Mazak Newsroom

December 2020

What are the Mazak Intelligent Functions?

Mazak Optonics utilizes intelligent technology to engineer laser-cutting machines that deliver innovation, performance, automation and value. These automated innovations are called the Mazak Intelligent Functions. When the Intelligent Functions are paired with the Mazak Multi-Control Torch, they work together to provide unrivaled operator support for exceptional ease of operation, offer enhanced quality of processed components as well as reduced cutting time. There are three categories of Mazak’s Intelligent Functions which include: Intelligent Setup Functions (ISF), Intelligent Monitoring Functions (IMF) and Intelligent Cutting Functions (ICF).

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Tilling New Ground

In 2012 growth prompted Orthman Manufacturing to think about expanding its plant and investing in new equipment like a fiber laser. Purchase plans idled until Orthman Manufacturing opened its new 115,000-square-foot production plant in 2016. By 2018 the company was outsourcing $2.5 million in laser cut parts in addition to other parts its’ fabrication shop couldn’t process. After discovering the advantages of high performance air-cutting, Orthman Manufacturing Inc. changed their order from a Mazak OPTIPLEX FIBER III 8kW to an OPTIPLEX FIBER III 10kW paired with a high-performance dry air system. Orthman Manufacturing also sourced a Mazak M-Series automation system tailored to its needs. The M-Series offered a compact footprint while optimizing the manufacturer’s ceiling height with a 20-shelf tower. The fabricator also wanted to run the machine lights out so they added over/under carts.

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Upgrading to Fiber

Demco, a family-owned business in its third generation, has roots going back to 1950. The family has witnessed many advancements over the years and recently, they’ve jumped from CO2 to fiber lasers, and the benefits have been exceptional. The fabricator determined that two Mazak OPTIPLEX 3015 FIBER 8kW laser machines would suffice to advance operations. The decision to implement an automation solution dealt more complexities than the decision to upgrade machines. Mazak’s M-Series systems feature a small footprint and highly customizable configurations. M-Series of automation is a flexible thanks to a wide variety of peripheral devices and functions that expand the range of applications, including conveyors, over/under carts and labelers.

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Cutting Corners and Small Features

While lasers are known for high speed and high accuracy cutting, they spend a fair amount of time cutting at less than top speed. Sharp corners, holes, and other features require the laser to slow down to process. There are two machine functions we can control in order to process these features efficiently and accurately, the cutting head and power.

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November 2020

Luke Surratt Promoted to General Manager of Customer Service

Mazak Optonics Corp. is pleased to announce the promotion of Luke Surratt from Installations Manager to General Manager of Customer Service. Surratt will be responsible for managing all aspects of customer support, service and installations. He will also develop the organization's customer service strategy and manage the overall performance of people and processes to achieve the highest levels of customer satisfaction.

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October 2020

A Recipe of Success for Royal Range

Since 1995, Royal Range of California has been serving up high-quality commercial restaurant equipment. Offering an extensive line of ranges, ovens, fryers and countertop cooking equipment, Royal Range’s commercial kitchen equipment has stood the test of time. Originally, Royal Range was using a punch machine and shear to cut sheet metal for all its product lines. Adding a 2kW and 4kW OPTIPLEX NEXUS FIBER laser machines and a high-performance air cutting system were the secret ingredients to Royal Range’s recipe for continued growth.

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How To Use the Nozzle Centering Camera

Since the introduction of laser-cutting machines in the 80’s, the advancements in technology, machine capabilities, and available options have been increasing by leaps and bounds. But one task that has remained unchanged over the years is the need to manually center the beam within the nozzle tip. Recently, Mazak has introduced an innovative option for vastly improving the speed and consistency of the nozzle centering process using a special camera.

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Post-Sale Support Considerations

Fabricators should consider a variety of factors when adding a new laser-cutting machine to their operations. However, post-sale support is a vital element of laser-cutting operations and should be a focal point when weighing options. It is important to understand what type of service and support will fabricators receive after the laser has been installed. Discover which post-sale support factors to consider when implementing a new laser machine.

