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Editors Comment

September 2018

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News

September 2018

First Cut faces up to the challenge of representing Bystronic

Seven years ago, First Cut, one South Africa’s leading manufacturers and distributors of capital equipment, cutting consumables and precision measuring tools for the metal, timber, textile, meat, DIY, paper and plastic industries, was appointed the distributor for Bystronic, a Swiss manufacturer of laser and waterjet cutting systems, press brakes and system software.
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Levelling beyond the coil – Second stretcher leveller line gives Allied Steelrode flexibility and the ability to shorten delivery lead times

In response to a growing demand for steel sheet that arrives flat and stays flat after laser, plasma or water-jet cutting in 2015 Allied Steelrode invested R150 million in a new 9 000m² facility and a dedicated Red Bud Industries’ cut-to-length line with Suregrip® stretcher leveller technology incorporated.
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Brink Towing Systems installs new Yaskawa Motoman twin six-axis welding robot

Brink Towing Systems has commissioned a new Yaskawa twin six-axis welding robot at its plant in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal. The Motoman MH24 arc welding robot has been installed to increase productivity and to minimise wear. This is the second system that Yaskawa Southern Africa has supplied to Brink Towing Systems.
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Celebrating the life of Frank Thompson – a stylish legend in the machine tool industry

The death of a loved one is the single most difficult experience everyone goes through. Whether it has been anticipated or it came as a shocking surprise, it is truly unlike any other ordeal. Despite the pain, anger, guilt or depression we are overwhelmed with, funerals are aimed not at the loss but at the celebration of the departed’s life.
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CNC Clear Cut celebrates 10 years of manufacturing South African designed plasma tables

What started out as a simple process to cut metal is now a fast, productive tool. Back in 2007 Paul van Niekerk, CEO of CNC Clear Cut, needed a plasma cutter but couldn’t afford one. However, with two decades of experience in steel manufacturing, it occurred to him that he could probably design one himself.
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Boschpick Engineering announces new business partners

Newcastle, KwaZulu-Natal-based Boschpick Engineering has announced that it has concluded a successful agreement with local entrepreneurs Bongani Khumalo and Phillip Majali and their company Lipsobex, a 100% black youth owned industrial investment company backed by the IDC, whereby the new partners will acquire a 70% shareholding in the company.
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Metal Chip Machinery moves to new home

“We only started trading four years ago and started off small. However, we have got to a position now where we needed more office space and an area to showcase the machinery that we market. Rather than rent we have decided to purchase our own office and showroom facility, which needed renovating and modernising before we moved in,” said Malcolm Moriarty, owner and founder of Metal Chip Machinery.
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Stillam CNC Programming Solutions launches Vero Software’s WorkNC solution

In a series of workshops around the country Stillam CNC Programming Solutions has launched WorkNC, a CAM solution from Vero Software that the company now markets. Walter Wade, Business Development Manager of Vero Software in the UK and Miguel Johann, WorkNC Brand Manager based in France, were part of the roadshow giving insightful comment on where the industry and the company is headed.
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Electra Mining Africa 2018: five days, five themes

Taking place from 10 – 14 September 2018 at the Expo Centre in Nasrec, Johannesburg, Gauteng leading players in the mining, manufacturing, electrical and power industries are looking forward to engaging with visitors and sharing information on their latest products, services and solutions.
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EuroBLECH 2018 – The technological showcase for the sheet metal working industry

From 23 to 26 October 2018 the international sheet metal working industry will meet again for its leading industry exhibition EuroBLECH 2018 in Hannover, Germany. A total of 1 550 exhibitors from 40 countries will put their innovative products and services on display in eight exhibition halls.
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The 29th Japan International Machine Tool Fair (JIMTOF) to connect exhibitors, visitors and technology

The exhibition will be held at the Tokyo Big Sight (Tokyo International Exhibition Center) from 1st November to Tuesday, 6th November 2018. As is customary the organisers of Japan’s machine tool exhibition JIMTOF link the exhibition to an appropriate theme in the engineering field. The theme for JIMTOF2018 will be Connect.
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July 2018

Rhinogroove – ideal for parting and grooving

Taegutec has extended the range of the Rhinogroove family by adding 4 and 5mm inserts to the current 2 and 3mm line. Further, single-ended “C” and “J” chip breaker type inserts for deep machining are now available in 2, 3, 4 and 5mm sizes. The Rhinogroove is an enhanced insert with an overall reduced length developed for efficiency in shallow depth of cut parting and grooving machining.
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Lucchini invests a further R25 million to cope with increased demand

Last year Lucchini RS, the Italian manufacturer of forged railway products, invested R260 million in a new production facility in Germiston in Ekurhuleni to machine railway wheels. It was the first international forged wheel manufacturer to make some investment in manufacturing facilities in South Africa. The group partnered with black South African investors Kusini Investments who currently hold a substantial amount of shares in the local company.
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WD Hearn Machine Tools has partnered with CAMplete Solutions Inc. to supply its software across South Africa

WD Hearn Machine Tools has joined forces with CAMplete to supply an integrated suite of post processing, verification and optimisation tools dedicated to 5-axis machining centers. “We have signed this deal to help our clients avoid expensive collisions and interferences, whilst also optimising processes to ensure the best possible machine cycle time.” said Graeme Cooper.
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High Tech Machine Tools to cooperate with Open Mind to market hyperMILL CAM solution

“After you decide to purchase a new CNC machine, it is essential to get the software, training and support required to make your investment pay off. Although 5-axis milling is one of the most challenging forms of CNC machining, Open Mind’s hyperMILL CAM software makes it possible for programmers to generate 5-axis NC programmes quickly and easily, with short machining times and high quality surface finish.”
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Adding Logiq to the Iscar range

The range is an extension of its IQ concept, the new Logiq range offers an array of machining solutions for applications in parting off, turning, milling and drilling. Iscar has introduced a new range of cutting tools designed to make the most out of manufacturing advances promised by the fourth industrial revolution. This new ‘Chess Line’ series of cutting tools is intended to be fit for the coming era of Industry 4.0 and the smart factory.
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Invicta SA Holdings to acquire Forge Industrial Group

