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Displaying items by tag: Transfluid

Wednesday, 01 April 2020 09:26

Robots as efficient tube bending machines

transfluid has a new generation of machines

Bending robot from transfluid with easier programming © transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH Bending robot from transfluid with easier programming © transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

Robots have already been used for some time as efficient and flexible bending machines to process tubes. These systems are constantly developed further and improved. For the experienced engineers at transfluid this means first of all to make the software user-friendly, so it is possible to work in an efficient and professional way.

These bending systems from the high-tech engineering company can take isometrics data and generate bending data without separate programming of the robot system.

The next stage has been designed and improved

A tube is processed mid-air. © transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH A tube is processed mid-air. © transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH transfluid has now designed the next step in the development of its range of tube bending robots and improved it again. The online connection to CAD systems has always been possible, which reduces the set-up time a lot. Another important aspect is to simplify the software connection because of the robot programming capabilities of each customer.

The latest generation of machines can process isometrics data online. There are also positions stored in the control system, for where the piece is picked up and dropped off. In addition to this, it is also possible to retrieve the position for the necessary supports for long tubes. Because of this, a complete new complex bending geometry can be programmed and bent quickly, in max. 30 minutes. This including the set-up of the bending tools.

Synchronized and coded for clear identification

The transfluid bending cells with two robots bend long tubes at both ends. This way tubes can be supplied with forming, hoses or connection systems. The preparation and cleaning of the tubes becomes a lot easier. It is much better to process straight tubes, when the bending machine can bend at both ends. These benefits can be enjoyed both when bending with one or two robots.

With a set-up with two robots it is possible to process tubes of up to 6,000 mm without any problems. The two robots work in a synchronized way. Additional equipment like clamping or support devices also synchronize with the processing robot. The robots recognize the component with a code, generate the bending sequence and they can also choose between different radii and diameters. It is possible to work with a total of six different tube diameters or radii without having to change the dies.

Advanced processing, greater output

With the new developments and improvements from transfluid, a production cell with two robots can do more than bend a tube at both ends: each of the bending robots can also process different geometries. Both machines are working all the time and the system can be used efficiently and with a significantly higher output.

New from transfluid: Each robot can process different geometries in a manufacturing cell with two robots. © transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH New from transfluid: Each robot can process different geometries in a manufacturing cell with two robots. © transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

Bending and handling without costly programming

The latest generation of transfluid bending robots also offers safe handling: the grabbing coordinates on the tube for the pick-up from the magazine and for the dropping off can be retrieved from the pre-programmed parameters. This means that the user has to do almost no programming of the bending sequence or the handling steps. The machine simply refers to pre-loaded data.

Even tubes with long lengths, which are nearly impossible on conventional bending machines, can be processed without any problems, as the long sections will not cause any collision problems. This is possible, because the last bending is done on the “floating” tube, just before the drop off. The whole system is operated by a bending machine control unit. The benefit is that it is possible to work both with x, y and z coordinates, but also with lengths and bending angles, just like a standard bending machine.

Short learning curve and fast set-up

It is not necessary to have special knowledge of robot programming. In order to keep the set-up times as short as possible, the robots have pre-programmed tool settings, including axes for the set up position. This keeps the set-up time short for the operator. With the latest generation of bending robots transfluid has once again expanded the possibilities of tube processing and made it more efficient.

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In agriculture the production has gone from manual manufacturing to industrial production. What used to be processed with simple farm machinery is now at times highly automated and has to be done rationally. This does in fact apply to all areas of agriculture, from tractors to combine harvesters and driverless machines for many different applications, but also to the accessories, like the small pieces of equipment used in agriculture.

