As UK companies were readying themselves for a very different trading relationship with the European Union (EU) following Brexit, along came the small matter of a global pandemic.
It is perhaps an understatement to say that 2020 was a challenging year for the UK economy, and the manufacturing sector was far from immune. However, as they always do, UK manufacturers stepped up to the plate. Ventilators were produced, PPE products were supplied and operating procedures were overhauled to keep production lines flowing and customer demands satisfied.
In terms of the need to build both a resilient and agile industry, many lessons have been learned. Production processes have been changed to adapt to the new trading environment, investment in digital and green technologies has increased and employees have generally embraced new ways of working.
Though the future looks hopeful, COVID-19 has in fact provided an unexpected opportunity for manufacturers to examine their working practices holistically. Many have recognised that improving agility in an increasingly unpredictable environment is imperative to future success.
Visibility, flexibility, optimised productivity and end-to-end connections by embracing technological advancements – the pursuit of Industry 4.0 has never been more relevant.
Offline tool presetting: A step into the future
The smart factories of tomorrow will achieve a level of interconnectivity, automation and self-monitoring that has never been reached before, where machines have the ability to analyse and communicate with both each other and their human co-workers, creating smoother processes and more productive environments.
Employees will be freed up for other tasks thanks to the implementation of smooth and error-free operations, ultimately helping to deliver better outcomes for customers.
Offline tool presetting is a major step along that road.
Though setting tools is an essential part of any CNC machining operation, the belief that the best and most cost-effective way of doing so is via an on-machine system is outdated.
Traditional setting – even with expensive lasers – not only wastes time but is unreliable and cannot validate critical tool features prior to machining, increasing the risk of crashes and failures.
Valuable minutes are lost every time a spindle stops turning, negatively impacting your profitability.
Intuitive tool setting solutions immediately eradicate this issue and therefore free up extra machining capacity. Businesses get much more out of their existing assets, as well as benefit from product quality gains and extended tool life.
Why choose offline tool setting technology?
- Your competitors are doing it – in a challenging climate of increasing capital, overheads and material costs, businesses must find new and cost-effective ways to remain competitive and attractive to customers. You can be sure that your rivals are doing everything they can to win business and improve the services they offer, including investing in the latest technologies.
- Time is money – Time is everything in highly competitive industries, where everyone is under pressure to deliver high-quality products quickly and affordably. When the spindle stops turning, your business is not making parts and you’re not making money.
- Cost – Competitive pricing plays a big part in winning business, but you don’t want to narrow your profit margins. Offline tool setting frees up resource and ensures end-part accuracy, so the savings can be passed on to your customers.
- Reputation is everything – Letting down or delaying a customer can have a devastating effect on their deadlines and irreversibly damage your relationship with them. Positive reputations can take many years to build, but just a moment to destroy.
For all of these reasons, regardless of the size of your business, you can’t afford not to be tool presetting offline in this new era of manufacturing.
Holding the Aces: download our eBook to discover more benefits of offline tool setting for manufacturingDownload eBook