With a lack of skilled workers, MC3 knew that a tube laser-cutting machine was the answer to higher throughput and higher accuracy
MC3 Manufacturing, located in Kingsville, Ontario, Canada, designs and builds conveyors, filtration productions and chip conveyors while also offering custom fabrication productions. MC3 puts an emphasis on having the right systems in place to offer the best possible value to all customer orders. They do this by continuously working to improve processes by implementing new practices and equipment.
With skilled personnel being a pain point for many fabricators, this was a major contributor to why MC3 started looking for a tube laser machine. Utilizing multiple pieces of equipment to accomplish jobs created a challenge with the lack of qualified workers. Tube processing would require many different steps including sawing, drilling, and machining.
Abe Klassen, President of MC3, was set on a tube laser to handle these complex tube fabricating jobs. He explained, “Two years ago, we decided to invest in a tube laser and opted for a Mazak 3D FABRI GEAR 400 III, which is capable of handling larger pieces of material compared to regular CNC machines. These capabilities have given us better accuracy and faster turnaround times.”
One of MC3’s requirements when searching for a tube laser was getting the maximum range, from the smallest diameter to the largest, along with maximum length of material. Klassen said, “I don’t think I know anybody who has a machine that can do 40 ft. in and 40 ft. out. That’s a really big deal, especially when we are now taking on large housing projects with lots of long structural beams. We have the confidence to know that we can do them on the tube laser.”
The FABRI GEAR’s done-in-one reputation remained true for MC3. While previously MC3 was required to use multiple different machines, they are now able to accomplish it all on the FABRI GEAR. Klassen clarified, “Now several processes are all done on one machine, and it allows us to add features and designs that can only really be done on a tube laser.”
While the efficiency of processing tubes on the FABRI GEAR has increased throughput, it has also improved processes further down the fabrication process. Klassen said, “It has also helped our welding department. With the tube laser everything is cut cleanly and fits together so much better than before.”
MC3 also has a Mazak OPTIPLEX flat sheet laser-cutting machine in an EMC FMS automation system. Initially, they were just looking to upgrade to newer laser technology, but the automation just made sense, Klassen explained, “Being able to run lights out just made sense when we were looking for the new laser.” As MC3 continues to grow, so does their capacity. “We are currently considering adding a second laser to that cell so that we’ll be running two sheet lasers.”
Article published in the December issue of Canadian Fabricating and Welding.