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Digital robot welding system pays off

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REFORM-Werke Bauer has been using the Fronius TransPuls Synergic (TPS) 4000 system, available in Australia through Smenco , for robot welding since 2003. The experience of this Austrian mechanical engineer illustrates that robot welding is profitable even with small batch sizes.

With a relatively small market niche, Reform-Werke has to pay attention to both special customer requests and operational efficiency. Those in charge of production noticed that time was reduced by a third, there was a high degree of process reliability, and working conditions were improved.

Improvements in the quality and profitability of the welding processes have a pronounced effect on the company's market position.

Large production range in small batch sizes, a wide variety of parts, diverse job tasks and sophisticated customer requests are responsible for the demands placed on the welding systems at Reform-Werke Bauer.

Firstly they should be suitable for a comprehensive range of welding procedures and for the materials and sheet thicknesses to be joined, secondly they should ensure an increase in quality and process reliability.

The company also expects ease of operation and excellent profitability as a matter of course.

The 17 welding engineers use approximately 17,000kg of filler metals each year to join the vehicle frames and more than 1000 other different parts all of which are made from low-alloy steel.

Head of production, Manfred Lebelhuber, describes welding as the key point in the process chain. The welding engineers can easily create the program for the TPS (TransPuls Synergic) 4000 without assistance.

The system for robot applications is suitable for a range of processes from MIG/MAG arc welding and pulsed arc welding to dc TIG welding and MIG brazing in the welding current range from 3 to 400 amps. The unit only weighs 35kg.

"We gain process reliability and 100% reproducibility not to mention greater job satisfaction," says Lebelhuber.

"Die TPS 4000 reliably produces low-spatter, uniform, long welds in thick materials in the same way as it does short welds on thin metal sheets. With regular updates the system will be current for the next 10 years.

"The more complicated and thicker the part to be welded, the greater the rationalisation effect. The investment in our robot welding system will have paid for itself within three years."

The utility vehicle manufacturers have found their dream solution in the Fronius TPS 4000 system.

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