Wednesday, January 1, 2014

How many of us actually count the number of shuttles from a tube?

This is a real incident from 2013. Personally I do not believe it was intentional but rather caused by the processes in-use.

How many of us count the number of shuttles in a tube? I didn't.

We trust the manufacturer to provide what we paid for - a dozen shuttlecocks per tube.

A few months ago I received a puzzling call from another organiser (I know) requesting assistance to confirm his findings. He was retrieving a freebie item which the manufacturer placed inside the tube of shuttlecocks and just decided to count the number of shuttles since he had open it. He was SHOCKED to discovered several tubes had one less shuttlecock than what it was suppose to contain???

He then called myself to request for assistance to go thru my stockpile since I had over 20 tubes of the same brand and model of shuttles then. I WAS FLABBERGASTED when I discovered I had 3 such tubes - 2 tubes with 1 less shuttlecock and 1 tube with 1 more shuttlecock! He had more than 3 tubes with lesser shuttlescocks!!!

We then feedback to the shop and they, in-turn to the manufacturer. I even called the manufacturer to update them on the incident. After a few calls, the manufacturer reimbursed the difference since the shop confirm we were frequent customers for their brand of shuttles.

I personally believe the automation used to fill the tubes is based on weight and not on actual number of shuttlescocks shoved into the tube. In theory one possible cause of the discrepency could be the weight of the container was at/more than the maximum tolerance and the shuttlecocks were a little heavier than norm.

I dare say nearly all of us would just take a tube at random, break the seal from the head/top of the tube and withdraw shuttles for a game - myself included!!!

What's the take-away from the above?

For myself (anyway) - I will perform random sampling every once in a while, especially when the manufacturers place gifts inside the tubes!!!


  1. Hi,

    I am one of the the guys working in RCL shuttlecock distributor. For us, we do the packing (labeling etc by ourselves in Penang). We need to take out each shuttle and put back manually into the tube after we put the small label on the shuttle. Each of our employee will count each tube has 12 shuttles when they put the shuttles back to the tube. Occasionally we will find some tubes having fewer than 12 shuttles, but since we have done the DOUBLE-CHECKING here, we rarely have the problem of missing shuttle in 1 tube. In the event we give free gift such as mini-shuttle keychain, the extra weight will not affect the number of shuttles in the tube at all since we count manually, no automation is used.

    1. Thank you for your prompt and pro-active response.

      The brand and model of shuttecocks we experience the issue with WAS NOT RCL.