Success is the sum of many good things at a time - Fastems

fastems

Success is the sum of many good things at a time - Fastems

Fastems Oy Ab customer magazine 1 • 2008

Success is the sum of many

good things at a time

Metal experts meet at METAV 2008

Growing together with the market

1 • 2008 | 1


SYSTEM

INTEGRATOR

Editorial ..................................................................2

Metal experts meet at METAv .................3

A change for the better ...............................4

A leap in productivity through

automated workpiece handling ............8

Fastems expands its robot training

program in Sweden ....................................10

Closer in Central Europe ............................11

A globally unique solution .....................12

Success from automation ...........................14

50% reduction in set-up time at

Doesburg Components ...........................15

Success is the sum of many

good things at a time ................................16

20% machine output increase at

Nefit in the Netherlands ...........................17

The key to growth ..........................................18

Meet the market demand

with automation ............................................19

1+1>2 – getting Stronger

Together! ............................................................20

Fastems web magazine:

Net Integrator starts off! ...........................21

Time-off ...............................................................22

Published by FASTEMS Oy Ab

No. 1/2008

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

Helena Reilin, Fastems Oy Ab

helena.reilin@fastems.com

ENGLISH EDITION:

Sari Lehtonen-Lammi, Imageneering Oy

LAYOUT:

Imageneering Oy

EDITORIAL ADDRESS:

System Integrator

Fastems Oy Ab

Tuotekatu 4, 33840 TAMPERE, FINLAND

Tel. +358 (0)3 268 5111

Fax. +358 (0)3 268 5000

PRINTED BY:

Kirjapaino Hermes Oy, Tampere,

Finland 2008

CONTRIBUTORS:

Per-Olof Carlsson

Klaus Maurmaier

Martinus Menne

Juha Pihlajamaa

Peter Springfeld

Pekka Tuhkanen

Thomas Weinhold

Cover: 2 | 1

photo

• 2008

by Pilatus Aircraft Ltd

“LIFETIME CARE” –

MAINTAININg yOuR

SySTEMS wITh

INDuSTRIAL SERvICES

E d i t o r i a l

The positive trends in machine tool manufacturing have continued in 2007. Incoming foreign trade

orders for the german machine tool manufacturing industry enjoyed a percentage increase in

double figures, which was an improvement on the previous year, whilst the number of domestic

trade orders also grew slightly. The prognosis for 2008 shows a similar picture, with the expected

creation of an estimated 110,000 new jobs in the german metal industry.

growing companies are usually small to middle-sized and are relatively young. They usually deal

within the Eu and only have an indirect connection to global business. One challenge for the future

will be to maintain these and other existing jobs in the long term. An important aspect in this regard

is the optimization of productivity with the available offering. Flexible, automated production with

high capacities secures jobs in high-cost locations that would otherwise be outsourced abroad.

Nonetheless, the Fastems company motto deals with much more than automation. In order to

approach the target of 8,760 operating hours for machine tools, the question of quality must be

defined over the whole service life of a system. The key target is to always maintain a focus on

both the company and the system.

In the planning phase, we ensure that the system is adjusted optimally to the individual company

involved. The correct mixture of standardized products and customer-specific adjustments, all

combined with tried and tested technology, guarantees a good cost/performance ratio and forms

the basis of a reliable system. Fastems also believes in the use of dedicated project managers, who

are responsible for discussing project details with the customer and machine supplier. They also

monitor the correct execution of the whole project.

After a delivery is made, Industrial Services takes over responsibility for the system. The services

offered are diverse, but are always focused evenly on both the customer and system. After the

installation and commissioning, our technicians train your staff on the correct use of the system,

deal with malfunctions during the guarantee period, draw up further contractual agreements, take

carry of spare parts, and also carry out system extensions and retrofitting in the years to come.

Fastems has sold almost 700 systems since 1982, many of which are still in operation. “Lifetime Care”

means that our customers and systems pass on the positive aspects of Fastems systems far into

the future. Teleservice, maintenance contracts, retrofitting, and adjusting the system to changing

demands are just some examples of “Lifetime Care”.

