A new era for an old friend

Southern Manufacturing 2017 marks the dawn of a new era for Engineering Capacity as the magazine re-launches at the show under the new management and ownership of long-time editor Andy Sandford.

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Engineering Capacity is the UK’s only magazine and online brand that is exclusively focused on contract and subcontract manufacturing – covering all sectors and processes ranging from machined components, to moulding, composites, sheet metalworking, fabrication, additive manufacturing, metrology and complete outsourced production.

Andy says: “We will be back in May with a brand-new look and editorially-led content that will make it a must-read for anyone who sources contract manufacturing services and an ideal platform for any subcontractor looking for new customers.”

“Come and see us on Stand R1 to tell us your latest news and let us tell you ours.”



Matsuura expands presence at show and launches new machine

Matsuura MX-330 PC10_tmbMatsuura’s latest machining centre makes its UK exhibition debut at Southern Manufacturing 2017. The new Matsuura MX-330 PC10 5 axis is equipped with 10 pallets and 90 tools.  Matsuura is anticipating high demand for the MX-330 PC10; two machines have already been sold prior to its official launch in the UK. The firm believes the new machine will quickly establish itself as the best-selling “lights-out” automated 5 axis machine in its history.

Matsuura announced last week that it is expanding its presence at Southern Manufacturing 2017. Ian Michie, Marketing Manager for the company, said, “Over the past 5 years Matsuura has achieved great success at Southern Manufacturing exhibiting our single table MX-520 5 axis CNC machine tool. At least six new customer accounts have been introduced to Matsuura products via previous Southern Manufacturing exhibitions, investing in the MX-520 and other machines from our portfolio of high quality CNC products. Southern Manufacturing 2017 will see Matsuura expand our offering with our largest stand to date, showing our belief and commitment in the show and the prospects for UK manufacturers.”

Two machines will be cutting live at Southern Manufacturing 2017; alongside the new MX-330 PC10 will be Muratec Murata MT100iT2 automated bar fed lathe with twin turrets & Intelligent Servo Unloader. The MT100iT2 features an integrated Intelligent Servo Unloader. This bar fed machine accommodates bar up to Ø51mm, with maximum length of component of L180mm weighing 2.5kg. Chuck size is Ø165mm. This phenomenally accurate & fast turning centre has 2 tool turrets with 15 live tools on each. Matsuura are the sole UK agent for Muratec Murata turning centres and lathes, with UK customers in every industry where speed, accuracy and incredible reliability are pre-requisite to the end user.

Find out more about the latest innovations from Matsuura on stand R98 or visit http://www.matsuura.co.uk

Become an export documentation ninja

With export activity increasing, more firms than ever are having to deal with export documentation, much of which can be unfamiliar and confusing. Mistakes in paperwork can cause delays and extra expense – problems that can be easily avoided by getting to grips with the basics of export documentation. A 1-day course offered by Chamber International will arm participants with everything they need to ensure the paperwork gets done right first time. The course provides a detailed look at export documents that takes a practical approach to why and when documents are needed. The curriculum includes background, uses and key information requirements for different documents, such as pro-forma invoices, waybills and certificates of conformity etc.

Chamber Management Service - Language and Culture Seminar at Village Hotel, Headingley, Leeds. 25 May, 2006. 

The course will be held at the Bradford Chamber Business Park on 24th January 2017 from 9.30am to 4.30pm. The cost is £245 +VAT for Chamber members, £315 + VAT for non members. The fee includes lunch and refreshments.

To find out more and reserve your place, click here

Merry Christmas to one and all


As we near the end of a remarkable year, from everyone at INDUSTRY.CO.UK, we’d like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a peaceful, prosperous New Year.

We’re looking forward to welcoming you to Southern Manufacturing 2017 on its new Spring dates in March, and to Northern Manufacturing in September. In the meantime, enjoy your well-deserved break!

Export payment workshop helps you get it right first time

The falling pound has been good news for exports. But for those venturing into overseas markets for the first time, the subject of obtaining payment and using letters of credit can be bewildering. The sobering fact is that over 75% of first presentations to banks against documentary letters of credit are rejected, resulting in delayed payments to exporters, additional costs and breached delivery deadlines.