Mandrel bending machine DB 2060 CNC-SE © transfluidMandrel bending machine DB 2060 CNC-SE © transfluid

Efficient driving, lifting and motion with tubes bent the right way

transfluid, the specialist in tube processing machines and systems, has already been delivering its solution to this sector for many years. “The developments are very exciting and we are happy to continue to contribute to that”, says Stefanie Flaeper, Managing Director at transfluid. To show the capabilities, the company will be at Agritechnica in Hannover, Hall 16, Stand 03. “When we look at the tube processing for the manufacturing of agricultural machinery we see two key types: heavy tubes and profiles, that are often used in the construction of frames, and on the other hand the large hydraulics systems”, explains Stefanie Flaeper. Hydraulics is often the method used in agricultural machinery to drive, lift and move. transfluid offers a wide range of machines suitable for the processing of the tubes for this application. From a simple bending machine with mandrel, like the t bend DB 642K, for mobile use and small numbers of tubes, to the highly flexible CNC-controlled systems with short set-up time and able to bend clockwise and counterclockwise, like the t bend DB 630-CNC. Very fast processes and higher output are the results with these machines. The drives of the tube processing machines are particularly high-performing and can be either hydraulic or electric with brushless motors, depending on your preference. All the challenges are therefore met, whether it is small or large diameter tubes. Machines are available for extreme geometries, which can bend both clockwise and counterclokwise in one operation. These generally have an electric, brushless motor drive for large outputs.

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Better processes with different materials and geometries

It is often the case that with hydraulics tubes there is a great variety of geometries and small numbers of production pieces. In this case, materials and geometries are particularly challenging. Although standard materials are used, other materials with significantly greater strength are used to meet the specifications. For this reason, the machines must offer the right level of flexibility. In this production area it can make sense to have a manufacturing model that is based on one piece flow and chaotic, when tubes of different diameters are needed for a product. The stock levels can be reduced a lot and the tube is prepared completely before bending. “Our goal is to greatly simplify and optimize the production processes with our solutions. To do this, our machines will produce tubes that are completely ready for immediate use after the bending”, explains Stefanie Flaeper. The first step is the cutting, which the t cut range takes care of. The cleaning and automatic application of cutting rings and many different types of forming are also required. The forming and the cutting rings can be processed both ways in this case. The transfluid cleaning systems automatically deliver clean tubes. The experts are offering the complete processing of tubes and, if needed, also the right automations systems with t motion, for a completely automated production.

The t project software makes it possible to process isometrics directly from CAD. © transfluidThe t project software makes it possible to process isometrics directly from CAD. © transfluid

Prototyping and software for safe production from the very first tube

A key element for success in tube processing is prototyping. All transfluid machines can be operated manually to produce the first set of tubes. In addition to this, tools are available to measure the component, or even the whole set of components, in a flexible way and directly on the item and generate accurate digital data. The t project software makes it possible to process isometrics directly from CAD. Both the technical department and the machine operator can use a number of different interfaces to import data and run collision tests. “With our advanced software, even the very first tube is ready to be used in a manufacturing process”, highlights Ms. Flaeper. This way, transfluid offers tubes to the manufacturers of agrotechnical products, which are ready to be incorporated and produced in a way that is extremely close to the final manufacturing standards; they are necessary for a functioning and reliable hydraulics system. Come and speak to the transfluid experts, if you want to learn more about transfluid’s solutions for tubes. You will find them at Agritechnica in Hannover, 10th-16th November 2019.

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transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.

www.transfluid.net

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Wednesday, 25 September 2019 08:00

transfluid presents at FABTECH 2019: hall D46577

A precise engine manifold with two blade cutting

A t bend system developed by transfluid enables the processing of tubes of up to 60 mm with a bending radius of 1 x D. Most of the tubes produced in this case have two or three bends, with the cut made straight after the last bend or between two bends. No additional follow-up cuts are required. The bending machine for this solution features a centre-line booster and three bending planes, plus the plane where the cutting tool is used.

© transfluid : The tubes are initially bended in sequence and then cut with blades.© transfluid : The tubes are initially bended in sequence and then cut with blades.