The product density of Fastems systems in and around germany has developed so far that we have

been able to combine all company aspects in our technical center in göppingen.

However, the development doesn’t stop with our organizational structure - we also have a new

arrival in our product range. Our newest standard product is the FPM (Flexible Pallet Magazine).

you can see this flexible and easily extendable compact pallet system for yourself at the METAv

2008 trade fair. Among other things, the FPM reaches new levels of operator friendliness.

you can find us in Düsseldorf at stand C32 in hall 15 – we look forward to meeting you in person.

Pekka Tuhkanen

Managing Director

Fastems gmbh


M e t a l e x p e r t s M e e t a t

FROM 31 MARCh TO 4 APRIL 2008 ThE ExPERTS OF ThE METALwORKINg wORLD wILL

gAThER AgAIN AT ThE METAv 2008 TRADE ShOw IN DüSSELDORF. AS ONE OF ThE

TOP EvENTS FOR MANuFACTuRINg TEChNOLOgy AND AuTOMATION IN gERMANy

AND EuROPE, METAv OFFERS AN ExCELLENT ARENA FOR KEEPINg AbREAST OF ThE

LATEST SOLuTIONS AND DEvELOPMENTS IN PRODuCTION TEChNOLOgIES.

METAV 2008 presents a complete range of

state-of-the-art manufacturing technologies

for the metal working industry – from

machine and precision tools, to automation

technology and complete systems in a customer-oriented

layout. The scope of the display

covers both standard machine solutions

for series production as well as customized

machines for specific challenges.

Currently, more than 760 exhibitors

from 23 countries have already registered.

They will present innovations and solutions

to problems in manufacturing across 52 000

square meters of net floor space.

At the same time as METAV 2008, the

international trade fairs Wire and Tube are

taking place in the Düsseldorf fair premises.

Exhibitors and visitors can utilize the posi-

Me taV2008

tive synergy effect of hosting three fairs with

similar customer and visitor groups simultaneously:

metalworking technology presented

to an even greater extent!

FPM – a new generation

standard For Flexibility

During the show, Fastems will introduce its

new generation Flexible Pallet Magazine,

FPM, which enhances productivity with

several new features. FPM is based on configurable

standard modules, which provide

versatility in size, number of machines, and

control features. This flexible standard creates

a cost-effective solution for machining

workshops, enabling them to increase their

automation level and unmanned production.

Matched to your

Production goals

As a modular system, FPM grows together

with the workshop’s production goals. At its

smallest, the system consists of a machine

tool, loading station, and storage rack for 12

machining pallets. With extension modules

the storage capacity can be increased

to more than 100 machining pallets and ten

machine tools.

Made For its users

The new generation FPM provides a new

control system, which offers an easy-to-learn

and easy-to-use graphical interface that

guides and supports users in their different

tasks and manufacturing operations. The

same extendable system supports manufacturing

of both large batches and single parts.

To improve work ergonomics, the loading

station has been designed so that users can

work in more comfortable positions.

The new generation FPM will enhance

your productivity with several new features.

To see it yourself, join us at METAV!

1 • 2008 | 3


A change for

the better

Why a world business leader is

planning for the future with Fastems

AS ONE OF ThE wORLD’S LEADINg MANuFACTuRERS OF FuLLy AuTOMATIC

vACuuM PACKAgINg MAChINES, MuLTIvAC IS A CONSTANTLy gROwINg COMPANy.

ThIS LEADINg POSITION ALSO RESuLTS IN NEw ChALLENgES ThAT MuST bE MET,

bOTh TODAy AND IN ThE FuTuRE. TO OvERCOME ThESE ChALLENgES, MuLTIvAC

ONLy wORKS wITh PARTNERS ThAT PuLL IN ThE SAME DIRECTION AND ShOw

ThE SAME vISION. ThIS IS ThE REASON why MuLTIvAC hAS ChOSEN A FLExIbLE

MANuFACTuRINg SySTEM (FMS) FROM FASTEMS ThREE TIMES wIThIN ONE yEAR.

