Citizen machine helps TAS rebalance business

Around 20 years ago, Gareth Davies started Burton-on-Trent company TAS Engineering as a steel, stainless steel and aluminium fabrication shop.In 2014, he established a machine shop to add extra value to the products the company was forming and welding. Today, there is a pair of three-axis vertical machining centres on-site and a trio CNC lathes, the latest of which is a pre-owned Cincom L20 sliding-head turning centre from Citizen Machinery.

What prompted the purchase in October 2023 of this 20-year-old lathe, the company’s first sliding-head model, was a desire for more efficient turningof components in various materials from bar up to 20 mm in diameter. A case in point is the ongoing production of a 16 mm diameter, 316 stainless steel magnet holder, which is welded to a small, laser-cut and bent plate to form part of a safety unit for industrial switchgear. The turned component, of which 200 are required per month, was previously produced complete on one of two fixed-head, twin-spindle lathesin a 2.5-minute cycle.

It was apparent that the steel magnet holder could be produced more quickly on a modern Citizen L20 twin-spindle sliding-head turning centre due to the faster axis motions of the gang tool carriers on the former compared with the turret movements of fixed-head lathes. However, Davies was surprised to find it was possible to machine the part more than three times faster on the Cincom: the cycle now takes just 48 seconds.

He says that although the purchase price of the lathe was only about 24% of the investment needed for a modern 20 mm capacity L-series Cincom, he was treated by all Citizen Machinery UK staff as though he were purchasing a new L20.

For further information