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TRUMPF Discusses Vietnam Metalworking Market Amid COVID-19

TRUMPF Discusses Vietnam Metalworking Market Amid COVID-19

Patrick Kemnitz of TRUMPF Vietnam talks about the impact of the ongoing pandemic in Vietnam’s metalworking sector, lessons learned, and strategies to adopt amid the ongoing crisis. Article by Stephen Las Marias.

Patrick Kemnitz

TRUMPF is one of the leading providers of machine tools and laser technology for industrial applications. The company has a strong presence in Southeast Asia through its numerous local subsidiaries. Since 2006, TRUMPF has also been represented in Vietnam, with offices in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. The company has been expanding its local team and presence continuously, and has now grown to a team of more than 40 local employees.

TRUMPF Vietnam supports businesses with local sales, spare parts and service requirements, with the main purpose to be close to its customers. Its European-trained engineers are dedicated to install, inspect, maintain and repair machines locally as well as provide extensive trainings for customers operating the TRUMPF high-end technology in their manufacturing plants.

In an interview with Asia Pacific Metalworking Equipment News, Patrick Kemnitz, General Director, TRUMPF Vietnam Co. Ltd, talks about the impact of the ongoing pandemic in Vietnam’s metalworking sector, lessons learned, and strategies to adopt amid the ongoing crisis.

WHAT HAS BEEN THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON YOUR MARKET?

Patrick Kemnitz (PK): The metal fabrication industry was also impacted by the unforeseeable situation and consequences of the COVID-9 pandemic. 

However, the Vietnamese government has managed the spread of COVID-19 with immediate and very efficient measures. Due to this, the total number of cases since the beginning of 2020, compared to other countries, is on a low level. Now, it has been more than 44 days of no transmissions in the community. This has helped stabilize the economy in Vietnam!

With the latest figures, the Vietnamese GDP is expected to grow to around 2 percent in 2020, after reaching around 7 percent in previous years. The forecast for 2021 is around 6 percent and shows a fast recovery. That means the Vietnamese market is even in such hard times a growth market, during other economies are shrinking. 

Why this can happen? Companies have already amended their strategies. The COVID-19 pandemic made them question their existing supply chains and their sourcing strategy and this means not only companies in Vietnam. This is more a global topic and before COVID-19 the differences between U.S. and China regarding trade brought already dynamic into such consideration of factory movements or at least sourcing diversification.

As a result, especially in manufacturing sector in Vietnam and what we can see from TRUMPF side for the sheet metal market, more production is done and will be done in Vietnam. The demand for metal fabrication has increased in the past months.

In such situations also companies from U.S., China, Japan, India or Singapore are contacting TRUMPF in Vietnam to get contact to reliable manufacturers for sheet metal parts in Vietnam.

WHAT DO YOU THINK SHOULD MANUFACTURERS HAVE IMPLEMENTED BY NOW AS THEY RESUME PRODUCTION?

PK: Right now, it is a good time for manufacturers to realign their strategy. That means not only  preparing an outlook for the production requirements in next six to 12 months, but also being prepared for economic recovery.

The most important thing is to keep the skilled and trained workforce in their factories. The people with their knowledge are the most important factor for a fast ramp-up or for a sustainable change program. Flexible working models can help in current times.

The second thing is production capacity. If manufacturers in Vietnam want to make a next step with their factory and bring in new production jobs especially from foreign countries, then they are facing usually the so called “chicken and egg” problem. Do they need to have the machines first or can they wait to receive the order confirmation?

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Studer: A New Lease Of Life For Your Machine

Studer: A New Lease of Life for Your Machine

Any grinding machine with 45,000 operating hours on its log will wear. The question is, will you buy a new one, or refurbish the old one? Find out in this article from STUDER.

Before

LMT Kieninger specialises in highly demanding machining tasks and manufactures special tools for die and mould making. One of its equipment is the Studer S40 Grinding Machine, which has been in use for 14 years now.

“The S40 was the Rolls Royce of grinding machines. But the machine still wears over time and after intensive use,” admits Heiko Braun, Group Manager of Cylindrical/Surface Grinding and Assembly at LMT Kieninger.

It was clear to LMT Kieninger that they should send the cylindrical grinding machine to the STUDER factory in Switzerland for an overhaul. STUDER provided them with a loan machine for around three months and took care of everything from—from collection through to customs formalities.

