Mazak machine boosts plane restoration

A restorer of vintage aeroplanes has increased its capacity and ability to produce challenging bespoke parts by investing in a new turning centre from Yamazaki Mazak. Kennet Aviation specialises in the renovation and servicing of historic aeroplanes, including Supermarine Seafires used in World War II, to the stringent standards required by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) – the UK’s specialist aviation regulator.

With the aim of enhancing in-house manufacturing capacity and growing its existing business, the company has invested in a Yamazaki Mazak Quick Turn 250MSY CNC turning centre. The new machine, built in the UK at the company’s Worcester-based European Manufacturing Plant, has enabled Kennet Aviation to quickly produce high-accuracy, bespoke aircraft components, and significantly reduce the time taken to restore aircraft.

Kennet’s investment has also opened up new business opportunities by enabling the company to subcontract its capability regarding the production of rare parts for vintage aircraft restorers and collectors worldwide.

Tim Manna, director at Kennet Aviation, says: “Existing components for these older aeroplanes can be very rare, and often not available anywhere. As we may only require very small batches, requesting parts from general subcontractors can be expensive and result in long lead times. We therefore decided to invest in a high-quality CNC machine tools to manufacture parts at Kennet, so we could bring selection, quality control and timing in-house.

“Mazak provided a brilliant service, and we’ve been very impressed with how quickly and accurately the machine has been able to produce parts,” he continues. “In fact, it has been so successful that we’ve since invested in a second machine, a VCN530C vertical milling machine with an additional rotary axis.”

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