Purchase includes the businesses of Toolquip & Allied and F&H Machine Tools. Invicta Holdings subsidiary Invicta SA Holdings has entered into an agreement to buy Forge Industrial Group, it has been announced. The value of the deal, which will entrench Invicta’s position in the industrial and engineering industry, was not disclosed. The acquisition will be complete after the fulfilment of certain conditions precedent, including Competition Commission approval.
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Sandvik’s Prime Turning Open Day held at Hi-Tech Machine Tools

Following last year’s launch of PrimeTurning methodology and tools for external turning operations, Sandvik Coromant held an event at Hi-Tech Machine Tools, the exclusive agents for Mazak CNC machine tools in South Africa, to introduce the new tooling and allow delegates to actually see the tooling operate on the latest Mazak CNC machine tools. Revolutionary in concept – it might even be called radical – the PrimeTurning methodology could very well turn turning on its head.
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Competition Commission approves Naledi Forging’s acquisition of DCD Ringrollers

The Commission has recommended to the Tribunal that the proposed merger be approved, without conditions, whereby Naledi Forging intends to acquire DCD Ringrollers, a division of the DCD Group. As part of its localisation programme the Naledi Group will invest an estimated R180 million to improve the quality systems and machining capability in the Ringrollers facility.
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EuroBLECH 2018: Step into the digital reality

EuroBLECH 2018, the 25th International Sheet Metal Working Technology Exhibition, takes place from 23 to 26 October 2018 at the Hanover Exhibition Grounds in Germany. Six months ahead of the show, around 1 400 exhibitors from 38 countries had already secured their stand space at the world’s leading trade exhibition for the sheet metal working industry. Currently, major exhibitor countries are Germany, Italy, Turkey, China, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, Austria and the USA.
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Trade Fair Tours and Metalworking News tour to EuroBLECH 2018

Book your space on the EuroBLECH 2018 Trade Fair Travel and Metalworking News travel package. Trade Fair Tours, a specialist travel agency for trade fairs internationally and in particular Germany, in conjunction with Metalworking News, have put together a very reasonable tour package to visit this exhibition. The tour includes return airfare Johannesburg/Hanover, airport taxes, airport/hotel transfer, accommodation, full breakfast daily and medical and travel insurance.
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Locally manufactured evaporator units reduce the cost of water recycling and coolant disposal

Wastewater treatment has become an increasingly critical component of manufacturing operations. Whether you are in the metalworking, foundry, surface treatment or wire and tube industries, along with many other industries, you will need water during some stage of your manufacturing process. However, rising water, energy and waste management costs continue to increase and this affects the overall operating costs of your business.
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WD Hearn appointed agents for ANCA tool and cutter CNC grinding machines

WD Hearn Machine Tools has signed an agreement to represent Australian machine tool manufacturer ANCA, in South Africa. “ANCA is a market leading manufacturer of high quality CNC tool and cutter grinders. ANCA has tool grinders to meet everything from large scale manufacturing to entry-level production requirements. ANCA is renowned for the flexibility of its tool design software and machines that enable you to produce a wide variety of complex tools.
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RPC Astrapak acquires Spec Group

In terms of the transaction, all three of the businesses that make up the Spec Group – Spec Tool & Die, Spec Design and Spec Molders – will be acquired as going concerns. Three of the main shareholders – Dave Murgatroyd, Kenny Moore and Leanne Suarez – will be staying on along with the rest of their team, while Norman Hancock will be taking a well-deserved retirement, though he will still consult to the business from time to time.
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DCD Rolling Stock offloaded to Russians

As part of its international growth strategy, Russian rolling stock manufacturer Transmashholding (TMH) is to invest R500 million in a South African manufacturing facility through its newly acquired subsidiary, TMH Africa. TMH Africa, which is 70% owned by TMH and 30% owned by empowerment partner Mjisa Investments, has acquired railing contractor DCD Rolling Stock and will modernise and develop the 42 000m² manufacturing facility, in Boksburg, Gauteng that was formerly owned by DCD.
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Fuchs Lubricants invests R125 million in new grease plant

Fuchs Lubricants South Africa has opened a R125 million grease plant expansion at its factory in Isando, Gauteng. “Fuchs sees the importance and demand for specialty grease growing significantly and wants to be in a position to support this increase in demand from our customers. But importantly, the reasons for building the new grease plant are not only for capacity but to inject new levels of process excellence and quality into our grease manufacturing.”
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Cape Town Iron and Steel Works (Cisco) reopens

The company, based in Kuils River, Western Cape, was established in 1967. Murray and Roberts closed its doors eight years ago resulting in 360 job losses. In 2012, Turkish company DHT Holdings took ownership to expand and upgrade the steel plant, which produces steel from scrap. DHT have invested R550 million to expand and upgrade the steel plant and expects to produce 500 000 t/y.
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May 2018

Precision coolant helps fasten thread-turning operations – Sandvik

Over- and under-coolant provides unique thread-turning solution. The CoroThread® 266 thread-turning tool from Sandvik Coromant is available from 1st March 2018 with precision over- and under-coolant to improve process security and maximise efficiency. The addition of over-coolant improves chip formation for more secure machining, while under-coolant controls temperature for long and predictable tool life.
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Somta invests in new equipment to enhance productivity and quality

“What is especially exciting is that most of this equipment is developed and used by OSG, and designed to give an advantage over competitors. Japanese engineers from OSG conducted the training at our factory in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal to ensure optimum use of the technology,” said Allan Conolly, Managing Director of Somta Tools.
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New Takumi allows BMW Engineering to alleviate bottlenecks and enhance capabilities

It doesn’t matter if you’re producing the highest-quality components if they’re not getting to the customer on time. Many machine shops invest in resources to improve quality requirements – such as new machine technology and improved process design – but unpredictable backlogs and bottlenecks can remain difficult to manage.
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King Bull appointed distributor for Schumacher threading tools

