Two bandsaws from Kasto replace four conventional machines

At the Newcastle-under-Lyme facility of special metals stockholder, Langley Alloys, two German-built KASTOtec bandsaws specified for cutting with tungsten carbide tipped (TCT) blades have replaced four out of six machines from a different supplier, which are effective only when bimetal blades are used.

As the downfeed on both KASTOtecs is three times faster, overall cutting capacity across the six machines has increased by one-third while the floor area occupied has decreased by a similar amount. This is precisely what Langley Alloys needed, as orders have increased sharply since the start of 2017 but there is no room on the site for more bandsaws to handle the higher throughput.

As an added bonus, the freed space has allowed the stockholder to increase the range of materials and sizes that it holds to well over 1,000 line items. For example, Alloy 254SMO stainless steel is now stocked in bigger quantities, Alloy 2205 duplex stainless steel has been added and the variety of nickel alloys has been expanded from Alloys 625 and 718 to include Alloys 725, 825 and K-500. The investment, approaching £2 million in stock alone, means that Langley Alloys has extended both the range and depth of material available.

2017 08 02 091552The KASTOtec AC4 in operation at Langley Alloys, Newcastle-under-Lyme.

Business Development Director Rodney Rice said, “Our success is despite half of our business historically being in the oil and gas sector, which has been depressed in recent years.

“Offsetting that, we have seen significant growth from many of the other industries we supply, including defence, marine, pulp and paper, chemical processing and general engineering.

“Responsiveness to customer demand is crucial. Installation of the Kasto bandsaws means that we are able to stock a broader range of materials that closely match users’ requirements and cut them quickly for supply in short lead-times.”

Operations director Richard Bulmer added, “Cutting with TCT blades was key to making this a reality. We tried using them on our older bandsaws but they were not rigid enough to cope. The band would squeal through the guides and excessive vibration wore the teeth out quickly.

“We were only able to cut 2 square metres of nickel alloy with a carbide blade, which was about the same as with a bimetal blade but at three times the consumable cost.

“We are not quite there yet, but we will soon be getting 5 to 6 square metres cutting area per TCT blade on the KASTOtecs, so cost per cut will be equivalent to bimetal in terms of the consumable cost alone.

“Taking into account lower labour costs due to operating four rather than six bandsaws, five days a week and sometimes on Saturdays, plus more capacity for lights-out running, the new machines will pay for themselves quickly.”

He added that when it came to purchasing the carbide-enabled bandsaws, there was a preconception within Langley Alloys that Kasto was the way to go, as this make of saw is used widely in the stockholding sector, especially for cost-effective cutting of high performance materials.

2017 08 02 091616Close-up of the control of the KPC bandsaw.

As the machines were needed quickly, a decision was taken to purchase the two 430 mm-capacity KASTOtec AC4 models on display in the supplier’s Milton Keynes showroom.

One was fitted with a so-called carbide pack, including uprated motors to allow infinitely variable band speeds up to 50 m/min, which compares favourably with typical bimetal blade speeds of a little above 20 m/min. The other saw was a Kasto Performance Cutting (KPC) model, designed and built specifically for cutting using TCT blades with the inclusion of patented Trum guides to minimise band vibration on the side opposite to the point of cutting.

Initially, Mr Bulmer took some Ferralium super duplex stainless steel bar to Milton Keynes for cutting trials, as the material forms a large percentage of throughput at Langley Alloys.

Following successful tests, a purchase order was placed on Kasto for a four-week trial installation of the first bandsaw in Newcastle-under-Lyme so that further side-by-side cutting comparisons could be made with the conventional saws on site. These proved beyond doubt that the KASTOtec was ideal for processing difficult alloys, including high strength nickels, which are slow to cut using a bimetal blade. Both machines were duly installed on a permanent basis.

Since their arrival, further cost savings have accrued from reduced material wastage. Whereas the older saws are set to cut to -0, +2 mm to ensure that material length is not undersize, the Kasto machines are so accurate that they can be set to -0, +0.5 mm with confidence. In practice, they cut to within 0.1 mm. Over a large batch and especially when processing expensive alloys, the saving is significant.

