Is a welding robot cost-effective for our supply company?

Is a welding robot cost-effective for our supply company? That is a question of the Dutch supplier Bromedo wrestled with for a year or two. Last year the company decided to go for it and invested in the pick of the bunch: a Panasonic Tawers TA 1800 with two 3m working stations and a number of options. As well as efficiency gains and higher, consistent welding quality, Bromedo was also immediately able to gain substantial savings on subsequent processing. Company manager Menno Brok: “The products were so neatly welded that we could deliver them straight to our customers without any further processing."

Bromedo mainly delivered plate metal sections to third-parties, including a number of wellknown OEMs. For Holmatro Bromedo made items such as plating sections and handles, for Boon-Edam contact mats, which are not included in the standard range. Bromedo also develops, produces and sells its own products, like sound booths under the name Esmono Sound bv. This approach makes the company less dependent on the outsourcing market, which has less to outsource in times of crisis. Last year Bromedo sold even more sound insulation cabins to private buyers than in previous years. That meant that the company no longer had to postpone its investment plans.

Bromedo has many systems for making all those varied products, such ranging from CNC punching, CNC-bending to a machining centre. Menno Brok: “We process pipe, rod, tube and plate materials. The idea is to avoid risks and damage by carrying out as many treatments in-house as possible. Until recently we did the welding manually. These days we use the robot for returning series.”

Menno Brok: “For the welding robot system we immediately opted for a comprehensive system and a long reach in order to be ready for what the future holds. The 3m working stations are also a perfect fit for the maximum plate measurement that we can place on the punching machine and edging presses. The Panasonic TAWERS welding robot is suitable as standard for MIG, pulsed aluminium welding and TIG welding, which means that we can use the same system to weld steel, stainless steel and aluminum. For that purpose we switch between a VWP 316 and VWP 351 robot torch, with the robot torch system optimally protected by a pneumatic shock sensor. We also additionally bought the Auto Tool Check (ATC) as an option. The zero point is rechecked after every fifth welded product. That rules out all risks of non-conformities and rejection. We received details advice on this subject from Valk Welding. We had a good feeling about the amount of support we were receiving from the very beginning.”

The welding robot system is currently being programmed with the teach pendant. External work preparation with DTPS does of course offer more benefits, but we want to start by learning to use the welding robot system properly before making the switch, explains Menno Brok.


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