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Kontino, a Finnish steel stockholder, has invested in a computer-controlled sawing centre from German manufacturer Kasto.

The installation has reportedly increased productivity and improved quality.

Kari Rontyen, Kontino’s project manager, said: ‘At first, we thought we had found a good solution using new saws and improved material in-feed technology, but it did not solve the problem of restricted space at our Tampere site.

‘Moreover, supply of stock to the saws would not have been continuous, which would have created lower machine utilisation, more bottlenecks and less productivity,’ added Rontyen.

Measuring 8.5 x 30m, the automated Kasto store avoids these drawbacks by ensuring the 24/7 supply of material ranging from 20mm to 320mm in diameter and up to 3.5m in length to two integrated sawing machines.

One is a Kastovariospeed SC 15 circular saw that uses very thin, disposable carbide blades to minimise kerf and material loss.

The other is a Kastotec SC 3 bandsaw, which also uses tungsten-carbide-tipped blades.

There is also a standalone Kastotec FC 7 bandsaw for processing bars up to 730mm in diameter and 7.2m in length.

All three saws are equipped with the sorting and palletising of cut pieces.

The store is 8.2m high and has 514 cantilever locations, each of which can support up to 2.5 tonnes to a total system load of 1,150 tonnes.

A gantry crane, travelling on elevated rails, affects storage and the removal of material.

With the help of two quick-change stations and a cart, it feeds the two integrated saws as well as the non-integrated bandsaw.

The sequence is computer controlled and fully automatic, so it can run unattended overnight and with minimal manning during day shifts.

‘A huge advantage for us is that we are now able to consolidate all our activities in Tampere and do not need satellite storage locations,’ said Rontynen.

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