Another feature of the bandsaws that the stockholder appreciates is a function within the Kasto control that allows a new TCT blade to be programmed to run-in automatically at different, reduced speeds to suit the tooth pitch.

Langley Alloys, which was founded near Slough in 1938, grew steadily throughout the Second World War. Several successful alloys were developed including the high strength Naval alloy Hidurax Special and the copper alloy Hidurel 5, from which engine bearings on the Spitfire aircraft were made. Even today, four of the company’s 43 staff are metallurgists, able to provide customers with detailed technical guidance and support.

In recent years, the stockholder has largely reinvented itself by focusing on the distribution of bar, tube and plate in a variety of corrosion resistant alloys alongside its proprietary products. The opening of sites in the United States and Singapore has added the ability to provide a high level of support to customers worldwide.

Published inMachinery

German metal sawing and storage equipment manufacturer, KASTO, has introduced a new, high performance, economically priced bandsaw, called KASTOwin pro AC 5.6, said to offer short cutting times, long blade life and intuitive operation. Availability in the UK and Ireland is through the company’s Milton Keynes subsidiary.

The automatic machine is optimised to extract the best possible performance from either a bimetal or tungsten carbide tipped (TCT) blade. It is ideally suited to a wide range of applications cutting solid material, tubes and profiles, particularly in steel production and stockholding, machine manufacturing and the automotive industry.

2016-10-28 094547

The KASTOwin pro AC 5.6 bandsaw pictured on the manufacturer’s stand at the AMB 2016 show in Stuttgart during September, where the machine was launched.

The bandsaw can significantly increase production speed and efficiency. Depending on the type of blade and the material being cut, processing times can routinely be reduced by up to 50 percent and more in some instances.

An important feature of the KASTOwin pro AC 5.6 is its innovative, electromechanical downfeed. It is controlled via two ballscrews, each with a servo drive, for precise, infinitely variable control. There is a retraction unit for separating the blade from the material to protect the cut surface when the saw head moves back. It also helps to minimise tool wear.

The drive unit and sensor are separate from the working area, ensuring reliable, trouble-free operation. Access to the machine is good, despite compliance with CE safety standards.

The saw band is driven by an 11 kW, frequency-controlled motor, delivering infinitely adjustable cutting speeds from 12 to 150 m/min and providing plenty of capacity for TCT sawing. Helping to dampen vibration are ‘Trum’ guides mounted at the return side of the blade, inside the top of the saw head guarding. They suppress vibration on the side opposite from the cutting action, promoting accurate sawing and prolonging tool life.

Maximum cutting capacity is 560 mm and the smallest dimension that can be cut is 25 mm x 25 mm. The band guide arm adjusts automatically to material width. Shortest residual length is 10 mm for individual offcuts and 35 mm in automatic operation, enabling operators to minimise waste.

2016-10-28 094603

Close-up of cutting in progress on the KASTOwin pro AC 5.6.

Two electrically driven, plastic brushes keep the teeth free from chips. They are easy to replace and are automatically adjusted throughout their service life.

Having an installed weight of 4.3 tonnes and a rigid welded structure with vibration-optimised ribbing, the KASTOwin pro AC 5.6 ensures quiet operation, short processing times and accurate cutting. A powerful coolant pump and large reservoir serve to reduce wear on the teeth further, especially when sawing difficult-to-machine materials.

The bandsaw comes with EasyControl, a high-performance control unit that is easy to use and reduces idle times in automatic operation for maximum output. All parameters can be optimised to match the type of blade and the material being cut

Published inMachinery
Thursday, 28 January 2016 10:09

NEW BANDSAW FOR CUTTING METAL TUBE

Specifically for cutting tubular material, KASTO has introduced a new bandsaw, called KASTOwin tube A 5.0, on which the blade cuts from the bottom upwards - the reverse of the action on other bandsaws. It reduces wear on the band and avoids damage to its teeth that often occurs when a blade travels downwards into swarf that has accumulated inside the bottom of the tube.

Until now, this problem made it virtually impossible to use a tungsten carbide tipped (TCT) blade for sawing tube, as the delicate teeth were invariably damaged. A bimetal blade was the only option. This is a thing of the past with the KASTOwin tube A 5.0, on which TCT blades may be used without fear of premature wear.

