9 November 2006

Case study: Beakbane Limited achieve greater scope and faster processing speed

The growing need to process materials whose thickness is outside the scope of its current manufacturing plant was the principal reason for Beakbane Limited to invest in a new Trumpf L3030 2D laser-machining centre. Increased cutting speed was also another important factor in its choice. The company already has a Trumpf TC600L combination machine that provides laser cutting capability but its power is less than half that of the new flatbed addition. With a 3.2kW laser the L3030 has the potential to boost its production significantly.

With almost 50 years experience in designing and manufacturing protective covers in steel and flexible materials for production machinery, Beakbane supplies components to machine tool builders worldwide. Products include steel telescopic and folded covers, armoured aprons, roller blinds and slideway wipers. The company has also developed new projects away from its core business. For example it now manufactures its own range of food and drink trolleys used in hospitals and other public service areas.

"The L3030 is replacing our TC240R punch press that we bought in 1989," explained Barry Reeves, Managing Director. "That machine revolutionised the way we processed our metalwork and it was followed seven years later by the TC600L combination machine that is still going strong today."

The installed L3030 is to become Beakbane's main cutting facility with the TC600L as back-up and for parts requiring additional forming. "These account for 30% of cutting capacity and together the machines will provide almost 100% of our component needs," Mr Reeves adds.

The flexibility of the L3030 to cut Beakbane's thinnest 0.5mm stainless through to 20mm mild steel will be commercially advantageous across all its market sectors. So too will its ability to process cost-effectively any batch size from one-offs to several hundred; the laser will also allow customer part numbers to be marked.

Beakbane will operate a twin shift basis and although the company has no plans for lights out production at present, the modular design of the machine enables it to keep its options open on future automation. "This is proven technology," Mr Reeves concludes. "We know we're getting a quality product and the fact there are so many Trumpf machines in the marketplace underlines this view."

Contact: Gerry Jones

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