Machinery & Manufacturing | Issue 15 | May-June 2024

Highlighting Machine Tool & Manufacturing Technology


ISSUE 15 | MAY/JUN 2024




TUESDAY 9th & WEDNESDAY 10th JULY 2024 9:00am – 3:00pm

TUESDAY 9th & WEDNESDAY 10th JULY 2024 9:00am – 3:00pm

JULY 2024

JULY 2024

Page 16 Shop-floor Workout Plan Exlporing Siemens MACHINUM - The pathway to digital transformation


Page 12

SHOW PREVIEW Automation UK is on the horizon

LET’S TALK INSPECTION A stereo digital microscope

EXCLUSIVE REVIEW MACH exhibition gets back on track

Page 24

Page 20

Page 64

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Contents 5 Thought : Manufacturing Matters A vital time and drive for change

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Catch up What’s been happening?


Publisher - Laura Crawford Technical Editor - Steed Webzell Circulation Enquiries Advertising Enquiries Editorial Submissions Published in an eco-aware format by Engineering Media Ltd The Maidstone Innovation Centre, Gidds Pond Way, Maidstone, Kent ME14 5FY Tel +44 (0)1622 296112 Company Number : 13634129 VAT Registration 397 8226 41 Our registered company address is : 20-22 Wenlock Road, London, N1 7GU In our mission towards carbon neutral, we publish and replant in partnership with:

Industry Report Unveiling the true impact of manufacturing


MACHINUM A shop-floor workout plan


MACH Show Review Great to see MACH back on track


People of #UKMFG A model entrepreneur Let’s Talk Inspection A stereo digital microscope!



Celebration Half century contribution to industrial progress


Cover Spotlight The inside track on 40 years of XYZ Quality & Metrology High performance partnership



Cutting Tools ISCAR is about to change metal cutting..again! Sheetmetal Sparks fly when ACCURL and Kellys join forces



Stamping and Pressing A match made in tooling


The Think Tank Workforce Productivity


Aerospace Pooling knowledge for aircraft assembly


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Software New Cutting Parameters AI


Laser Cutting Nukon Lasers collaborates with Lantek UK Automation Trebling automated milling capacity



Welcome... Welcome to issue fifteen of Machinery & Manufacturing magazine. Crafted by our team of dedicated engineering media professionals especially for you, the CNC machine tool intensive manufacturing community. We invite you to enjoy this immersive reading experience packed with video and downloads. This is a hybrid magazine, to be read on or alongside your desktop, phone or tablet. I’m a hybrid! How do you use me? Click or scan the play buttons for instant video Click or scan the download buttons for instant brochure downloads, discreetly appearing on your device in a separate file ready for you to simply hit save.

Machining Productivity Autonomous machine tool optimisation


Additive Manufacturing Improved AM efficiency Green Manufacturing Energy efficiency in full ‘Force’



Event Preview Automation UK


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Manufacturing matters

At this year’s MACH 2024 exhibition in Birmingham, the Manufacturing Technologies Association (MTA) launched a new report that is highly pertinent to our industry: ‘The true impact of British Manufacturing’. Compiled in conjunction with Oxford Economics, this insightful report reveals the direct, indirect and induced impacts that manufacturing has on the UK economy, which in total are far greater than many thought. You can download it within this issue of Machinery & Manufacturing. Inside its pages you’ll find many key findings, but among the most notable is the fact that manufacturing accounts for a staggering £518 billion of UK GDP and supports 7.3 million jobs. Furthermore, ‘making things’ represents 34.5% of all UK goods and services exports, while manufacturing’s median wage is 11% above the national average. Innovation in manufacturing also continues to help overcome global challenges, reveals the report. The drive to reduce carbon emissions, for example, is demanding new technologies and solutions in areas such as renewable energy, which offers huge potential for our national prosperity. We’ll also see great opportunities in areas such as lightweighting. In reference to these trends, the report makes an important statement: As technologies evolve, the scale of change can be daunting for SME manufacturers, so access to practical and financial support must continue to be a priority. Of further interest, the report assesses the economic impacts on manufacturing from several extraordinary factors of recent years that include the pandemic, Brexit, soaring energy prices, global supply chain fragility, labour shortages and international conflicts. Although manufacturers have clearly been pushed to the limits of their ingenuity, they have overcome every hurdle. Moving forward, encouraging domestic production and supporting exports will create vital opportunities to generate wealth and improve living standards across the UK. This report therefore is a reminder, should it be needed, that manufacturing matters. This leads me on to a poignant plea surrounding a petition that was set up by some of our best industry champions - Advocating for the recruitment of a highly experienced, respected and trusted professional to represent the engineering & manufacturing industries to Government. It is time for manufacturing and engineering to have a trusted voice in parliament. Please spare 30 seconds and join me in signing the petition by scanning the QR code or clicking on the button. Thank you. Laura Crawford Publisher Sign the petition

Catch up

Sertec stars at the metalworking Oscars

A supplier of millions of components every day to cars, lorries and engines has been named as the Confederation of British Metalforming’s Company of the Year. Sertec Group, which employs over 2200 people across ten global locations, beat off strong competition from the sector to win

the main award, with judges impressed by ‘its journey to excellence’ that has seen it enjoy a major increase in productivity, improvements in on-time delivery in full and the implementation of a comprehensive employee engagement approach.