Although threading tools (taps and forming taps) manufactured by German specialist manufacturer Schumacher Precision Tools GmbH have been available in South Africa for some time it has always been on a limited basis. That is until now. King Bull has been appointed to be the official marketing agent and distributor of Schumacher’s specialist products in South Africa and in future products will be available ex-stock from the company’s facility in Edenvale, Gauteng.
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Stillam adds WorkNC to its portfolio of CAD/CAM software it markets

“We have a strong background in the CAD/CAM space and we understand the needs of the metalworking and manufacturing companies in South Africa. With WorkNC’s solutions, we can expand our offering to these companies, alongside the CAD/CAM and Vero software that we already distribute,” says Ryan Scott, CEO and founder of Stillam CNC Programming Solutions.
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U & L Engineering invests in MTool vertical boring mill

Strong growth in the last few years has necessitated investment in equipment and factory and office space for U & L Engineering, based in Putfontein, Benoni, Gauteng, an engineering shop that offers machining of new, as well as repairs. rebuilding and refurbishment of equipment and components for the mining, construction, earth-moving and agricultural industries.
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TWR Steel moves into fiber laser cutting of thin gauge and is loving it

“We have always wanted technology to be a key enabler in our business so that it could leverage us into a position of strength. The benefits that are derived from using modern technology are self-explanatory. Up until now we have been skeptical about fiber laser cutting fitting into our business profile and we were uncertain whether the technology had reached a point whereby it was worth investing in it,” explained Tony Windt.
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InnovMetric and South African business partner launch PolyWorks South Africa

InnovMetric Software Inc., a leading provider of universal 3D metrology software solutions, and its South African business partner George Sansoni have announced the launch of PolyWorks SouthAfrica, a joint venture created to expand the sales of the PolyWorks® universal 3D metrology software platform in South Africa.
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Atlantis Foundries well advanced in Smart Foundry ambitions

Last year Atlantis Foundries revealed that the company had embarked on an ambitious plan to turn the company’s Atlantis, Western Cape facility into a Smart Foundry. The announcement attracted worldwide attention in the foundry industry, from both equipment suppliers and other interested foundries.
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Cast Products South Africa established as IDC awaits Competition Commission approval

Last year South Africa’s state-owned Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) announced that the restructuring of its steel subsidiary Scaw Metals into three standalone entities was at an advanced stage, as were plans to secure strategic equity partners (SEPs) for each of the units.
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UK plasma cutting table manufacturer enters South African market

“This is just the beginning of a journey. Swift-Cut Automation has an established name worldwide in the USA, Europe Russia, UAE & Middle East, Australia & New Zealand and we intend to grow that reputation locally. The local metal working industry will now be able to benefit from having a dedicated team that will only concentrate on supplying the Swift-Cut products to a broad spectrum of engineering companies,” said Le Roux.
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EuroBLECH 2018 – The technological showcase for the sheet metal working industry

From 23 to 26 October 2018 the international sheet metal working industry will meet again for its leading industry exhibition EuroBLECH 2018 in Hannover, Germany. A total of 60 636 visitors from some 102 different countries came to Hannover in 2016 to get an overview of the latest technological developments in sheet metal processing and invest in new production equipment.
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March 2018

Multitrade Distributors reaches 35th anniversary milestone

This year will mark the 35th anniversary in business of Multitrade Distributors, a wholly owned South African company that supplies tungsten carbide cutting tools as well as holding tools to the engineering and manufacturing industries. It all started over 40 years ago. Straight after finishing school Johny Hansen joined his father’s company Hansen Engineering in Port Elizabeth, where he spent 12 years.
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Leisure and lifestyle manufacturer Roadque upgrades with Ermaksan fiber laser

South Africa is famous for its sunshine, even in winter, which has allowed South Africans to live the great outdoors. Equally, we love the outdoor life and we as South Africans take advantage of the natural beauty, an aspect that the country is renowned for and one that attracts millions of international tourists. It does help that South Africa is also one of the top adventure destinations in the world.
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More than 1 300 exhibiting companies announced for BIEMH 2018

Anticipating a very ambitious and highly technical exhibition and conference: 28 May to 1 June 2018. According to the data recorded so far for companies, products, services and innovations, this year’s exhibition is expected to be very ambitious in terms of its approach, content and technology. It will help to tackle companies’ challenges when creating new and more competitive industrial solutions in the field of advanced manufacturing.
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Specialist cutting tool supplier Star Tooling gets closer to the action

After being comfortable and settled in the same location for the past 22 years specialist cutting tool supplier Star Tooling has decided to leave its comfort zone and move to a new office and warehouse factory in the Spartan Industrial area of Gauteng, which is located in close proximity to OR Tambo International Airport. Now in its 37th year of business Star Tooling has always been based in the Springs, Gauteng area since the company was established by Helmut Schmidt in 1981.
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Family ethos still high on the agenda at High Duty Castings

“There might have been changes in some of the shareholders recently but as one of the original shareholders I am still very much involved in the day-to-day operations of High Duty Castings and have been since the company was established in 1991,” said Fred Venter. Venter’s career in the foundry industry started in the 1960s when he began studying metallurgy. After completing his four-year diploma he then spent time with the Dorbyl Group’s foundry division with a major period at Salcast.
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5-axis machining and automation simplifies production at Wam Metals

The manufacture of electrical plugs, sockets and couplers for the mining industry is one of the motivations behind the investment in two mill turn CNC 5-axis machines. Wam Metals has traditionally been a company manufacturing components for companies who need these components for their own branded products. Although Wam will continue making the components for customer products, a decision was made by management that the company needed to manufacture their own branded product.
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Robor invests in new steel mill