Video Below

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.

www.transfluid.net

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High-tech engineering company transfluid presents solutions for effective tubing and connection systems

The highly dynamic stress on hydraulics tubing and connections needs technology that delivers clean, robust and long-term tight results. The engineering company transfluid has been developing tube bending machines for the past 30 years to produce these results and the solutions for these demanding specifications are more and more advanced. They go from simple bending machines that bend directly on the equipment to CNC-controlled bending machines. Cutting ring pre-assembly machines are available for connections in hydraulics and also forming machines, to add DKOL and other soft sealing connections and hose fittings directly on the tube, as well as forming a single-piece tube fitting on the tube, with no chips.

Mobile bending machineMobile bending machine

Strong mobile performance for on-site applications

Simple and effective techniques, little space required (sometimes just one m2) and great flexibility in the applications: transfluid has developed the latest generation of its classic mobile bending machine t bend MB 642 for bending directly on site. With this machine it is possible to bend tube up to 6m long on-site and the floor space needed by the machine does not change. This is because the rotating head can turn and reduces the working space needed to a minimum. With the compression bending technique the MB 642 can bend tubes with a diameter between 6-42mm and the operation is simple. The bending radius can be relatively tight in this case, between 2-2.5x the diameter of the tube and 3x with tube with very thin-walled tubes.

Extra equipment is available: internal and external deburring devices, saws and assembly devices for all the most common connection systems (flange and with cutting ring for thread cutting), as well as metal circular saws.

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Tight bending radius when using mandrels
For the manufacturing of tube geometries for individual pieces or small series with rotary draw bending, transfluid has developed its compact bending machines with mandrel. They are very flexible and can achieve a very tight bending radius even with tubes with thin walls when bending with a mandrel. This means that the t bend DB 2076K machine can work with tubes with a diameter of 20-76mm. If needed, it is possible to transfer data to the machine with a USB connection. The control system can store whole bending programs and the machine comes with an 8-angle pre-selection as standard. In this case too there is optional equipment, such as saws, burring devices, cutting ring for threads and flanges, to manufacture complete tubing systems for the individual needs.

Interfaces for small runs and a variety of geometries

As well as tubing and connections for hydraulic applications, there is more and more often the need to process CAD data from different programs or to manufacture complex tubing systems. transfluid makes this possible with CNC machines that perform strongly, are simple to use and completely automated. The tools can be exchanged quickly, making their use extremely flexible. Because of the price/performance ratios, they are ideal for small production runs and for applications with high geometry diversity. These bending machines work independent of the user and to the specifications of the individual project. This is possible thanks to the interfaces available to connect them with CAD and measuring machines.

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Digitally connected to the technical department and measuring systems

transfluid created its own software t project to improve the processes and the safety of the production. The two versions provide controlled tube manufacturing and connect the machines to CAD and measuring systems, BDE (Manufacturing Execution System) or ERP systems. They make the use of CNC-bending machines or also bending robots more flexible. For instance, it is possible to test bending sequences in advance, make sure that there are no collisions and execute them. Various additional modules contain the information for whole sequences, to have better control over the process and to manage the forming process data. The software also helps at the cutting stage, reducing any waste to the minimum.

Separate assembly machines for safe connections

In addition to its range of machines for bending techniques, transfluid also offers separate assembly machines for cutting ring or flange connections. They operate in an axial or rolling manner to deliver safe connections. For instance, the combination desk unit HA 642 makes it possible to have the die ring pre-assembly and the flanging of tubes with a 6-42mm diameter. The experts in tube manufacturing machines will present their variety of solutions for tubes at the Hannover Trade Fair 2019 in Hall 21, Stand H38.

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH
transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.
www.transfluid.net

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Faster processing of tube ends and better surfaces

The new t form forming machine from transfluid with simple tool substitution and reduced operator intervention.

Time-efficiency and quality of the end results play a crucial role in efficient forming processes of tube endings. To achieve this, the high-tech machine manufacturer transfluid has completely re-engineered its ‘t form UMR’ forming machine. The proven benefits of the unit were kept and more added, to reduce the process time and achieve better surface results, irrespective of whether you are working with seamless tubes or tubes with longitudinal welding seams.