2016-01-28 100850

The automatic saw has a feed mechanism rotated through 180 degrees so that the cutting action starts at the surface supporting the stock. Capacity is 500 mm diameter for round tube and shortest cutting length is 10 mm. The frequency-controlled drive can be adjusted steplessly to deliver a cutting speed between 12 and 150 metres per minute.

The upfeed is equipped with zero-play linear guides, while ballscrews ensure controlled cutting and material infeed. The saw band is clamped in position hydraulically for cleaning by a replaceable, electrically driven chip removal brush.

The intelligent SmartControl ensures easy operation and, as it contains a comprehensive material database, is able to set all sawing parameters automatically for nearly all types and cross sections of material.

In addition, a new KASTOrespond feature continuously records the force on the tool, without the need for additional sensor systems that are often fault-prone. An intelligent algorithm continually varies the feed rate so that the force on the blade is maintained at a constant, optimised value.

The feature was developed for the KASTOwin tube A 5.0, as tube in particular presents a blade with widely varying conditions throughout the cut, especially at material breakthrough. It is, however, applicable to cutting all types of stock.

The tube saw boasts all of the benefits that characterise other units in the German-built KASTOwin series. Since all models are built to a similar design and the components are mostly identical, Kasto is able to offer this range of automatic production bandsaw saws at considerably more attractive prices than comparable products, without compromising quality.

Published inProcessing

Pipe Center www.pipecenter.co.uk  has opened a new distribution centre (DC) in Measham, Derbyshire, the newest and most technologically advanced distribution operation in the supply chain of parent company, Wolseley UK.

The 142,000 sq ft facility, which went live in December 2014, has given Pipe Center the ability to provide next-day delivery across its entire network and has created over 50 new jobs. At its heart is a bespoke, 3,332-location KASTOunicompact 4.0 automated warehouse, built in Germany and supplied through KASTO Ltd, Milton Keynes www.kasto.com/gb . The cassette-type tube storage system provides dynamic goods-to-man presentation for efficient picking, which reduces the amount of manual handling required.

2015-08-17 114212

A view of the KASTOunicompact 4.0 automated warehouse for pipe and other materials soon after erection at Wolseley UK’s new distribution centre in Measham.

The warehouse structure, which required the installation of 182 drive piles to provide deep foundations, has boosted storage capacity by 20 per cent compared with the previous operation, which relied on storage of long stock using a mixture of cantilever racking and bulk stacking. There was also a separate section for small parts and an area for pallet storage.

The KASTO system has reduced the distance warehouse operatives have to move when picking, speeding the consolidation of orders. The warehouse design also increases the height used for storage of Pipe Center’s SKUs (stock keeping units). The consequently reduced footprint represented significant cost savings.

The KASTO control interfaces with Measham’s HighJump warehouse management system, which offers superior tracking and traceability of inventory, further maximising efficiencies and reducing costs. The resulting optimised storage and picking coupled with improved stock management allows an even broader range of products to be stored at Measham and delivered to the branch network. The portfolio includes Bondloc, Geberit, Ideal Stelrad, Spirax Sarco and Marla Tube Fittings, underlining Pipe Center’s status as the market-leading distributor of such products.

2015-08-17 114242

An exterior view of the new Pipe Centre DC at Measham.

Each cassette is 7 metres long and 3,332 of them are arranged in 78 blocks horizontally and 22 rows vertically to a height of 12 metres on both sides of a central area, along which a picking crane travels on rails. Some locations are not filled due to the presence of building columns.

The width of the installation in the warehouse is just over 22 metres and the length is nearly 80 metres. The top seven rows contain cassettes measuring 645 mm high, the very top location being 40 mm deeper still, while the lower 15 rows house 435 mm high cassettes. All are 770 mm wide and accept material up to 6.8 metres long.

The crane travels with two cassettes weighing up to 4,150 kg each between the store locations and three input/output stations, extracting and / or returning material at up to 160 m/min longitudinally and 40 m/min vertically. These motions are performed simultaneously for maximum productivity, while cassette pulling and return speed is up to 80 m/min.

