Quartztec CMM decision ‘CRYSTAL’ Clear
Based in a purpose build 50,000 sq ft manufacturing facility in East Kilbride, Scotland, Quartztec Europe is the UK’s largest fabricator of quartz glass and one of the top five such companies in Europe. Quartztec Europe is a market leader in manufactured solutions through fused quartz and ceramic products and produces high-quality products for a range of extremely demanding market sectors, including the defence, aerospace, automotive, semiconductor, solar and fibre optic industries.
Given the nature of Quartztec Europe’s customers and the challenging standards it adheres to, the ISO 9001:2015 and 14001:2015 certified company administers a strict, all-embracing quality regime and employs highly skilled staff who have access to a range of advanced inspection equipment.
To help satisfy increasing global demand for the company’s products, the directors of Quartztec Europe are currently planning a large expansion, including the purchase of state of the art production equipment. To allow Quartztec Europe’s vital inspection function to keep pace with the company’s planned rise in output, Quartztec Europe’s Managing Director, Ron Jackman recently explored the available high-precision, fast acting CNC Coordinate Measuring Machines (CMMs).
Whilst at the premises of a supplier, Ron Jackman recently observed a Mitutoyo CMM carrying out complex inspection routines on several of Quartztec Europe’s more difficult to measure manufactured components. Prompted by the CMM’s performance and, following a glowing Mitutoyo CMM testimonial from the business’ owner, Ron contacted Mitutoyo Scotland. After communicating Quartztec Europe’s CMM accuracy, speed and capacity requirements a quotation was requested. As Mitutoyo’s Crysta S9166 CMM was a perfect match for Quartztec Europe’s list of CMM criteria and as a cost-effective price was quoted, an order was quickly placed.
Ron Jackman explained. “Customer satisfaction through the provision of quality products and services is at the core of our business philosophy. To help ensure that we consistently deliver on our quality principles we believe in making investments in advanced inspection equipment. As our existing CMM didn’t have the speed to keep pace with our planned rise in production, and as it was proving costly to maintain, a decision was made to invest in a new, advanced, high-speed CNC CMM.
“At a time when our existing CMM was being repaired, an urgent need occurred to inspect and deliver several products to an important customer. Having taken the products in question to a supplier who had offered to perform the required inspection routines on one of the company’s Mitutoyo CNC CMM’s, I was amazed to see how quick and easy the CMM was to program when compared to our own CMM. Also, once programmed, the Mitutoyo CMM completed the required, complex inspection routines in half the time our machine took.
“Impressed by the performance of the CMM and influenced by the user’s enthusiastic recommendation, I contacted Mitutoyo Scotland. As the price quoted for Mitutoyo’s CRYSTA-Apex S 9166 CNC CMM compared well with other similar CMMs that I had considered, I was happy to place an order. At this time our current CMM was still out of commission, so it was a great help to us that the staff of Mitutoyo Scotland offered to undertake the CMM inspection of our components until our CRYSTA-Apex S 9166 CNC CMM was installed.
“Following the CRYSTA-Apex S 9166’s installation and operator training sessions, as it is so easy to program and operate, our quality staff soon became familiar with our new CMM’s operation. As the CRYSTA-Apex S 9166 has a generous xyz capacity of 900 x 1600 x 600 mm, in addition to it easily accommodating the largest of our components, we are now able to load multiple smaller parts onto the machine’s bed, recall the relevant program and start a precise, fully automated, mass CNC inspection routine. When required we then archive the CMMs results, or print-out detailed customer inspection reports.
“In addition to it having the accuracy specification to enable the dimensional inspection of our most complex and tightest tolerance parts, the CMMs’ impressive speed of operation means that it will ensure that no hold-ups occur when inspecting our current levels of output, and it will also be able to handle all predicted increases in production.” Mitutoyo Coordinate Measuring Machines are available in a wide range of sizes and accuracy classes to cover practically all precision 3D measuring applications. Each machine represents an excellent investment in terms of accuracy, productivity, versatility, quality of construction, training and service support.
The availability of a wide range of contact and non-contact probes enables numerous kinds of measurement to be performed, whilst rapid analysis CMM software quickly interprets measurement results and is able keeps-pace with today’s speed of production. The CRYSTA-Apex S series represents an advanced CMM range that is able to make very accurate measurements at high speed. Users regard these popular CMMs as future-proof investment, as probe systems and software can easily be updated, or added to the system, whenever required. The comprehensive range, embraces small, medium and large size CNC CMMs. The use of lightweight materials and innovative machine structures deliver high motion stability, accuracy and affordability. As increasingly, measurements are made on the shop floor, the CRYSTA-Apex S series boasts a temperature compensation function (16°C to 26°C), allowing accuracy to be achieved in less than perfect conditions.