Van der Sluis uses welding robot systems from Valk Welding
In the market for project design, VDS Van der Sluis has been a common name for over 70 years. The company develops and produces steel residential and project furniture for well-known brands supplemented with work for third parties. Within the production process, tube processing such as sawing, bending, drilling, welding and powder coating are the most obvious production steps where automation can save on labour costs. Director/owner Niek van der Sluis: "The shortening of the manufacturing time is determined by the welding robot instead of the employee. But in addition to the cost, it is also the high consistent quality that we can guarantee thanks to the welding robots. "In the past year, the furniture manufacturer took a fourth cell into use, which will weld 50,000 chair frames a year for a rapidly growing furniture project.
Whereas in the past VDS Van der Sluis also sold under its own brand in addition to the production of school and office furniture, the manufacturer now focuses entirely on production. Its own brand is now sold by partner Casala, for which Van der Sluis already produces all its chairs and tables. "We are strong in producing tubes and wires, for which we do all the operations ourselves. A constantly high quality is our central focus, from development to production and delivery. We have a delivery reliability of more than 98.5%. Thanks to this quality we also produce for residential labels and third parties. As long as it concerns tubes and wires. We even produce frames for a customer from Hungary, " Niek van der Sluis explains.
Years of experience with welding robots
Van der Sluis has years of experience and technical expertise in the field of bending, welding and finishing tube and wire material. All frames for chairs, tables, bar stools and benches are welded and coated by the company itself and completely finished. Niek van der Sluis: "We have worked with welding robots in an early stage. At the first replacement round in 2011, we switched from a different brand to Valk Welding, after which several welding robots followed. All cells have a welding robot with a workstation on two sides, where employees unloads and loads while the robot weld frames on the other station."
Indexing table shortened the walking distance
The fourth installation concerns a Panasonic TA-1400WG3 welding robot on a pedestal and two workstations on a indexing table. Alex Hol, technical advisor at Valk Welding: "To improve the workflow for the operator, the workstation is continuously operating in the fourth cell where the robot welds on one side of the indexing table. In this way the walking distance for the operators could be minimized . In addition, L- positioners were chosen to manipulate the w products for optimal accessibility."
Trial with Active Wire
One of the frame types of 2 mm thick-walled tube of ø 40 mm is now manually welded with the TIG process. Niek van der Sluis: "We do this to limit rework as much as possible. However, this costs quite a lot time (money). That is why we have started a test with Valk Welding and by using MIG combined with the Active Wire process. "Active Wire is a combination of SP-MAG and wire feed control, in which the welding wire is moved back and forward at a high frequency. Active Wire makes it possible to weld thin-walled materials faster and without spatter, so rework is minimal.
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