Andy Wighton, Managing Director of Pipe Centre and Climate Center said, “We have created one of the most dynamic and advanced distribution centres in the industry that will help us achieve customer service excellence.

“Measham DC is ideally placed geographically and fits with our supply chain strategy to operate as efficiently as possible. It optimises our distribution capability for Pipe Centre and Climate Center so we can offer our customers next day delivery and accommodates our exciting growth ambitions for the next 10 to 15 years.”

Published inProcessing
Monday, 29 September 2014 10:25

NEW WAREHOUSE MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE FROM KASTO

To complement its range of storage systems and controls, KASTO has upgraded its warehouse management software from KASTOlvr to KASTOlogic and in so doing has further improved its functionality. Core functions consist of an intuitive graphical user interface, an interface to the customer’s host computer system and a dashboard for overall visualisation of warehouse management.

2014-09-29 102411 kas 5

In addition to the standard module, customers can choose from various additions. One is material flow, which oversees dynamic random storage and real-time restocking and provides 3D simulation and statistical information including of gantry movement. Bottlenecks are detected and the system’s full potential can be exploited by adjustment strategies.

Inventory management is broken down into three sub-groups: logistics, for optimising routes within the warehouse; production, for providing an overview of orders and machine utilisation; and manual storage, for managing non-automated areas of a warehouse and manually operated equipment.

2014-09-29 102411 kas 6

Machines and handling systems with a higher level of automation may now be included and comprehensive statistics are available for system analysis. An automation function allows an even better overview of connected production machinery, whether it is for sawing, sheet metal profiling, pressworking or inter-machine handling.

One of the first companies to use the new KASTOlogic software is family-owned metal stockholder, Weinmann Aach AG in Dornstetten, which uses four KASTOunicompact honeycomb systems with a total of 7,000 cassettes. The stores, which include goods-to-man commissioning stations, hold steel, stainless steel and aluminium bar, tube and profile. They ensure short picking times and their compact design optimises space utilisation.

KASTOlogic controls the honeycomb storage units, clearly displaying all processes from receipt of goods to shipping. The exchange of data with other systems, such as the host computer at Weinmann, ensures a high level of transparency. The system's functions include automatic order processing, batch management, inventory management and remote diagnostics.

As with the controls on each individual store, the warehouse management system is operated via a graphical user interface developed by KASTO. Previously, they featured different interfaces but over the last few years, user experiences have provided insights into how system operation could be improved.

Andreas Stark, deputy manager of storage software development at KASTO explained, "A lot has changed in recent years, particularly in terms of operating concepts.

"A user interface must be simple and intuitive to operate – like a smartphone, for example. This gave us several ideas for how we could improve our user interface, which we decided to completely overhaul.”

The new interface is both easier to use and more user-friendly. All functions can be found quickly and easily, while system statuses are clearly displayed and monitored. To help resolve problems, KASTO has included improved help functions. It means that employees can work more efficiently, training times are shorter and production planning is streamlined.

Published inProcessing
Friday, 04 April 2014 21:54

KASTO MACH 2014 preview

KASTO WORKSHOP RANGE OF SAWING MACHINES TO FEATURE PROMINENTLY

Manufacture of multi-level warehouses for storing and retrieving bar, tube, sheet and other material automatically, and production of an extensive range of sawing machines for cutting material accurately, are the two specialisms of the German firm, KASTO, whose UK subsidiary will be exhibiting at MACH 2014. The group, which has recently entered its sixth generation of family ownership and management, is celebrating its 170th anniversary this year.

Better known for its high performance sawing products, the company has been actively promoting its workshop / dealer range of machines for the past year. The programme comprises smaller bandsaws, circular saws and hacksaws and MACH 2014 will be the first time that all three ranges will have been shown at a national exhibition. Aimed at jobbing shops, they are designed alongside the company's high-end sawing machines and are manufactured at the company's factory in Schalkau/Thueringen.

The saws range from pull-down models priced at a couple of thousand pounds to automatic machines costing ten times more. During 2013, marketed under the slogan 'quality for all budgets' and supported by a new website www.kasto.uk.com, they accounted for 35 per cent of sawing machine sales by value in the UK, up from 20 per cent the previous year.