“We were very satisfied with the loan machine. Apart from a few little things, we were able to continue grinding as usual,” sums up Braun.

What’s special about machine overhauls at STUDER is that it is the only company to refurbish the machines’ guideways to the original specifications. After the assemblies have been reinstalled, the machine geometry is equivalent to that of a new machine.

“This point in particular really convinced us. We notice the difference. Since the overhaul, we have been grinding with the precision of a new machine. I can only recommend a machine overhaul. Everything went without a hitch, the investment has paid off and a 1,600 mm machine is worth its weight in gold for us,” says Braun.

Rebuild—New from Old

After

A rebuild, or a machine overhaul, makes sense—and not just economically. The operator gets his familiar machine back and continues where he stopped before the overhaul. The difference is that his old machine is like new.

In STUDER‘s factory, specialists disassemble the machine into all its individual parts. The guideways are completely refurbished, the assemblies overhauled, the wear parts in the electric cabinet replaced, and the hydraulic and lubricating system as well as all valves replaced. If old spare parts can no longer be obtained, STUDER provides an alternative solution. The casing and components are sand-blasted and then given a fresh coat of paint.

After assembly, the geometry is like that of a new machine. Commissioning is carried out by STUDER Customer Care, including a functional and geometry inspection, which are all CE-compliant.

“Over 20 people work on machine overhauls at STUDER. This shows the value of rebuild and retrofit at the company. The customers are always enthusiastic about the transformation and are delighted to put an as-new machine into operation at an excellent price-performance ratio,” says Marcos Cotarelo, Divisional Head and Customer Care Consultant at STUDER.

Expanding the Component Range

If the customer wishes to expand his component range at the same time as the overhaul, he can do it with a retrofit. During the machine overhaul, the machine can be modified or retrofitted to the customer’s requirements. This opens up new production possibilities on the same machine. Ingold Tools AG has taken advantage of this STUDER service.

Ingold Tools has been producing high-precision and complex parts for spindle, compressor, hydraulic, and general machine manufacturing since 1946. Its machinery include a variety of CNC and conventional machines, including robotics and automation solutions for turning, milling/drilling, honing, lapping, barrel finishing, sand-blasting, laser marking, as well as surface and cylindrical grinding.

The cylindrical grinding shop already has several conventional and CNC STUDER machines. A further machine is currently being overhauled in the STUDER production halls—an 18-year old S21 with two external spindles and continuous fine adjustment of the turret wheelhead (B-axis fine), which the two managing directors Christoph Jenzer and Edgar Stich recently took on as a second-hand machine.

The S21 will not only be updated in line with the latest developments, but will also be retrofitted to suit the needs of Ingold Tools. In particular, the cylindrical grinding machine will have an additional internal grinding spindle for internal cylindrical grinding and the relevant fixture for swiveling the tailstock into the park position. The S21 will also have a new spindle cooling system with its own circuit, as well as a hydraulically swiveling dressing unit. For all grinding machines to have the same mounting, the universal tool headstock will also be upgraded from MK4 to MK5.

“This deal is perfect for us. Thanks to the retrofit, we get the second-hand machine with 50 percent new hardware,” says Jenzer.

Trusted Quality

The S21 is the second factory-rebuilt STUDER machine at Ingold Tools. In 2016, the company took on a second-hand S31 machine, which STUDER overhauled.

“We grind to a bearing tolerance and diameter of 1 mm. STUDER guarantees this accuracy after the overhaul. Either way, an overhauled STUDER will run just as long as a new machine,” says Stich.

Jenzer and Stich see a further advantage of the machine overhaul in the operation—their employees don’t need to get used to a new machine with a new control system.

Ingold Tools has relied on STUDER since its establishment. The first external cylindrical grinding machine was a Type 01 from 1955. This was still in use when Jenzer joined the company 13 years ago.

“We like working with STUDER. The service personnel are quick to respond, and our customer care consultant supports us wherever he can. It’s not without reason that we have so many STUDER machines,” he says.

A new machine? Jenzer and Stich both agree that they wouldn’t rule it out, as a new machine always offers advantages that an old one doesn’t have, such as faster travel in all axes, simpler set-up of the machine, and easy programming with less technical knowledge. But the employees are looking forward to the overhauled S21, which will soon be on its way to Inkwil in Bern.

