Amerlux recently invested close to $2 million in new production equipment and efficiency initiatives that executives say will help the lighting manufacturer better serve customers by increasing production speed, driving down costs and lead times, and making the company’s fabrication area twice as efficient.
Chief among the improvements was the installation of an Amada Laser Turret device, a combination laser/turret/punching system with shelf-automation, at the company’s Oakland, New Jersey, headquarters earlier this month.
“The punch is something new to us. We never had a punch before,” Michael Seckler, Amerlux’s Vice President of Operations, said. “We never had a laser before. We traditionally had turrets that take a flat sheet of metal and punches out a shape. Then, the sheet of metal with a shape punched out gets pulled off the machine, shaken and the individual part comes out before we bend it up.”
That process is different now with the Amada laser’s high-speed cutting capabilities and its versatile, multifunctional turret with shelf-automation.
“What we got is a laser punch that will allow us to take a laser and cut that part out,” Seckler said. “The shelf automation automatically picks that part up and sticks it on a shelf, so we no longer have to take a metal sheet out and shake the parts out. The shelf automation automatically reloads the materials and unloads the parts and scrap material from the machine.”
What does this mean? Enhanced processing speeds and productivity, plus the ability to process highly reflective, exotic materials with ease.
“We’re now able to produce parts quicker and less expensively, both of which will reduce lead time and costs for our customers,” Seckler said. “It also opens new opportunities for our engineers to be more creative. Typical punches limit what we can do with some part designs. Now we have a laser with unlimited geometrical abilities. The automation and the complexity of the parts that can come out of this is a big wow factor right now.”
Seckler said the purchase, delivery and installation would not have been possible without the financial backing of Delta Electronics, a $9 billion international electronics manufacturer that acquired Amerlux last year.
“We used the slowdown in business due to COVID-19 as productively as possible in getting this incredible piece of machinery up and running while also making significant improvements throughout the plant in equipment and configuration,” Chuck Campagna, Amerlux’s President and CEO said.