Foremost Specialist Products, a Derby-based subcontract manufacturer of precision engineered components, has invested in a new Sodick ALC600G CNC wire-erosion machine from Sodi-Tech EDM. Acquired to help the company take on the “complex and awkward parts that no else wants to tackle”, among the jobs being successfully accommodated by the machine are stainless steel tubular stem guides for power generator turbines.
“We won a contract for an awkward, tricky part and our existing EDM couldn’t offer four-axis cutting – and didn’t have enough memory to take on the job anyway,” explains the company’s engineering director Joe Walker. “This contract meant we would be tasked with producing a number of cross-holes in stainless steel stem guides for turbines used in power generators. The holes are angled in two planes are must be held to extremely tight tolerances.”
Although Foremost had never owned a Sodick EDM before, when Walker scrutinised the marketplace for a suitable machine capable of processing the stem guides and other complex parts, he was drawn to Sodi-Tech EDM.
“I really liked the feel of the Sodick ALC600G – such were its capabilities that it felt like we’d be moving from a small hatchback to a supercar,” he says. “We are finding the machine offers so many benefits – it is making particularly easy work of the stem guides. Some of the guides have six or eight holes, typically measuring from 1.3 to 3.0mm in diameter, but one of the latest has 28. The Sodick ALC600G gives us peace of mind that the work will be completed efficiently and accurately, every time. Moreover, I would say the new machine is up to 50% quicker on many jobs than the machine it replaced.”
For further information www.sodi-techedm.co.uk