New MMT threading series

The MMT series, a comprehensive range of inserts and tools for threading from Mitsubishi Materials has been expanded to include a new 3-D chipbreaker and a new versatile PVD coated grade. In total there are 88 new items now available. The MMT range covers a huge range of tooling for efficient and precise machining of a multitude of internal and external thread types from, standard metric and popular imperial threads such as Whitworth and UNC

geometries through to thread forms such as ACME. The main feature and

advantage of the MMT series is to maintain chip

control during the latter half of passes when continuous chips are formed and typically cause problems such as chip wrapping and poor surface finishes.


Machinery & Manufacturing

Catch up

UKMHA Appoints Rob Fisher as New CEO

The UK Material Handling Association (UKMHA) announces Rob Fisher as its Chief Executive Officer, effective July 1, 2024. Rob Fisher will succeed Tim Waples, Chief Executive UKMHA, whose retirement was announced earlier in the year, and

Cameron Burnett, CEO Designate.

Keith Villiers has retired as Applications Engineer at Walter Ewag UK, manufacturer of CNC grinding, erosion and measuring machines, after 27 years’ of service. James Hanmer has succeeded him as Applications Engineer. Keith joined Walter GB (as it was then) in 1997 as a machine salesman, moving into applications two years later. He has been involved with customers the length and breadth of the country, applying his vast applications knowledge to help with programming, process and productivity improvement in the production and regrinding of cylindrical cutting tools. James joined Walter Ewag UK’s customer care department in 2017 after a career in production engineering that began with an apprenticeship in the early ‘90s. He now succeeds Keith at the Warwick-based company and will continue to offer similar outstanding levels of support. ‘All change’ at Walter Ewag UK

“I am honoured and excited by this unique opportunity,” says Rob Fisher. “I look forward to engaging with UKMHA members along with our Safe User Group at the earliest opportunity. With an exceptional team by my side, I am confident in our ability to drive positive change and continue to elevate the profile of our industry.” Innovative solution reduces set-up times for die change

ROEMHELD announces the new, rail- guided RWS die changing table for transporting heavy dies and moulds. The innovative solution

is available in three versions for loads of up to 15 tonnes, 25 tonnes, or 40 tonnes

per die. Electrically driven, the system is equipped with two different pull-push systems for the safe and automatic transport of dies to set up presses. It can be used to change dies and moulds on all types of machines, including vertical forming and injection moulding machines.


Machinery & Manufacturing

Catch up

Largest robots ever ordered in UK

Aerospace automation specialist Loop Technology has signed a deal with FANUC UK for seven new robots – including four units of the largest industrial robot ever to be ordered in the UK. Renowned as the strongest long-reach robot in the world, three FANUC M-2000iA/1700L six-axis units will be delivered to the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) for its new innovation facility in

South Yorkshire. This is part of Project Compass (Composites at Speed and Scale), a larger £80m investment which includes an aerospace manufacturing R&D project delivered by a consortium of partners including Boeing, Loop Technology, Spirit AeroSystems and the AMRC. The Loop/AMRC deal also encompasses two further FANUC M-2000iA robots: a 1200L and a 900L model.

£37.6m ‘UK Digital Twin Centre’ for Belfast

Belfast Region City Deal and Innovate UK have announced a £37.6m investment in the UK Digital Twin Centre, a centre of excellence that will revolutionise how industries develop products, services and systems across the UK. Led by Digital Catapult, the Centre has been endorsed by UK industry, launching with co-investment from three major industry partners: Thales UK, Spirit AeroSystems and Artemis Technologies. Enabled by a core investment from

Innovate UK into this new world-class Centre and

the associated programmes, the partners will deliver an initial six use cases to demonstrate

the potential of digital twins in transforming the maritime, aerospace and defence sectors.


Machinery & Manufacturing

Catch up

Cambridge Precision Ltd has been announced as a recipient of the King’s Award for Enterprise for International Trade. The King’s Awards for Enterprise are the most prestigious awards for UK businesses, recognising and celebrating business excellence in the UK. Cambridge Precision Ltd (CPL) is one is rightly yours.” Celebrated Tony Murray, Commercial Director. Kings Award for Enterprise for CPL

of only 252 organisations nationally to be honoured this year with a King’s Award. “What an achievement. For all our team who have, time and time again, gone the extra mile and found a different way, this award FOBEM needs you! Mark your calendars, the inaugral National FOBEM (Festival of British Engineering and Manufacturing) will be held on 26th September 2024 in line with National Manufacturing Day at the prestigious Bristol Aerospace Museum. The one day festival pledges to cultivate a new generation of engineers who will proudly uphold the UK’s legacy of manufacturing excellence. “Following many conversations at MACH, it is clear that this superb industry has proven once again that it’s prepared to collaborate and fly the flag for British engineering & manufacturing. There are limited sponsorship opportunities available, I urge those companies who wish to have an involvement to get in touch with me directly or formally express their interest via our website.”