The three models on display will be the KASTOfunctional U bandsaw with length stop arrangement, the KASTOradial M6 circular pull-down saw, and the KASTOhbs1 power hacksaw.

KASTOfunctional U

The KASTOfunctional pivot-type bandsawing machine with hydraulic infeed is available in manual, semi-automatic and fully-automatic versions, with suffixes M, U and A respectively. The semi-automatic machine will be on the stand at MACH.

Kasto-1272-2 opt

It is of solid construction with a robust, torsion-free welded base for rigorous use in workshops, capable of cutting material up to 260 mm round / square. Mitre-cutting to the left at up to 45 degrees and to the right at up to 60 degrees can be performed on tube, section and solid material. The mitre angle can be adjusted without having to alter the material position to achieve the correct cut length.

Precise ballscrew drive ensures exact positioning of the stock prior to cutting. The hydraulically actuated, horizontal clamping vice ensures accurate sawing to length without slippage and also allows short rest pieces, minimising material wastage. Cutting speed is infinitely adjustable from 20 to 110 m/min to suit any type of metal, even tough varieties. The BasicControl with swivelling operator’s panel ensures optimum machine operation via function keys. Up to 98 programs can be preselected.

KASTOradial M6

Kasto-1272-1 optKASTOradial is a family of cold circular saws including four manual, pull-down versions designated M4, M6, M7 and M10 and two semi-automatic models, U7 and U10.

With two cutting speeds for universal use in workshops, the KASTOradial M6 is ideal for straight cuts and mitre cutting on both sides within 45 degrees. A double vice with quick clamping lever provides security for holding bar stock. A 315 mm diameter HSS saw blade, length measuring stop and re-circulating coolant system are standard equipment.

KASTOhbs1

For around half the price of a workshop range bandsaw, the KASTOhbs1 power hacksaw provides an economical alternative facility for cutting. Used widely in workshops, including on ships, the design is popular for jobbing applications on a variety of metals where space is limited, performance is of secondary importance and small volumes of cut pieces are involved.

The KASTOhbs 1 is a hydraulic, semi-automatic model with two cutting speeds in a pushing, arched cutting motion invented by KASTO in 1947. Cutting pressure is infinitely adjustable. Requiring minimal floor space, the machine is designed for light to medium workshop use and is ideal for cutting profiles, beams and solids. Mitre cutting from 0 to 45 degrees extends the machine's versatility.

KASTOtec AC4 KPC

There will be demonstrations of a high-performance, 430 mm-capacity KASTOtec AC4 KPC bandsaw cutting 200 mm diameter, 316 stainless steel in 3.8 minutes minutes using a coated carbide blade running at 70 m/min. The emphasis will be on the measures that have been taken to manage and minimise vibration, which leads to higher band speeds and feeds, increased production output, lower noise levels, better accuracy and surface finish, and longer blade life.

Bandsawing productivity has increased by 300 to 400 per cent with KASTOtec bandsaws that have been factory-fitted with KPC (KASTO Performance Cutting) technology. It takes a holistic view of all aspects of the bandsawing process including blade guidance and monitoring, cutting parameters for the material, machine construction, coolant delivery, the control system and blade selection.

KASTOtec AC-series machines feature a steel / mineral cast composite construction that is six to eight times more vibration-absorbing than cast iron. The machine has a powerful main drive through a rigid, play-free, spur bevel gear delivering 98 per cent of the available power directly to the drive wheels.

High precision cuts are a result of having blade guides as close as possible to the stock on both sides and maintenance-free linear guides for the hydraulic infeed. Together with feedback of cutting force, blade speed and position, they provide consistent feed per tooth, irrespective of the ambient temperature.

Overlaid on this already high specification is the new KPC package, which KASTO has developed to improve cutting productivity still further. The focus has been on minimising vibration during cutting. Key steps taken include new blade guidance on both sides of the cutting area (patent pending) and a novel measure to dampen vibrations using a so-called ‘Trumguide’ system.

Central to the step-change in performance, it is a simple yet effective device. Two spring-loaded tensioner guides are mounted at the returning side of the blade, inside the top of the saw head guarding at either end. These guides have the effect of suppressing vibration on the side opposite to the cutting action.

