Louis Industries is a fabricator based in one of the more rural parts of Minnesota. Their business model of always staying ahead of the curve by investing in newer technologies and accepting changes to the metal fabrication industry has allowed them to grow into a multi-million dollar company over its three generations. Despite using sophisticated equipment in their manufacturing processes, they employ local farmers to work in their shops. In addition to this, they provide their services to all their customers whether they present their designs drawn on a napkin, or a prototype made by hand or even designed using old software.
Recently they have made a big investment in upgrading their press brake forming area by acquiring a new press brake with its companion software. They believe that using better software is the key when trying to produce more complicated parts on the press while decreasing the time it takes to bring the new operator for the press brake up to speed.
The software accompanying the press brake has a simulation component to it. This allows the engineers to test out the customer’s part in order to detect any errors, most notable collisions that may happen when fabricating the part before the design is even sent to the shop floor. This saves a lot of time in developing the part in the office, writing a program for it and testing the bends to make it perfect. The software works by running simulations in order to test if the part can be manufactured on the press brake and whether there will be any errors or collisions during the process. This allows for preemptive corrections and reduces the need for trial-and-error on the job site while actually working with the part on the machine. This saves a lot of time for the operator.
Visual Reference for Operators
The software has simplified the process of bending greatly as well. As a result, an operator with lesser experience than others in the operation of the machine can make high-quality parts due to the abstraction provided by the software. Before, whether or not the operator could bend a part to the correct specifications depended solely on their experience with bending other parts of similar nature. But now, the engineers choose the tools for the parts and give the correct measurements, all of which is available to the operator on on-site screens, thereby eliminating the need for any guesswork.
Due to the increasing complexity of the designs, there is a greater need for accurate laser cutting, metal rolling, and metal bending. The software allows for much tighter tolerances which were not possible previously by the expertise of the operators alone.
Easier to Find Faults
The software has also made it easier to find and correct faults as they appear. In the case of an error, the engineers can just reassess the design and figure out where things might have gone wrong.
All in all, the software greatly reduces the complexity of producing complicated parts by boiling it down to specifications determined in the design stages which can be given to operators directly. Moreover, problems can be dealt with quickly and before the job hits the shop floor. Therefore, it is beneficial to have a sophisticated software aid in stainless steel fabrication, aluminium fabrication, and steel fabrication.