When a CNC wire bending machine started to cause mounting maintenance costs, the end user turned to KMT Machine Tools with the aim of updating the machine to attain modern performance and reliability standards. As professionals in rebuilding and refurbishing machine tools, KMT were happy to accept the challenge.
Upon detailed assessment, the machine was found to be in poor mechanical condition. Most major components needed to be rebuilt, while the control system was severely outdated with the system no longer supported by the manufacturer. The machine framework itself was found to be in good order, so with the reasons for machine failure clear, KMT started on a total tool refurbishment.
Constant use had taken a toll on the machine’s wire feed, with wheels and shafts comprising the two straightening rolls in urgent need of replacement. KMT refreshed the system with brand new components, bringing this integral part of the machine up to its peak efficiency. The slew rings were also found to be in a poor state of repair after 20 years of constant service, so KMT sourced high quality replacements to bring the machine up to original mechanical condition.
The decision to replace the control system was taken when it was discovered the original system manufacturer no long supported the product with spares.
Therefore, KMT installed a 4 axis Omron CNC control system, bringing the machine up to the latest electronic standards. The replacement also served to simplify the wiring process, ensuring that electronic maintenance conducted in future could be carried out in a reduced time frame.
Adrian Degg, Engineering Director at KMT Machine Tools commented on the project, ‘this is typical of the kind of projects we take on at KMT. The customer was losing money due to the high levels of maintenance needed to keep the machine operational, so we were called in to offer a solution. Generally we deal with machines that are well built, but worn down, so with some expert attention they can be brought right up to current mechanical and electrical standards such as this example.’
A CNC wire bending machine new would typically cost £350,000 with an expect 4 month wait before delivery. However, through a policy of ‘rebuild and refurbish’, KMT can offer the same solution for a fraction of the cost, with a lead time of generally between 8-10 weeks.