Prototype machines meet R&D and education needs

Axminster preview edit_tmbWith over 40 years’ experience, Axminster Tools & Machinery should be on the visit list for any Northern Manufacturing visitors interested in machinery. The firm says it selects the best manufacturers with which to work, so that customers can be certain of the reliability, availability and serviceability of its range of machines.

The company is continually enlarging and updating its range of metalworking tools and machinery. Recently, it has developed the Axminster CNC Technology range. Working closely with manufacturing partner Sieg, this is a core range of CNC metalworking mills and lathes that fill an important niche in the market, the company believes. The machines are manufactured in high-grade cast iron, giving a stable and absorbing platform. All are supplied with software which is compatible with Windows 7, 10, XP and Vista.

At this year’s Northern Manufacturing & Electronics, the company will showcase some exciting products. On display will be its own brand machines, including Axminster CNC Technology Series iKX3 mill and iKC6 lathe, together with a range of pillar drills from the Axminster Engineer Series SB-16, SB-25, SB-250 and SB-25-TC. All are suitable for prototype and light engineering, small production workshops and component makers, fabrication works for testing, R&D and the education sector including university technical colleges.

The company also has exclusivity in the UK for the Jet Elite range of mills, lathes and bandsaws. These efficient and powerful machines offer precision, durability and safety which widely exceeds market standards, claims the company.

Visit Axminster Tools & Machinery at Stand H20 or go to


Great British Marketing launches at Northern 2017

gmbGreat British Marketing, an initiative to support and share best marketing advice across the northern manufacturing industry, is being formally launched at Northern Manufacturing & Electronics 2017.

Delivered by FIG, an award-winning B2B marketing and communications agency that specialises in helping manufacturing businesses grow, Great British Marketing is offering expert advice at the show with its free marketing publications.

Explained FIG’s managing director, Helen Duncan: “While the national press have been reporting on how well the sector is performing – with Markit CIPS UK recently reporting that the UK manufacturing sector had recorded its fastest growth for three years – they have also included notes of caution about the degree to which this growth can be sustained against a backdrop of Brexit, political uncertainty and market volatility. For over 15 years, FIG has been working with North West manufacturers to help them to achieve their business goals, whatever the economic climate.

“In 2017, the threats to the manufacturing sector are many, but so too are the opportunities, and we felt the time was right to do our bit to help manufacturing companies across the North West and East Midlands not only to survive the volatile climate, but to thrive.”

Attendees at the Northern Manufacturing & Electronics Show can visit Great British Marketing at stand D27 for their free publication ‘Your Guide to Lean Marketing’ which offers manufacturers some fundamental marketing advice, such as establishing clear marketing objectives, identifying the necessary resources and planning to achieve those goals, along with some of the latest social media trends and top tips for the manufacturing sector when using LinkedIn.

Starting life in 1996 as copy writing and communications business, FIG was the winner of the 2016 CIM northern large agency award and is ranked among Prolific North’s 2017 Top 50 PR agencies. The firm provides in-house creative, digital and PR solutions for its clients across a wide range of B2B sectors, including manufacturing, food and drink, transport, industry and technology.

Find out more about FIG and the Great British Marketing initiative on stand D27 or visit  For more information about FIG, visit or call 01457 857111.

Silicon-on-Sapphire sensor technology redefines strain gauge measurement

ESI Technology preview edit_tmbSpecialising in the design and manufacture of pressure transducers and pressure transmitters, ESI Technology was established in 1985. At Northern Manufacturing & Electronics 2017 the firm will highlight specialist applications using sensing technologies such as an innovative silicon-on-sapphire strain gauge.

Expertise in such a niche field means the team is able to analyse and interpret customer specific requirements and create a product that meets – and often exceeds – the exact needs of the application in order to eradicate any compromise from the customer.

The most outstanding developments from the company are the silicon-on-sapphire sensor technology and the new GD4200-USB digital pressure transducer. Silicon-on-sapphire sensor technology has redefined the performance capability of pressure measurement instrumentation in the industry, says the company. It demonstrates excellent insulation properties, performance with high over-pressures and virtually no hysteresis, repeatability and chemical compatibility.

The GD4200-USB makes pressure measurement simple and portable, reducing the need for expensive data loggers. It has all the advantages of silicon-on-sapphire, sample rate of 1000Hz and is available in ranges up to 5000bar. Supplied software features the capability of measuring multiple inputs and also customised test certificate generation.

The company’s portfolio has solutions for applications in oil and gas, subsea, aerospace, defence, hydraulics, depth/level, hazardous area, automotive, process and industrial, test calibration and OEM markets.