However help is at hand thanks to a workshop being run by Chamber International at Bradford Chamber Business Park on November 9th. The one day workshop covers the 5 main types of payment for exports, from advance payment to open account, including Sight Documentary Collection, Term Documentary Collection and Documentary Letters of Credit. It includes the use of Bills of Exchange with and without documents. This course is suitable for all staff who need to have a clear understanding of the procedures required to ensure payments for goods sold on documentary credit terms. Knowledge and understanding is reinforced through the use of exercises, tips on getting the credit you want and working examples of documentary credits. Essential learning for accounts, export and sales teams.

The course is from 9.30am to 4.30pm. The costs are £295 +VAT for members of the West & North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, or £390 +VAT Non-Members. The cost includes lunch and refreshments. To find out more about the course, visit the Chamber International website or to reserve your place,  click here

Trotec launches new website

SP1500: Trotec's biggest CO2 laser cutting machineTrotec Laser has launched a brand new website. Besides a fresh look, the new website offers detailed information about laser technology, gives tips and tricks for laser processing as well as background information and answers to frequently asked questions.

Visit the new website at www.troteclaser.co.uk website and explore the opportunities that Trotec can offer.

Fronius Perfect Welding Division under new management

160822_Fronius_PW_Harald ScherleitnerChange at the top at Fronius International GmbH: Harald Scherleitner is the new head of the Perfect Welding Division. He is taking up the position vacated by Wolfgang Lattner, who in 2017 plans to retire after 41 years at the company.

In Scherleitner, the division is gaining a leader with a familiar face. The 37-year-old has been a member of the Fronius team since 1994 and has spent the last eight years as head of the Perfect Charging Division. He began his career as an Area Sales Manager for welding technology, covering Europe and Latin America. It was in this role that he oversaw the establishment of Fronius Mexico and Fronius Brazil.

The future of the division is safe in the hands of a man who knows the industry and company inside out – and who has set himself a clear aim: “I want to continue to expand our global position. Customers and their needs have to be at the heart of everything we do. Every activity and development we make has one primary goal: to save our customers money,” explains Scherleitner.

His successor at the Perfect Charging Division, Patrick Gojer, was formerly the head of Fronius United Kingdom.

Can a laser make your business more profitable?

Trotec Laser is hosting one of its popular demonstration events at its Guildford all this week.  Trotec Laser UK & Ireland offers the chance for visitors to find out how a laser from the leading manufacturer, can help benefit their business by speeding-up production, improving accuracy and detail, increasing  product range and reducing downtime.

Visitors can bring along a test sample of their current material to discover the results that a laser machine can achieve and receive accurate production times, specific to their application. Trotec offers a range of solutions from flatbed laser to an integrated galvo, available with a range of finance options.

Book your appointment now

Fronius launches a new generation of the TransPocket MMA welding system

160510_Fronius_PW_FB TransPocket 150 180_02Fronius has launched a new generation of its proven single-phase MMA system: the TransPocket 150 and the TransPocket 180. The new design features simple operation and added functions. A digital resonance inverter ensures perfect weld properties in a whole range of applications. Thanks to the innovative PFC (Power Factor Correction) technology the handy, compact Fronius devices are also extremely energy efficient. The two new TransPocket 150 and 180 models replace the tried and trusted TransPocket 1500, which has been on the market since 2001 and which has enjoyed great popularity with its many users in many industries. The power sources are supplied in different variants depending on their primary use. The TransPocket 180 is also the first single-phase MMA system in the Fronius portfolio with a welding current range of up to 180 amperes. The new models are primarily designed for manual metal arc welding and can handle rod electrodes with a diameter of up to 4.0 mm without difficulty. A special operating mode can be selected to ensure perfect welding results when using cellulose electrodes (CEL). New and enhanced dynamic settings let the user adjust the ignition precisely to the electrodes being used. The HotStart function makes it easier to ignite CEL- and rutile electrodes, the SoftStart option on the other hand ensures a stable arc for basic electrodes, which ignite at a low welding current.

