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Kennet Aviation, a leading restorer of vintage aeroplanes, has increased its capacity and ability to produce challenging bespoke parts by investing in a new turning centre from Yamazaki Mazak.

A leading restorer of vintage aeroplanes has increased its capacity and ability to produce challenging bespoke parts by investing in a new turning centre from Yamazaki Mazak.

Kennet Aviation specialises in the renovation and servicing of historic aeroplanes, including Supermarine Seafires used in World War II, to the stringent standards required by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) – the UK’s specialist aviation regulator.

With the aim of enhancing in-house manufacturing capacity and growing its existing business, the company has invested in a state-of-the-art Mazak QUICK TURN 250MSY CNC turning centre. The new machine, which was built in the UK at the company’s Worcester-based European Manufacturing Plant, has enabled Kennet Aviation to quickly produce high-accuracy, bespoke aircraft components, and significantly reduced the time taken to restore the aircraft.

Kennet Aviation’s new QUICK TURN 250MSY CNC has enabled the company to quickly produce high-accuracy, bespoke aircraft components, and significantly reduced the time taken to restore aircraft.

The investment has also opened up new business opportunities for Kennet Aviation by enabling the company to subcontract its capability to manufacture rare parts for vintage aircraft restorers and collectors worldwide.

Tim Manna, Director at Kennet Aviation, comments: “Existing components for these older aeroplanes can be very rare, hard to find, and often not available anywhere.  As we may only require very small batches, requesting parts from general subcontractors can be expensive and result in long lead times. We therefore decided to invest in a high-quality CNC machine tools to manufacture parts at Kennet, so we could bring selection, quality control, and timing in-house.

“Mazak provided a brilliant service, and we have been very impressed with how quickly and accurately the QUICK TURN has been able to produce parts. In fact, it has been so successful that we have since invested in a second machine, a VCN530C vertical milling machine with an additional rotary axis, which arrived in December. Now it is up and running, we have 100 per cent capability to produce any parts we need for aeroplanes and even classic cars, which is a market we’re now making great strides in.”

Investment in the new QUICK TURN 250MSY CNC has also opened up new business opportunities for Kennet Aviation by enabling the company to subcontract its capability to manufacture rare parts for vintage aircraft restorers and collectors worldwide.

Alan Mucklow, Managing Director UK & Ireland Sales & Service Division at Yamazaki Mazak, adds: “A nation’s history can be found in its vehicles, so it is fantastic organisations such as Kennet Aviation exist to preserve and protect our aviation heritage.

“We are thrilled to have played our part in helping the company expand its machining capacity and generate new business in its highly specialist field. We are also excited to see how they have used Mazak machinery to expand into general subcontracting and renovating vintage cars.”

For more information on Kennet Aviation, click here.

For more information on Yamazaki Mazak’s QUICK TURN 250MSY CNC turning centre, click here.

Yamazaki Mazak Ltd

Yamazaki Mazak is the world’s largest manufacturer of computer controlled (CNC) metal-cutting machines. With over 260 different models, the Mazak product range includes CNC lathes, machining centres, multi-tasking machines and flexible manufacturing systems as well as laser processing machines.

Machine tools are called “Mother Machine” because they relate to the manufacturing of almost every product around us and are very important in supporting the base of “world manufacturing.” Our mission as a machine tool maker is to enrich people’s lives and contribute to society by developing and providing high performance machine tools that can produce high accuracy work in a short time.

We were among the first to start foreign production as a Japanese machine tool maker. Following the establishment of Mazak Corporation in the USA, we expanded our production base worldwide to include the UK, Singapore and China, as well as further expanding our Japanese manufacturing operations. We are the only machine tool maker to have established a global production system. With these local plants, we have been able to provide high quality service and have built strong relationships based on mutual trust with customers from all over the world.

True to the Yamazaki principle of supporting the customer locally, Mazak’s European Manufacturing plant, in Worcester UK, opened in June 1987 and was immediately recognised as the most advanced machine tool manufacturing plant in Europe. The factory has expanded three times since then and now offers over 29,000m2

This is a complete machine tool manufacturing plant. Mazak machines the components that go to make its spindles, turrets, tool magazines and Mazak even manufactures its own sheet metal covers. As with all Mazak manufacturing plants, the most rigorous practices and Kaizen programmes ensure continuous improvement.

Serving all of Europe’s markets, more than 80% of the machine tools built in Worcester are exported from the UK into Europe. More than 17,000 Mazak machines have been manufactured here so far and this number continues to grow every day.

Mazak European Manufacturing Plant is recognised for its factory automation, technology and overall management practices. Selected as one of the “Top Ten Companies in the World” by the Swedish Royal Academy of Science and Technology underscores this worldwide reputation.

As with all Mazak factories, this facility comprises a variety of flexible manufacturing systems, consisting of machining centres, multi-tasking CNC lathes, and a sheet metal FMS – all designed for unmanned operation.

The plant benefits from highly skilled employees who are committed to continuous improvement through the 25 “Kaizen” teams in operation.

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