Manufacturing Today - July 2017 - 78

West

Climax Portable Machine Tools

Lean Thinking
Using portable tools is often safer than the risks associated
with transporting the workpiece around the factory or to
another location, Cunningham says. In addition, portable
tools enable a factory to apply lean manufacturing principles to increase safety, productivity, quality and to help reduce costs.
"The use of portable machine tools opens up exciting
new applications of lean manufacturing principles," Cunningham says. "Instead of trying to make your workpiece
flow through a lean manufacturing line or cell, why not keep
the workpiece stationary and use portable machine tools
to make the lean manufacturing process flow around your
workpiece instead?"
Cunningham notes that multiple portable tools can perform many operations on the equipment concurrently. "It's
faster, safer and more flexible, the results in the metal are
better and it's far more cost-effective," he says.

Hands-Free Pioneers
Safety is becoming more important to companies, and Climax considers itself a safety pioneer in its market. Almost
all of Climax's products have hands-free operation.
"There is a trend in our industry toward better safety practices and higher safety standards," Cunningham says. "The
typical cycle is that Climax introduces innovative new safety
features, customers like them and they put pressure on our
competitors to follow suit and then the features become the
new industry standard. We loop through this cycle over and
over, and we're proud of that."
Climax has long been a pioneer in hands-free operation
of portable machine tools, meaning that users don't need
to place their hands near the moving parts of the machine
tool while it is operating. The hands-free products use auto-feed features, remote controls and incorporate safety
interlock systems. For example, if the machine suddenly
climax considers itself
a safety pioneer because
all of its products offer
hands-free operation.

78

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