Kondex Automates Swaging Operation.
In the spirit of continuous improvement, Kondex recently completed a six-month project to streamline an additional manufacturing process. Swaging, a forging process used to manufacture approximately 98% of Kondex’s hollow tines, is now an automated process. Previously, parts were picked and set by hand for both swaging and chamfering of beveled tips. A robotic arm now manages both operations.
With the machine’s input loaded, the operator is able to multi-task within his or her work cell. Alerts are sent in the event that a part is not set properly or if the tooling begins to wear out or break. There is no required operator downtime, leading to greater efficiency and consistency.
Another benefit is a reduction in exposure to safety hazards. Swaging is a very loud process, reaching around 105 decibels. Even with proper personal protective equipment, the sound levels still required personnel rotations every three hours. The automated process is now performed in an enclosed room, which greatly reduces the operator’s in-room exposure to the loud equipment.
“We’re continually investing in the growth of our business, and automation is just one way we’re improving our processes and position for the future,” said President Jim Wessing. “Our manufacturing teams are committed to identifying new automation projects, and we anticipate a number of advancements will be unveiled in the coming months.”