Text: Martinus Menne

“Our first priority is the production of

vacuum packaging machines for foodstuffs,

medical sterile goods, and consumer goods,”

explains B. Sc. Uwe Glöckler, the divisional

manager of production at the Multivac

headquarters in Wolfertschwenden, Germany

and at the production plant in Lechaschau,

Austria. “We are the market leader in

manufacturing fully automatic thermoformers

that automatically form and seal package

trays from a roll of film.” Multivac has

enjoyed an average sales growth of 10% in

the last five years. The total turnover of the

Multivac group for last year was around 450

million euros.

doubled eMPloyee nuMbers and

extended Production areas

The number of Multivac employees at the

main headquarters has almost doubled in

the past seven years. This is also mirrored

at the production plant in Lechaschau, Austria,

where the number has doubled in an

impressive four years. Multivac currently

employs more than 2,500 dedicated workers

worldwide, of which half are employed in

Wolfertschwenden and 260 in Tirol. The rest

of the employees work in over 45 local offic-

es around the world. As a result of this success,

manufacturing areas have also grown.

In the last year alone, an additional 8,000

square meters of assembly, logistics and

production space was added to the Multivac

headquarters. The total building area now

covers 50,000 square meters. The branch in

Automatic packaging unit

from Multivac.

Loading station area of

second system in Wolfertschwenden

– Germany.


Austria is also growing. In five years the total

production area has increased from 9,000

to 15,000 square meters.

oPtiMal division oF tasks

“Basic constructions are produced in Lechaschau,

in addition to all movement units

and cutting tools for our machines. Stainless

steel is used primarily for this purpose.

The plant produces assemblies, modules

and small machine series for Wolfertschwenden.

The development, construction and

production of related parts takes place here.

The machines are also assembled here. The

production line in Wolfertschwenden is focused

on the processing of aluminum. This

means that tasks are divided and distributed

optimally,” comments Uwe Glöckler on the

plant layout.

custoMer-sPeciFic Products

The expansion of assembly areas in the German

plant has also lead to a further optimization

of internal logistics, as Uwe Glöckler

knows all too well. “Each machine must

have all the materials needed for assembly

available on-site. The assemblies and individual

components are delivered directly

onto the machine, which requires free space

and a logistics area directly around the machine.”

A visit to the assembly hall shows what

this means at first hand, with around 120

machines being constructed simultane-

Area Sales Manager Thomas Weinhold from

FASTEMS Göppingen.

1 • 2008 | 5


ously. On average, up to 30 machines are

delivered to customers each week – with no

two machines the same. “We only deal with

specific customer requirements, although the

length and width of the system play an important

part. On one hand, the customer can

process the film width needed to pack their

products. On the other hand, the machine

infeed defines the length of the entire system.

In addition, we have to make every type of

packaging possible, including some unusual

examples.”

wide range oF Production,

autoMation and Flexibility

The new logistics concept has allowed

Multivac to significantly reduce assembly

dwell times on the machines, leading to a

drastic reduction of overall processing times.

“The continued company growth requires

more than a simple increase in employees

and more working space,” comments Uwe

Glöckler. With this in mind, internal processes

and procedures have been improved

in Wolfertschwenden, leading to an increase

in productivity. A key example of this is the

continuous investment in higher productivity,

although batch size one plays a decisive

role due to customer-specific solutions. “We

develop around 500 new parts daily, which

means we strive for a constantly increasing

range of production whilst also developing

flexible, automated manufacturing processes.

In order to do this, investment in new production

areas, state of the art sheet processing,

the replacement of older machines and

the purchase of new systems are all of critical

importance.”

constant increase in

Productivity

For machining work, ‘Gebr. Heller

Maschinenfabrik’ is the first choice for

Multivac. At the end of 2006, two new MCi25

machining centers were ordered for the production

of customer-specific form and sealing

dies. “One system was intended to replace

an existing machine, whilst the other was

used to increase capacities and thus productivity,”

states Glöckler. An important purchase

of this type must justify itself from the start

the goal was to achieve long running times

on both machining centers. “This could only

be achieved by connecting both machines to

a linear system. The purchase of a Flexible

Manufacturing System from Fastems in December

2006 was the logical step.”

hard challenges

The system acquisition in Wolfertschwenden

was initialized as a result of the cooperation

with the Multivac branch in Austria. “A special

challenge arose in the middle of 2006,” remembers

Markus Rachbauer, the divisional

6 | 1 • 2008

“Anyone who thinks

that pallet pools

are the right way to

handle small batches

should have a rethink.

