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Ceratizit engineers have suggested the use of its Maximill 211 to help JRG improve operations at its tool room facility.

Based in Sissach, Switzerland, JRG is a manufacturer of fittings for water and heating.

As a consequence of the number of specialist tools and workholding fixtures required to machine these components efficiently, and the requirement for moulds and dies for its in-house foundry, it has maintained an in-house tool room facility.

‘There are several reasons why we decided to develop and produce special tools ourselves,’ said Stefan Ochsner, head of the JRG mould/die production department.

‘However, the decisive factors are time and flexibility.

‘Within the tool room we have the required know-how to implement both development and production of special tools very quickly.

‘The employees understand the materials that are machined, the final product and the machine tools, so we can make things immediately and the distances are very short.

‘Furthermore, we are in the position to maintain the tools ourselves and to analyse production problems immediately,’ he added.

The tool room at JRG employs 40 people, whose sole responsibility is to ensure the rapid production and development of tools.

To help them achieve greater optimisation, JRG invited Robert Denny, sales manager at Utilis, Ceratizit’s Swiss distribution partner, to look closely at the application and variety of cutting tools being used.

‘We had reached a plateau and the pressure to increase productivity was rising,’ said Ochsner.

‘Therefore, we had to make changes that would keep the department in good shape.

‘This is why we investigated all of our machining processes with the help of Ceratizit’s cutting tool specialists,’ he added.

The mould and die sector is characterised by small batch sizes and short lead times and it is generally recognised that savings, when it comes to cutting tools, are minimal, although cutting data and tool life are an important factor.

Therefore, the greatest potential for optimisation is in the economy of applications as well as in the variety of cutting tools being used.

In the past JRG had a diverse stock of cutting tools, which caused a lot of time loss.

‘We often had to change the tools, which led to machine downtime,’ said Ochsner.

‘Due to the numerous milling cutters and inserts that we stocked we were not able to keep consistent data sheets.

‘In addition, processing small orders from all the different cutting tool suppliers became complex and sapped our resources,’ he added.

After analysing the situation at JRG, Ceratizit suggested the use of its new tooling concept, Maximill 211.

‘The Maximill 211 milling concept is exactly what we need: a tool with a smooth cutting action that is suitable for multiple applications,’ said Ochsner.

‘The high-precision manufacture of these milling cutters and inserts ensures that the cutting edges can be quickly changed without having to adjust the tool, which means additional time savings.

‘By reducing the number of tools that we stock, we can now keep data sheets and share our experiences within the team.

‘So trial and error are things of the past.

‘This optimisation to the Ceratizit Maximill 211 system was essential for us, but it also proved that you cannot simply swap cutting tools – you also have to be able to use it.

‘The technical advice you receive must be appropriate,’ he added.

With the assistance of Utilis’ Robert Denny and the back up available from Ceratizit, the Maximill cutters are now being widely used to their full potential on roughing and peripheral milling at JRG.

Through use of optimised cutting data even the older CNC machine tools and conventional machines in the JRG toolroom are achieving high chip volumes.


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