Visit ESI Technology at Stand D50 or go to

PACE Europe BGA/SMD rework system accelerates throughput

PACE_preview edit_tmbAmong the new products to be displayed by Pace Europe at this year’s Northern Electronics show will be the TF 1800 BGA rework system (pictured) and PH 100 pre-heater.

The rework system incorporates a top-side inductive-convection heater. The patent-pending heater technology provides rapid heat-up and active cooling of the solder joints, resulting in faster throughput and greater process control. Its high efficiency, low thermal mass design takes far less power to operate and is more reliable than conventional heaters, claims the company. A stepper motor drives an automated reflow head for smooth, precise, repeatable movement, with no drift, allowing for soft landing of components and 28µm (0.0011-inch) placement accuracy.

A vacuum pick/shaft design with optical sensor is counterweight-balanced to eliminate placement pressure on components, and uses precision high temperature linear ball bearings for highest sensitivity in placement and pick-up.

The adjustable height, bottom-side infra red pre-heater allows safe, closer proximity to the PCB for challenging high thermal mass boards. User-friendly software guides operators through an intuitive interface that virtually automates the process.

Visitors will also exhibit the PH 100, a high powered (1600W), non-contact infra red heating system. Its ergonomic, low profile design allows operators to safely pre-heat PCBs for fast and easy soldering, rework or repair on the highest mass, lead-free assemblies.

The ADS200 AccuDrive production soldering station will be introduced at this year’s show. The rugged, high-powered soldering station provides thermal performance, to allow accurate adjustable temperatures to be set with no calibration required.

Visit Pace Europe at Stand A110 or go to

Five-axis technology from Yamazaki Mazak suits small or volume production

Yamazaki Mazak preview edit_tmbCombining a compact footprint with the ability to offer simultaneous five-axis machining across multiple surfaces, the Variaxis j-500/5X is one of the highlights of the Machinery Zone at Northern Manufacturing 2017. The machine can be used in a variety of sectors, including aerospace and oil and gas. Its advanced manufacturing capabilities are suited to small batch, volume production or prototype work, says Yamazaki Mazak.

The machining centre’s high rigidity structure uses linear roller guides on all linear axes and roller gear cam on both rotary axes, to deliver accuracy and productivity from a wide A-axis spectrum of rotation (+30 to -120°).

Most importantly, says the company, it has SmoothX, the five-axis version of its Smooth Technology, claimed to be the world’s fastest CNC. SmoothX includes a 19-inch touchscreen control panel, and has the capability to deliver a machining revolution, from programming and cycle times through to automation integration, data collection and ergonomics.

Alan Mucklow, managing director said: “The Variaxis will be live-cutting for the duration of the show and we look forward to demonstrating the machine’s capabilities across a variety of applications. Designed to deliver high speed and accuracy, with exceptional cutting performance and ease of operation for machinists, it will be of interest to those manufacturers looking for a step-change in their machining.”

Visit Yamazaki Mazak at Stand D26 or find out more at

Inspection is drawn to Scandinavian quality

VisionAid Preview edit_tmbFor over 20 years, VisionAid has provided quality digital magnification systems. At Northern Manufacturing & Electronics 2017 it is showcasing a range of high quality, 1080P, 60-frame/s, Scandinavian digital magnifiers, microscopes and inspection solutions with magnification up to 750x. The collection combines superior optics, claims the company, with advanced features such as precise measurement, focus stacking, image and video capture.

The vision equipment is ideal for tasks including R&D, inspection, quality control, service and rework. It is quick and easy to share critical information between co-workers and departments with both computer connectable and standalone systems, for training, responsive quality control, comparison and documentation.

A highlight is the FHD Zap, which the company describes as its most flexible space saving digital microscope. It can be attached to a variety of fully adjustable monitor arms to meet specific requirements. Pure optical magnification range is 1.3x to 65.8x (24-inch monitor). USB 3.0 computer connectivity is provided for live viewing, recording video and saving images for rapid information sharing. The precision laser pointer is a visible target indicator allowing for fast, accurate zooming on a subject.

All of the systems offered improve productivity and users’ posture when combined with the company’s specialist ergonomic products, such as posture seating, height adjustable workstations and accessories.

See VisionAid at Stand C26 or visit

RIM division provides options for resins

Northern Manufacturing 2017 exhibitor Hepworth Group will promote a significant expansion of its services at this year’s event. Earlier this year, after heavy investment in new equipment and experienced personnel, the firm launched a new reaction injection moulding (RIM) division as an additional manufacturing option.

Many current customers have both resin and metalwork requirements, especially low volume and prototype work, the RIM division now enables the company to be a one-stop-shop.