Steel manufacturer Robor has replaced two older steel mills with a new one designed to use the latest technology. Designed in conjunction with some of the leading equipment builders from around the world, this fully automated, state of the art mill, is claimed to be one of the most advanced ø219 pipeline mills in the world. The machine’s capability is to roll a size range from 114 outer diameter to 219 outer diameter with wall thickness up to 8mm.
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Competition Commission approves Barnes Southern Palace’s acquisition of wire rod products and rolled products divisions of Scaw from the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC)

The Competition Commission has recommended that the Competition Tribunal approve the proposed transaction, with conditions, in which Barnes Southern Palace will buy Scaw Metals Group from the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC).
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Hurco to celebrate 50th anniversary on top of record results

The Indianapolis-based company, which makes CNC machines for the metal cutting industry, has reported a profit of $6.7 million, or $1 per share, in the quarter ended October 2017. That was up from $3 million, or 45 cents per share, in the same quarter of 2016. Revenue rose 14 per cent, to $75.9 million in the latest quarter, up from $66.4 million in the year-ago period. Total profit for fiscal 2017 came in at $15.1 million, or $2.25 per share, compared with $13.3 million, or $1.99 per share, in fiscal 2016.
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Hypertherm celebrates 50 years in business

Hypertherm, a manufacturer of industrial cutting systems and software, is celebrating its 50th year of industrial cutting innovation by introducing new programmes designed to deliver greater value to the company’s long-time customers. In addition, the company’s anniversary year events will include the unearthing of a long-buried time capsule, and celebrations at all its global locations with Founder Dick Couch.
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YG-1 opens subsidiary in South Africa

South Korean-based company engaged in the manufacture and distribution of cutting tools also investigating the possibility of opening a local manufacturing plant. YG-1, whose cutting tools have been widely distributed in South Africa for many years, has decided to open up a subsidiary in South Africa. The South African subsidiary company – YG-1 South Africa Pty Ltd – is based in the Brentwood Park, Benoni area of Gauteng and is headed up by Lance Hockly.
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January 2018

The Nikon Story – Industrial measuring systems and solutions

The “Nikon Metrology” division today offers the broadest range of metrology solutions for applications ranging from miniature electronics to the largest aircrafts. Nikon Metrology’s innovative measuring and precision instruments contribute to a high performance design-through-manufacturing process that allows manufacturers to deliver premium quality products in a shorter time.
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MSC Technical Durban invests to attract more business

Over the past few years, the Port of Durban has seen larger vessels calling and this has put a strain on the resources that are at hand to speed up turnaround times and reduce the cost of doing business. The Port of Durban is a relatively small, but busy port, where large vessels have to be moved over shorter distances quickly.
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Time and quality influence Mesh Gear to invest in five-axis capabilities

Mesh Gear specialises in the manufacture of gears, associated components and an array of other industrial consumables on a production basis for the local as well as international heavy equipment industry such as the mining, construction, agricultural, railway, military and industrial sectors.   

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Custom fabrication shop PQJ invests in Lincoln Electric Torchmate plasma cutting system

The launch of PQJ by Johnson came about when he saw an opportunity after becoming frustrated with the maintenance company that had been contracted to look after his property portfolio. The idea was galvanised after visiting his son’s cattle farm and observing the frustrations he was experiencing getting replacement components for gates and fences that were damaged during transit.
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Significant milestones for Ford Struandale engine plant, expanded production for 2018 and beyond

In December 2017, the Struandale Engine Plant assembled its 500 000th Duratorq TDCi turbodiesel engine since the program was launched in 2011 for the new Ford Ranger, which is built at Ford’s Silverton Assembly Plant in Pretoria and exported to over 148 markets in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
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GOM and RGC Engineering to hold a one day conference on optical measuring techniques for industrial casting processing

GOM, a global industrial company that develops, produces and distributes software, machines and systems for industrial and automated 3D coordinate measuring technology and 3D testing and local partner RGC Engineering will hold a one day conference on 15 March 2018.
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Murray & Roberts sells Genrec to black-owned group

Murray & Roberts has sold its Genrec steel engineering and fabrication business to black-owned and managed Southern Palace Group for R185 million. Henry Laas, Murray & Roberts group CE, said that Genrec would now have greater opportunity to unlock its order book potential in the public sector. Southern Palace had been involved in the steel services business as an investor for the past 15 years.
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Local Manufacturing Exhibition 2019 launched

Organised by the South African Capital Equipment Export Council (SACEEC), in association with Specialised Exhibitions Montgomery, and endorsed by the Premier of Gauteng the exhibition is scheduled to take place at the Expo Centre, Nasrec, Gauteng from 21 to 23 May 2019. The exhibition aims to showcase South Africa’s local manufacturing capabilities.
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EuroBLECH 2018 – The technological showcase for the sheet metal working industry

From 23 to 26 October 2018 the international sheet metal working industry will meet again for its leading industry exhibition EuroBLECH 2018 in Hannover, Germany. A total of 60 636 visitors from some 102 different countries came to Hannover in 2016 to get an overview of the latest technological developments in sheet metal processing and invest in new production equipment.
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Strong interest for Wire and Tube 2018

As before, the two number one trade fairs in their industries will occupy 16 exhibition halls, mapping the entire spectrum. They will cover manufacturing and finishing, process automation, measurement and control engineering, cable technologies, tube manufacturing and processing, raw materials, the raw material trade, pipelines, OCTG technology, profiles, pre-used machinery and plastic tubes.
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International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) 10 to 15 September, 2018

IMTS 2018 will be the 32nd edition of the premier manufacturing technology show in North America. IMTS 2016 hosted the highest number of exhibiting companies ever (2 407) and was the third largest in number of registrations (115 612) and in net square feet of exhibit space (1 370 256) at the McCormick Place complex. IMTS is held every even-numbered year in Chicago and attracts buyers and sellers from 120 countries.
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JIMTOF2018 – One of the world’s foremost machine tool tradeshows

As is customary the organisers of JIMTOF link the exhibition to an appropriate theme in the engineering field. The theme for JIMTOF2018 will be Connect. Currently, the public and private sectors are proactively deploying various measures to realise “Connected Industries” in which new value is created through different kinds of connections.
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Atlas Copco acquires South African exploration manufacturing business