Marking two decades

Ted Barchard recently celebrated his 20 years’ service at Hone-All Precision Ltd.a dynamic and sub- contract machining company specialising in Deep Hole Boring, Deep Hole Drilling, CNC Turning and CNC Honing. Lovingly referred

to as Morale Manager, Ted always has a smile and great sense of humour. He’s a true star of the industry and over the years, he has quite possibly spoken to every one of Hone-All’s 4000+ customers whilst helping with their engineering issues. Director, Andrea Wilson, commented on Ted’s milestone “Massive congratulations Ted - We can’t thank you enough for being alongside us the last 20 years and we look forward to the

Leigh Howarth, Co- founder – FOBEM.

years we have ahead!”


Machinery & Manufacturing

Catch up

New capacitive contact discharge stud welder

GYS, the largest manufacturer of welding equipment in Europe, has introduced a new stud welder to its range, the CAPATEK 66. The CAPATEK 66, made in France, is an industrial stud welder with capacitive contact discharge, capable of welding a wide range of studs in steel, stainless steel, aluminium, and brass to thin sheet metal. Its ergonomic contact gun, with adjustable force and trigger, ensures ultra-fast and accurate welds. Featuring advanced technology, its minimal penetration produces clean welds without marking or deforming the material. “The CAPATEK 66 is an exciting edition to the GYS welding range,” said Neil Burton – Divisional Manager. “With its speed, precision, and user-friendly features, it is a great choice for top-tier efficiency and accuracy in stud welding.” It has an intuitive and user-friendly design, while delivering maximum performance. With a 66mF capacitor discharge and recharge time between 0 and 5 seconds, it can rapidly weld

Download brochure

a wide choice of stud sizes, from M3 to M8. Compatible stud lengths are 6 – 40 mm. The contact gun features several designs that improve efficiency and usability. Force adjustment allows the user to select a force between 25 N and 100 N, and features a cover to prevent inadvertent adjustments. The trigger control allows for simple control of welding actions. Unique to the market, the CAPATEK 66 features a bright LED light, capable of illuminating the welding zone. The LED light also acts as an error indicator and stud counter for added convenience.

ETG Introduce New Bending Centre

The Fabrication Division at the Engineering Technology Group (ETG) is now proud to present the latest arrival to its product range – the Durma PB Bending Centre. Capable of performing bending operations on a wide range of sheet metals, the PB accurately positions the lower and upper bending dies to achieve incredibly flexible part profiles with unparalleled precision. With its user-friendly interface and technologically advanced software that

facilitates the programming of an unfathomably wide range of parts, the PB Bending Centre is your ideal solution. From a technological perspective, the new addition to the ETG range has a ‘Smart Consumption System’ that offers standard production conditions isolated from thermal effects with minimum operator input.


Machinery & Manufacturing







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Industry report

Unveiling the true impact of manufacturing ‘The True Impact of UK Manufacturing’, which was unveilled at MACH 2024, shows industry is worth £518billion and supports 7.3million UK jobs directly and across the supply chains/communities it operates in.

This represents nearly a quarter of total GDP (23%) and far bigger than the direct contribution of 8.2% that is usually quoted by economists. Carried out by Oxford Economics and the Manufacturing Technologies Association (MTA), the in-depth report also shows that ‘making things’ accounts for 34.5% of all UK goods and services exports, whilst the median wage is £31,300 – 11% higher than the national median wage. The findings are even more impressive when you consider the sector has had to navigate

a myriad of challenges outside its control in recent years, including changing relations with the European Union, the Covid-19 pandemic, unprecedented increases in energy costs and global supply chain fragility and international conflicts. MTA’s Chief Executive Officer, James Selka is now urging the sector to build on this report by exploring ways in which it can address the skills shortage and develop successful programmes, such as the High Value Manufacturing Catapult

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“Our report has been designed to take a ‘deeper dive’ and looks at the direct, indirect, and induced impacts of manufacturing, which is a far more comprehensive overview of what we make, the complex nature of our supply chains and the economic benefit gained from the spending of wages by those employed in our sector.” He continued: “The results illustrate that manufacturing accounts for £518bn of GDP and supports 7.3m jobs, most of which enjoy higher than average wages. “We are also a part of the economy that invests heavily in new technologies, with nearly half (47%) of total R&D investment made by manufacturers. You only have to visit MACH this week to see this first-hand, with more than 500 companies showcasing the latest in automation and robotics, additive manufacturing, latest software, advanced CNC machining and measurement and inspection solutions.” The MTA is now calling on a well-integrated commitment from the whole nation to help industry realise its potential, ranging from business leaders and academics to policymakers so crucial in developing a cross-party industrial strategy.