We found this

out the hard way.”

manager of Facility Management at Multivac

in Lechaschau. “Two new MCH280C machining

centers from Heller were purchased

in order to process steel parts for our packaging

machines quickly and easily. We considered

the optimal capacities of the machining

centers and then looked for a linear system

that could be integrated seamlessly into the

somewhat cramped production conditions.”

This challenge was met by Fastems with the

integration of a flexible multi-level system

(MLS-MD).

Flexibility, not iMMobility

“With all other systems we would have had

to raise the crane on the hall ceiling by half a

meter in order to achieve a sufficient number

of stored pallets. Additionally, at least seven

machines would have had to been relocated.

What Fastems has achieved here is impressive

the MLS-MD was set up as a stand-alone

system. This means that the racking was built

around the columns and beams of the production

hall. With the MLS-MD, Fastems has

provided a system with two levels, space for

55 pallets and a maximum weight of 1,500 kg

per pallet,” comments Markus Rachbauer enthusiastically.

He also admits: “Another argument

for a long-term, flexible manufacturing

system was shown by our experiences with an

existing linear system. We wanted to expand

this system by adding two machines. We

were shocked to find that this older system

Manufacturing Division Manager (Wolfertschwenden,

Germany and Lechaschau, Austria)

Mr. Dipl. Ing (BA) Uwe Glöckler.

was completely unsuitable for use with the

more powerful machines needed for flexible

handling of the pallets. In this case, we would

have had to scrap the entire linear system.”

Uwe Glöckler agrees: “Fastems was prepared

to solve all problems in close cooperation


Master PC with FASTEMS MMS control of

the system.

Multivac – Wolfterschwenden – Germany.

with us. This gave us the basis for a trusted

partnership at Wolfertschwenden as well.”

Machine oPerating tiMes

Massively increased

In June 2007, an MLS-MD system was added

to the two Heller MCi25 machining centers

bought in 2006, this time with three levels

and space for 42 pallets. The first shift is used

by two employees to produce parts with short

operating times. In the second shift, another

employee provides the system with parts that

need longer operating times, and also defines

the capacities for the fully automated night

shift. “The Fastems FMS offers us the opportunity

to set up the machines simultane-

ously, regardless of what is being produced

at that moment. Both machining centers can

therefore run at all times for around 22 hours

a day. The pallet storage ensures fully automated

production at nights and on weekends

– which has a positive effect on productivity

and costs per item,” states Glöckler. “Anyone

who thinks that pallet pools are the right

way to handle small batches should have a

rethink. We found this out the hard way.”

learning the hard way

Markus Rachbauer knows this from experience

– in the past, two Heller MCi25 units

were operated with pallet pools in the Austrian

plant. “At first, we were sure that this

configuration would be sufficient. A two-shift

system was in place, with uninterrupted operation

of around nine hours per day.” As it

turned out, this was not enough - a shortening

of auxiliary times was unthinkable under

such conditions.

As Uwe Glöckler explains: “Small batch

sizes usually require different clamping devices,

meaning a pallet pool with a maximum

of six places has its limits. Even if all pallets

are not permanently loaded in a system

(such as the example from Fastems), several

other pallets can still be stored with the same

clamping system and can then be processed

when several identical parts are produced in a

short space of time. At first, we also used less

storage space than the system provided at our

main plant. We then added successive systems

where clamping limitations were a problem

in the past. It pays to reconsider when

choosing between a pallet pool and a linear

system, as our experiences with the MLS-MD

system in Lechaschau have shown.”

Plans For the Future...