Leading provider of sustainable productivity solutions, Atlas Copco, has agreed to acquire the assets of Renegade Drilling Supplies Proprietary Ltd, a South African manufacturer and distributor of drilling consumables for mining exploration. Renegade Drilling is based in Johannesburg, South Africa, and sells its products throughout the Southern African region.
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ZF Lemförder South Africa celebrates the production of its one millionth axle set

ZF Lemförder South Africa, a subsidiary of global technology giant ZF Friedrichshafen AG, recently celebrated the production of its one millionth axle set at its Rosslyn plant. To commemorate the milestone achievement, the facility hosted a family day with its employees, executives from the global division and local customer representatives.
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November 2017

Pegasus Steel adds fifth Trumpf laser to increase production and quality

Pretty much every service centre processing sheet and plate looks for process flexibility from the machine tools it selects. These companies need to be process agile because of the nature of the work that they do for their clients. Service centres such as Pegasus Steel tend to be creative in ways that help streamline the metalworking process to maximise productive machining time and minimise costly non-productive time.
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EMO Hannover 2017 theme of “Connecting Systems for Intelligent Production” allowed exhibitors to showcase their smart solutions

The EMO Hannover 2017 theme of “Connecting Systems for Intelligent Production” lived up to expectations from the many exhibitors who were only too willing to show you how they have embraced the concept by implementing Industry 4.0 or the Internet of Things (IoT) in their products or future plans.   

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Budget Sheet Metal experiences 46% growth

Budget Sheet Metal Engineering is a family-run business that specialises in the manufacture of sheet metal parts and finished products. “Growth in any type of market or industry does not come easily. You have to be innovative, be prepared to spend money on capital equipment to increase and improve your manufacturing capabilities, but more importantly, engage with your client.”

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BMW Group South Africa invests another R160 million to increase production capacity of the BMW X3 at its Rosslyn plant

BMW Group South Africa has announced that it will invest an additional R160 million into its Rosslyn manufacturing facility outside Pretoria to enhance production line speed. The enhancement raises the maximum production capacity by almost 10%, from 71 000 units to 76 000 units.
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B&R Metrology Solutions equipped for accuracy

Opens showroom to allow prospective buyers to come and view equipment in an operating environment. “While many companies invest heavily in CNC machine tools and related equipment, the implementation of new metrology strategies tends to happen more slowly. However, today the call for more accountability when manufacturing large or small components is getting louder.”
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Mecad launches SolidWorks 2018

Dassault Systèmes recently announced the launch of SolidWorks 2018, the latest release of its portfolio of 3D design and engineering applications. SolidWorks 2018 features an integrated, end-to-end solution for the design to manufacturing process that enables businesses of any size to rethink their approach to how parts and products are made and quickly bring innovative ideas to market in today’s experience economy.
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Harcliff gears up with CNC grinding

The focus of the company is design, engineering, manufacture, spare parts, maintenance and refurbishment of new and existing equipment. It offers grinding mills and components, scrubbers, open gearing, kiln and drier components, industrial gearbox rebuilds, Radicon, Benzlers, Elecon and Kumera gearboxes and drives and crusher wear and mechanical spare parts.
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New aspects in industrial 3D metrology, inspection and testing conference

GOM to present optical measuring techniques for industrial casting processing. GOM, a global industrial company that develops, produces and distributes software, machines and systems for industrial and automated 3D coordinate measuring technology and 3D testing, will hold a one day conference on 15 March 2018.
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BSI Steel may close KwaZulu-Natal branch

The group may restructure to centralise distribution from Gauteng office amid sector ructions. BSI Steel, an AltX-listed processor and distributor of steel products into sub-Saharan Africa, is reviewing the viability of servicing the market in KwaZulu-Natal through its Pietermaritzburg warehouse and offices, according to a SENS announcement and a report in Business Day.
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Caterpillar commits to local sourcing of components through R1.3 billion investment

Caterpillar, a leading US manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines and diesel-electric locomotives has said it is to source components and related services in South Africa worth a total estimated value of R1.3 billion. The commitment is for a period of 10 years, in support of local enterprise and supplier development.
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Esteq launches Solid Edge ST10

New release offers robust enhancements for design, simulation and collaboration. South African reseller Esteq introduced the newest version of Solid Edge – ST10 – at a function at the CSIR, revealing a handful of improvements, including the introduction of convergent modelling (the ability to mash up mesh and b-rep). The release also offers the ability to scale parts models and provides correct modelling of holes across bends in sheet metal.
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Atlantis Foundries embraces the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Atlantis foundries have embarked on a process that will pave the way to becoming a Smart Foundry by embracing the Fourth Industrial Revolution. This project aims to combine various technologies available to gather and analyse process data, with the aim of improving product quality and cost efficiency.
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September 2017

Fiber laser cutting without compromises – Bystronic

The ByStar Fiber pushes the limits. With a fundamentally redesigned machine concept, Bystronic is redefining fiber laser cutting and thereby expanding the range of applications of the cutting technology. With its uncompromising high-end performance, the ByStar Fiber is aimed at users who want to rely fully on fiber laser technology.
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AHRLAC engineers develop machining concept that is now internationally recognised

Much has been written locally about the AHRLAC (Advanced High Performance Reconnaissance Light Aircraft), a light reconnaissance and counter-insurgency aircraft developed in South Africa by AHRLAC Holdings. It is a joint venture between the Paramount Group, Africa’s largest privately owned defence and aerospace company and Aerosud Innovation Centre.
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Somta Tools flies South African flag at EMO 2017

This year marks the 11th time that KwaZulu-Natal based Somta Tools will participate at the international metalworking exhibition. Somta Tools will once again be flying the South African flag by exhibiting at the internationally renowned EMO exhibition, which is taking place from 18 to 23 September 2017 in Hannover, Germany.
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Successful Red Bud Industries seminar held for the first time in South Africa