 

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Makino Asia’s Smart Factory Meets Sophisticated Precision Engineering Capabilities

Makino Asia’s Smart Factory Meets Sophisticated Precision Engineering Capabilities

Makino Asia, a leading provider of machine tools used across various industries including automotive, aerospace, medical, semiconductor and electronics, has recently showcased its smart factory at its regional headquarters in Singapore. The facility is designed to meet the growing demand for high-quality products and sophisticated precision engineering capabilities in Asia by adopting Industry 4.0 and the principles of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). The smart factory consists of an assembly factory and state-of-the-art machining factory, leveraging seamless automation and digital technologies to achieve high levels of productivity and connectivity between its robots, machines and other peripheral systems.

The combined facility is expected to increase machine production capacity to almost double its previous capacity. The new machining factory and existing assembly factory are connected by a link bridge for staff, and a canopy area for the transfer of materials between the two factories using automated guided forklifts (AGF).

The facility is also fitted with energy-saving and efficient solutions: green energy from installed solar panels within the compound helps to generate about 2,400 megawatt hours of energy annually. This is equivalent to taking 200 cars off the road, avoiding 1,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions over the same period. In the machining factory, a chilled ceiling system is used to ensure maximum energy efficiency of its air-conditioning system while maintaining high quality, reliability and optimum performance of Makino Asia’s manufacturing operations.

Neo Eng Chong, CEO and President of Makino Asia said, “Makino strives for a ‘Quality First’ mindset across the organisation, from the manufacturing of our products to the development of our people and the business. We are extremely proud of our expanded smart facility in Singapore that will enable Makino Asia to better support our Customers in the region and Singapore’s vision to become a global Advanced Manufacturing hub.”

He added, “The automation and digitalisation of the entire facility serves as a way for us to achieve increased productivity, capacity or energy efficiency. More importantly, it embodies our vision to provide more than just machines for our Customers, by providing the most effective and efficient solutions that meet their needs. The establishment of the IoT Centre to provide real-time support is another milestone to enrich partnerships with our valued Customers.”

The monitoring and tracking of machine conditions in real-time enables Makino Asia to provide proactive and predictive services to Customers. This ensures optimum machine performance at all times so that Customers are able to consistently deliver high quality products.

Lim Swee Nian, Assistant Managing Director of the Singapore Economic Development Board said, “Global precision engineering manufacturing leaders are accelerating the adoption and deployment of Advanced Manufacturing technologies from Singapore, to better serve the evolving needs of their Customers. We are pleased that Makino will be deepening its 45-year presence in Singapore through the launch of its digital transformation journey. As Makino Asia focuses on building its Industry 4.0 capabilities to develop and scale new solutions, we are confident that it will create value-added roles and upskilling opportunities for Singapore to succeed in the digital manufacturing economy.”

Makino Asia embarked on its digital transformation journey in 2016 with a plan to invest around S$100 million over five years to expand and boost the capabilities of its facility in Singapore. The company also established two new departments focused on automation and digitalisation to catalyse digital transformation in the company.

Besides having “smart” machines and solutions, Makino is committed to upskilling all its employees to keep up with fast and ever-changing developments in the manufacturing landscape. Makino Asia’s new and current employees undergo a Workforce Transformation program focused on equipping them with automation skills, digital literacy skills and safety skillsets. The courses are mandatory for all employees to keep abreast of the digital technologies being used to manage automated equipment.

The manufacturing sector in Singapore remains a key pillar of Singapore’s economy. It accounts for around 21 percent of Singapore’s nominal Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 14 percent of the total workforce. Rapid technological advancements and digitalisation are changing the face of manufacturing. Developments in Advanced Manufacturing presents opportunities for companies to leverage on new technologies to drive productivity and growth.

 

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Miniaturisation In Clamping Technology Thanks To Additive Manufacturing

Miniaturisation In Clamping Technology Thanks To Additive Manufacturing

Miniaturisation plays an important role in many industries, including machining manufacture. Therefore, clamping chucks also have to become smaller, more precise and more powerful. The requirements cannot be met with conventional manufacturing – MAPAL therefore relies on additive manufacturing by selective laser melting. Article by MAPAL.