KASTOunitower C

A KASTOunitower C storage tower for sheet metal will occupy a large area of the stand. The space-saving tower stores 3 metre by 1.5 metre sheets, plates, flat products and other materials such as bar, tube, boxes and semi-finished goods in a compact footprint. It offers many advantages compared to conventional storage on shelves, cantilever arms or on the floor.

The tower is especially suitable for job shops, machine shops and small to medium size sheet metal processing facilities, providing flexible storage to a height of up to 7.2 metres. It has a compact footprint of 3,415 x 4,350 mm and the standard version has a storage location every 47 mm.

Kasto-1272-3 opt

The pallets holding the sheet metal glide on almost wear-free, plastic-lined tracks when pushed into or pulled out of a storage location within the steel structure. A lift mechanism travelling at the front of the tower effects horizontal transfer of the material as well as traversing vertically between locations at up to 8 m/min.

Depending on design, pallets can support a maximum load of either 1,200 kg or 3,000 kg. The height of the loading / unloading station is adjustable, allowing direct transfer to a sheet metal processing machine or transport cart. This raises production efficiency, improves safety, saves labour and minimises the risk of damaging the material.

Versions of the KASTOunitower C are available for semi-automatic or fully automatic operation, with appropriate safety measures. The tower is controlled by KASTO's own BasicControl, which is fitted with a user-friendly touch panel.

170th anniversary

 

To coincide with its 170th anniversary, the KASTO group will unveil a revolutionary new product range on 7th May 2014 during an open house to be held at its headquarters and main factory in Achern, southern Germany. The company is saying little about its new product before the launch, but the implications are that it represents a major step forward in bandsawing technology and in the company's manufacturing process.

 

On 18th, 19th and 20th June, the Milton Keynes subsidiary will hold open days at its showroom and technical centre. The new machine will be on show again, along with many other bandsaws, circular saws and hacksaws from the manufacturer's wide range of products. Automated warehousing of bar, tube, profile and flat material will also be demonstrated.

Manufacture of multi-level warehouses for storing and retrieving bar, tube, sheet and other material automatically, and production of an extensive range of sawing machines for cutting material accurately, are the two specialisms of the German firm, KASTO, whose UK subsidiary will be exhibiting at MACH 2014. The group, which has recently entered its sixth generation of family ownership and management, is celebrating its 170th anniversary this year.

Better known for its high performance sawing products, the company has been actively promoting its workshop / dealer range of machines for the past year. The programme comprises smaller bandsaws, circular saws and hacksaws and MACH 2014 will be the first time that all three ranges will have been shown at a national exhibition. Aimed at jobbing shops, they are designed alongside the company's high-end sawing machines and are manufactured at the company's factory in Schalkau/Thueringen.

The saws range from pull-down models priced at a couple of thousand pounds to automatic machines costing ten times more. During 2013, marketed under the slogan 'quality for all budgets' and supported by a new website www.kasto.uk.com, they accounted for 35 per cent of sawing machine sales by value in the UK, up from 20 per cent the previous year.

The three models on display will be the KASTOfunctional U bandsaw with length stop arrangement, the KASTOradial M6 circular pull-down saw, and the KASTOhbs1 power hacksaw.

Kasto

KASTOfunctional U

The KASTOfunctional pivot-type bandsawing machine with hydraulic infeed is available in manual, semi-automatic and fully-automatic versions, with suffixes M, U and A respectively. The semi-automatic machine will be on the stand at MACH.

It is of solid construction with a robust, torsion-free welded base for rigorous use in workshops, capable of cutting material up to 260 mm round / square. Mitre-cutting to the left at up to 45 degrees and to the right at up to 60 degrees can be performed on tube, section and solid material. The mitre angle can be adjusted without having to alter the material position to achieve the correct cut length.

Precise ballscrew drive ensures exact positioning of the stock prior to cutting. The hydraulically actuated, horizontal clamping vice ensures accurate sawing to length without slippage and also allows short rest pieces, minimising material wastage. Cutting speed is infinitely adjustable from 20 to 110 m/min to suit any type of metal, even tough varieties. The BasicControl with swivelling operator’s panel ensures optimum machine operation via function keys. Up to 98 programs can be preselected.

