16 July, 2018
Ceramicx has invested further in its new factory infrastructure, with the purchase of a new TruPunch installation from German supplier Trumpf.
Ceramicx will now be further enabled to process a diverse range of metallic parts with flexibility. In addition to punching, the machine will provide the option to form sheet metal parts or to integrate a thread – all from one machine and workstation.
The initial quotation process featured a total 82 options for just the machine alone. Tooling presented further issues, requiring tonnage estimates and other calculations to assess future production needs. Ceramicx’s eventual purchase of over 220 tools for the new Trumpf puts the company in pole position to design and make virtually any metal needed for IR heating equipment.
The punching head on the TruPunch can turn the tool to any angular position. This minimizes setup times and increases productivity. Innovations such as an active and descending die also guarantee the best part quality. Intelligent and connected automation also relieve the operator from attendance, decrease programming time and increase production throughput.
The new machine will play a key part in fulfilling the Ceramicx aim of 100% in-house manufacture. It will also reduce time-to-market, allow Ceramicx to design to the TruPunch capability at hand and eliminating the need – and the lead times involved – for outsourced supply.
The TruPunch also helps catalyses the automation processes at the Ceramicx factory: Finished parts are ready and available from the machine with no need for further processing, increasing productivity and improving part aesthetics.
A programme of operator training is already underway and is being made available to several Ceramicx personnel. As with any new machine, operations take a little time to bed in: In the course of commissioning the project Ceramicx received training in the Trumpf based software. Ceramicx also received operator training in the week the machine arrived. Training is also being established on the set-up of tooling and further training is scheduled for the coming months on more advanced features like thread forming, engraving and forming.
The New Year ushered in the launch of the newly built factory at Ceramicx and the TruPunch - representing a mid six figure investment sum - is but one of a series of new technical competences in plant and machinery that will be established at Ceramicx in the coming months.