The company’s lathes are capable of producing medium and large volumes of precise, high quality components ranging in diameter from five to 82mm. As the multi-spindle lathes can work on up to eight bars at a time, they can produce components in 15 to 20 percent of the time required using a single-spindle machine. Operating out of offices in the UK, Brazil, USA, China and India, Wickman serves a variety of key industries. These include automotive (especially fuel injection), aerospace, defence, oil and gas, agriculture, hydraulics, white goods and electronics. Components produced for these markets include hose end fittings, termination glands for industrial cables, projectiles and cartridges, bearing housings and rings for use in electric motors and much more. Competitively priced, Wickman’s machines operate at the top end of their respective markets, offering customers the ability to achieve production runs of up to one million components.Wickman’s machines typically have a working lifespan of 40-50 years, making aftercare and service important elements of what the company offers. This includes providing spares for machines that it manufactured many decades ago as well as a comprehensive upgrading service to reconfigure existing machines with the latest technology. Key elements include adding CNC capabilities to them and upgrading their AC motor drives. While 20 percent of the machines sent out from Coventry are custom designed, it is still rare for two standard machines to leave the factory with identical configurations.This level of personalisation required the company to use an off-the-shelf CAD package for producing electrical drawings relating to how the newly fitted spindle motors and drives will operate. However, the CAD system used tended to be more like a 2D drafting aid than a design tool. There was no way of cross-referencing or cross-checking connections on electrical drawings, but more comprehensive CAD systems that offered these options were prohibitively expensive.Keen to improve the turnaround times of its machines, Wickman wanted a CAD package that was not only cost-effective and powerful but also easy to use. After searching the industry, the company found that the best system on the market that met all its requirements was the WSCAD SUITE X CAD/CAE package.
Read the full article in the July issue of PBSI
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