Centres, to increase wealth creation by commercialising more of the great ideas and innovations born in the UK. “This is a fantastic insight into the true impact of manufacturing in the UK and reinforces what many of us already know – that industry is a far greater contributor to GDP and jobs than listed in national accounts,” commented James.

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Industry report

True Impact of Manufacturing Report






The recent Advanced Manufacturing Plan - accompanied by support worth £4.5bn - has been welcomed as a step in the right direction and an important vehicle in helping to cultivate the new technologies and industries being born, such as electrification, lightweighting, less carbon intensive materials and renewable energy. Introducing new measures that increase exports should also be a priority and there is an unprecedented opportunity to deliver critical sovereign capabilities from public health to defending our realm. Headline sponsors Lloyds Bank welcomed the findings of the latest report. David Atkinson, UK Head of Manufacturing SME and Mid Corporates, commented: “As this report highlights, manufacturing is an integral part of the UK economy, through GDP contribution, job creation, and as a source of high wages. “When you consider the sector’s extended reach through its supply chains and beyond,

you can really start to see the scale of its contribution. “Manufacturers have demonstrated agility and resilience in the past few years of uncertainty, and we are responding by continuing to invest in partnerships in the sector that ensure it has the skills, tools and support needed to compete on a global scale.” Stephen Phipson, CEO of Make UK, concluded: “Manufacturing has always been a strategically important sector for UK economy and, none more so than now, given the immense societal, political and economic challenges that we face. “Just as the first industrial revolution provided a step change, the accelerating pace of technological change of the fourth industrial revolution gives us a generational opportunity to do the same now. This valuable report highlights to those in power now and in the future, how manufacturing is greater than the sum of its parts.” n




Machinery & Manufacturing 14


A shop-floor workout plan

Machine tool builders and users alike are facing growing challenges to enhance productivity and adapt to constantly changing conditions. As traditional optimisation methods reach their limits, the digitalisation of production processes is an important tool for addressing these challenges. However, with many companies unsure of where to start, Siemens suggests that a tailored ‘workout plan’ can provide the pathway to digital transformation. With specific use cases and digital solutions, companies can get their shop floor fit for the future.

Importantly, it’s not just large automotive and aerospace customers that can benefit from this approach, as Mark Coombes, Machine Tool Systems Business Manager for Siemens in the UK explains: “It’s definitely changed over the past few years; many SMEs are now embarking on their digital transformation journey. With a portfolio- based digitalisation solution, SMEs can make the transition step-by-step as budget and time allow.” Christian Meltzer, Head of Machinum Product Management at Siemens Erlangen, Germany, adds: “For machine tool users and their many

challenges – such as supply chain crises, skills shortages and market uncertainty – digitalisation is becoming more realistic. Smaller machine shops want to know what’s available to make production more flexible and resilient. Notably, there’s no need to make a big investment up front. You can start by attacking specific pain points.” Case in point Nuremberg-based business W. Andreas Pfeiffer - Maschinen- und Apparatebau knows all about the current challenges for companies

Machinery & Manufacturing 16


Coombes. “Companies can see the value in digitalisation and how much it can improve their processes. We have solutions that allow SME manufacturers – including those without the latest machines – to achieve gains in productivity or tool life, for example.” Despite the potential on offer, many companies still struggle to find the right starting point for their digital transformation. Siemens says the process is similar to striving for personal fitness: good preparation, clear goals and tailored measures can help machine shops get fit for a digital future. The company sets out three performance enhancement goals to assess shop-floor fitness: speed, agility and endurance. With its Machinum CNC digitalisation portfolio, which is specific to machine tool users and builders, the company offers an easy and convenient way to achieve these ambitions. “Importantly, Machinum is suitable for all shop-floor machines, not just those with Siemens controls,” says Mr Meltzer. “By way of example, a small machine shop near here has been focusing our digital tool management solutions, leading to a reduction in set-up times of circa 50%.” Full speed ahead A key point in the process chain between order receipt and finished product is machine tool set-up and programming. Errors here can lead to machine idle times. This is where simulating the machine program using a digital twin makes it possible to create and check NC programs offline without a real machine, safely optimising machining processes in a virtual environment. Furthermore, digital resource management helps to link tools and machining resources with the correct NC program, saving significant time in job preparation. Manufacturers can

in the metal-cutting sector. This family-owned business produces components for applications that include optics, precision mechanics and medical technology. Business is strong, but the market is becoming more demanding, which is why Andreas Pfeiffer is adopting end-to-end process digitalisation to help reduce set-up and throughput times. “Andreas Pfeiffer is demonstrating that traditional perceptions of barriers to digitalisation – such as cost, complexity and lack of knowledge – are eroding,” says Mr

