The UI LABS impact starts in Chicago and extends across the country, with projects underway from coast to coast.
ROI for Illinois Manufacturers: Two Cases
Tek Pak, Inc, in Batavia, Illinois had a problem: the machining process at the heart of their business was a lengthy procedure that was difficult to shorten. UI LABS partnered with the State of Illinois to invest $9,500 to see what could be done to improve the cycle time, save money, and increase demand due to faster delivery. The pilot project used their Aluminum mold, which took nearly 125 hours to machine.
By analyzing the process and using new technologies from participating partners, UI LABS determined the optimal feed, speeds, depth, and width of cut for the mold operation. It was discovered that new MasterCAM “Dynamic Milling” technology, MLI “MetalMax” software, and a better coolant from Tower Oil contributed to a decrease in machining time and a drastic decrease in roughing time.
The ROI on this project for TekPak was $72,000 per year, which represented a 658% ROI on its original investment. The company increased profitability due to decreased cycle time and increased delivery speed to market. After seeing the impact of the pilot project, Ted Pak now wants to implement the technology on three additional machines. Greg Perkolum, Product Development Manager at Tek Pak, stated: “If we can save an additional $100,000 with $12,000 investment in software and training, that would really impact our business.”
While experiencing double-digit revenue growth in recent years, Atlas Tool Works had run into a capacity challenge. To meet its stringent on-time delivery rating, it needed to decrease the machining cycle times on a complex supply program. As is often the case when today’s demands prevent the implementation of changes needed to survive tomorrow, the heavy work load of Atlas Tool employees made it extremely difficult to commit time to redesigning the process.
UI LABS analyzed the process, and using new tool path strategy from Esprit technology, deploying new MetalMax software and hardware, and consulting with Benchmark Carbine and Ingersoll Cutting Tools, the company was able to achieve a 15% reduction in machining cycle time. The internal time commitment on the part of Atlas Tools was less than two days.
Atlas Tool increased profitability due to decreased machining cycle time and increased demand due to faster delivery time to their defense customers. The estimated ROI for the year is well over $150,000.
Curt Snyder, VP of Aerospace and Machining for Atlas Tool, was surprised by the outcome: “From a cost savings and increased capacity perspective, this project far surpassed expectations.” Zach Modd, Chief Alignment Officer for Atlas Tools, added, “I am an early adopter of new technology, but sometimes I’m disappointed when it fails to deliver on expectations. In this case, I was quite pleased and the results were apparent in a very short amount of time.”