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A rigid NT4250 machine from Mori Seiki has sped up production at Allens Crankshafts’ facility in Wolverhampton.

Allens Crankshafts produces crankshafts for organisations such as the Ministry of Defence and companies such as Gardner Denver and RAM Pumps.

In addition, it is the sole supplier of crankshafts to Engine Developments for its Judd engines and provides high-performance cranks for motorsport applications, including the Honda K20 engine.

Allens Crankshafts’ relationship with Mori Seiki started with an investment in an MT machine for heavy-duty milling and turning.

As demand grew, the company needed extra capacity and invested in a mill-turn centre from a different supplier, rather than waiting for a new Mori Seiki one.

However, the machine proved to be unsuitable for crankshaft manufacture.

Nash Sharma, managing director of Allens Crankshafts, said: ‘The machine we purchased was not solid enough for the production of cranks, so after two years we sold it and invested in a Mori Seiki NT4250 1500S.

‘The difference is considerable: the NT4250 weighs 24 tonnes compared with 11 tonnes for the machine we replaced and it produces parts 33 per cent faster,’ he added.

The NT4250 includes Built-in Motor Turret (BMT) and Octagonal Ram Construction (ORC) technology.

This enables it to achieve metal-removal rates of around 1,024mL/min, which is equivalent to a conventional machining centre and in excess of what is possible on some other mill-turn centres.

Sharma added: ‘We have a 100-station tool changer on our NT and we use the best-quality tools with through coolant operating at 70bar.

‘Tool life is now 100 per cent better than we achieved on the old machine.

‘It was all right for light work, but not sufficient for our needs,’ he said.

Machining times can vary between two and five hours, depending on the design of the crankshaft.

Six-cylinder cranks typically take four-and-a-half hours.

By using the NT4250, Allens Crankshafts can produce a complete part in one operation, starting from a solid billet of EN40B.

Journal diameters are left +0.5mm before dynamic balancing, nitriding, finish grinding and final balancing.

Sharma continued: ‘The Mori Seki produces very consistent cranks, which are completely concentric and hardly need any balancing.

‘If I produced a part now and then another a year later, they would both be exactly the same weight, giving us excellent repeatability,’ he said.

MORI SEIKI with its head offices in Nagoya, Japan, is a pioneer in machine tool building. Founded in 1948 the company has launched more than one hundred different lathe and machining centre series over the years, all NC / CNC models. In total more than 180.000 machines have been produced.

Products from MORI SEIKI are manufactured on the basis of a solid development policy. As manufacturer of machine tools the company has developed a wide range of CNC lathes, machining centres, and multi-axis lathes. Complete solution is the key phrase, as support throughout the full lifecycle of machines is paramount to MORI SEIKI.

MORI SEIKI machines are produced in Japanese production factories Iga, Nara and Chiba, as well as in its production location at Dixi machines in Le Locle, Switzerland. The French company TOBLER SAS – specialists in precise clamping mandrels and clamping tools – also belongs to the Mori Seiki group.

MORI SEIKI has over 90 sales and service technical centres worldwide.

Recent years have seen the company’s dedication in Europe get off to a good start. Various sites have been set up and further expanded. The European training centre is located in the Stuttgart Technical Centre. Here customers, employees and business partners from all over Europe can be trained in extremely well equipped conditions.

We also have a centralised spare parts department in Europe, which has over 23.290 parts in stock, ensuring quicker and more efficient spare parts delivery.

Precision, performance and productivity: that is PURE TECHNOLOGY from MORI SEIKI.

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