January 7, 2015 -- A machine tool distributor has diversified into cutting metal for customers who are working to capacity and need to fulfil another order, or if they’re asked to cut a different material from normal and do not have a suitable machine for it.
CNC World are the UK’s sole distributor of MultiCam lasers, water jets and plasmas. Having launched a partnership with the world’s most powerful sheet metal CAD/CAM software, Radan, at the MACH exhibition in 2014, they now offer Radan, from Vero Software, as an option with all machines. It also drives the demonstration machines which they use for the new cutting service.
“When our machines weren’t being used for demonstrations they were standing idle,” says Sales Director Jason Rowe. “Customers receiving orders for cutting a different material have to subcontract it out, and we were often asked to recommend companies to undertake emergency cutting, so decided to start using our own machines for it.”
They have also hired a programmer with extensive knowledge of Radan to ensure they provide customers with the best possible solution, including the most efficient nesting available, keeping material wastage to an absolute minimum.
The service has proved particularly useful for machining overspill when a manufacturer’s shop floor is full to capacity, and when a customer needs to work with material they do not normally cut. He explains that as CNC World also supplies 3-, 4- and 5-axis routers driven by Radan’s sister software, Alphacam, they are able to cut wood or plastic, which metal-focused customers with lasers, plasmas and water jets cannot undertake.
“It means we can offer wood and plastic cutting for metal manufacturers, and metal cutting for woodworkers. For example, a woodworking company needed to cut a couple of pallets of stainless steel as part of a cabinet-making contract. We were able to do that for them.”
The cutting service has also helped CNC World to secure a machine order. “We’ve recently been cutting components for a manufacturer which led to him winning a major contract. The additional work that is bringing in justified them investing in a new machine from us.”
Having been offered partnerships by several software developers, CNC World undertook research amongst their customers. “Many were already using Radan and recommended it to us – so our decision was customer-driven and is the obvious choice. Radan is extremely powerful software that can be adapted to every customer’s specific needs – whether it’s for our new cutting service or their own machines – which is vital as everyone needs something different.”
He says CNC World’s major strength is that they have a machine for everything. “Normally a company would only deal in one type of cutting technology, but we have MultiCam water jets, lasers plasmas and routers and now, with Radan and Alphacam, the best software to fully optimise those machines.”
They always offer Radprofile with the nesting module. “When used with Radprofile, Radnest can automatically produce common line cuts between adjacent parts to further increase material utilisation and reduce cycle times. Gaps between components are controlled by the kerf width created by a given material, thickness and cutting method for a specific machine. This data is stored within Radan, meaning that complete automation is possible.
“Radnest can mix different nesting techniques on the same sheet – including rigid kits, picking clusters, common cutting, or standard spaced, giving industry-leading results for manufacturing techniques used by customers with CNC World’s modern machines.”
He says water jet and plasma is a major growth area in the UK, and their range includes 3- and 5-axis machines. “Full 5-axis water jets are extremely popular, and we’re being asked for 5-axis plasmas a lot more nowadays, which come with the full range of hypertherm torches.”
When cutting metal at CNC World’s Norfolk headquarters their 3000 Series water jet is linked to a KMT Streamline SL-V 50 STD pump which sends water out at 60,000 psi. A steady flow of GMA garnet abrasives to the focusing tube allows uninterrupted production without downtime resulting in optimum efficiency and lowest production costs. CNC World also supply the full range of KMT intensifiers going up to 90,000 psi.
In the short time since the partnership with Radan began they have already shipped a number of machines incorporating Radan, and quotes are out on several more. “We also held an open day recently running machining demonstrations with Radan, and customers were most impressed.”
Part of the Vero Software Group, Radan is a leading sheetmetal CAD/CAM solution providing productivity, reliability and flexibility. Vero has direct offices in the UK, Germany, Italy, France, Japan, USA, Brazil, Netherlands, China, South Korea, Spain and India supplying products to more than 45 countries through its wholly owned subsidiaries and reseller network.
Vero is part of Hexagon (Nordic exchange: HEXA B), a leading global provider of design, measurement and visualisation technologies that enable customers to design, measure and position objects, and process and present data.