norwood Z/28. Lemans Blue 715

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2018, 03:48:47 PM »
I *think* I've read before here (JohnZ or William or ??) that at times the Corp would generate a sequence of Order Numbers maybe to keep the supply pipeline flowing?  and perhaps those Corp orders were 'canceled' when 'normal' orders began flowing...?  That's about the only thing that makes sense to me IF the 'orders' were the "input" to generate parts orders, etc.   Having even/uniform production flow is what makes for efficiency in the production...
09C 69Z28-RS, 72 B 720 cowl console rosewood tint
69 Corvette, '60 Corvette, '72 Corvette
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william

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2018, 05:00:15 PM »
Couldn't even guess how much time I have spent on this over my 43 years of 1st Gens. The two numbering systems [confirmation # and VIN #] are completely unrelated.

For 1969, both plants [Van Nuys and Norwood] were on the same system. My guess, the 1st confirmation # issued was 100001. Highest confirm I know of is in the 377xxx range so 277,000 orders were confirmed at one time. By the end of July '69 both plants had produced just over 200,000 Camaros so 77,000 orders were not built. In his book, John De Lorean stated dealer orders often contained errors; also dealers often exceeded allocations. Many orders were cancelled.

The confirmation # was assigned when Central Office determined the dealer order could be built within normal lead time. Orders that could not [usually material availability] would not be confirmed until the material was available. Under normal circumstances, not unusual to see consecutive confirmation numbers for a group of orders placed at the same time. Many, but not all, COPOs are like that     

The confirmation number had nothing to do with production scheduling. The 50 Fred Gibb ZL1 Camaros were ordered at the same time; 49 had consecutive confirmation numbers 222001-222049. 1st car built [222002] December 30, 1968, 222001 was the 14th built on or about March 4, 1969. Last Gibb ZL1 order was built on or about March 24, 1969 [222044]. Some very early confirmations [105000-110000] were built in November.

I state 'on or about' because the last 6 digits of the VIN were assigned as the completed body assembly was received from Fisher Body. Bodies were then queued in the Schedule Bank and released to final assembly based on labor content to maintain line balance. VIN order was not a factor. 512345 may have released late on 2nd shift; 512340 may have been released the next day.

So what were the determining factors in when a dealer order was built? With two plants and 6,400 dealers ordering cars I'm sure the considerations were complex. Dealer status, location, equipment, paint color may have all been factors.

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KurtS

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2018, 11:55:35 PM »
VIN order was not a factor. 512345 may have released late on 2nd shift; 512340 may have been released the next day.
The body bank didn't work quite that way. Its purpose was mainly for line balance. There were 6 lines in the body bank and 10-12 cars in each line. There were always bodies coming into the bank (and each line) and thus requiring the continual release of bodies.  So a given line might progress at a slightly different rate than another line, but they all progressed. Two bodies that were sequential entering the bank would exit within a dozen or so of each other, depending on options of course.
It looked very much like a toll booth on a turnpike, where everyone fans out into multiple lines, some faster than others, then rejoins into a single flow again.
Kurt S
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rlw68

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2018, 09:04:21 PM »

For 1969, both plants [Van Nuys and Norwood] were on the same system. My guess, the 1st confirmation # issued was 100001. Highest confirm I know of is in the 377xxx range so 277,000 orders were confirmed at one time. By the end of July '69 both plants had produced just over 200,000 Camaros so 77,000 orders were not built. In his book, John De Lorean stated dealer orders often contained errors; also dealers often exceeded allocations. Many orders were cancelled.

It seems unlikely that 77K orders would be confirmed and then later cancelled. Then in August the order number gets reset to ~100,000.  Why not just continue on past 400K?  So instead duplicate order numbers are used in the same model year.  My understanding is this order confirmation# was physically stamped on the trim tag, printed on the broadcast sheet, then the shipping report, and even on the window sticker.  Thats one magic number.

In Jerry's book (4th ed) there are some example documents from different months. On pg119 there is a window sticker for a very late Z, VIN 709540.  The order# is 158298 and production for Aug-Nov 69 was ~42803.  This is another ~15495 orders not built.

Rob
1969 02D Norwood Z/28. Lemans Blue 715

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #5 on: December 12, 2018, 02:02:53 PM »
Remember the body numbers were assigned by Fisher, a separate division from Chevrolet. When production started in Aug 69, it was a new year to Fisher and they started over.
Jimmy V.

rlw68

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2018, 03:06:45 PM »
Remember the body numbers were assigned by Fisher, a separate division from Chevrolet. When production started in Aug 69, it was a new year to Fisher and they started over.