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Open shop approach Machinum from Siemens is an open, modular digitalisation portfolio based on Siemens Xcelerator for the machine tool industry that can benefit small and medium-sized companies and large enterprises. “In the development of Machinum we look at all elements of the machine shop: the machines, the virtual machine and the shop-floor processes,” explains Mr Meltzer. “Also, we focus on making the solution control-agnostic. As a result, I’m not aware of another portfolio with such a breadth of capabilities.” Adds Mr Coombes: “The portfolio dovetails with sustainability initiatives, an example being using virtual machines to simulate and verify NC programs rather than consuming energy and material by running actual machine tools. In fact, the fourth performance goal of Machinum will be sustainability, arriving in 2025.” Fighting fit “A digitalisation transformation project is like going to the gym,” concludes Marketing Communications Manager Bozena Immonen. “You don’t run a marathon on the first day; you build steadily towards goals like more speed, agility or endurance. And although every machine shop is different, the ambitions are the same: you want to be better than before. You’ll need certain things, namely a personal trainer [Siemens], a workout plan [use case clusters] and equipment [Machinum apps]. The time to start is now because what will happen if you don’t? You’ll continue suffering flabby production processes, dispiriting setbacks and poor recovery times.” Siemens offers a shop-floor check-up tool to see where machine shops can make savings. This informative tool also compares resource management – including tools, NC programs and machine data – against industry standards. Now is the time to get fit. n

also reduce cycle times, as adaptive feed control is able to minimise machining times and detect tool breakage at an early stage. Machine tool manufacturer Grob was able to reduce its cycle times by 18% using this solution. The ability of agility If companies want to produce small batch sizes and complex geometries quickly and cost- effectively, they need to make their processes more flexible. Before starting the job, the user can employ the machine’s digital twin to check whether efficient component manufacture is possible using that specific machine. He or she can also calculate the run time. In addition, users can develop virtual prototypes in the model to map new requirements. It is then possible to allocate corresponding production resources via digital resource management. Efficient and targeted re-tooling on the machine allows companies to take production plan changes into account and implement them more quickly, as confirmed by Andreas Pfeiffer. The company is using digital resource management to achieve set-up time savings of around 50%. Machine endurance Digital solutions also help companies to extend the service life of their machines and tools. Special apps use machine data to enable predictive maintenance and prevent unplanned downtime. Digital solutions can detect tool wear and excess stress to avoid tool breakage. Alongside information from the digital twin, data from cameras and sensors helps to detect collision risks, signs of wear and errors in advance. Tool manufacturer Emuge-Franken is able to carry out around 95% of measurements without investing in an expensive tool external measuring system thanks to in-process monitoring of high- frequency data.

Machinery & Manufacturing 18

YOU Milling Intelligently?

NEW Small 06 Square Inserts to be Mounted on Endmills for High Feed Machining

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MACH 2024 Review

strong order levels, including XYZ Machine Tools, which took orders worth in excess of £1 million. Spanning 12 machines, this figure is expected to rise in the coming weeks and months. “We saw a similar number of visitors to the stand as MACH 2022, but the quality was better,” stated Martin Burton, XYZ’s Sales Director. “There were more people looking to make an immediate or near-future investment, rather than discussing plans further down the track. In particular, it was nice to meet a number of companies who are considering XYZ for the first time.” NCMT also had cause to celebrate, not least because 2024 represents the company’s 60th anniversary. This major machine tool supplier used the event to showcase five-axis machining centres

There was a broad consensus among both exhibitors and visitors attending the recent MACH exhibition in Birmingham: the exhibition felt like it was back to pre-Covid levels. The star of the show, of course, was the technology, as MACH visitor Andrew Heffer-Lamond, Sales and Project Manager at Suffolk-based fabrication specialist HF Bond, confirmed: “I visited MACH to look at the latest in automation and was blown away by the range on offer. I’ve lined up some demonstrations and look forward to making an investment in the right technology to drive our business forward.” With so many visitors offering the same sentiment, a huge number of exhibitors reported

Machinery & Manufacturing 20

MACH 2024 Review

such as the Genos M460-5AX VMC, which was one of the first Okuma machines to be exhibited in the UK with the manufacturer’s new OSP 500 control. It certainly captured the imagination of visitors, as Marketing Manager Vicky Knight reported: “After a consistently busy week at MACH it’s been great to see industry positivity and these initial conversations evolve into investments.” Machines making their first MACH appearance were a common theme. Indeed, there were three debutants on the stand of Matsuura: the four-axis horizontal H.Plus-405 PC12 with twelve 500 mm² pallets for high-mix, low-volume manufacturing; the MX-850 single-table five-axis machining centre, now the largest in the MX series; and the Muratec MWR120G CNC multi-tasking turn-mill centre with front-facing twin spindles equipped with live-tool Y axis and milling function. Yamazaki Mazak said it drew thousands of visitors to its stand. The company’s recent emphasis on entry-level machines created exceptionally strong interest, while further development of Mazak’s NC Mazatrol Smooth also drew the attention of visitors. UK Managing Director Alan Mucklow said: “The quality of the visitors to our stand, many of whom had a very high intention to invest in new technology, resulted in one of our best-ever UK exhibition performances. MACH 2024 proved that UK manufacturing is in good health.”