Fronius says that its latest device generation is also suitable for TIG welding, for which it offers a new TMC connection (TIG Multi Connector) and a torch with the Up/Down function. The welding current can be adjusted by pressing a button on the welding torch, between 10 and 150 amperes for the TransPocket 150 and between 10 and 220 amperes for the TransPocket 180. With the TransPocket, TIG welding is carried out in two- and four-step mode or as pulse welding. The TAC tacking function is also available for quick and easy joining of thin gauge sheets without additional filler metals.
An innovative digital resonant intelligence developed by Fronius delivers practically ideal starting characteristic to ensure constant power reserves for an extremely stable arc with reduced energy consumption. This gives excellent ignition and weld properties, which are manifested above all through the optimised electrode ignition and minimised spattering during the welding process. The low short circuit current of around five amperes when the tip makes contact with the workpiece prevents the electrode from sticking. The current then rises to 35 amperes to ensure that the arc does not break, before the device reaches the target current, which the user can set precisely.

Another highlight of the new TransPocket generation is the PFC (Power Factor Correction) technology. This automated power factor correction models the input current such that it has an almost ideal sinusoidal progression. This reduces the reactive power to a minimum and uses the mains current optimally and effectively. The output current is also increased by harmonic smoothing. Compared to devices without PFC, this permits a greater welding current of up to 180 amperes with the same mains fuse protection. At the same time, Fronius technology provides greater stability during voltage fluctuations. With a tolerance of -20% / +15% the power sources are ideally designed for generator-powered operation and also deliver maximum power during major mains voltage fluctuations. They are protected against overvoltages of up to 400 volts – a major advantage for instance when the device is wrongly connected to a high voltage. Long mains leads of 100 meters and more are not a problem. This gives the user a larger action radius and more flexibility during welding.

The combination of digital resonant intelligence and PFC technology means that the new TransPocket is particularly energy efficient. In comparison to the predecessor model, the power consumption of the TransPocket 150 is up to 20 percent lower – with increased output power. The power consumption of the TransPocket 180 is actually 30 percent lower than that of comparable competitor devices. Users therefore benefit from far lower current consumption and can therefore lower their energy costs sustainably. Fronius has also further optimised the design of the TransPocket. The power supply has a tough and sturdy plastic housing to guarantee reliable operation under the varied and often difficult usage conditions. With protection class IP 23, the sensitive electronics are safely shielded from dust and damp. A permanently integrated dust filter and improved cooling also help. A special arrangement of vents at the front of the housing prevents dirt from entering the device and optimises airflow. The airflow is directed only where cooling is required. The sensitive PC boards are therefore optimally protected from dust and dirt. Plastic feet prevent damage to the housing which can occur from being dragging along the floor. Ergonomic handles make handling easier and welding power-leads are easily and conveniently wound onto the device.

The user interface consists of a seven-segment display, which is inset and angled to protect against mechanical damage and to make it legible in all lighting conditions. The user interface is simple and clearly laid out yet offers a wealth of settings options – from adjusting welding parameters by selecting special functions to reading off operating hours. The TransPocket can also be fitted with the optional TMC (TIG Multi Control). This allows the user to control the power source directly from its place of use. A service interface, also protected, allows simple analysis of system information and special characteristic updates. The improved housing design also ensures effortless maintenance of the devices.

Fronius also offers a multivoltage variant of the TransPocket 180, which is a single-phase device that can be operated flexibly with mains voltages of between 96 and 265 volts. This is a major benefit to users who access different mains supplies, e.g. in different countries. Thanks to their compact and resilient construction, the TransPocket is also the ideal companion for mobile use (e.g. on construction sites). Weighing just 6.3 kilograms (TransPocket 150) and/or 8.7 kilograms (TransPocket 180), the power sources are easily transported. The CE and S marks confirm the safety of the devices and ensure that they can be used even in environments with increased electrical danger, e.g. in confined spaces or in damp.

Fronius offers a wide range of services for the new TransPocket. Customers can simply hire the welding system on request. This gives them flexibility, saves costs and ensures that they remain at the cutting edge of welding technology. Fronius provides complete systems in the TransPocket 150 and 180 system case comprising the power source, welding station equipment and TIG torch, in a compact kit. If required, the welding specialist can perform additional tasks such as calibration, maintenance or safety inspections (SIT) of the devices. Bespoke maintenance contracts also guarantee maximum availability, planned downtimes and optimum value retention of the welding system.

