Local industrial equipment, electronic and mechanical components supplier Elquip Solutions has supplied and successfully commissioned two Behringer high-performance bandsaws, valued at more than R5-million, for a heavy-duty engineering company in the steel industry.
The engineering company needed equipment for a new facility it was building, including two new saws, which would increase its productivity and cutting speed. “There were a number of factors that were taken into account when [the client] was deciding which brand of saws to buy,” says Elquip Solutions MD Mike Cronin.
He tells Engineering News that the client wanted to double its output of cut steel with as few saws as possible, and needed to reduce tooling (blade) costs. Reliability was also a priority, given that the cutting machines’ placement at the start of the production process would result in the entire production line having to be shut down if the cutting machines were stopped.
“The return on investment ultimately depends on the output of the two saws,” says Cronin. He adds, however, that the commissioning was successful and the reliability of the Behringer range was confirmed.
The installation and commissioning of the bandsaws was managed by an engineer from the German bandsaw manufacturer, Behringer, who remained present for the first few days of production and trained the site operators to ensure that the machines would be operated as effectively and efficiently as possible in the future, says Cronin.
He adds that the Behringer saws have been working opti- mally since the plant started full production mode.
“The client has been able to meet production requirements with these machines and is satisfied with the cutting part of the production process.
“In this instance, it is also important to note that these machines have the same capacity as five similar machines that were installed at the [client’s] old facility,” says Cronin.
He adds that the client has not stopped running its existing five machines, which are running as backup – an ideal setup at any industrial site because of the significant decrease in downtime.
Elquip Solutions supplied its heavy engineering client with a fully automated HBM540 cutting machine, made for heavy-duty application, as well as a semi-automated single-cut HBP560, which offers a combination of high cutting output and simple handling.
Cronin notes that the Behringer range of bandsaw machines is versatile and designed to operate with a regular M42 blade as well as a sophis- ticated carbide-tipped blade.
“Both machines had a materials handling section fitted to them. There is, therefore, a full loading system comprising an inlet conveyor that brings solid material to the machine, an auto- mated saw, an outlet conveyor and a weighing system,” he says.
Further, the bandsaw machines were designed with international high-efficiency specifications in mind.
“These machines have a proven record as high-quality accurate machines that save on tool and labour costs, as well as reducing scrap and increasing production and profitability,” says Cronin, adding that the equipment is manufactured from cast iron produced at Behringer’s in-house foundry, which makes the product robust and dampens vibration, therefore extending the life of the blade.
The machines are not labour intensive as they are either fully or semiautomated. “Once the machine is set up, it is computer numerically controlled. “You can load the system with data, and the machine takes care of the rest,” says Cronin.
He notes that repeatability is another important factor in the product’s end solution. A Behringer machine can be programmed to produce a certain cut and to reproduce that same cut – with the same speed, time and tool costs – when required to do so.
Cronin remarks that price is always a challenge when introducing a new range of saws to clients because of the initial expense. “However, once the client sees the benefits of the machine and realises its potential return on investment, it becomes clear that this is probably the most cost-effective machine on the market in the long run,” he states.
Further, because of the dampened vibration, the consumption on saw blades is reduced, which significantly reduces tooling maintenance – one of the most expensive costs of running the machine.
“When you take all these factors into consideration, you find that the payback on Behringer machines far outweighs that of most of its competitors.
“Ultimately, the cost per cut is the biggest challenge and clients want to reduce the cost per cut and increase productivity. The challenge for any saw manufacturer is, therefore, to improve on those two elements and make the products as cost effective as possible.”
Behringer’s range of machines includes circular saw machines, bandsaw machines and horizontal and vertical bandsaw machines.