Alitech races to success with ITC

As a subcontract machine shop, Alitech Precision is a company that is rapidly evolving, a fact credit to its aggressive investment programme, enthusiasm and love for all things motorsport. Since its inception little over three years ago, the Silverstone-based company has purchased three Haas machining centres, Open Mind CAM software, a Spinner five-axis machining centre and cutting tools from Industrial Tooling Corporation (ITC).

A recent example of the partnership between Alitech and ITC could be seen when it came to the profile machining of deep port pockets. Here, it was ITC that stepped up to the challenge with its lollipop cutters. The majority of projects undertaken by Alitech involve the complex, simultaneous five-axis machining of parts such as billet inlet manifolds, valve seats, inlet port heads, billet turbo manifolds and much more. Reaching deep into ports is a complex challenge for the machine tool kinematics, the CAM software, the cutting tools and tool holding. At the sharp edge are ITC 4101 lollipop end mills that permit Alitech to reach surfaces around corners and deep inside manifold ports.
Commenting upon the daily challenges at Alitech, managing director Darren Cudd says: “We recently machined a billet turbo manifold for a motorsport customer that required two 40 mm diameter oval shaped port holes with a curved machining depth beyond 200 mm. We used an 8 mm diameter ITC lollipop cutter necked to 5 mm that was protruding 70 mm from a slim 80 mm heat-shrink tool holder extension with a 75 mm long back-end configuration. The rigidity and geometry of the ITC lollipop tools ensure we attain an exceptional surface finish while machining at extremely productive speed and feed parameters.”
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Subcon 2018 opens this week

The organiser of Subcon (5-7 June, Birmingham NEC) has revealed that it is preparing for a bumper year with over 400 exhibitors confirmed and some 4,500 visitors expected, which would be a new record.

This year, visitors will enjoy two shows – Subcon and a brand new sister event, The Engineer Expo.
“There is going to be so much to talk about this year: from our research into the ignorance around Industry 4.0 and the importance of increasing the number of women in manufacturing and engineering leadership roles, to the presentations across our stages and discussions among the stands of more than 400 exhibitors,” says Subcon event director Gordon Kirk. “This year’s event is set to be our best yet and will give visitors and suppliers an opportunity to interact with every facet of the UK manufacturing and engineering community, maintain their competitive edge, and shape how the industry is seen from the outside.”
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Business is brisk at Chester

Chester Machine Tools is reporting brisk business across its portfolio of metal-cutting solutions.

Among notable recent sales, a Chester Hercules milling machine and a Kitchen & Walker radial drill have been loaded for their journey to Eritrea in Africa (pictured). They are the first machines of a large three-stage project shipment for the company.
In addition, following a highly successful MACH 2018 exhibition at the Birmingham NEC last month, Chester says that the first Style 510 CNC lathe is now on its way to a specialist hydraulic component manufacturing company in Kent. The Style 510 is suited to the manufacture of research and development project components, prototype parts and sample creations. Chester announced its UK representation of the Dutch-built Style range at the MACH show.
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New research on exporting and subcontracting

Subcon (5-7 June, Birmingham NEC) has unveiled research showing the subcontracting impact of a 48% increase in UK engineering and manufacturing exports over the past 12 months.

The research also revealed: a further 35% of businesses had seen export levels remain the same; of those increasing exports, the most common increase is a healthy 5-10%; and for an elite 20% of businesses, exports grew by more than 20%.

The research also shows that two thirds of manufacturing and engineering businesses used subcontractors in the past year, with 38% planning to increase work with them in the next 12 months. This rise is driven by a lack of in-house capacity and a desire among manufacturers and engineering businesses to focus on core competencies. Of those businesses that do use subcontractors, over half (53%) outsource up to 20% of their requirements, while more than a third (36%) outsource £10,000-£100,000. A further quarter outsource £100,000 to £1m annually.
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Momentum builds to METALTECH 2018

The 24th edition of MetalTech is set to take place on 23-26 May at Putra World Trade Centre in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

More than 2000 companies from 33 countries will participate, showcasing hundreds of machine-tool systems and products revolving around this year’s theme of Industry 4.0 and smart manufacturing.
Like many other advanced countries, Malaysia’s manufacturing industry is undergoing a period of rapid transformation, implementing robotic assembly lines and computer controlled processes. As a result, a number of exhibitors are also showcasing complete assembly line systems, rather than individual machine tools. In addition, visitors will be treated to an opportunity to learn from industry heavyweights through the new live demonstration arena on the show floor, where ‘smartphone manufacturing processes’ will be the theme.
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