Able to corroborate this belief was Mills CNC, which took 30 machine orders on the show’s largest stand. A cursory glance at the list reveals multiple orders for DN Solutions Lynx and Puma lathes, DNM vertical machining centres, an SMX turn-mill machine, a SYNERGi automated manufacturing cell, and two high- speed tapping centres. The company also says a number of leads related to turnkey and process improvement project work, specifically involving Zayer machines. A large-capacity Zayer XIOS G MT horizontal bed mill took pride of place on the stand. “The feedback we received from customers and visitors alike has been overwhelmingly positive,” stated CEO Tony Dale. The show’s biggest machine was a Correa Fox 60 bridge-type milling machine with enormous travel distances of 6,000, 4,250 and 1,750 mm in the X, Y and Z axes respectively. The machine took pride of place on the stand of British partner DTS UK, which at MACH took an order for two Correa Axia travelling-column CNC milling machines and two Fox M gantry CNC milling machines from long-standing customer WEC Group. A cut above MACH 2024 also proved a great platform for cutting tool manufacturers, with Ceratizit a case in point. The company scanned circa 2000 visitors on to its stand, all keen to see new innovations such as the patented MaxiMill-211-

21 Machinery & Manufacturing

MACH 2024 Review

FumeGuard range: a FumeGuard, which comes with a specially designed hood and options for disposable filter cassettes or cleanable cartridges; and a portable FumeGuard Mini for on-torch welding applications. EDM was another popular technology area at MACH. Sodick, for instance, committed to its largest-ever MACH stand and reported its most successful show with double-digit machine sales. New models on display included the VN600Q precision wire-cut EDM machine and ALC600G iG+E wire EDM with iGroove+ technology. While FANUC was among others to shine the spotlight on EDM machines, the company is known for its wide portfolio of automation solutions, including robots, CNC systems and machining centres. Regarding the latter, the centrepiece of the stand was a RoboDrill D21LiB5ADV Plus machining centre which now offers turning capabilities thanks to the addition of a Nikken two-axis high-speed rotary table. The machine spent the entire event producing scroll compressor housings from aluminium, showcasing live to visitors the cost-saving and performance benefits available from combining machining and turning in a single platform. “FANUC and Nikken have created a combined milling/turning cell at a fraction of the cost of machines with similar capabilities,” said Oliver Selby, Head of UK Sales at FANUC UK.

DC. A shoulder mill that provides direct cooling to the cutting edge in the flank of the insert, the new MaxiMill-211-DC (with 3D-printed body) is for the high-performance machining of aerospace alloys. Indeed, Ceratizit recently tested the cutter on a landing gear component made from titanium 555. At 9-10 mm depth-of-cut, the MaxiMill-211- DC doubled productivity for customer. Another cutting tool specialist, Mapal, used MACH to showcase live tooling demonstrations with various machine tool builders, including the machining of an aerospace component on a Mazak machine featuring the PowerSpeed PCD face mill and newly released OptiMill-Alu-Wave. The solid-carbide OptiMill-Alu-Wave roughing cutter for aluminium workpieces can achieve staggering metal removal rates of up to 21 litres per minute on structural parts such as wing ribs and wing skins. Of course, MACH is about far more than machines and tooling. The focus on the stand of Oemeta, for example, was helping manufacturers understand common coolant-related problems – such as bad smells, foaming, residue, skin irritation, sump life, corrosion, poor lubricity and sludge – and pairing them with solutions. On the stand of mist/fume extraction expert Filtermist, visitors could discover two new welding fume units from its new Dustcheck

Machinery & Manufacturing 22

MACH 2024 Review

Strong as steel There was no shortage of solutions on show for the processing of structural steel. Akyapak, for instance, shone the spotlight on its 3 ADM three-spindle, 10-axis CNC steel beam drill line. The machine allows users to perform multiple simultaneous operations without repositioning materials. Such was its appeal that Akyapak sold two machines at MACH to customers in Ireland. New on the stand of Ficep was the XBlade, which can perform drilling, tapping, milling and sawing of various steel profile shapes with sections up to 305 x 305 mm on three sides, 450 x 450 mm on one side, and variable lengths (thanks to its modular configuration). Crowds of people also gathered around the stand of Flow, all keen to catch a glimpse of the company’s Mach 200 waterjet machine cutting 10 mm thick aluminium. With its pivot and bevel cutting capabilities, and a head that uses a low-profile design to deliver five-axis cutting with taper control, the Mach 200 is suitable for advanced waterjet applications. With traceability high on the agenda of many manufacturers, there was plenty of interest in the new desktop MarkMate Laser from Pryor Marking. At the heart of the MarkMate Laser is a fibre laser capable of delivering fast, crisp, permanent marks on metals, coated metals, plastics, ceramics and more. Marks can include serial numbers, logos, barcodes or any number of intricate designs. A measured response MACH did not disappoint when it came to metrology, with Mitutoyo among those leading the way. The company highlighted its new Strato-Active, a rigid, bridge-type CMM that offers accuracy of 1.2+3L/1000 µm. Able to measure at speeds up to 3 mm/s, the Strato- Active is ideal for mid-sized parts. The CMM features Mitutoyo’s new thermal compensation

technology as standard.