With the new model year its very likely the GM order system software would have been updated.  So that would explain the order# reset for the Camaro extended production.  However in 1969 the Fisher body# is the order acceptance# according to the report  http://www.camaros.org/bodynumbering.shtml#69

I've looked the original sale invoice for my 69 countless times but recently noticed that the dealer stock# 2682 partially matches the Fisher body/order#, 264782. Sort of cool, likely less than exciting to the CRG.  Some of the old dealer ads have the stock# also.

Rob
1969 02D Norwood Z/28. Lemans Blue 715

rlw68

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #7 on: December 12, 2018, 03:19:53 PM »
More details here also http://www.camaros.org/forum/index.php?topic=4795

Does anyone have a copy of an original dealer form?

The body number on the cowl tag was assigned when the plant accepted a dealer order for production; the dealer order number (which was pre-printed on the dealer's order blanks) didn't serve any direct purpose on the line in production, although it followed the car on all the Chevrolet paperwork (Broadcast Copy, window sticker, Car Shipper, etc.). The body number on the cowl tag showed up as the "Ident Number" in the top row on the Broadcast Copy, and also showed up in the upper right corner of the window sticker and Car Shipper. In the scheduling computer, that number tied the unit back to the specs on the Dealer Order.

When each body was scheduled out of the Chevrolet Body Bank to the beginning of the Chevrolet assembly system, it was assigned a "sequence number", which appears at the upper left corner of the Broadcast Copy - that's the exact sequence in which the car passed through the Chevrolet assembly system, and that was the important number as far as the plant was concerned while the unit was in the system; once the car came off the line, it was meaningless.
Rob
1969 02D Norwood Z/28. Lemans Blue 715

william

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2018, 05:31:34 PM »
Remember the body numbers were assigned by Fisher, a separate division from Chevrolet. When production started in Aug 69, it was a new year to Fisher and they started over.

Fisher had nothing to do with confirming or scheduling dealer orders. All done by Chevrolet; they dictated to Fisher when to release the confirmed order for body fab.

As for all the cancelled orders, entirely possible. For years I have been recommending reading De Loreans' book "On a Clear Day You Can See General Motors." He took over as Chevrolet General Manager early in 1969. They had just installed a new system and it was a mess. Dealers weren't billed for some cars. He stated up to 30% of new car orders had errors so given that and other reasons 77,000 cancelled orders was possible.
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bcmiller

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #9 on: December 13, 2018, 12:23:09 AM »
As always, thanks for your insight Bill. Much appreciated. I need to get that book.
Bryon / 1968 Camaro SS 396 coupe - now old school 468 big block
1967 Camaro RS/SS 396 coupe L35/M40 - 4 generation family project
Looking for 68 Camaro with body # NOR 181016

william

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #10 on: December 13, 2018, 12:41:20 AM »
Thanks Bryon!

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KurtS

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #11 on: December 13, 2018, 04:51:39 AM »
It was a good read. He has a bit of an ego, but interesting insights.
Kurt S
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bcmiller

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #12 on: December 13, 2018, 02:25:51 PM »
Cool. I did order them book last night. :)
Bryon / 1968 Camaro SS 396 coupe - now old school 468 big block
1967 Camaro RS/SS 396 coupe L35/M40 - 4 generation family project
Looking for 68 Camaro with body # NOR 181016

william

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #13 on: December 13, 2018, 02:47:25 PM »
Back in the day I read two business books that mentioned De Lorean. Both authors thought he was one of, if not the best, car guy in Detroit. At 36 he was Chief Engineer at Pontiac; at 44 General Manager of Chevrolet. He didn't fit in at GM, didn't even try. As stated, his ego took over. The DMC-12 was a bad car even in those days, the SS body an expensive gimmick.

There is no denying he turned Pontiac around with the GTO; did it again at Chevrolet. That's how he should be remembered.

Looks like there is another auto industry maverick making news these days. Like them or not, its people like these that change the world.
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rlw68

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Re: Fisher Body Number Report (1969)
« Reply #14 on: December 13, 2018, 05:16:19 PM »

Thanks for the book recommendation!  I know little about DeLorean other than flux capacitors :)
Rob
1969 02D Norwood Z/28. Lemans Blue 715

 

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