KASTOradial M6

KASTOradial is a family of cold circular saws including four manual, pull-down versions designated M4, M6, M7 and M10 and two semi-automatic models, U7 and U10.

With two cutting speeds for universal use in workshops, the KASTOradial M6 is ideal for straight cuts and mitre cutting on both sides within 45 degrees. A double vice with quick clamping lever provides security for holding bar stock. A 315 mm diameter HSS saw blade, length measuring stop and re-circulating coolant system are standard equipment.

KASTOhbs1

For around half the price of a workshop range bandsaw, the KASTOhbs1 power hacksaw provides an economical alternative facility for cutting. Used widely in workshops, including on ships, the design is popular for jobbing applications on a variety of metals where space is limited, performance is of secondary importance and small volumes of cut pieces are involved.

The KASTOhbs 1 is a hydraulic, semi-automatic model with two cutting speeds in a pushing, arched cutting motion invented by KASTO in 1947. Cutting pressure is infinitely adjustable. Requiring minimal floor space, the machine is designed for light to medium workshop use and is ideal for cutting profiles, beams and solids. Mitre cutting from 0 to 45 degrees extends the machine's versatility.

KASTOtec AC4 KPC

There will be demonstrations of a high-performance, 430 mm-capacity KASTOtec AC4 KPC bandsaw cutting 200 mm diameter, 316 stainless steel in 3.8 minutes minutes using a coated carbide blade running at 70 m/min. The emphasis will be on the measures that have been taken to manage and minimise vibration, which leads to higher band speeds and feeds, increased production output, lower noise levels, better accuracy and surface finish, and longer blade life.

Bandsawing productivity has increased by 300 to 400 per cent with KASTOtec bandsaws that have been factory-fitted with KPC (KASTO Performance Cutting) technology. It takes a holistic view of all aspects of the bandsawing process including blade guidance and monitoring, cutting parameters for the material, machine construction, coolant delivery, the control system and blade selection.

KASTOtec AC-series machines feature a steel / mineral cast composite construction that is six to eight times more vibration-absorbing than cast iron. The machine has a powerful main drive through a rigid, play-free, spur bevel gear delivering 98 per cent of the available power directly to the drive wheels.

High precision cuts are a result of having blade guides as close as possible to the stock on both sides and maintenance-free linear guides for the hydraulic infeed. Together with feedback of cutting force, blade speed and position, they provide consistent feed per tooth, irrespective of the ambient temperature.

Overlaid on this already high specification is the new KPC package, which KASTO has developed to improve cutting productivity still further. The focus has been on minimising vibration during cutting. Key steps taken include new blade guidance on both sides of the cutting area (patent pending) and a novel measure to dampen vibrations using a so-called ‘Trumguide’ system.

Central to the step-change in performance, it is a simple yet effective device. Two spring-loaded tensioner guides are mounted at the returning side of the blade, inside the top of the saw head guarding at either end. These guides have the effect of suppressing vibration on the side opposite to the cutting action.

KASTOunitower C

A KASTOunitower C storage tower for sheet metal will occupy a large area of the stand. The space-saving tower stores 3 metre by 1.5 metre sheets, plates, flat products and other materials such as bar, tube, boxes and semi-finished goods in a compact footprint. It offers many advantages compared to conventional storage on shelves, cantilever arms or on the floor.

The tower is especially suitable for job shops, machine shops and small to medium size sheet metal processing facilities, providing flexible storage to a height of up to 7.2 metres. It has a compact footprint of 3,415 x 4,350 mm and the standard version has a storage location every 47 mm.

The pallets holding the sheet metal glide on almost wear-free, plastic-lined tracks when pushed into or pulled out of a storage location within the steel structure. A lift mechanism travelling at the front of the tower effects horizontal transfer of the material as well as traversing vertically between locations at up to 8 m/min.

Depending on design, pallets can support a maximum load of either 1,200 kg or 3,000 kg. The height of the loading / unloading station is adjustable, allowing direct transfer to a sheet metal processing machine or transport cart. This raises production efficiency, improves safety, saves labour and minimises the risk of damaging the material.

