In the 1980’s, the fast food chain Wendy’s had a commercial advertising chicken sandwiches with a tag line stating “parts are parts”. InterConnect Wiring has been assembling wiring harnesses and electrical panels with both standard parts and non-standard parts for the past 23 years. But parts are parts, right?
When the Department of Defense started building weapon systems, it decided to make standard specifications and parts that all branches of the US Armed Services (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard) could use. These standards are called military specifications. The US Department of Defense is in charge of them. Most are controlled and kept updated in Philadelphia. These parts have been changing over to Aerospace Standards controlled by the Society of Automotive Engineers but QPL authority remains with DOD.
Non-standard parts are parts that a company develops based on a military specification. As an example, when InterConnect assembles F-16 or F-22 harnesses designed by Lockheed Martin, most ‘C’ and ‘P’ specifications developed and controlled by Lockheed are based on military parts with a few minor changes. Non-standard parts provide a mechanism for a company to obtain a high-grade, quality part and have control over the part (instead of the DOD).
As for the Wendy’s commercial, you can watch it here.