For tube diameters between 6 and 42 mm the t form UMR 642 flaring machine creates excellent sealing surfaces.For tube diameters between 6 and 42 mm the t form UMR 642 flaring machine creates excellent sealing surfaces.

Electronic pre-selection saves time and manpower

The transfluid solutions shape tubes either in a rolling or rotational process. For instance, the bead rolling machine uses a rolling process. That makes it possible to achieve various forming results on the extremity of the tube, with high-precision reduction over a long distance, and amongst other things it can create a thread with the rolling system. The rotational process is on the other hand able to carry out multiple flaring at the end of the tube, at an angle to the diameter between 20˚ and 90˚ or contoured, for instance ball-shaped.

"In the past it was necessary to set stops and strokes manually for both machines, in order to achieve good geometries on the surface. The latest generation of machines ‚t form UMR‘ 628, 642 and 2090 only require a very simple tool substitution by the operator, which doesn’t even take five minutes“, says Stefanie Flaeper about the benefits of the latest tube forming machines. Now the equipment includes a complete selection of flaring-geometries to choose from electronically. The position of the stop, as well as all the strokes and operations are controlled servo-electrically and can be retrieved via a touch panel.

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The material that is processed and the type of forming that is required are crucial for the exact timing of the process. The machines completes the process almost independently, when it is possible to retrieve the size of the tube together with the required process parameters. In each case the clamping length for the production process are between 1x and 1.5x the diameter of the tube. This way the operator always has the option to carry out the forming after the bending steps. With this solution transfluid makes it possible to have a more economical production of complex forming geometries and flaring with polished sealing surfaces in one single forming step.

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH
transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.
www.transfluid.net

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From cutting to bending: The software ensures economical and precise production

For a few years already, the high-tech manufacturers transfluid have provided smooth tube bending with their t project software, for instance through digital collision tests. The increasing digitalisation and networking of the processes in tube production requires more and more advanced solutions. The engineers at transfluid have developed the software further and constructed it both for networked use and to be integrated in the production proces. In addition to this, it can also be used to process production data. The data from the production and the various steps can easily be retrieved online through one of the available ERP Systems.

The transfluid t project software determines bending times, accurate cutting lengths and records tube data. © transfluidThe transfluid t project software determines bending times, accurate cutting lengths and records tube data. © transfluid

Everything under control: List of cuts and individual marking

The software solutions contribute to the economical processing of tube, starting with the determination of the cutting length for various cutting machines, in particular for the orbital transfluid t cut machine for chipless cutting. The software generates a list with the details of the cuts, which improves the cutting and the use of the half-finished product, with as little waste as possible.

A unique marking with all the important data – such as those associated with the bending process or connecting systems - is generated, to ensure that the component is identifiable throughout the process. The required data transfer can be done via an interface with CAD, ERP or also other programs, which deliver the data relevant to the process.

In those cases where a robot is assigned a bending task it is possible for the necessary manufacturing data to be processed without having to program the robot. © transfluidIn those cases where a robot is assigned a bending task it is possible for the necessary manufacturing data to be processed without having to program the robot. © transfluid

Production information includes the quality of the bending

The software prevents collisions with the machine, the tools and also the surrounding area before initiating the bending process. The CAD program delivers the necessary machine and tool parameters online. In those cases where a robot is assigned a bending task it is possible for the necessary manufacturing data to be processed without having to program the robot.

The software can adjust the bending speed on all transfluid machines for the specific product, in order to be able to process tubes safely and without oscillations, which is particular important for long, small-diameter tubes. A software module captures the status of the production process and provides the central systems with the production-related information about the status and the quality of the production (CPK). This is how the networked transfluid software delivers an efficient production process.

The software prevents collisions with the machine, the tools and also the surrounding area before initiating the bending process. © transfluidThe software prevents collisions with the machine, the tools and also the surrounding area before initiating the bending process. © transfluid

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.

www.transfluid.net

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Interview with Benedikt Hümmler, managing director, engineering/production at transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

What is your assessment of the current market situation for your sector?
It is actually extremely positive at present for German mechanical engineering, which is working at a very high level. And is also because of the great potential for innovation that we have. We take advantage of it in a very effective and deliberate manner.