More information at www.fronius.com

South West consortium are Fit for Nuclear

A supplier consortia created with assistance from the Somerset Chamber’s Hinkley Supply Chain Team showcased its collective expertise at Southern Manufacturing 2016. APEC (Advanced Precision Engineering Consortium) was formed to make the most of opportunities around Hinkley Point C and other large infrastructure projects. While the majority of collaborations have been formed in response to a potential work package request, APEC was driven by a group of proactive companies prior to a specific requirement being identified.

APEC group phot_tmb The partnership between high precision engineering firms CAM Machine Components (CMC), Berry & Escott, TMB Patterns and Metaltech Precision has resulted in a one-stop-shop that can deliver a comprehensive range of skills and capabilities across a variety of engineering fields. It boasts over 200 years’ combined experience and a joint workforce of more than 200 employees. The group came together following events linked with Hinkley Point C, where it was identified that a collaboration of multi-skills would be required to handle any one project. Chris Escott from Berry & Escott explains: “Early on it became apparent that the potential size of projects required for Hinkley Point C could be much larger than any one of our companies could handle; it was decided that forming a new consortium would better equip us to manage these opportunities, as well as share knowledge and experience.”

All four companies within the group are on, or have completed, the Fit For Nuclear (F4N) process, ensuring they have the correct procedures and accreditations to be able to work in the demanding nuclear sector. Chris says this process has been pivotal in highlighting areas to strengthen within the businesses. “Since the beginning, we realised that early planning is essential to allow a steady progression towards being Fit For Nuclear so it does not become overwhelming. It’s clear to see that with the new skills and training built up through this process, we are continually improving our business model”.

The F4N process has been a positive learning curve for all of the companies involved. Andrew Riste from Metaltech Precision says: “Nuclear is a totally different culture. Route to market can be very difficult and painstakingly slow. By attending workshops we were introduced to the F4N programme run by NAMRC. This is a must for anyone looking at supplying into this industry. It fine-tunes your internal plans and processes to ensure you are prepared for any potential client coming through your door”.

To businesses considering collaborating for Hinkley or other large opportunities, Bill Colquhoun from TMB Patterns advises, “Make sure each company is diverse enough to support the opportunities. In APEC’s case, each of the four businesses has specific core skills to offer different avenues of engineering talents on projects. Look at what you can offer and get involved.”

Chris adds: “Trying to win contracts or business from any large organisations can be a difficult task if you are perceived as not having the resources to cope. I think you need to take a proactive stance to look at ways to secure new business. For us this has never been just about the nuclear sector, although we do recognise it as a strategic goal, but there are plenty of large scale projects out there that we feel we could facilitate utilising the skills we have in the group”.

F4n2_tmb The companies involved in APEC are already benefiting from the collaboration by offering their joint expertise for projects when the opportunity arises, as Gervase Winn from CMC explains. “As a group, we are already seeing benefits from the consortium. By talking to each other – something we may not have done previously for fear of competition – we are now exchanging drawings on which to quote. The open approach, whilst initially of some concern, is proving to be the correct one and importantly we are within a whisker of each other when it comes to quoting a price”.

Andrew suggests: “There is a massive opportunity for the supply of machined components into the nuclear industry, not just Hinkley. Since being signed off and our details being placed on the NAMRC website, we have seen a definite increase in tendering opportunities within this sector”.

Chris advises: “Getting your company ready to supply the Hinkley project is quite a lengthy process but it’s definitely not too late to get involved. We would recommend signing up onto the Hinkley supply chain portal to keep up-to-date with all the latest news and events, as this has helped us no end in keeping abreast of opportunities”.

“Although it might appear that potential opportunities for your sector are a long way off, it pays to get involved early on. It can take quite a long time to obtain the right accreditations and, just as importantly, to instil the nuclear safety culture into your business and staff”.

“There are other collaborations that have already been formed off the back of Hinkley and already are proving to be successful. Get registered on the supply chain portal as soon as possible – you have nothing to lose and so much to gain,” urges Andrew.

More information on APEC and F4N can be found here www.apec-uk.com