Mazak's MAZATROL SmoothEz

Business Reinvestment at Core of Mazak Product Announcement

Dec. 14, 2020
The company sees reason for growth in the new year, and is ramping up production accordingly.

Mazak Corporation’s launch of its MAZATROL SmoothEz CNC machines for the job shop market isn’t a product debut in the traditional sense. It’s the culmination of a strategy at Mazak in the age of COVID that has included aggressive reinvestment, training and product development.

“Over the course of the last seven to eight months, we’ve taken a very aggressive route by investing in our business. Our goal was preserving the capacity we had,” said Mazak president Dan Janka during a virtual press conference to announce the launch of the EZ Series. “We’ve taken on a number of continuous improvement initiatives. I feel really confident where we’re positioned now. We’re ramping up our production as we roll into first quarter of 2021.”

One of Mazak’s key decisions in the early days of the pandemic was to reinvest in systems and people at its Florence, Ky. headquarters and at other locations around the U.S. As part of a $15 million investment in the Kentucky facility, Mazak has developed a $3.8 million spindle rebuild facility that supports more than 2,000 spindle models.

“We added applications engineers, implemented more training, and worked to improve productivity and improve our competitiveness,” he said. “We reinvested in product development, opened streaming technical centers and expanded our service footprint.”

Janka said he’s encouraged by recovery in several key manufacturing sectors that will benefit from machine tools. He expects a robust recovery in 2021 as optimism over a potential COVID-19 vaccine and pent-up industrial demand will drive continued manufacturing investments. “Overall manufacturing output continues to recover,” Janka said. “Total manufacturing output is only down 3.8% from October of last year, and we’re certainly headed in the right direction.

Janka noted particular markets, including aerospace, semiconductors, medical devices and implants, all expected to show growth in the new year.

“The automotive sector rebounded faster than expected—sales back to pre-COVID levels,” he said. “Housing construction continues to do well, and there still is bipartisan support [in Congress] for an infrastructure bill. I believe this recovery is going to be led by the consumer.”

Among the turning center configurations are machines featuring milling, milling with Y-axis off-centerline capability or a combination of both paired with a second turning spindle for complete DONE IN ONE part processing. Available chuck sizes for the machines are 8, 10 or 12 in. The 3-axis vertical machine model features a powerful 25-hp, 12,000-rpm spindle; 30 tool magazine; and offers shops 41.2 in. of travel in the X axis, 20.1 in. in Y and 25.0 in. in Z with a 49.2 in. x 19.4 in. table size.

The new MAZATROL SmoothEz control gives operators a full 15-in. touchscreen interface. The screen also allows for the display of either a full screen keyboard and/or 60 full program lines.

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