Precision Antennas specialises in designing, manufacturing, testing and installing a wide range of communication equipment. The company has to be able to react quickly to customer demands and produce small batch runs of complex components, often at very short notice.
This has resulted in the installation of Roemheld System Bock TV100 vices, with interlocking bases, on a palletising system. This has not only enabled Precision Antennas to quadruple the number of components produced per hour, but also to dramatically reduce set-up times from one and a half to two hours, down to just half an hour.
Alan Brooks, Manufacturing Manager for Precision Antennas, said: "We had tried other brands, but after 2,000 or so components, the clamps started to wear. We also needed to be able to machine our components on both sides, with the minimum downtime. We looked at the System Bock vices and felt that they offered the quality and repeatability we needed at the right price. On a practical basis they were easy to use, the right weight to manouevre and flexible enough to allow us to machine components of different sizes and shapes at the same time."
Alan has also found the System Bock machineable soft jaws increase productivity: "They are easy to change over, offer high repeatability and enable jobs to be swapped without having to re-set the vices."
Price is a key issue for the business as customers expect Precision Antennas to drive down costs year on year. To do this without affecting quality or the production process means increasing productivity. Installing the System Bock vices 12 months ago has meant that more components can be machined at the same time without compromising on the 15 micron accuracy required. The reduced set-up times have freed up operators as well as reducing the downtime of the production line. With batch runs ranging from 200 components to 10 off at a time, this fast set-up and repeatability is vital.
With customers continuing to demand short batch runs and complex machining, Alan is confident that they will continue to invest in equipment, like Roemheld System Bock, that combines the utmost repeatability with ease of use and set-up.