Over on the stand of Hexagon, there was much interest in the company’s launch of a free digital benchmarking tool that helps machine shops see where they stand regarding digitalisation in comparison with their peers. Thought to be a market first, the tool identifies, within a defined seven-step process, which areas of a machine shop could see immediate improvements and what optimisations could come later as part of an overall business transformation project. At no point is there any obligation to adopt Hexagon technology. The tool is part of the company’s recently introduced machine shop excellence campaign. First time for everything Even first-time exhibitors lauded MACH as a roaring success. Among them was business transformation expert, Sharing in Growth. Jessica Harvey, Marketing & Communications, said: “We had lots of engaging conversations with UK manufacturers looking to grow their businesses. We look forward to continuing these conversations over the coming weeks.” She sums up by adding: “It was a fantastic event showcasing mind-blowing technologies that will help develop the future of manufacturing.” Says it all really. Roll on MACH 2026. n

23 Machinery & Manufacturing

Lets talk: Inspection

Every so often a new technology arrives with genuine potential to disrupt the market. For several years quality control professionals have been putting stereo microscopes to good use and, in more recent years, adopting digital microscopes (which swap a conventional magnifying lens for a camera). While the latter bring added capabilities such as image capture, data collection and traceability, the user has to settle for a flat 2D image. The only way to gauge depth is to measure the height of different features or shadows. From vision to reality: A stereo digital microscope

Float an idea “In essence, our DRV-Z1 houses two digital microscopes and a pair of monitors,” he says. “These two high-resolution channels project two distinct optical paths through two specialist lenses on to a unique, large convex mirror, giving crisp 3D visualisation in stereo. When users sit down in front of the microscope they see a full 3D HD [1080p] digital image float before their eyes. There’s no hunching over and squinting down an eyepiece.” Users of the DRV-Z1 do not require any special eyewear or goggles, and there are no unpleasant side effects. They simply sit back and

“For some tasks a 2D image is fine, but many others require a true stereo image,” explains Logan Wheeler, North UK Sales Manager at Vision Engineering. “Most people with two good eyes see a stereo image in normal life. We have left and right eye paths, and our brain puts the images together to give depth perception. The DRV-Z1, as the industry’s first 3D digital microscope, replicates this process.” Vision Engineering showcased its DRV-Z1 at the recent MACH 2024 exhibition in Birmingham, where it caused quite a stir. DRV stands for Deep Reality Viewer. This is optical inspection like nothing before.

Machinery & Manufacturing 24

Lets talk: Inspection

view high-definition 3D images, with impressive depth perception, as easily as real life. This ergonomic design improves comfort, efficiency and productivity by enabling good posture and reducing fatigue. Operators enjoy freedom of head movement, a natural view of the object and easy hand-eye co-ordination for precision inspection tasks, including rework and repair. In addition, there are no limitations for wearers of prescription or safety glasses. The experience is not dissimilar to using a virtual reality (VR) headset, but without the user disadvantages of strapping a unit to their head, and without getting tired eyes or a sense of isolation and dizziness. Vision Engineering’s patented DRV technology aids visual inspection at a host of manufacturing businesses, including those making aerospace and automotive components. Medical device manufacturers, PCB manufacturers and companies producing additive parts/prototypes also benefit. Indeed, the list of applications already extends to fields as diverse as geospatial and ophthalmology. Ahead of its time “A key advantage of DRV is real-time collaboration on a global scale,” says Mr Wheeler. “Users can share 3D HD images across networks to other DRV-Z1 systems for simultaneous remote viewing at 60 frames a second.” With this capability, colleagues can view anything from sensitive objects in strictly controlled environments through to prototypes created thousands of miles away, without ever leaving the office. The result? Big savings in time and cost, along with reductions in carbon emissions. Magnifications of between 6.1x – 93x (additional 2x digital) with zoom capabilities are possible, depending on the selected objective lens (three are available). Users of the DRV-Z1

will also discover a very large working distance of up to 182 mm, allowing them to use tools such as screwdrivers, glue guns and soldering irons while inspecting the process at high resolution. Notably, an integral aperture (iris) allows operators to adjust or increase depth of field at higher magnifications. The big picture “Image capture is another inherent part of the system,” reveals Mr Wheeler. “By simply plugging in a USB drive, the user can capture whatever they see on the screen as a jpg format image.” Although Vision Engineering classes the DRV-Z1 as an inspection system rather than a metrology system, various dimensioning software solutions with different capability levels, such as ViPlus and DimensionOne, are available to provide component measurement. Ultimately, this glasses-free 3D experience with true depth perception, extra wide field of view, HD resolution and excellent subject clarity make the DRV-Z1 an astute choice for inspection applications which would otherwise be problematic using conventional technology. The system is already completely changing the way manufacturers view, capture and share 3D images of objects. This particular vision has become a reality. See live demonstrations from Vision Engineering at the Smart Factory Expo 5-6th June, NEC Birmingham – Stand 4-P60 n

