Roscomac Operations Director Stuart Burdock looks at the latest in production technology innovation in terms of design, processes and CNC manufacturing.
Roscomac customers usually ask a very direct question about innovation. ‘What does it mean for manufacturing quality and component costs?’ The answer, as always, is that the right mixture of technology innovation is important.
“We constantly ask ourselves what we need to do to embrace the best technology innovation to help all of our clients.”
“We look at everything, from customer requests for design and prototype development, through to the way that we think about creating manufacturing process efficiencies. Of course we also need to consider the advanced CNC manufacturing equipment we require, to make what our customers need.”
Customers increasingly expect their CNC manufacturing partners to manage everything, from vendors to suppliers and materials. That’s why Roscomac has focused on creating a true manufacturing partnership that delivers both high quality and the lowest practical cost for all of its customers.
“Ongoing quality improvements are driven by several factors, not the least of which is technology innovation. But striving to keep component costs down too is a much more delicate balance, one of using the right range of high technology CNC machines combines with improving overall process efficiencies.”
A lot of the strategy Roscomac has regarding process efficiency is a natural evolution of the Toyota Production System (TPS) developed in the 1970s. TPS was established based on two concepts: The first is called ‘jidoka’ (automation with a human touch) which means when a problem occurs, the equipment stops immediately, preventing defective products from being produced. The second is the concept of ‘Just-in-Time’, when each process produces only what is needed by the next one in a continuous flow. But even though the TPS has proved itself over the years, with many newer process methodologies taking a similar focus, high volume and efficient production is often still held back by staffing issues.
“The latest suite of Matsuura MAM72-35V machines we have installed have 32 pallets each. This means, once we’ve set the machines and loaded up, we can regularly run for 16 hours flat out. So we can produce large volumes of high quality complex components without any need for staff interaction.”
These new types of CNC machine have enabled Roscomac to deliver ‘world class process efficiency’, with a miniscule number of component rejects, and allowed the company to run genuine ‘lights out’ manufacturing, seven days a week.
“In a highly competitive modern manufacturing world it takes engineering expertise, the deployment of the latest technology and a constant focus on product design and manufacturing processes. That’s the way we’ve found that works best and most effectively to deliver against customer expectations.”