Whether in electrical engineering, medical technology, the aerospace industry, the watch industry or robotics and mechanical engineering – many products are becoming ever smaller, yet smarter, more user-friendly and more powerful. The topic of space is therefore crucial. Because space is not only limited on the wrist, in trouser pockets, on board an aircraft or in the human body, but also in the production halls of companies.

This requirement gives rise to the demand for productivity in the smallest possible space, which transfers the cycle of miniaturisation to the entire value-added level. Machine and tool technology in this small sector requires more and more functions having to be fulfilled in the smallest space, also in the area of clamping technology.

Perfect Radial Run-Out And Optimum Balancing Value

The radial run-out accuracy of the clamping chucks for a chipping thickness in the range of a few thousandths of a millimetre must be almost zero. This is the only way to achieve good surfaces at maximum spindle speeds with a long tool life. In addition, it must be ensured that any contamination due to microparticles is excluded. Another important topic for machining in the miniature sector is the supply of coolant lubricant. Too much medium means complex downstream part cleaning, too little or no cooling leads to a loss in quality and productivity.

If handling should also be simple, conventional manufacturing reaches its limits. The smaller the tool and clamping chuck, the easier handling must be. Because with each reduction, the handling of external peripheral devices becomes more complicated and more difficult. With shrink or collet technology, it also takes considerably longer for the tools to be ready for use. In the case of multi-part attachments, the individual deviations of the components also add up to a considerable error chain.

Additive Manufacturing By Selective Laser Melting

At MAPAL additive manufacturing by selective laser melting is used in all product areas. And this is the case in all situations where additively manufactured products can offer clear added value for the customer. Thanks to this innovative manufacturing process, MAPAL has succeeded in manufacturing clamping chucks in miniature format with HSK-E25 connection, for example for direct clamping of tools with a diameter of 3 mm. And these miniature clamping chucks meet all of the above requirements.

The Smallest Clamping Chucks With The Best Properties

In order to guarantee radial run-out accuracy, the clamping technology specialists have integrated innovative clamping chamber systems into the new clamping chucks, which fit snugly against the tool shank. They are equipped with dirt grooves to displace microscopic dirt. The required balancing value is ensured thanks to internal balancing geometries including support structures, which also optimise weight and strength. Overall, with the chucks in a small format, there can be achieved a more homogeneous and spindle-friendly acceleration and braking of the entire tool system consisting of clamping chuck and tool.

Thanks to additive manufacturing, MAPAL has succeeded in equipping the clamping chucks for the miniature sector with decentralised coolant outlets. Using parameters such as coolant pressure, setting dimension and spindle speed, these outlets are designed in such a way that they convey the coolant lubricant directly to the cutting point. In the best case, a dosed loss lubrication, which makes subsequent cleaning of the parts superfluous, is achieved.

Very Easy Handling Without Peripheral Devices

The new clamping chucks from MAPAL in a small format enable simple and quick clamping of the tool. Neither training courses nor high retooling costs or expensive peripheral devices are required for implementation. Because the hydraulic chucks are operated using a simple screw.

New Possibilities – Not Only For Tool Clamping

The new small hydraulic chucks also open up new possibilities for workpiece clamping. For example, for clamping hip joint balls. Here the external hydraulic clamping technology is used. Specially shaped chip flutes inside the chuck and a special external geometry ensure that the balls are clamped very precisely and gently at the same time. In medical technology in particular, topics such as reproducible precision are of enormous importance. And this is ensured during machining thanks to the new chucks.

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[TMTS 2018] Interview With Mr. Ryan Liu From CNC-Takang

[TMTS 2018] Interview With Mr. Ryan Liu From CNC-Takang

Asia Pacific Metalworking Equipment News is pleased to conduct an interview with Mr. Ryan Liu from CNC-Takang regarding his views on the current and future market outlook for Taiwan’s metalworking industry.

Mr. Ryan Liu from CNC-Takang

1.What has been the business focus of CNC-Takang in 2018?

Originally, the company’s main markets are in Russia, India and Western Europe such as Germany. However, the company is now shifting its focus to the US and the Southeast Asian market due predominantly to currency challenges in other markets. The company also has an office in the US as strong service standards are required in order to meet market demands as well as the country’s strict regulatory requirements. Similarly, in order to meet the quality standards in our markets in the US and Europe, our products have been certified to be able to meet DIN standards.

