RAS bending machines have increased productivity, quality, and design capabilities for this Orchard Park, NY-based manufacturing facility.
Diversified Control Inc. is a custom manufacturing facility that provides unique security enclosure solutions for the Telecommunications Industry. The company’s main objective is to be their customers’ single source for all security and enclosure needs. Diversified Control’s metal fabrication division supplies the industry with a complete line of weather-resistant standard and customized metal enclosures.
To meet their growing metal fabrication needs, Diversified Control purchased their first RAS MultiBend Center 79.22 in August 1998 and upgraded to a new model in December 2016. The company purchased a second automated bending machine, a RAS MiniBendCenter in October 2016.
“These machines fabricate a significant amount of product for us. We offer a broad range of custom electrical & telecomm enclosures, panels, and other parts that these machines form. They are a great solution for our fabricating needs.” says Plant Manager Tim Spencer, explaining how the RAS machines are being used.
Improved Production Times
Before converting to the RAS bending machines, Diversified Control used manual press brakes, making it more difficult to meet production goals. “We had multiple employees forming identical parts on manual press brakes,” says Spencer, who adds that manual press brakes pose inherent dangers, require more workers, and are not nearly as efficient.
The RAS fabrication machines allow Diversified Control to form panels at a much more efficient rate. “There are features that can be created much more easily, especially on the MiniBend, than can be done on a manual press brake,” Spencer says, elaborating that the machine has opened the company’s “landscape to create more intricate parts.”
Diversified Control has experienced a significant increase in productivity due to the efficiency of the RAS machines. “It increases the throughput of parts significantly compared to the output of a single person. The MiniBend specifically can run without an operator. It is capable of running when the lights are off and the plant is closed. “We have taken advantage of 24 hour production runs,” says Spencer.
For some products, the RAS fabrication machines can produce ten times the amount an operator is able to do in the same amount of time. According to Spencer, the machines help them change product lines quickly and efficiently compared to using a manual press brake which requires considerably more setup time. “Both machines have automatic tool changers, so once the program is loaded, it accurately changes the tools for the appropriate job,” he adds. The Multibend Center features a few automatic loading options, and the MiniBend Center features a loading conveyor with a robot, allowing multiple jobs to be set up. “You can have several different jobs on a single pallet or a different job for each pallet. The programming allows for loading and unloading of pallets, as well as the changing of jobs and loading the next program, so an operator is not required until the machine has run through all of its loaded jobs.” Both the Multibend and Minibend are servo driven as opposed to hydraulic which increase reliability and accuracy.
Lack of Qualified Operators
The metal fabrication industry is facing a lack of available press brake operators. “For the past few years, it’s been very difficult to find anyone with experience, and prospective employees don’t favor these positions. It’s dirty, tiring, and frankly, challenging,” explains Spencer.
Diversified Control was one of the first facilities to embrace automation in metal fabrication. By utilizing RAS machines, they were able decrease their reliance on finding qualified human resources capable of operating manual press brakes.
The company has been at the forefront of investing in automation and in keeping with this philosophy, has recently acquired robots to automate their powder coating line.
Design and Quality
The designers at Diversified Control are innovative and enjoy tackling difficult tasks. “The RAS machines have opened the company up to addressing some of those tasks without having to compromise design or quality due to machine limitations,” says Spencer.
From a quality standpoint, the RAS machines are extremely reliable and do not require an employee to oversee that they perform correctly every time. “Both of the machines measure each part to make certain it’s oriented properly as it feeds into the loading cell,” says Spencer, adding that the quality coming out of the panels is consistent every time.
“We have had a terrific relationship with RAS Systems for the past 22 years. They have always been extremely helpful in every aspect. Their team is top notch!”
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Founded in 1939, RAS builds metal bending, cutting, and forming equipment, as well as fabrication software, and is known for its high quality, reliability, and accuracies.