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Iscar has delivered to Benham Manufacturing three Mazak five-axis work centres with pallet-loading and gun-drilling capabilities, mainly to help it keep pace with its aerospace-related output.

Benham also bought the Matrix tool-management system from Iscar.

Benham’s ability to effectively engage its skilled CAD/CAM and online programming capability allows it to execute effective machining processes, utilising a range of high-quality three, four and five-axis machining centres.

The multi-axis machining capability of Benham’s mill-turn work centres allows the completion of all machining processes from raw material to a finished work-piece in a single set up.

This advanced ability provides customers with both a cost-effective manufacturing solution and reduced component-delivery times.

The company’s turning work centres allow the efficient production of large- and small-batch production runs that require conventional two-axis and light three-axis machining.

With fine finishing processing carried out in a temperature-controlled environment, Benham Manufacturing was able to undertake CNC external grinding, conventional internal and external cylindrical grinding and surface-grinding honing.

Benham can carry out complex assembly routines that require a clean environment and class-1,000 clean-room conditions.

Benham has recently collaborated with cutting-tool supplier Iscar.

With a view to streamlining its cutting-tool ordering system, reducing inventory levels and cutting tool use, Benham Manufacturing recently undertook a review of its entire tooling structure and process-optimisation techniques.

After a rigid series of criteria was established, Benham Manufacturing began the cutting trials.

Iscar products were judged against those of its competitors, in terms of speed, tool life, unit price and time advantages.

To provide ‘real-world’ comparisons, the results of each of these important factors were translated into both machining costs and into actual savings per part.

On completion, the project delivered a number of conclusions, one being the advantages that could be gained by Benham’s increased use of Iscar cutting tools.

The flexibility of Iscar’s products has resulted in Benham Manufacturing reducing the category of tools previously used.

Faster cycle times, due to improved tool selection, have resulted in increased machine-tool productivity.

The renowned endurance and cost-effective nature of Iscar’s products has ensured that the company’s overall cost of purchasing cutting tools has been reduced.

A major factor in Benham’s improved output and reduction in machine downtime has been its adoption of Iscar’s ingenious Matrix tools store system.

Managed by a local Iscar distributor, Matrix is a computerised total-management system that can give users absolute control over their cutting-tool inventory, streamline purchasing functions and drive down costs.

Matrix combines the most innovative, automated tool dispenser with a powerful yet simple management software.

Access to an item stored within the system’s locked bins is electronically controlled by the system’s advanced management software, with entry determined by the establishment of pre-defined authorisations.

The modular Matrix system is extremely flexible, drawer configurations can be swapped in or out, while add-ons can be connected with a click of a cable.

Multiple cabinets can be deployed within different locations and networked, enabling each of them to run from one common database.

Matrix technology includes: a patented locking system to prevent unauthorised use; a large hi-resolution, touch-screen interface; plug and play ‘smart’ electronics; ergonomic-design features; and a remote diagnostic capability.

A barcode reader is used for rapid and reliable tool issuing, while a manual system override is included, enabling system access in the event of a power failure.

Suitable for small organisations, or larger enterprises with single or multiple sites, the Iscar Matrix system is easy to use, reducing each operator’s learning curve.

Iscar’s system reduces tool inventory, machine downtime and production costs, as the sophisticated planning engine ensures every required item is always available.

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