What do you understand by “Industry 4.0”?
For our business, Industy 4.0 is an important step into the connected future. For many of our clients it is still not clear how it will benefit them. Many look at this topic in isolation and not as a supplementary and performance-improving opportunity. That is not quite happening yet.

(on the left) Benedikt Hümmler, managing director, engineering/production at transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH.(on the left) Benedikt Hümmler, managing director, engineering/production at transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH.

Is transfluid already planning to or already integrating digital technologies?
We are gradually making our products capable of 4.0-communications for our various customers and, if the customer wants it, we offer the corresponding software to install, which can collect and process the operational parameters. With this and the corresponding hardware we can achieve the current idea of 4.0.

What do you see as future trends for your business sector?
At present it is fair to expect that the mechanical engineering sector will have to consolidate again, after this period of strong demand. Just as before, the trend towards adopting automation techniques will continue and more strongly so. This will make it easier to even out geographical differences and the associated costs. The higher the technical level of our clients’ equipment, the more relevant it becomes to ask whether the production can be done independently of the employee. This would make it possible to establish production anywhere in the word that meets the same quality requirements.

Published in Ferrous Tube / Pipe
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The transfluid software improves mobile processes and high-performance bending machine for large tubes offer up to 60% time savings

Digital solutions are required by the international shipbuilding and off-shore industry for efficient planning of their resources and processes. To support that, the high-tech machine manufacturer transfluid combine their bending technologies for large diameter tubes with online networking aimed at practical applications, as with the ‘t project’ software calculating beforehand the exact orientation of the flanges, when bending straight tubes with welded flanges. Mobile measuring tools acquire data on-site, for instance in order to measure template tubes accurately. In addition to that, transfluid offers the option of tube end-forming processes with the rotary tube forming UMR ‘t form’ machine. For instance, it is possible to introduce flared flanges economically and subsequently bend the tube.

Bending tubes with a diameter of up to 400mm faster
“Saving time and money are aspects that we make possible for this industry, when it comes to tube processing”, says transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH director Stefanie Flaeper. “Our ‘t bend’ CNC bending machine has replaced the need to weld bends onto large tubes a long time ago, as it lowers the production costs.” In addition to that, the bending systems save up to 60% of the production time for tubes with a diameter up to 400mm. The fast setting-up of the machine, at times in less than 10 minutes, also plays a crucial role. Equipped with a fully automated CNC control system, the transfluid units can process tubes with thin and thick walls and made of any material, even with radii of 1.5 x tube diameter or more. These tight bending radii are achieved with unrivalled minimal thinning of the tube walls. This leads to benefits also in terms of space on board the ship.

© transfluid: As the mobile version, 't project Draft' contributes to more time-efficient and more flexible tube manufacturing.© transfluid: As the mobile version, 't project Draft' contributes to more time-efficient and more flexible tube manufacturing.

Better bending of tubes with flanges with the transfluid software
It is possible to achieve much simpler and much cheaper tube processing, when the flanges are welded onto the straight tube beforehand, because the welding process is considerably faster at that stage. With the internal connection to the CAD programs, the ‘t project’ bending software can process the isometrics immediately. Flanges can be chosen from a database and integrated in the isometrics, also in terms of bending technology. “With the directional bending of the flanged tubes our solution is able to improve the flexibility of the manufacturing. The processes clearly become simpler”, explains Stefanie Flaeper.

‘t project’ for mobile use on board
The tablet version of the ‘t project Draft’ software offers greater freedom for on-site practical applications. It allows the user to acquire data with a very light, portable measuring system. It is thus possible to collect data, for instance for connector tubes, both the geometries of the process, as well as the flanges and the position of the flanges. Time savings are particularly significant for this aspect. The process of measuring on board only requires a few minutes, even for more complex tubes with flanges. All the data is acquired digitally, documented and the data can be transferred online and be available to the technical office, as well as the bending machine. Once a tube-part has been completed, it can be measured once again, in order to guarantee a smooth installation. And here is an additional time benefit: whilst tubes are processed with the measurement data that was provided, further measurements can be taken on board.