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Mazak Optonics Expands North American Headquarters

Mazak Optonics has confirmed expansion plans for their North American Headquarters located in Elgin, Illinois. This fall 2020, Mazak Optonics will break ground on the expansion of their Elgin Technology Center. Mazak plans for the expansion project to be completed in the spring of 2021, and once complete, it will bring more than 20,000 square-feet of additional operational facilities.

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September 2020

Part Sorting and Identification Strategies

While keeping the laser constantly cutting is essential, customers do not pay for machine runtime; they pay for parts. And not the parts that go missing, rework on lost parts, or re-cutting pieces that should have been identified properly in the first place. Now that the laser processes more parts to more downstream machines, strategic part identification and sorting have become even more important. Discover strategies available for part sorting and identification strategies.

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August 2020

The Assist Gas That Saves

Assist gases are the most expensive part of laser-cutting operations. Many fabricators use bulk nitrogen, but considering the cost, they’re often looking to reduce this expense. Typically, a nitrogen generation system comes to mind, however, high-performance dry air systems are also a viable option, if the application allows for it. The outcomes from utilizing high-performance air as an assist gas can dramatically reduce monthly operating costs, increase throughput and reduce laser idle time.

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July 2020

Ten Tips for Fabricators to Beat the Heat

As temperature rise in the summer, so does concern for workers’ safety and health in manufacturing facilities. Fortunately, there are many precautions workers and managers can take to ensure the work environment and employees are safe during the steamy season. Discover five tips for employees and five tips for managers to beat the summer heat.

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Mazak Launches FT-150 FIBER

Mazak Optonics Corp. has launched the latest in its laser-cutting line up, the FT-150 FIBER. The FT-150 FIBER tube-cutting laser has been designed for high-speed cutting and reduced non-cutting process to improve cycle times for small to medium diameter tubes. The result is superior productivity with high throughput. The FT-150 FIBER utilizes a series of advanced technologies and optional features to streamline and automate laser-cutting tube production processes.

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June 2020

Setup for Non-Metal and Expanded Metal

When laser-cutting, there are certain applications we cannot rely on the height sensor to control the position of the torch above the material. One of the more common examples of this is expanded metal. Learn how to configure your laser-cutting machine's Z coordinate to adjust the torch height without using the height sensor.

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Dan Konrath Promoted to Southeast Regional Sales Manager

Mazak Optonics Corp. is pleased to announce the promotion of Dan Konrath from Applications Engineer to the Southeast Regional Sales Manager. Konrath will be responsible for the Southeast territory which includes Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida.

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TMI Climate Solutions Punches Out

From the concept stage through the manufacturing process, TMI Climate Solutions, based out of Holly, Mi, manages the full scope of modular climate solutions process by offering construction management, maintenance programs and on-site analysis to give customers a complete solution. TMI’s sheet metal operations previously involved six people running shears and two older turret punches. After fully vetting a range of options, TMI decided on a Mazak 4-kW OPTIPLEX 4020 DDL laser with a Mazak MCS automation solution with dual towers, totaling 27 shelves.

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What to do With Your Laser Cut Parts

Laser-cutting automation has been around for over 40 years. Mazak was the first laser manufacturer to implement factory automation in 1984. In the past, many automation systems were cookie cutter and if it did not fit properly in your facility, it was on you to rearrange the shop to make it fit. Today it is a different story. There are many different types of automation layouts that fit into a variety of different shop floors. The latest technology allows for the finished product to be presented in an appropriate manner by allowing you to decide where you want the finished product to go and then we can create the proper automation flow for your fabrication shop.

