Laminate Works in Kansas City, Kansas, installed a new large-scale edgebander and had it up and running quickly. They also documented the quick installation process with a series of photos.
The original idea was to remove an existing edgebander and install the new machine in its place, said Yves Lebovics, director of manufacturing.
“That is how we did the same installation last summer in our Dallas facility,” he said. “A few days before the installation began a decision was made to take a different machine out of service and install the new edgebander in its place. This gave us a little breathing room on the installation.”
In preparation, Kirk Uffelman, general manager Kansas City, said that the area for the new machine had to be freed up, and power, compressed air supply and dust extraction needed to be provided to the machine location in advance.
Riggers were lined up to the exact date and time, waiting for the arrival of the machine. All tools were in place at the right time and were just waiting for the moment of action. The management team had everything organized, so all sources needed were “ready to roll” when needed.
Lebovics said that supervisors and future operators attended the entire installation and start-up process, learning about all parts to be adjusted and programmed during the start-up phase.
“A few of us from corporate spent significant amount of our time at or around the project to assure (that) everything stayed on track and was completed on-time to specification,” Lebovics said.
Laminate Works chose an IMA Schelling Novimat Contour R3 edgebander.
“The special feature of this machine is the “KFA” Kontur Fraes Aggregate (contour milling aggregate) which even at a max speed of 30 meters / minute rounds the front and back corners with precision,” Lebovics said.
The fact that IMA Schelling Group has a U.S. support and parts location with service technicians being able to connect directly with the machine to either support troubleshooting or solve the problem was another factor in the decision-making process.
Uffelman said that IMA Schelling assigned a service coordinator to work directly with the Kansas City facility to assist with the delivery and installation requirements of the machine.
“Having the machine’s technical data and drawings allowed us to locate the power supply, and install dust collection and compressed air connections prior to the machine being on site,” Uffelman said. “The IMA technician, Paulo, was also on site and assisted with the rigging and complete installation of the machine.”
“When we encountered an issue with a special product type, the head of the IMA Installation Department immediately booked a flight to Kansas City, to take a closer look at the situation, and help adjust the machine,” Lebovics said. “This was an incredible quick response and problem solving strategy.”
The installation was completed without major difficulty.
“Other than accepting a small period of time without edgebanding capacity, there were really no challenges which could be mentioned,” Uffelman said.
“The complete installation took three weeks to complete, but by the end of the third day we were running parts. We decided to take each phase of the installation process one step at the time and incorporate machine maintenance into the installation. The goal was not just to purchase an excellent machine but also to run and maintain it in world-class-fashion.
“It takes a fair amount of time to program the variety of products the machine is capable of banding, as well as to teach the operators on how to run, maintain and program the edgebander,” Lebovics said.
A master-reference sample of each type of edgebanding Laminate Works applies was made, quality checked, and signed off by the supervisors and machine operator. The master-reference samples will be kept in a controlled area and used to maintain the proper operation of the machine.
“One key thing to point out is we changed the installation location a few days before we received the machine,” Bert Clothier, Laminate Works president, said.
“The upside to this new location is it allowed us to keep the old machine running longer. We used the same power source for both machines so only one could be under power at a time, but this allowed us to run the old machine until we were ready to switch over. See laminateworks.com, imaschelling.us.
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