IQ Metal, master of excellence in robotic welding

With over 300 employees, the Danish supplier IQ Metal serves industrial OEMs who require high quality tolerances on their products. Consequently, IQ Metal has extensively automated and optimised its production processes in the field of sheet metal working and welding. “In addition to high productivity, this results in consistently high product quality, which makes us competitive worldwide and has built up a lasting relationship with our customers,” says CEO Bo Fischer Larsen.

IQ Metal

What requirements does IQ Metal set for robotic welding?

IQ Metal supplies components, sub-assemblies, and complete products to sectors such as wind energy, offshore, transport and machine construction. Partly due to their scale, the company can invest in the most high-quality production systems, with which it has achieved a high degree of efficiency. In the field of robotic welding, the supplier has seven Valk Welding robots and six additional robots of different brands.

Applying welding robots successfully

“It took several years before we really managed to take full advantage of the welding robots. If the robot does not move, it does not make any profit. Every minute the robot is not welding is a waste. Today we can finally say that we are mastering the challenge in robotic welding, with 13 welding robots we have extensive experience in utilising the technology,” says the CEO.

Why Valk Welding?

Bo Fischer Larsen continues: “Everyone can deliver a robot for welding. But if you want to take full advantage of the options you have today, you need full integration between robot, welding machine, peripheral equipment etc., which is handled by most of the robot suppliers. But when you are about to combine everything together including the parts to be welded inside a virtual environment, it becomes more difficult and the potential welding robot integrators who can manage this becomes fewer. Because even if most potential producers of robotic welding equipment claim to master this, it is our experience that Valk Welding was one of the very few who do. Today we are programming all weldments in an offline 3D environment inclusive of welding parameters. There is full 2-way communication between the offline 3D programming software and the welding robot, meaning all adjustments executed within the robot cell are also updated within the external storage of welding programs.”

Programs can be used at any station

“Each Valk Welding cell, every station and every separate welding jig is measured in and stored within the virtual welding environment, and as soon a certain jig is related to an individual working station and combined with a welding program, all the specific parameters are loaded as well. In practice this means that we can load and weld every welding jig and program in any of our 16 welding stations and obtain the exact same quality of welding."

Data log

“We must comply with a lot of additional requirements for high demanding customers and industries. All welds must be executed according to certified welding procedures, and we must prove that every welded item was complying with the exact welding procedure. It means, if a customer returns to us after some years and claims that a product delivered has failed, we can prove according to which specifications the part has been welded. This includes the specific order, the certificate of the base material and proof that we have adhered to the welding parameters of the welding procedure, including Amperage, the speed of the welding wire, etc. Valk Welding has made that possible.”

“In Valk Welding, we have found a supplier that is able to supply everything that counts, so not only the hardware, but also all invisible functions. Thanks to the Valk Welding solutions, all our robots are connected to an Industry 4.0 network, for the management of OEE, traceability, 3D offline programming, etc. As a closing remark, Valk Welding is among the few welding robot suppliers which is specialised in welding only. Most of the other suppliers of welding robots are suppliers for all other branches and services too. Valk Welding is a specialist in welding, which they manage very well,” concludes Bo Fischer Larsen.

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