Production Machining

DEC 2018

Production Machining - Your access to the precision machining industrial buyer.

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to pick up a lathe and a mill to begin making the very small part used in the chip assembly. During the next 35 years, the company has grown to serve a worldwide base of customers from five manufacturing facilities located in Singapore, Malaysia, China, the Philippines and the U.S., along with a direct sales presence in Taiwan and Europe. at brings us to the Morgan Hill, California, location, dedicated to U.S. customers and employing about 50 people producing parts for the aerospace, laser and semiconductor industries. ese indus- tries are particular in their machining specifications, and they generally require small quantities. So Micro-Mechanics is pressed to find ways to manage the high mix well. High-mix, low-volume work is not uncommon, as more and more U.S. manufacturers are facing it every day. Micro-Mechanics, however, also has the challenge of its location in a particularly high-cost geography and uses that constraint as motivation to work harder to find new ways to be competitive. Nimble Efficiency One of the company's overarching philosophies is very lean production, eliminating as much setup time as possible by incorporating a lot of offline processes. e production floor has high utilization relative to direct labor. e company works with its suppliers to strip away the non-value skills from the setup time. On the production floor, set off from several mills are two Okuma LB4000 EXII two-axis turning centers. ese machines are dedicated strictly to production turning operations—proven parts and processes. Most of the parts the company runs require significant milling work as well, but to simplify the setup process, that work is reserved for the milling machines across the aisle. In addition to having a redundant production machine, Micro-Mechanics also has a prototype engineering division where milling and turning equipment with the same configuration as the production machines are used to develop and prove out processes before sending jobs to the floor. Process optimization begins with the prototype :: The CMMs in the inspection area are used to help build a good process, only on first articles. Once the process is established, in-process checking is sufficient. :: An RFID chip in the toolholder maintains important tool data that is automatically uploaded to the machine when jobs are set up. An App to Simplify Setups productionmachining.com :: 35

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