Asset finance aids CNC lathe purchase

The purchase of a CNC turning centre by GWR Fasteners, a manufacturer of special fasteners and precision components, has been funded by Close Brothers Asset Finance. Having recently moved into new premises in Oswestry after outgrowing its former location, the new machine will enable GWR Fasteners to both ramp up production and offer new products.

“Here at Close Brothers, we’ve been partnering with GWR Fasteners since they established their firm over a decade ago,” says Simon Parker, regional sales manager for Close Brothers Asset Finance – Manufacturing Division. “We funded their very first CNC machine and we’re delighted that they selected us as their funding partner for the Miyano BNE-51SY6 eight-axis CNC turning centre with bar feed. Despite the considerable cost of the machine, the bespoke finance package we compiled will have a negligible impact on GWR Fasteners’ cash flow, which is always a key consideration in this type of deal.”
Jude Robinson, who founded GWR Fasteners with her partner, Gary, adds: “The purchase of the new CNC machine is a strong statement of our ambitions and it wasn’t a decision we took lightly. Having worked with Close Brothers Asset Finance since we started out, we were able to negotiate a deal that worked for both firms, and we’re delighted with the outcome.”
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Investment provides opportunity for growth

Family-owned Stevens & Carlotti is a subcontractor supplying metal fabrications to a wide range of industries from its 64,000 sq ft facility in Sandwich, Kent. These fabrications, which can be anything from a simple bracket to fully-assembled and tested machines, are supplied to customers in the power generation, oil and gas, and yellow goods sectors, among others.

At any one time Stevens & Carlotti can have up to 1200 individual jobs in progress which, in addition to laser cutting, CNC punching and folding, welding, and painting, also require the support of a machining facility. Investment in turning and milling capacity with machines from XYZ Machine Tools has enhanced productivity on the company’s fabricated components, and created opportunities to develop a dedicated subcontract machining capability.
“The machining of parts used in our fabrications remains the bread and butter for our machine shop, but with the increased capacity and capability we have now, we’ve seen a growth in pure machining work for customers,” says Joe Douglas, planning manager at Stevens & Carlotti. “This now accounts for between 10 and 15% of our machined output, and is growing year-on-year.”
Most recently Stevens & Carlotti has taken delivery of additional capacity in the form of an XYZ TC 320 LTY turning centre, an XYZ 1510 HD vertical machining centre and an XYZ 710 HD VMC.
The XYZ TC 320 LTY turning centre replaced a temperamental lathe from another manufacturer and provides greater capacity with its barfeed, 78 mm bar capacity, 32 kW spindle and 100 mm Y axis. It is the turning workhorse of the business, with operator Callum Jones simply stating “it works” when asked why he likes it.
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Chuck for Swiss-type lathes

According to Big Kaiser, the company has released the world’s first hydraulic chuck designed specifically for Swiss-type automatic (sliding-head) lathes.

Now available in the UK from Industrial Tooling Corporation (ITC), this chuck solution overcomes the problems frequently encountered when using ER collet chucks.
Swiss-type machines make widespread use of ER collet chucks. However, operators often face difficulties when replacing their cutting tools as the available space inside the compact work envelope is extremely tight, providing very little space for tightening the nut. The hydraulic chuck from Big Kaiser simplifies the tool replacement process by using just a single T-wrench. In addition, the chuck facilitates the connection of a coolant tube from the underside.
Head of sales and marketing at Big Kaiser, Christian Spicher, says: “This hydraulic chuck finally provides a simple, easy-to-use solution for all Swiss-type machines, including those from Citizen, Star, Tornos and Tsugami. With the chuck, customers can simplify and accelerate tool replacement. In addition, the system achieves even higher precision cutting results than ever before.”
The new chuck offered by ITC is a world-first concept and Big Kaiser is said to be the only company currently producing such a hydraulic chuck solution. This chuck promises to save time and take the frustration out of tool replacement, essentially superseding existing ER chucks. The Big Kaiser hydraulic chuck for sliding-head lathes is available in six sizes.
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Lathe will pay for itself in 18 months

Installation by Citizen Machinery of a fixed-head Miyano BNE51-MSY twin-spindle, twin-turret turning centre at electrical wiring conduit manufacturer ABB Cable Management Product, Coleshill, is heralding a fundamental change in the way the company turn-mills its cable end fittings.

Cycle time savings of up to 70% with more to come, reductions in manufacturing cost, scrap and returns, and elimination of the need to outsource 10% of production to subcontractors, will combine to amortise the cost of the Miyano well within 18 months of its installation in January 2019. Manufacturing unit manager Andrew Fellows describes this payback time on a major item of capital expenditure as “brilliant”.
“In the first two weeks of the Miyano arriving, we transferred on to the new machine the manufacture of four fast-moving products, all of which benefitted from drilling on both end faces simultaneously at the main and counter spindles,” says Felllows. “Average cycle time saving was 59%, while the largest reduction was 70% in the case of a conduit fitting that previously required 133 seconds to produce. The turn-mill cycle now takes 40 seconds on the Miyano.”
Senior operator Dan Gardner says: “We’ve only taken advantage so far of cutting with two tools at a time, but the superimposition function in the Mitsubishi M730VS control, coupled with Y-axis movement of the upper turret and X-axis travel of the counter spindle, allows three tools to be in cut at the same time.
“After five days’ training from Citizen, both on- and off-site, we carried out a time study on a complex fitting that will see an 80% reduction in cycle time, from 230 to 46 seconds.”
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Latest Index G200 turn-mill

German machine-tool manufacturer Index has introduced the second generation of its G200 turn-mill centre for the complete machining of components from bar or billet.

Available in the UK through sole agent Kingsbury, the machine offers extensive improvements, including increased turning length, up from 400 to 660 mm, a second lower tool carrier and a higher power milling spindle.
Providing cycle-time reductions of up to 30%, the compact machine offers significantly improved performance in a footprint virtually the same as that of its predecessor. New also is the vertical orientation of the heavily ribbed, low-vibration cast bed, which optimises chip flow and provides more space in the working area, especially for the lower tool turrets. Arranged in mirror image, each has an independent, ±45 mm Y axis, as well as 14 live tool stations rated at 16 kW/16 Nm and 7200 rpm maximum speed.
The identical main and counter motor spindles are fluid-cooled, have a bar capacity of 65 mm and a chuck diameter of 165 mm. Rated at 31.5/32 kW and 125/170 Nm, they provide rotational speeds of up to 6000 rpm.
A notable feature is the upper tool carrier, which has a ±65 mm Y axis and a 360° B axis. On one side there is a tool turret with another 14 positions, and on the other an HSK-A40 milling spindle. The spindle’s drive comes with a considerable increase in speed. Whereas the previous G200 was limited to 2000 rpm, the latest 22 kW/52 Nm version provides speeds up to 7200 rpm.
For maximum productivity, it is possible to utilise all three turrets simultaneously at either the main spindle or counter spindle, without interference.
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