Machinery & Manufacturing 25

People of #UKMFG

Sam Baynham, Founder and Managing Director of ConeX Portal UK, tells Technical Editor Steed Webzell about his journey from building Airfix models to successful entrepreneur A model entrepreneur Sam Baynham, ConeX Portal UK

Like many youngsters nurturing an interest in engineering, Sam Baynham fondly recalls the excitement and satisfaction associated with building Airfix models in his boyhood years. This fascination served to cultivate his ingenuity and, a few years later, Sam passed four A-Levels and gained a First Class Honours Degree in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Leeds. The first step on Sam’s career ladder was Delcam, a leading developer of CADCAM software with a listing on the London Stock Exchange. “It was a great introduction to engineering in the commercial world,” he says. “My role was very hands-on and I developed a broad range of skills.” Autodesk acquired Delcam in 2014 and, after four years with the company, Sam felt the time was right to seek a new venture. He launched Dynamic Edge Innovation to help take customer design concepts from initial idea to fully functioning prototype. The business was performing well, but then the Covid-19 pandemic struck. During lockdown, Sam had time to think about his future direction. Something resonated strongly while heading-up Dynamic Edge Innovation: the difficulty in identifying the optimal manufacturing partner for new products designed by innovative start-ups. “It usually meant trawling through a Google search, emailing lots of generic email addresses and, if you were lucky, getting one response in

50. There had to be a better way.”

Sam founded ConeX Portal UK on the basis of connecting design engineers with local manufacturers and establishing a genuine industry community with real-world lines of communication. Already boasting around 160 members, ConeX anticipates a capacity of 300- 400, a number that will keep the platform close- knit and familiar. “ConeX is not just about creating a network or community, it’s about developing something that positively impacts the manufacturing sector.” “I have several other avenues I want ConeX to explore moving forward,” says Sam. “ConeX is not just about creating a network or community, it’s about developing something that positively impacts the manufacturing sector. There are many exciting ideas in the melting pot, so watch this space.” ConeX Portal UK will be exhibiting on stand 4-L80F at Smart Manufacturing and Engineering Week (NEC, Birmingham) on 5-6 June 2024. n

Machinery & Manufacturing 26


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Half-century contribution to industrial progress Family, fulfillment, and a fascination with technology are all part of a formula that has seen ANCA lead the demanding niche of CNC tool and cutter grinders for a half-century.

In its time, the Australia-based global business has made an enormous yet largely hidden contribution to the world, selling over 10,000 5-axis CNC machines to over 2,500 customers. Around 1.1 billion tools have been created using ANCA’s grinders. “You would be very unlikely to find any bit of advanced equipment, anywhere in the world, that hasn’t been touched by a cutting tool which has been manufactured on one of our machines,” explains co-founder Pat Boland, whose company’s customers include Boeing,

Rolls-Royce, Iscar, Sandvik, Sutton Tools and many other household names. Boland and Pat McCluskey – then an electrical engineer and an industrial electronics tradesman – met at a government-owned munitions factory at Melbourne in 1968. The two Pats started ANCA in 1974 in a spare room at Boland and wife Libby’s home. “It wasn’t about money in the beginning, and for me it’s not about money now...I get my kicks out of designing new machines,” explains McCluskey. “Even before we started ANCA,

Machinery & Manufacturing 28


Pat and I have always been driven by simply wanting to get machines to do things better. My enduring philosophy in business is if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always gotten. New ideas and new thinking are the basis of our business.” ANCA’s highly sophisticated CNC grinding machines are exported around the world, with 98 percent of its revenue being generated by exports. The ANCA Group also makes associated equipment and software, including robot arms, software, and control systems, and offers automation services and technology to OEM machine builders. Leading the incredibly demanding tool and cutter market – where nanometre-level details matter – means a reinvestment of roughly a tenth of revenues back into R&D. A near-obsession with solving customer problems has seen ANCA contribute a collection of world firsts to its industry, including the first probe for digitising tools, first modem for support and diagnostics in a machine, first full and true 3D simulation of the grinding process, and many more. Martin U. Ripple, who has been at the helm of ANCA as CEO since November 2022, reflects on the company’s enduring legacy. “In all my interactions, I’ve observed a consistent thread - our customers invariably share fond recollections of their encounters with ANCA dating back to the 70s, 80s, and 90s. It’s evident that there’s a deep-seated loyalty and trust towards our brand,” he notes. 1.1 billion cutting tools and counting have shaped the world around us for 50 years

Ripple, always keen on uncovering the unique elements that set a business apart, asks, ‘What is the secret ingredient that differentiates us from our competitors? What makes ANCA exceptional?’ His answer is the involvement of family in the business, a fervent passion driving the company forward, and a steadfast commitment to providing customers with the most innovative products. This blend, according to Ripple, is the essence of ANCA’s success and longevity.” Edmund Boland, son of Pat and ANCA CNC Machines’ General Manager, values ANCA’s agility as a privately owned company which enables swift decisions to support ANCA’s people and customers. “ANCA has always endeavoured to stay

29 Machinery & Manufacturing

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