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.
If material conditions change ever so slightly, or if parameters aren’t set up quite right, the quality of the cut can suffer, particularly near the bottom of the cut edge. Rough striations and dross are signs that molten metal isn’t being evacuated as it should be.
In critical cutting applications, you might see a technician peer carefully through the laser-safe window of a laser cutting machine. He could be looking for telltale signs of trouble in piercing and kerf creation. Today you also might find such a person take out a phone or tablet and pull up an app. Some manufacturer’s cutting heads sense trouble in real time, and communicate via Bluetooth directly to an operator’s phone or tablet.
All well and good, but what happens if it is the head itself that is faulty or needs servicing? It does not happen often but we all know that machinery is not fail proof and needs servicing and maintenance. The scenario is that it could take between three and four weeks for a technician to come and remove the head from your laser and then send it internationally to be fixed or serviced and then returned to be reinstalled. In essence your machine could be down for up to four weeks, if you are lucky. Imagine the production time lost and the resultant turnover. I am not even going to mention the unhappy clients.
One of the most widely used cutting heads in the laser cutting industry, flat bed or tube, is a Precitec, manufactured by a German company that has long-term experience in the fields of laser processes, welding and optical design. Their comprehensive product range offers various laser cutting heads for different applications.
Precitec offers service, repair, commissioning and maintenance options, including replacement parts, but this is all done in Germany. The company has now partnered with South African company Durma South Africa to offer these services locally.
“This is the first time that Precitec have allowed this service to take place outside of Gaggenau, Germany. Normally a company would have to send their cutting or welding products to Germany to be repaired or serviced. We have sent a technician to Germany to be trained and we are setting up a mirror image of the German facility locally,” said Byron Gueffroy of Durma South Africa.
“The time and cost saving for South African users is going to be impactful.”
Another new development at Durma South Africa is that the company will in future market Lantek sheet metal solutions software.
“Lantek provides software solutions in the form of CAD/CAM/MES/ERP for companies fabricating sheet metal, tubes, and beams with any cutting (laser, plasma, oxy-cut, water-jet, shear) and punching technology,” explained Gueffroy.
“Its capacity for innovation and its firm commitment to internationalisation and emerging markets have led Lantek, established in 1986 in the Basque Country in Spain, to devise a global-local strategy. Today, the company has over 18 000 customers in over 100 countries and its own offices in 15 countries, in addition to an extensive network of distributors that are present throughout the world. In 2015 its international operations provided 88% of its turnover.”
“Our aim is to not just be a reseller but offer training options as well.”
Online shopping for sheet metal parts
“One of the more interesting recent developments with Lantek software is that it now integrates online shopping for sheet metal parts. With this new capability Lantek’s customers can integrate with their own customers into a supply chain. These customers can reorder previously supplied parts or request quotations for the manufacture of new designs through each individual company’s website. By implementing this technology on their websites, Lantek’s customers will be able to work much more closely with their own customers, delivering accurate quotations even quicker, while checking for available capacity for manufacture, to offer realistic and achievable delivery times.”
For further details contact Durma South Africa on TEL: 011 865 4090 or visit www.durma.co.za