Machine Design

Proper Tooling Improves Quality and Productivity for Conduit Maker

Spirol International Corp.,

A company that made electrical conduit assemblies was having quality problems with inserting brass inserts into a variety of plastic components. The company used a single ultrasonic welder which bottlenecked production. Worse, a technician had to waste time forcing two oddly shaped brass inserts into undersized holes. Finished assemblies sported excessive melt, making them unsightly and needed cleaning up with secondary operations, and inserts were often out of place, leading to a lot of rejects. All these problems limited production to one finished part per minute.

To increase production, the company turned to Spirol International Corp., Danielson, Conn., a firm that specializes in metal inserts. Spirol advised replacing the inserts with Spirol versions and to use a Spirol Platen-style Heat Inserting System for assembly. The inserter can handle three to six assemblies, depending on their size, and insert two inserts into each simultaneously. Quick-change attachments let the inserter handle 10 different styles of assemblies. The machine uses conductive heating with closely controlled pneumatic-installation pressure on the inserts for consistent results. After the switch to the new equipment, productivity jumped by a factor of six and the defect rate plunged to nearly zero. This let the machine pay for itself in less than a year.

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