More than 50% of the world’s vehicles contain parts that were manufactured in Switzerland by Polydec SA. To help maintain this impressive statistic, the company relies on over 30 Deco, EvoDeco and SwissNano turning machines from Tornos.
Polydec manufactures more than 40 million parts per month for the watchmaking, medical and automotive sectors. With regard to the latter, over 20 million shafts intended for dashboards and fuel-injection systems are produced in the company’s workshops each month.
In 1999, Polydec decided to invest in its first Tornos Deco 10. This solution turned out to be a good strategic choice, so further machines soon followed. That first Deco machine is still active today and being used in a workshop now equipped with a total of 15 Deco, one EvoDeco and 12 SwissNano machines. For the oldest machines, a revision programme is currently in progress.
“We have grown up with Tornos and are fully satisfied with our choice,” says the company’s CEO Claude Konrad. Just recently, Tornos delivered its 200th SwissNano to Polydec, which provided an opportunity to celebrate almost 20 years of collaboration and success.
Polydec is pushing the envelope and recently turned steel parts with diameters down to 0.07 mm and a length of 0.3 mm. On a regular basis, the company is producing components to tolerances of ±2 µm and, in extreme cases, down to ±1 µm.
For further information www.tornos.com
Having produced its first lathe back in 1870, Broadbent Stanley has a long history of designing and manufacturing large-capacity machine tools. At one point the company offered a series of vertical turning lathes (VTLs) and now history is repeating itself with the announcement of a strategic agency agreement with Radar Industrial, a Taiwan-based manufacturer of CNC VTLs.
The agreement will see Broadbent Stanley actively market and sell the Radar range in many markets, including the UK, Ireland, Africa and the Middle East.
Radar VTLs are available in three model designations, the RAL-12, RAL-16 and RAL-20, with maximum turning diameters ranging from 1500 to 2400 mm (and turning heights up to 1600 mm), with a maximum workpiece weight of 13,000 kg on the largest machine. All three machines come as standard with the Fanuc 0i-TF CNC.
The Radar models are equipped with a 12-position tool changer, which can be increased to 18 on the optional M-specification machines, with nine of those positions being capable of handling driven tooling, powered by a 15 kW motor with up to 2400 rpm available for the live tooling. For the largest of the three machines, the main rotating table is powered by a 45 kW motor, with two speed ranges of 1-50 and 1-200 rpm controlled via a high-torque (up to 23,750 Nm) gearbox.
As would be expected of machines of this size and capability, construction is key. The main table features a novel hydraulic static bearing design, where a floating hydraulic bearing is combined with a heavy-duty roller bearing that sits in a one-piece base casting. The result of this design leads to what is claimed to be the ideal combination of increased table-load capacity and precision.
For further information www.broadbentstanley.co.uk
The specialist fastener operation of Hockley-based Non Standard Socket Screw (NSSS) is continuing its policy of upgrading competitiveness by not only increasing productivity with further lights-out operations, but achieving improvements to quality and, most importantly, consistency of production, especially in more difficult to machine materials.
To help achieve this target, NSSS has ordered four CNC sliding head turn-mill centres worth £400,000 from Citizen Machinery UK.
Two Citizen Cincom installations comprising an L32-VIII and L20-VIII are already in full production. These machines will soon be joined by a further Cincom L20-VIII plus a smaller capacity L12-VII.
Says marketing director Melvin White: “We are in a very competitive market and it is important to maintain our production capability for both UK and overseas customers. We’re a modern business that is driving the use of automation and the latest manufacturing technologies to continually improve quality and output.”
By way of example, he follows on to describe the recent installation of a computer controlled heat-treatment facility and how lights-out techniques contribute to the firm’s improved levels of productivity.
“Our market demands consistency of production over long periods, which is being achieved with the latest machine-tool installations,” he says.
Since its foundation in 1971, NSSS has developed a fully self-contained fastener manufacturing operation that employs 90 people. In addition to its stockist business, the company produces a range of special fasteners, including prototypes for customers that range in size from M1.4. Parts are produced from up to 32 mm diameter bar on the Citizen Cincom machines.
For further information www.citizenmachinery.co.uk
Karen Finegold, executive director of the Engineering Industries Association (EIA) has been invited to join the board of the Genesis Initiative, which was formed to improve the quality of the debate on SMEs and create economic reform, driven by SMEs and supported by Parliamentarians.
The role of Genesis is to act as an umbrella organisation, working on the behalf of UK SMEs to optimise potential growth in the SME sector by fostering a “can do” culture. Genesis aims to participate fully in achieving economic and structural reforms that will enable businesses to flourish.
For further information www.genesis-initiative.org
Lina Huertas, head of technology strategy for digital manufacturing at the Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) in Coventry, has been chosen to be on a jury of experts for the European Innovation Council (EIC) pilot.
Huertas is one of 87 experts drawn from 26 countries who will assess companies pitching innovation projects to the EIC SME Instrument, which supports innovators, entrepreneurs, small companies and scientists with funding opportunities and acceleration services. The EIC SME Instrument will fund around 4000 small companies that pass the rigorous process, through to 2020.
For further information www.the-mtc.org