To date, Voestalpine Rotec GmbH, a specialist in the manufacture of precision steel pipes and tubes, has been using a manual process to place a radius on its stamping tools. Within the framework of its continuous process optimisation programme, the company recently replaced this manual operation with an automated Rösler R 4/700 SF drag-finishing system. By deploying the single-piece, dry, drag-finishing process, the usable life of the stamping tools at least doubles. For some tools, up-time can even increase by a factor of 10. For this reason, return on investment (ROI) is well below two years.
Adding edge radii to tools is an ideal application for drag-finishing technology. This mass finishing system allows the precise, targeted surface finishing of high-value, complex workpieces. Exactly defined process parameters guarantee repeatable finishing results, reports Rösler.
“From my previous occupation at a supplier of motorsport components I knew that Rösler builds such equipment,” says Hannes Winkler, assistant to the plant manager. “That’s why I contacted them first. Of course, we also contacted other suppliers of mass-finishing equipment and asked them to run processing trials.”
In the end, Voestalpine Rotec chose the R 4/700 SF system because Rösler was the only supplier that could offer a dry finishing process.
“The dry solution eliminated the water cleaning system required with the wet processing alternative,” explains Winkler. “This reduced not only the capital expenditure, but resulted in lower operating costs. Of course, the quality and long service life, as well as the high availability of the Rösler equipment, also played an important role in our decision.”
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