Red Bud Industries, a leading manufacturer of high speed, cut-to-length, blanking, multi-blanking, stretcher levelling and coil-to-coil slitting machines held its first ever coil processing seminar in South Africa in June 2017 at the Southern Sun O.R. Tambo International Airport Hotel in Johannesburg.
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Opportunities abound for Eezi Laser

Eezi Laser was just recently established in March 2017 and only took delivery of its own sheet metal processing machines in June 2017. During this ‘downtime’ the partners had plenty of organisational and administrative tasks to complete but they were also not idle in the area of securing business for their fledgling sheet metal processing company, and this has enabled them to keep their new machines busy since they were installed.
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Large DMG MORI 5-axis milling machine investment gears up Titanus Slew Rings for new business

No matter if your work is in Gear Manufacturing, Machine Construction, Tool & Mould Construction, Energy Technology or Aerospace, a clear trend is the creation of highly complex, high precision & quality workpieces of large dimensions.
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IDC starts to sell off struggling Scaw units

For over a year now the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has been seeking strategic equity partners for its struggling steel subsidiary Scaw Metals, which reported a loss of over R1 billion for 2016. The restructuring of its steel subsidiary Scaw Metals into three standalone entities is now at an advanced stage with plans to secure strategic equity partners (SEPs) for each of the units said CEO Geoffrey Qhena.
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Okuma to present super multitasking machines and Smart Factory Solutions at EMO 2017

Okuma will display its latest machining solutions to provide supreme connectivity and productivity at this year’s EMO 2017. Okuma’s smart machines as well as the Laser EX series of super multitasking machines capable of turning, milling, laser hardening and additive manufacturing will make their European debut at the fair.
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DMG MORI to demonstrate the future of production technology live in Hall 2 at EMO 2017

From the 18th to 23rd September 2017 DMG MORI will again exhibit in the entire Hall 2, North Entrance, on an exhibition area of approximately 10 000m². DMG MORI will be showcasing around 80 high-tech machines at the EMO 2017 to demonstrate its latest innovations and integral technology solutions, right through to the digital factory.
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Tongtai Group presents new products at EMO 2017

The TTGroup will exhibit three innovative technologies. The first one is Anger Machinlng’s 2PLUS solution that opens new possibilities for different precision workpiece machining in 5-axis in volume production. The Anger 2PLUS is a new fully automated system, which enables the customer to achieve considerably greater variability with higher efficiency.
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Fair Friend Group to occupy entire Hall 14 at EMO 2017

FFG presents portfolio of machine tools and systems with a focus on smart production – occupies the entire Hall 14 to showcase 40 machines and manufacturing cells in the Group with 5 618m² of exhibition space. The Fair Friend group is known for its variety of renowned brands, covering the full range of metal cutting machinery for turning, gear making, milling, honing and grinding in all parts sizes and volumes.
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July 2017

TaeguTec’s cutting tools turn economic downturn into manufacturing upturn

While many economists, business analysts, government officials and investors are saying that things keep getting worse for South Africa, the reality is that the nation is a vibrant manufacturing powerhouse in the region whose potential exceeds most developing nations. Read more


Italian group invests R200 million in railway wheel machining plant

Lucchini RS, the Italian manufacturer of forged railway products, has invested R200 million in a new production facility in Germiston in Ekurhuleni and anticipates making a further investment of R1.8 billion in anticipation of further growth in their line of business in the regional market. Read more


Bekker Steel upgrades cutting operations

Plate preparation company Bekker Steel has been busy upgrading its plate cutting machines in order to boost quality and productivity. Additionally the company has added a 1 250 ton press brake to the bending department and installed a solar panel system that will cut the company’s electricity bill by one third. Read more


Machine Tools Africa exhibition looks set to become a regular event every three years

The decision to make Machine Tools Africa 2017 a standalone show received a positive response from exhibitors and visitors alike. Exhibitors were very enthusiastic about the quality of visitors and reported that a high number of sales leads were generated. Some major sales, made from the stands, were even reported. Read more


Dished End purchase could cost Hudaco up to R79 million

Hudaco, the listed industrial and automotive consumable products distributor, has acquired manufacturer Dished End for a maximum of R79 million. The company said it had acquired Dished End’s trading assets and liabilities effective from the beginning of May 2017. Read more


Industrial policy and the locomotive procurement – Corruption undermines industrial development

The procurement by Transnet of 1 064 locomotives was hailed as a boon for industrial policy. Transnet consolidated several years of procurement and sent the market signal that there was sufficient demand in South Africa for a major investment by locomotive producers and their suppliers. Read more


Automotive Masterplan to replace the Automotive Production Development Plan in 2020

In April 2017 the Automotive Masterplan lead and B&M Analysts chairperson Dr Justin Barnes said the achievement of a 60% level of localisation would make a significant impact on the South African economy, including the creation of 49 000 new jobs and an additional R68 billion in GDP. Read more


Highveld Steel plant reopens – structural mill began producing in April

“The reopening of the Highveld Steel plant in Mpumalanga is an example of what can be done with focus and partnerships. When the plant was closed two years ago, government worked with industry to find solutions that can restart operations. Arcelor Mittal saw an opportunity to provide blooms as input for the production of structural steel products and railway lines.” Read more


Automotive Export Manual 2017 shows some interesting stats

South Africa, as Africa’s largest economy and its most integrated in terms of capital and trade flows, represents the blue chip jurisdiction in the region. Although South Africa offers investors the benefits of a country with first-world standards in business infrastructure, it also offers emerging market vibrancy and opportunity, the ideal formula for growth and profitability. Read more


DMG MORI has called 2017 “the year of innovations for DMG MORI”

Company promises 18 world premières this year with eight launching at EMO 2017. In reporting its best quarterly order intake ever, German-Japanese machine tool giant DMG MORI has called 2017 “the year of innovations for DMG MORI” and is aiming to present 18 world premières this year. Read more