2. What would be the company’s business focus in 2019?

As the US economy is growing, the US market will be an area of focus in 2019. This is also because the Taiwanese market is currently experiencing limitations due to the policies by the Chinese government and local manufacturers will require more support from the Taiwanese government as well as the establishment of more trade agreements if they were to invest their growth in the local market. In the meantime, other markets that are of interest to the company are Vietnam and Thailand as both countries are experiencing growth in their economies.

3. What do you think will be the trends in Taiwan’s metalworking industry in 2019?

Due to the ongoing trade war, the Taiwanese manufacturing industry will experience a downturn at least till the first quarter of 2019. This is also because the larger Taiwanese manufacturers have factories in China and at least 30 percent of their exports are being produced from their factories in China.

4. What are your views on the Taiwan International Machine Tool Show (TMTS) 2018?

The show has improved every year and the location of the show in Taichung is optimal as 90 percent of the local machine building industry and its associated supporting industries are located here.

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Tornos Launches Customer Service Centre In Shanghai

Tornos Launches Customer Service Centre In Shanghai

Tornos Shanghai has officially opened its new customer centre in Shanghai’s Pudong Pilot Free-Trade Zone. This is in recognition of China’s status as the largest industrial market globally. The new centre will accommodate the company’s full range of machines and brings Swiss operational excellence to the doorsteps of customers in Greater China.

The inauguration of the new customer centre in Shanghai also underscores the power of three legendary entities—Tornos, Switzerland and Shanghai—Turning Together toward the future. Present for many years in China, Tornos inaugurated its first subsidiary in Shanghai in 2004. For both Tornos and Shanghai, the past 14 years have been an amazing journey and the Tornos’ customer centre in Shanghai will strengthen the company’s regional presence and fortify its standing as the partner of choice in machine tools.

Tornos, China And Switzerland: A History Of Collaboration

This year, Tornos also celebrates the fifth anniversary of its Tornos Xi’an plant. And with internationalisation as a top priority, Tornos is strengthening its flexibility and growing through innovation to enhance its operational excellence every day. With the opening of its customer centre in Shanghai, Tornos ramps up its offering of unique solutions for targeted market segments – an approach that has met success in Greater China.

And there is more to come: Tornos plans on increasing its visibility in this market region, and the customer centre in Shanghai will play a big part in this strategy. In fact, this centre is a clear sign of Tornos’ commitment to this market and to its customers.

The new centre is equipped with the latest technologies and will provide quality support to Chinese customers. With a surface area of more than 1,500 square meters, it includes a training center, showroom, metrology room and a stock of spare parts.

In terms of applications, the centre will make full use of Tornos’ know-how across a wide range of industrial segments—including automotive, micromechanics, electronics and medical & dental—with the goal providing turnkey machining solutions while being close to the market. The purpose of this technology center is to maximise support for Tornos’ customers in the production of parts in small or large quantities in China. This support ranges machine support and operator training to the supply of spare parts, technical assistance and programming advice, as well as expertise on the best choice of tools and clamping devices.

Close To Customers, Wherever They Are In The World

Thanks to its new center in Shanghai, Tornos will be faster, more efficient, more responsive to its local customers as this enables the company’s technicians to expedite machine set ups and partnerships with customers. An open house for the customer centre in Shanghai will occur on November 8.

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Amba “All-In-One” Bolt Production Machine

Amba “All-In-One” Bolt Production Machine

Amba’s “All-in-one” machine allows for the production of upset bolt blanks of 60 to 200 mm in length at a rate of up to 400 bolts per minute or 24,000 pieces per hour. In contrast, bolts in lengths between 160 and 180 mm are typically produced at a rate of 60 pieces per minute.

This increase in throughput is done by first upsetting one end of the rod, then rotating the rod and upsetting the opposite end—in an integrated secondary upsetting station the machine. The thus produced bolt blanks have a head at both ends. At the end of the process, they will be cut in half.

 

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Getting Up To Speed

Getting Up To Speed

“Fibernomics” (as coined by Bystronic), describes an all-encompassing economic principle which seeks to give the competitive advantage in today’s sheet metal fabrication environment. It begins with the company’s fibre laser cutting system. Contributed by Oliver Hergt, editor corporate communications, Bystronic.

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