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Miyano has revealed how investment in two of its LX-08 turning centres has enabled subcontractor Fastener Tools to build its position in the specialist fastener and allied industries.

The first Miyano LX-08 was acquired by the company seven years ago for the turning of hard and heat-treated materials.

The investment was initially aimed at alleviating capacity issues – however, the business soon realised additional benefits.

As a business that machines a large amount of tool steel that is then sent for heat treatment prior to polishing and finishing operations, the bottleneck for the company was the finishing processes.

The business had the bulk of its workforce in the grinding and finishing areas preparing the components for dispatch.

Upon reviewing the market and receiving recommendations from a tooling supplier that specialises in hard machining, the company acquired the Miyano.

Mel Shorthouse, managing director of Fastener Tools, said: ‘We used to turn our parts and leave a considerable amount of material on the job for the post-treatment machining of forms as well as polishing and finishing.

‘Now, we have a turning centre that has the rigidity to accurately machine the intricate forms and turn to finished size on steels that have been treated up to 66HRc.

‘Not only does it turn the hard surfaces accurately but the surface finish is exceptional and this is credit to the robust build quality of the machine.’
Using the Miyano LX-08, the company was able to reduce the bottleneck in the finishing section to the extent that three positions within the company became redundant.

The component quality and improved flexibility added to the cost benefit that was immediately noted.

When the company received a large order for seal components in 2008, it immediately turned to Miyano for a second LX-08 turning centre.

Fastener Tools opted for the LX-08 machine with a 10-tool station turret as the fixed tooling configuration offers increased rigidity.

With a 51mm spindle capacity and 300mm turning length and diameter the LX-08C with swarf conveyor and Fanuc control with memory card slot gives the business the flexibility and capacity to machine all its billets.

Despite not having driven tooling on the LX-08, Fastener Tools sends fewer parts to the milling section for secondary operations as the configuration of the tooling turret enables forming operations to be conducted on the turning centre.

Shorthouse added: ‘We produce anything from one-offs to batches of 100.

‘With this in mind, the second machine that was delivered in December 2008 gives us the flexibility to improve our scheduling and relieve pressure on our often short lead times.

‘We can now machine even more parts to within 3 or 4thou for finish grinding and this has further improved throughput to the extent that the second Miyano is delivering an additional saving of over 15 hours per week in the finishing section.

‘The bottom line is that accurate and intricate turning of our hard parts is significantly cheaper and faster than grinding.

‘Prior to the addition of the Miyano LX-08C we had a queue of jobs waiting to go on our older Miyano, as our manual lathes are not fast or accurate enough deliver the tight tolerances required to deliver the shorter times in the finishing section.

‘The two Miyano centres have proven a revelation and we have been delighted with the benefits they have brought to our business.’

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