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May 2020

Fabricators Join the Fight Against COVID-19 Pandemic

Mazak Optonics’ customers have joined the fight to help flatten the curve of COVID-19. These fabricators were deemed as essential businesses during stay-at-home executive orders and have been able to continue operations. In addition, these companies have initiated new projects, such as making essential items, to help during the pandemic. Learn more about these fabricators who are producing items to assist with the fight against COVID-19.

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April 2020

Mazak Applications Engineer Creates Non-Contact Brass Key

Due to the recent COVID-19 global pandemic, people are being more cautious of their surroundings. To help avoid contact with possible contaminated surfaces, Tyler Van Wyhe, Applications Engineer at Mazak Optonics Corp, has taken matters into his own hands by creating a non-contact brass key to use when in public spaces. From opening doors, to pushing buttons on a gas pump or elevator, this laser cut brass key can come in handy to keep your hands less vulnerable to being exposed to germs. Download the DXF file to cut your own "COVID-Key."

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Mazak Engineers Are Essential

While millions of Americans are under a stay-at-home order due to Coronavirus pandemic, there are people who are essential and unable to work from home. Manufacturing and fabrication have become part of the frontline fighting against COVID-19.

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Dual Laser Operation Increases Cutting Capacity

From mom-and-pop shop to a full-service manufacturing operation, US Metal Crafters has reinvented its business. Offering services for laser cutting, metal stamping, roll forming, fabrication, assembly, and an in-house tool and die shop, US Metal Crafters is one of the few American manufacturers that can offer this wide of a range of fabrication services. US Metal Crafters was previously operating a CO2 laser from the '90s and upgraded to the OPTIPLEX CHAMPION 3015 FIBER laser. Only six months later, a high-power OPTIPLEX FIBER III 8kW laser was also added to the production facility. US Metal Crafters is now running a dual laser operation and has increased part throughput.

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EM Dynamics Aims to be a Cut Above

Not only does Toronto based, EM Dynamics offer exceptional work as a company, the fabricator also sets the standard on how to give back to the communities that matter most. Not only does the company offer exceptional work, it also set the standard on how to give back to the communities that matter most. Learn about how the EMD's OPTIPLEX FIBER III 8kW has experienced immediate results and how they give back to the communities that mean most.

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COVID-19 Relief Resources for Fabricators

Fabricators and manufacturers are part of the Coronavirus frontline. We are being called on to be part of the solution and to help during this time. To help with suppling PPE and medical equipment to arm our healthcare workers but also, to help make daily life continue. This is essential. Here are the current COVID-19 relief offerings available to fabricators, manufacturers and small businesses.

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How Shickel Corp. Continues to Be the Most Trusted Name in Custom Metal Products

To be the most trusted name in design, fabrication and installation of custom metal products. That is the vision of Shickel Corporation based out of Bridgewater, Virginia. With over 80 years of quality and service, Shickel Corp. excels in metal project coordination, design, fabrication, polishing, coating, logistics, and installations. The company started out with the purchase of a 2.5kW CO2 laser cutting machine but just a few year later upgraded to an OPTIPLEX FIBER 8kW laser-cutting machine with a dual pallet shuttle table.

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Understanding Nitrogen Cutting on Fiber Lasers

Due to their small beam size and high wattage capabilities, fiber laser systems excel at cutting with nitrogen. As with all laser cutting, this requires the correct combination of settings in order to get the cleanest cut possible. Learn how to adjust the focal point position and feedrate for high quality cutting.

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Three Methods for Restarting Programs

During laser-cutting operations, laser users may run into a scenario when a program needs to be restarted. Depending on the situation there are multiple ways operators can efficiently resume a program on a Mazak laser. The three most effective methods laser operators can utilize to perform a program restart are through the FEED HOLD, RESTART function, or the GOTO method.

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March 2020

Help for Fabricators During COVID-19

Dear valued Mazak customers, We are in this together. Not only are we facing similar challenges that are you, but because we are a family company and we believe in showing up for your family. Ways we can help right now: support is accessible, parts are shipping, service technicians are ready to help, training is available, safety is first and foremost. There is no doubt that your work is essential, and as a result, we are committed to doing everything we can to support you. In the coming days and weeks, we will provide additional resources to help guide all of us through these changing times. We are in this together.

