SORB Engineers replace laser machines with Prima automated laser cutting cell

SORB Engineers has decided to replace its two existing laser machines with a state-of-the-art automated laser cutting cell from Prima Industrie UK. The result is a customized installation delivering faster and more accurate profiling, as well as a 'lights out' capability, and 40% extra material capacity than standard.

Based in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, UK, SORB is a family-run company that specializes in precision sheet metal engineering and fabrication. The company also offers CNC folding and MIG/TIG welding facilities on site.

"Our existing machines were coming to the end of their useful lives and we could see that, particularly in a compact operation such as ours, the ability to harness the full potential of modern workhandling systems would provide us with a number of benefits," said SORB production manager Andy Proniw

After carrying out a thorough market investigation, managing director of SORB, Mike Simpson, selected a machine from Prima Industrie UK, according to a news story.

The machine has a 4kW Platino laser, which can quickly and accurately profile up to 25mm mild steel, 15mm stainless steel and 10mm thick aluminium sheet. It also provides 0.03mm cutting accuracy across its entire machining envelope of 3m x 1.5m.

The machine's flying optics design and high dynamics enable head speeds of up to 140m/min and accelerations of 12m/s2 to be achieved.

The second important element in SORB's new laser installation is a purpose designed 14-story Prima TowerServer work handling system. The unit incorporates four additional pallet stations over the standard 10 story model and has been custom engineered to fit snugly under the 5.3m high roof line at SORB's premises. Each of the 14 shelves has a capacity of 3 tons and incorporates an automatic loading and unloading system.

Simpson continued," The equipment provides increased capacity and improved accuracy over the two machines it has replaced, while permitting us to utilize our workforce more effectively."

While the installation will keep running unattended until it runs out of material or has completed all of its jobs, an additional refinement built into its offline programming capabilities enables Simpson to remotely interrogate and control the new equipment from home.

The laser cell investment has enabled SORB to compete aggressively for an ever widening range of work. The company said it had already recorded a dramatic increase in business during the past 12 months.

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