Mould making shops, in many ways, are representative of the breadth of metalworking skills and operations. In most cases, they have one chance to get the job right and must work their magic under increasingly tough time constraints.
A typical mould shop deals with milling, drilling, jig boring, turning, grinding, EDM and heat treating to name a few of the operations required to manufacture cores and cavities. Each job that comes through the shop is different, requiring constant analysis of the shop’s capabilities with little or no benchmark from which to evaluate.
Another problem mould shops are facing today is the confusing proliferation of CAD/CAM software types, all of which don’t function as a cohesive whole. There could be up to as many as 10 different types of software in one shop alone. With so many different software languages running at the same time, it is no wonder that shops must deal daily with increased production lag time along with troubleshooting and a flawed final product. If engineers could gather the basic tools needed to build a successful, profitable part in a fraction of the time, most—if not all—of the inherent software problems infiltrating today’s shop floor could be solved.
Package solution – mould sets now offered through Mitco
Notwithstanding the above one way of increasing the workflow through the shop is ordering in mould sets. A common mould set has many benefits, especially when the production volumes are lower and change-overs are frequent. With the use of a common mould set, capital investment is reduced since only the core and cavity sets need to be manufactured or purchased, rather than complete plastic injection moulds for each piece part.
“Focusing your work on your company’s core business and leaving the pre-production steps to us makes it possible to untie capital in production units, thus giving your people opportunity to focus on your company’s critical success factors,” said Böhler Uddeholm Africa Managing Director Helmut Ulrich.
“Bohler Uddeholm Africa has a history in South Africa which is synonymous with providing the highest quality of tool steels to customers who demand excellence. It is with this thought that the company offers “a package solution” of steel, heat treatment, plasma nitriding and pre-machining for squaring and blocking, giving the customer complete accountability.”
“We have therefore been relieving them [the customers] of the costly and time consuming processes that also normally occupies the time of a tool maker and delays the use of equipment.”
“Through our market research we found that on the mould making side some local companies were opting for cheap Chinese deals whereas they should be supporting the local industry. However, we believe that there is no support from China and they have to deal long distance.”
“Our answer to this is the strengthening of our service capacity. We want to be fast and reliable and at the same time make our customers – the mould and die making shops – more competitive. These investigations found that the local market was in need of “off the shelf” mould sets and components such as pins and bushes.”
“We have the machining capacity, the materials and international technology. Production began midway through last year, at Mitco, our Vereeniging facility, and we are now able to offer a range of standard sizes ex-stock. Special sizes are available on request.”
“We are not competing with our customers. We are offering them a service which will make them more efficient.”
“The local tool making industry will now be able to come to us and get a complete product from cut to size, pre-machined tool steels in all shapes and sizes, as well as mould sets and then they can put it on their machine and start milling or machining the tools, which is what they are supposed to be doing.”
For further details contact Böhler Uddeholm Africa on TEL: 011 571 2300 or visit www.bohler-uddeholm.co.za