New saws for leading aluminium supplier - Impressive all-in-one package

Belief, benefits and being there: it's not without good reason that Swiss metal processing firm Allega has partnered with machine and plant manufacturer IMA Schelling for more than 30 years. This longstanding relationship was reaffirmed with the recent purchase of two of the manufacturer's precision saws.

Niederglatt in the canton of Zurich is home to the headquarters of Allega GmbH, a specialist in processing aluminium. The company has amassed 90 years of experience in this area and has worked closely with IMA Schelling Precision over the years. André Franel of Allega stresses the importance of the support and service the company provides: "When we're making a new purchase, IMA Schelling is always there to guide us. What's more, their engineers are quick to respond and attend in person if we have questions or for any problems we may encounter."

André Franel has particularly good things to say about the reliability and technical innovativeness of the company too, and also values the showroom and its test machines, "… where you can bring your own materials along and try them out on the saws." Belief, benefits and being there are plus points that tipped the scales for Allega when it came to purchasing two further fm8 precision saws on top of their six existing IMA Schelling machines.

Close contact and seamless workflows

Allega has replaced two older machines with the new precision saws. Commissioning of the two saws was staggered in order to keep production downtime to a minimum. The used machines were also replaced with the new ones gradually. Marcel Blum, a sales engineer at IMA Schelling Precision explains: "We coordinated everything closely with the customer throughout the entire project," says André Franel, adding: "First we had to disassemble one machine, then set up the new one and carry out an acceptance test. We then moved on to the next one; it was a well-structured process."

The installation and disassembly went smoothly and was complete within six weeks. Despite supply chain issues, André Franel thinks "things moved quickly". He also points out that the two used saws were part exchanged: "IMA Schelling took charge of disassembling the two old machines and accepted them in part payment."

Modular design and high standard

Allega primarily uses the IMA Schelling saws to process aluminium plates, sheets and blocks. The new plate saws are equipped specifically for this purpose, while still fulfilling the proven standard. This was important to Allega, as highlighted by André Franel: "We're pleased that it's generally a standard machine and not a custom-built one or even a prototype."

All IMA Schelling machines have a modular design meaning they can be combined in a way that meets the specific requirements. "This makes us more flexible and we are able to customise machines to meet specific needs," stresses Marcel Blum, a feature that is reflected in the new machines.

More clamps and an unobstructed turntable

The two precision saws are equipped with even more clamps and retractable clamping fingers, increasing processing flexibility. In addition, the material is pushed up to the turntable along the saw line. There is no longer any need to reach through in front of the saw line, which is more convenient and safer. The two fm8-330 saws are designed for a plate height of 150 millimetres and a nominal cutting length of 3300 millimetres.

What's more, the turntable simplifies the handling of the materials by using an air cushion to move the aluminium plates and lowerable cylinders to act as a stop, allowing longitudinal cuts to be made without obstruction. The aluminium plates can be manoeuvred easily on the turntable's air cushion and positioned precisely for further processing using the extended cylinders. Marcel Blum of IMA Schelling emphasises: "The patented turntable can handle plates and parts extremely easily. It turns all vertical strips effortlessly in one process, reducing the processing time significantly by 15 – 20 percent, while increasing productivity and protecting the surfaces."

The integrated clean-up function also sucks up the majority of chips produced, resulting in a burr-free and scratch-free cut. This also keeps the machine clean, which Allega appreciates. Andrè Franel adds with a wink: "… as it doesn't look like a bombsite!"

It's clear to see why Allega continues to rely on plate saws from IMA Schelling. Andrè Franel concludes: "The entire package, including the good price/performance ratio, was the decisive factor in opting for IMA Schelling Precision products once again."