Effective forming of tube ends
A key aspect of tube processing in the shipbuilding industry is the forming of tube ends, like the forming of flared flanges on the tubes. With the rolling UMR ‘t form’ machine it is possible to shape tubes with diameters up to 325mm. Almost tool-independent, it uses a controlled shaping cone, which can be programmed freely during the task. Another interesting shaping option is the cylindrical expansion of tube ends, in order to connect two tubes. The transfluid solution to this challenge is suitable for tubes with a nominal size up to 250. The traditional practice in shipbuilding of welding with two seams on each connection sleeve for large nominal sizes is now redundant.
transfluid will be SMM 2018, hall B2.3G, stand 324, to present its high-tech solutions for the processing of tubes in shipbuilding.

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transfluid’s mandrel bending machine delivers better processes through sequential control

Safety is an issue that is extremely important in the aviation and aerospace industry, perhaps more so than in any other industry, and therefore the demands are very high, also on tube processing, as managing director Stefanie Flaeper explains: “There is often demand for fast production processes of small batches of complex components, of course. In addition, high and ultra-high strength materials are an important matter for tubes that are more lightweight and that can be subjected to greater loading. What makes the development of tube processing technologies for the aviation and aerospace industry particularly interesting is that there are always new technical milestones that require sophisticated solutions.” Such as the project that the company is working on at present for a leading manufacturer of aeroplanes.  The new, specially designed t bend mandrel bending machine from transfluid is capable of bending titanium, aluminium and stainless steel tubes with a diameter of up to 60mm and a wall thickness of 0.5-1.5mm.  Furthermore, the design makes it possible to achieve a radius of 1xD.

© transfluid : All sequences can be programmed easily on the t bend-mandrel bending machine from transfluid. The operator can assign them to a product and recall them when needed.© transfluid : All sequences can be programmed easily on the t bend-mandrel bending machine from transfluid. The operator can assign them to a product and recall them when needed.

Axis synchronisation through smart sequential control

The other feature that makes it special is the option to control the wall thinning. This is where safety plays a key role with regards to the later application of the processed tubes in the aeroplanes. The wall thickness has to meet the specifications after the bending too; the flow through the workpiece and its stability have to be preserved. That is why the transfluid engineers have developed the push bending option for the process. The controlled push bending is applied during the last bend through a controlled inner tube.

“All the electrical axes are equipped with servo-electrical motors and their drives can be neatly synchronized”, Stefanie Flaeper explains about the technical details. “A key benefit is the complete synchronization of all the moving axes in different sequences, which is what makes our new sequential control possible.” This separates each movement of all the axes and moves the different units at the right time. That way it is possible to gradually introduce a bend with ease and either push or slow down with the required power.

Customized storage of production data and protected retrieval

All the sequences on this innovative mandrel bending machine are easy to program. The operator can allocate them to the product and retrieve them as and when needed. In addition to the actual process the sequencing will also take into account the material, radii and manufacturing processes of the product.

All control aspects can be accessed via the network. This allows the desired geometries to be taken from the CAD software and the data from the impact test be recorded in the same way. The measuring unit can be connected to the system too, depending on the size of the lots and batches. The sequence control will also store the relevant data for the production, as defined by the customer. They can then be recalled and processed with a password and the correct authorization. Furthermore, the machine’s software and all the control components, as well as the control panel (MMI), are compatible with Industry 4.0. These particular features make it possible to set up the machine with almost no operator intervention. Tube processing improvement that is right on target for the aviation and aerospace industry.