Mazak to unveil full Industry 4.0 solution at EMO 2017

Mazak’s Industry 4.0 infrastructure enables machine users to make the vital step-up from automated cell manufacturing to a completely connected Industry 4.0 factory of the future. Mazak’s iSmart Factory is centred on three key pillars, namely Smooth Technology, the new SmartBox, which provides faster data analysis with increased security; and the MT Connect standard communication protocol. Read more


The longest ever fiber laser built by Ermaksan

Ermaksan has built its longest ever fiber laser cutting machine. The Fibermak machine has a table size measuring 18.3 metres long and three metres wide and is powered by a 6kW source. Additional features of the machine include a 2-axis cutting head that can be moved in 45 degree left and right movements. This gives the machine the ability of linear bevel cutting at 45 degrees that aids fabricators during welding processes. Read more


May 2017

Sandvik Coromant unveils a revolution in turning

Cutting tool and tooling system specialist Sandvik Coromant has unveiled a revolutionary new turning concept that offers improved machining flexibility and the potential for significant productivity gains. The company’s PrimeTurning™ methodology and supporting tools provide manufacturers, particularly in aerospace and automotive sectors, with the industry’s first true ‘all directional turning’ solution. Read more


1 000th Doosan machine installed at PDC

The machine, a Doosan VC 510 vertical machining centre with a dual pallet, was installed at Pressure Die Castings (PDC), a manufacturer of brass, zinc and aluminium castings and components to the local and international building hardware, plumbing, lighting, automotive power and fire protection industries. Read more


The need for speed

Citing “short-term cash flow problems,” and flooding of the Hakskeen Pan in the Northern Cape province of South Africa where the record attempt will take place, Bloodhound SSC project director and former World Land Speed Record holder Richard Noble is confident 2017 is the year of milestones for the Bloodhound SSC. Read more


DCD Group exits the very heavy engineering industry

South Africa’s downward economic spiral is best characterised by the shutting down of heavy industries. Major steel and aluminium facilities have gone in recent years, including those belonging to the giant Russian Evraz group, India’s Tata Steel and BHP Billiton. Now, with South Africa’s ratings downgrade to junk status, things are likely to get much worse. Read more


Altair holds first South African Technology Conference

The first South African Altair Technology Conference took place at River Meadow Manor in Irene, Gauteng on 28 March 2017. This one-day event brought engineers and designers together from several industries to discuss the latest technology trends and developments around simulation-driven design and manufacturing in South Africa. Read more


Growing pains force Turnstar to more than double factory size

It was not so long ago that this fabricator provided turnstiles for most of the football stadiums used during the 2010 FIFA World Cup and over three million ticketed spectators passed through Turnstar turnstiles. In fact, next time you enter a major sporting venue in South Africa you will most likely be guided through a Turnstar turnstile to enter the stadium. Read more


South Africa’s giant Aeroswift 3D printer gearing up for commercial production

3D printing technology has been on the rise in South Africa recently, and while the country isn’t one of the most commonly talked about in the industry, South Africa has been working on some advanced 3D printing applications for years. In 2011, a government-backed project called Aeroswift was launched. Read more


DCD Protected Mobility awarded big US defence contract for Husky 2G landmine detection vehicle

According to Cornelius Grundling, general manager of DCD Protected Mobility, the contract is part of a US$132 million order awarded to its US-based strategic partner Critical Solutions International through the US government’s Special Defence Acquisition Fund (SDAF). Read more


EMO Hannover 2017 to set new standards

Exhibitors come to EMO Hannover from all over the world and from all segments of metalworking technology. With approximately 60% of exhibitors from outside of Germany, EMO Hannover is the world’s most international trade fair for metalworking. Experts from the industry know and recognise that fact – which is another reason why no other trade fair can match the international character of EMO Hannover’s visiting public. Read more


Fair Friend Group adds to European machine tool collection

Taiwan-headquartered Fair Friend Group (FFG) is acquiring Italian grinding manufacturers Meccanodora, Morara and Tacchella from IMT Spa, through its affiliate company Grinding Technology Srl, adding a further three European machine tool brands to the 14 it already boasts. Read more


Hurco develops honing-on-machining-centre process

American machine tool and controls firm Hurco has worked with honing specialists Bates Technologies to develop a high precision honing process that can be carried out on standard machining centers. Compared to purchasing and operating a dedicated honing machine, benefits include cost reductions and the ability to combine general machining with honing on the same platform, eliminating a separate set-up. Read more


Tongtai launches hybrid metal AM-subtractive machine

Optomec, a leading global supplier of production grade additive manufacturing (AM) systems for 3D Printed Metals and 3D Printed Electronics, announced an agreement with Tongtai Machine & Tool Company (TWSE: 4526.TW), one of the largest machine tool suppliers in Taiwan. The agreement enables Tongtai to integrate the Optomec LENS Print Engine and add 3D metal printing capability to its AMH-350 (Additive Manufacturing-Hybrid) vertical milling machine. Read more


March 2017

A success story through partnership

Formagrind is a subcontractor that is certainly playing its part in supporting the local manufacturing community. The company has recently won a significant order that has led to the delivery of two Hurco machining centers and new tooling innovations from Mitsubishi Materials. Read more


It’s not just about the machines at DMG MORI [VIDEO]

In this new world, improving customers’ manufacturing process efficiency requires a wide range of operational resources, establishment of a value chain, including peripherals, development of software to link these systems, design of human-machine interface and collection, analysis and protection of data. Read more


Turkish metal fabricating machinery manufacturer MVD Makina Sanayi A.S now represented in South Africa

“After initial meetings at EuroBLECH 2016 we then formalised our agreement with MVD Makina Sanayi A.S at the beginning of the year,” said Carlos Figueiredo, who has over 20 years experience in the marketing of sheet metal machinery in South Africa. Read more


Iscar South Africa celebrates golden anniversary

This year marks the 50th anniversary of Iscar South Africa, one of the country’s leading suppliers of precision carbide metalworking tools. The company distributes its products from its head office in Longmeadow Business Estate – North, its branch offices situated in Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, Durban and Vereeniging and via a comprehensive network of distributors. Read more