Versions of the KASTOunitower C are available for semi-automatic or fully automatic operation, with appropriate safety measures. The tower is controlled by KASTO's own BasicControl, which is fitted with a user-friendly touch panel.

170th anniversary

To coincide with its 170th anniversary, the KASTO group will unveil a revolutionary new product range on 7th May 2014 during an open house to be held at its headquarters and main factory in Achern, southern Germany. The company is saying little about its new product before the launch, but the implications are that it represents a major step forward in bandsawing technology and in the company's manufacturing process.

On 18th, 19th and 20th June, the Milton Keynes subsidiary will hold open days at its showroom and technical centre. The new machine will be on show again, along with many other bandsaws, circular saws and hacksaws from the manufacturer's wide range of products. Automated warehousing of bar, tube, profile and flat material will also be demonstrated.

 

Published inProduction
The touch-screen control of the KASTOtwin A4x5.

Cutting-to-length of aluminium and stainless steel stock is performed twice as quickly at the Coventry centre of Richard Austin Alloys (RAA), following the replacement of an ageing bandsaw with a Kastotwin A4x5 in June 2012.

thumb Untitled2 page1 image2Having 440 x 520 mm cutting capacity, the double column machine is able to process all of the company’s existing sizes of round and flat bar, tube, angle and box section, as well as larger stock that the company intends to introduce in the future. Sheet and plate is cut on site using a guillotine. Warehouse manager Steve Pope commented, “The Kasto bandsaw really flies through aluminium, at  the same time keeping the ends of the material square.

“It now takes us 1.5 to 2 minutes to cut through a 150 mm diameter aluminium bar, depending on blade condition, whereas with our old saw the same cut would take 3 to 4 minutes to achieve the same accuracy and blade life.” Higher productivity has increased the Coventry facility’s profitability from this value-added process. It is also benifitting RAA’s customers, who normally receive their cut material the next working day, rather than in two days from placing the order. 24hour operation four days a week, plus Friday and weekend working, ensures plenty of capacity to meet demand using one saw.

Currently, 70 per cent of the material processed by RAA is aluminium, the remainder being various grades of stainless steel. Key to the greater cutting productivity is the rigidity of the Kastotwin’s structure, allowing the 38 mm wide bimetal blade to run at 120 m/min through aluminium and at 25 m/min through stainless steel, without vibration. (Band speeds in the range 15 to 150 m/min are programmable). Downfeed rates are therefore higher than previously and are set automatically by the programmable logic control system, BasicControl, according to material type, size and section. The control can store up to 99 programs comprising material specification, length of billets and number required.

thumb Untitled2 page1 image1Another advantage of the new saw, according to Mr Pope, is the material saving resulting from the automatic zero position function, which employs a laser to detect the end of the material prior to accurate, ballscrew-driven infeed of the stock for the first cut. It avoids having to trim about a centimetre from the front end of the stock before producing the first cut length, saving material and blade life. Material height is also detected automatically, allowing rapid hydraulically-actuated downfeed of the blade before cutting starts, hence shortening the cycle time. Mr Pope continued, “The way the vice is arranged on the Kasto bandsaw allows the material rest-piece to be typically six centimetres shorter than on our previous machine.

“Together with the saving from not having to take a trim cut, it means that we save over 10 per cent of a six-metre bar and a bigger proportion of shorter stock. "It results in significant cost savings and hence higher profitability, especially when cutting stainless.”

The Kastotwin A4x5 is a new bandsaw in the German manufacturer’s range. Its 440 x 520 mm cutting capacity sits between 400 x 400 mm for the A4  and 560 x 630 mm for the A5, yet the machine’s price is much closer to that of the smaller machine. The difference was so small that RAA did not think twice about opting for the 4x5 model, which is the first to be installed in the UK.

Mr Pope concluded, “KASTO has a reputation for building high quality machines and we can certainly see that in our new bandsaw. It achieves exactly what it states in the brochure and is proving very reliable, which is important to us as all of our cutting is done on the one saw. “We were expecting improved sawing performance but have been surprised, not to say delighted, at just how massive a difference the machine has made to our operations.”

Published inMachinery