 

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For the past 30 years transfluid has been shaping progress in tube processing

When people think about 1st April they mostly think about spectacular stories that ultimately turn out to be a joke. That is not the case for Gerd Nöker and Ludger Bludau. They both remember how the history of their company also started on a 1st April and now, 30 years later, the success it enjoys is greater than ever. The story is about transfluid: established in 1998 as a two-man business, the current GmbH is now a sought-after international partner providing solutions for machines to bend and process tubes. Since 2013 it is also a world market leader in CNC-controlled rolling tube forming. There is very little now to remind us of those humble beginnings, when there was just 125m2 available. But there is one aspect that transfluid has remained true to for the past three decades: its commitment to progress in tube processing for the benefit of its customers.

Always one step ahead
When you walk through transfluid’s production halls in 2018 you will see fully automated production units and robots, working efficiently and accurately as bending and end forming systems. “When we started out in 1988 the internet was not playing a role yet and I am sure that nobody could have predicted how digitalization would revolutionize whole industry sectors on such a massive scale and in the shortest of time - including tube processing, of course”, says business co-founder Gerd Nöker. In spite of that, the first development that transfluid – still Nöker & Bludau oHG at the time - launched on the global market was a small sensation. This was, after all, the first manual tube bending machine for small tubes, up to 16mm diameter; the t bend MB 642 is the unparalleled top seller and it is still requested from all over the world for on-site jobs.

© transfluid : The t form UMR moulding machines open up for new shaping options for tubes that have already been moulded axially, for the production of sharp-edged contours for sealing elements.© transfluid : The t form UMR moulding machines open up for new shaping options for tubes that have already been moulded axially, for the production of sharp-edged contours for sealing elements.

The solution for tubes
There are now more than 12,000 machines in circulation globally, shaping tubes according to the concept of Bestform. transfluid is “the solution for tubes”, whether it is end forming, bending, cutting or connecting of the machines to an automatic cell. With their traditional technical creativity, the experts are, of course, also developing fully-automated solutions, including customized solutions to meet their customers’ individual requirements. The client base comes from a number of sectors: the plant and machine construction sector is represented just as strongly as the automotive and energy industries and shipbuilding, as well as many more.  Ludger Bludau points out that “this is exactly what still makes our work so exciting after 30 years. We have the opportunity to grow again and again, together with our customers, thanks to the new challenges, and thus redefine the boundaries of what can be achieved in tube processing”. Greater efficiency, flexibility and optimized processes: transfluid offers all of this with its smart software, into which the experts have packed all their know-how. The comprehensive portfolio is completed with a wide choice of stock machines, offering fast delivery prompt support to deal with everyday challenges.

Strong team and entrepreneurial vision
A lot of room is needed for so many ideas and transfluid has created this over time. In 1991 the business found a new home at the current site in Schmallenberg. In addition to that, the business’ leadership has grown from two to five proud members. Benedikt Hümmler, Burkhard Tigges and Stefanie Flaeper have further strengthened the Bludau and Nöker founding duo. With their combined strengths and strategic vision, the leadership group of five keeps the business on the road to success, supported by a strong and committed team. It is noteworthy that there are 10 employees who have known the business since the beginning and are still working for transfluid.

Global market leadership leads to knowledge exchange
transfluid’s position as an international market leader through its technology was confirmed in 2013 in a special way. With the newly developed CNC-controlled incremental tube end forming, the business was added to and is still included in the “List of global market leaders” of the South Westfalia Chamber of Commerce. Highly complex moulding geometries can now be achieved with the novel rolling process, such as end forming with very strict tolerances, groove structure with sharp edges and polished surfaces. This kind of forming are independent of special dies because they are adjustable. “We are of course proud of this recognition, as it is the result of intensive development work, into which a lot of our know-how has been poured”, says Stephanie Flaeper, managing director at transfluid. “However, it is also important for us to share this knowledge in the interest of advanced developments.” Therefore, the company regularly invites other experts to exchange experiences and thoughts at its Innovation Days. The experts meet once a year in Sauerland, to learn about the latest developments and to discuss the challenges of tube processing together. One thing is always clear during these events: transfluid will continue to chart new routes over the next 30 years.

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