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Reducing Sheet Metal Injuries in Metal Fabrication

It is no surprise that working in the metal fabrication industry can be dangerous at times. With sharp edges and varying weight, sheet metal increases the potential risk for an injury to occur. By wearing the required personal protective equipment, following proper material handling procedures and keeping an orderly shop, you can minimize potential risks to your business.

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Committed to You During These Challenging Times

Dear Valued Mazak Customer, As concerns and restrictions centering around the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak intensify, Mazak Optonics’s first priority continues to be the health and safety of our associates and their families. Yet, we remain committed to providing the highest level of customer service and support to you, our valued customer, and we are dedicated to doing everything we can to prevent interruptions to normal business operations.

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COVID-19 Announcement

As concerns about the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak intensify, Mazak’s first priority continues to be the health and safety of our associates and their families as we work to ensure our customers’ needs are met. We remain committed to providing the highest level of customer service and support during this challenging time and are doing everything we can to prevent interruptions to the normal course of business.

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Kloeckner Metals Upgrades from CO2 to Fiber Laser with Automation

Kloeckner Metals is one of the largest metals manufacturing, supply and service companies in North America offers anything from long products, flat rolled products, aluminum and stainless. After running two 15 year old CO2 lasers, they decided to upgrade to an automated Mazak fiber laser system. The OPTIPLEX NEXUS FIBER and EMC automation have increased Kloeckner's cutting capabilities with also being able to get more down with less.

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February 2020

Maximize Laser Processing with 2D Programming

Software is often an overlooked and underutilized tool for helping the laser machine achieve increased utilization and efficiency. Mazak Smart System offers a variety of functions that assist with maximizing flat sheet processing. Three software techniques to increase your laser-cutting efficiency include heat avoidance for thicker material, programming to cut parts with open profile geometry, and automatically applying different cutting conditions and speeds for different materials.

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The Three Biggest Upgrades to Mazak’s SMART Glasses

Wearable technology is being integrated in many ways in the industrial world, one of those ways is through Mazak’s SMART Glasses. Mazak has upgraded their SMART Glasses solution to better facilitate virtual support. The upgraded Mazak SMART Glasses overall have a new look and are now more stable, robust and user-friendly. Learn more about the top three improvements and how they benefit users.

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Conveying Cost Savings

Since 1907, Flexco, a global leader in conveyor belt systems, has been helping its customers maximize productivity by manufacturing mechanical fastener systems, belt cleaners, transfer chutes and maintenance rolls. Flexco has continuously looked to expand its collection of advanced manufacturing solutions to further increase productivity and meet production requirements. After researching, attending demonstrations and considering the options, Flexco selected the Mazak OPTIPLEX NEXUS FIBER 6kW machine. While the laser has improved efficiency through time, money, manpower and secondary processes, it has also improved in-house machinery usage.

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"The Canadian Laser Event" at Cambridge Facility

Mazak Optonics will host “The Canadian Laser Event” on April 29th and 30th from 9am to 4pm at the Mazak Canada Technology Centre in Cambridge, Ontario. This two-day event will include live demonstrations on the high power OPTIPLEX FIBER 10kW laser-cutting machine along with Mazak machining technologies. While highlighting the latest Mazak equipment, there will be seminars on high-performance air cutting, fabrication meets machining and automation advancements.

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January 2020

What to Know When Financing Capital Equipment

You found the laser machine to grow your business but how does financing capital equipment work? Purchasing capital equipment is one of the most common reasons that small businesses look for outside financing. Having the ability to upgrade or add new machinery to your operations allows companies to grow without having to pay for it all up front. There are three common options that fabricators and manufacturers have available to secure financing for their capital equipment.

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