Hepworth preview edit_tmb

Hepworth is a tier 1 supplier to the marine, rail and automotive industries with IRIS2, ISO-9001:2008 and EN15085 accreditation. Benefits of RIM include a wide range of rigid, semi-rigid, flexible, high impact and high temperature resistant resins and the capability to produce product sizes varying from a matchbox weighing just a few grams, to a product the size of a car bumper weighing up to 15kg.

The flexible, cost-efficient process for manufacturing polyurethane (PU) resin has advantages over injection moulding processes, says the company. These include short runs (from 1 to 1,000), varying grades of resin for any application, low-cost tooling to give value for money and easily modified tooling.

In-house facilities at Hepworth Fabrications offer manufacturing services in a wide range of metals and forms. Products include heavy-duty brackets, space frames, enclosures and control box housings, precision engineered, mirror polished super yacht deck fittings, plus aftermarket automotive accessories and prototypes, including grilles and hinges.

Visit Hepworth at Stand D79 or find out more at

Iron powder and alloy cores make up distribution range

MagDev preview edit_tmbPart of the Delta Magnet group of companies, MagDev is based in Swindon, Wiltshire and comprises a major test facility, in-house machining facilities and over 12,000 sq ft of warehouse space with low cost manufacturing facilities in India.

Among the exhibits on the company’s stand at Northern Manufacturing & Electronics 2017 will be the new distribution range of KDM iron powder and alloy cores.

The company supplies permanent magnet components and assemblies in a variety of materials including neodymium (sintered and bonded), samarium cobalt, sintered ferrite and alnico and a range of soft magnetic components, including cores in a choice of shapes and sizes manufactured from a range of materials including manganese zinc, nickel zinc, and cobalt-based amorphous.

The company is BS EN ISO 9001:2015-accredited and provides application specific solutions for permanent magnet assemblies, as well as assisting with the design and provision of high frequency and high power chokes and transformers for various applications.

Visit MagDev at Stand B79 or find out more at

Vertical lifts have four-wheel drive system for reliability

Randex preview edit_tmbAutomated vertical lifts from Randex are claimed to offer the biggest, fastest and strongest automated storage systems available on the market. The Compact Lift’s rack and pinion four-wheel drive system ensures unrivalled levels of reliability, claims the company. Its software links machines to the host workload management system (WMS) for gains in efficiency and stock control.

At Northern Manufacturing 2017 the company will showcase its turnkey solutions designed to maximise storage efficiency. It also offers consultancy in every stage from initial project planning and design, through installation and testing, to integration, and ongoing support.

Systems are designed to support speed of picking. The Compact Twin can handle two trays at once. While the operator is picking from one tray, the extractor is already retrieving the next. The introduction of picking technologies and controlling the operation with software allows customers to use lifts to maximise efficiency and productivity.

Bespoke machine design is possible. The company has delivered many projects where machines have been designed specifically to fit specific products. This has led to the development of Compact Deep machines with trays up to 1,600mm deep, and the Compact Wide machines used for storing tubes or extrusions, with 6,500mm wide trays.

For heavy duty products, Compact Lifts can store up to 1,500kg on one storage tray. These machines can be a storage option palletised goods. The systems can be fitted with forklift loading supports to guide operators though the loading or picking process safely and efficiently. For slightly lighter parts, there is a telescopic 100% extraction system which extracts the tray from the access opening, allowing goods to be lifted with an overhead crane.

Visit Randex at Stand 85 or find our more at

Electronics repair to extend lifetime

Photo for Editorial_tmbOver a period of time electronics become obsolete and spares are no longer available. Exhibiting at Northern Manufacturing & Electronics 2017, UNIS Group – EMR provides a professional service to further the life of equipment by offering a number of repair and replacement solutions. As equipment becomes older it can become unreliable; preventative maintenance can identify potential failures before they become critical. By doing so, important maintenance can be carried out during planned shutdowns.

Founded in 1984, the company specialises in the repair and selling of industrial electronics and motors. Its repair facility is centrally located in Northampton where repair technicians, with the support of extensive testing and measuring facilities, are able to repair all types and brands of electronics, new and obsolete alike.

The electronics are cleaned, repaired and tested in accordance with strict quality standards. Every year the company completes more than 41,000 repairs.

A wide range of electronic services is offered. The company employs expert technicians, supported by measurement equipment and varied test facilities. The extensive range of stock parts enables the company to identify and resolve defects in order to expeditiously reduce downtime.

All repairs are carried out on a ‘no fix, no fee’ basis, and there is two-year warranty on repairs, sales and exchanges.

Visit UNIS Group – EDMR at Stand B25 or discover more at