Secant Engineering invests in Soco fiber laser line for cutting of tubes and profiles

Over the years Secant Engineering, based in Springs, Gauteng, has endeavoured to become a fully fledged general engineering shop. The services that the company now offers to its customers include CNC machining, laser cutting, CNC bending, fabrication, cutting, welding and finishing solutions. Read more


WD Hearn celebrates 80 years in business

The company’s origins stem from 1937 when it was started by the well decorated Brigadier W.D. Hearn, the late Officer Commanding of The Queen’s Own Cape Town Highlanders. The Brigadier was one of the Frontiersmen from the Manchester Squadron who served with the 9th Belgian Lancers in 1914, receiving the Ysier Medal from the King of the Belgians. Read more


F & H Machine Tools appointed agents for Turkish sheet metal equipment manufacturer, Ermaksan

A relentless focus on R&D over the past 12 years has helped to speed growth and market share for Ermaksan, the Turkish sheet metal machine tool manufacturer. The family run company that was established in 1965 with five employees as a milling workshop manufacturing textile and leather processing equipment, generator and electric motor production equipment, now numbers 800 staff. Read more


Durma South Africa partners with Precitec Group to offer service, repair and replacement support for your laser cutting heads

Company also appointed agents for Lantek, the global software supplier of CAD/CAM, MES and ERP solutions for the sheet metal and structural steel manufacturing industry. Laser cutting is a subtle science, especially when cutting thick plate. It’s a balancing act between beam parameters, gas-flow dynamics, and the optics, all working together to make a clean kerf in a particular material grade and thickness. Read more


Mecad Systems recognised at SolidWorks World 2017 conference

South African SolidWorks reseller for the last 21 years have been recognised by Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks Corp., the developer of 3D CAD design software, analysis software, and product data management software, at the recent SolidWorks World 2017 conference held at the Los Angeles Convention Center in California, USA. Mecad Systems were honoured at the Awards Dinner, held during the conference, as one of the top resellers across the globe. Read more


1 000th Trumpf TruLaser 1030 fiber laser bound for South Africa

The customer is Federal Mogul Sealing in Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape. Trumpf Inc. one of the largest manufacturers of fabricating machinery in the United States has announced that it has manufactured the 1 000th TruLaser 1030 fiber laser, less than 8 years after the first machine was assembled. The significant connection for South Africa is that the customer is Federal Mogul Sealing, based in Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape. Read more


Plan your trip to Machine Tools Africa 2017

Quality tools and machinery are the backbone of the South African manufacturing industry which is why Machine Tools Africa 2017 has been designed to showcase the very latest technology developments, machinery, products, services and solutions in this innovative sector. Read more


Lubcon greases, oils, pastes and sprays now available in South Africa

A global research project conducted by a bearing manufacturer shows that more than 50 per cent of premature bearing failures are due to over-lubrication, under-lubrication, mixing of incompatible lubricants, wrong lubricant and lubricant contamination. This has its significant impact on a country’s economy. Read more


January 2017

2017 release of Edgecam features nearly 50 updates

The new 2017 release of Edgecam introduces a Tombstone module for assembling pre-existing parts on a defined mounting device. A simple dialogue window enables users to add pre-machined part files, specifying the positions they are to be mounted on a tombstone or other multi-component work-holding device. Read more


OSG Invests in Somta Tools to become major stakeholder

OSG is regarded as a global leader in round cutting tools and is listed on the Tokyo stock exchange. Founded in 1938, the company had established an OSG group company presence on every continent with the exception of Africa. Now, with the investment in Somta Tools, OSG have a presence on every continent and strategically position themselves to better serve the African market. Read more


Efficient Engineering calls for more support from State-owned enterprises

The success of local content designation depends on active support by public and private sectors. The implementation and verification of compliance with government’s local designation rules across both public and private sectors is pivotal to the success of the policy. Read more


Emphasis on speed, integrated automation with digital interconnectivity and fiber innovation revealed at EuroBLECH 2016

At EuroBLECH 2016 the world’s sheet and plate machine manufacturers and software developers exhibited new products and innovations aimed at reducing the time between component development and final delivery. Fiber laser machines, with more power and capabilities to cut thicker material, lead the way. Read more


Connecting the Smart Factory and IoT feature at JIMTOF 2016

Culture is an important aspect of human existence. From impacting on our behaviour to our aspirations, culture plays a vital role in defining who we are. I have been fond of exploring and experiencing different cultures and I have been lucky enough to travel to a few countries, both so called first and third-world and those in between, and experience their culture firsthand. Read more


Industry supports Machine Tools Africa 2017 as sales exceed 70%

With a few months still to go and the two allocated exhibition halls largely booked, industry has demonstrated its strong support for Machine Tools Africa 2017, taking place at the Expo Centre in Johannesburg from 9-12 May 2017. Exhibition space sales have exceeded 70% of overall square metres available… Read more


DCD Marine enters voluntary business rescue

According to DCD Group Chief Executive Officer Digby Glover, DCD Marine was focused predominantly on the oil and gas market, which has contracted massively due to low global oil prices. The business rescue process allows the business some room to negotiate with stakeholders, so it can take appropriate actions that put the business in a more positive position. Read more


AMSA concludes manufacturing agreement with Highveld

A contract manufacturing agreement has been concluded between ArcelorMittal SA and Highveld Structural Mill (HSM) and Evraz Highveld Steel & Vanadium (Highveld). HSM is a newly formed subsidiary of Highveld. The agreement relates to wind-down proposals by the joint business rescue practitioners in terms of a business rescue plan. The agreement is still subject to certain conditions. Read more


‘Shaping Possibility’ into Hypertherm’s future

“We are moving away from a company that just designs and manufactures products. Going forward we are going to be providing application solutions for the end user and this is demonstrated by our brand new state-of-the-art stand at EuroBLECH 2016. The stand includes a high definition live stream and online connectivity with our regional headquarters in The Netherlands.” Read more


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