The system was delivered in October 2007,

with four levels and space for 48 pallets. A

third MCi25 unit has been connected to the

Facility Management Mr. Ing. Markus

Rachbauer.

system in the meantime. An addition of 32

pallet spaces on the MLS-MD is planned for

April 2008. “An additional 74 spaces will then

become available, which brings with it significant

logistical advantages,” agree Markus

Rachbauer and Uwe Glöckler, who both

praise the close cooperation with Fastems.

“Our Finnish partners have shown time after

time that they listen to our requests and

consider certain special requirements. For

example, after the suggestion was made,

Fastems implemented a logged monitoring

system on all of our Fastems units.” In doing

this, the dedicated Fastems specialists wrote

an individual program, thus saving Multivac

a great deal of time in collecting information

on tool usage.

...with a Partner to Match

As a world-leader in their field, Multivac enjoys

an excellent reputation. This promises

constant growth for the future, as Multivac

themselves know all too well: “Our strategies

are based on prognoses that point to a

constant increase in turnover in the following

years. This means that we have to plan far in

advance – a great deal of vision is needed in

this regard. With this in mind, we only invest

in technologies, systems and solutions that

ensure the flexibility needed for a problemfree

increase in capacities over the next 10 to

15 years. We believe that the Fastems team

and their systems play an integral part in this

vision.” The proof of this claim is found in the

fourth planned investment in a Fastems FMS.

This time, a heavy-duty version of the MLS

will be delivered to Wolfertschwenden, with a

maximum pallet weight of 6,000 kg and space

for 22 pallets on two levels.

1 • 2008 | 7


FOR quITE SOME TIME, AuTOMATED MAChINE TOOLS hAvE RuN SO RELIAbLy

ThAT ThEy ENAbLE ROuND-ThE-CLOCK PRODuCTION. IDEALLy, 24 hOuRS, 365

DAyS A yEAR. ThIS TRANSLATES INTO 8,760 hOuRS PER yEAR. DOES AN OPERATOR

ALwAyS NEED TO bE PRESENT ON-SITE DuRINg ThIS TIME? NO, SAyS ThE FINNISh

COMPANy FASTEMS, whILE OFFERINg ThE SOLuTION: IT CONSISTS OF MODuLARLy

CONSTRuCTED FLExIbLE MANuFACTuRINg SySTEMS, whICh ARE AvAILAbLE IN

STANDARDIzED bASIC AND CuSTOM-TAILORED vERSIONS. ThE COMPANy JOSEPh

vögELE Ag, whICh bELONgS TO ThE SuCCESSFuL wIRTgEN gROuP, CuRRENTLy

hAS ThREE FASTEMS SySTEMS IN OPERATION.

8 | 1 • 2008

“Asphalt connects” is a commonly used expression

in the field of road construction. Indeed,

asphalt pavement is used in highways,

airports, and bicycle paths. A slope paver

modified from the Super 1800-2 paver was

even used to seal the upper water reservoir

in the Chinese province Henan, by covering

it with a layer of asphalt. This involved overcoming

inclinations of up to 31 degrees. It is

precisely by meeting the challenges of such

demanding conditions that the Mannheim

company underscores its technological leadership.

How the technological leadership of

A leAp in productivity through

AutomAted workpiece hAndling

Fastems flexible manufacturing systems for automated workpiece

handling in welding and mechanical parts machining

Text: Peter Springfeld

A slope paver modified from the Super 1800-2 paver was used

to seal the upper water reservoir in the Chinese province Henan,

covering it with a layer of asphalt.

Vögele AG looks in terms of its sales results

is indicated by the following brief statistics:

While 300 road pavers were issued from the

Mannheim factory in 1996, this number had

reached 1800 machines by 2007, all of which

were manufactured in basically the same production

area.

autoMation oF ManuFacturing

sections

With the design of the flexible manufacturing

system in 2002, a large stride was taken

in automating the manufacture of laying

planks. Laying planks are high-tech components.

They can be considered an area of core

expertise, since the construction of the planks

determines the quality of the finished road.

For this reason, the planks manufactured by

Joseph Vögele AG are of particular interest.


“With the investment in the flexible manufacturing

center in 2002, we achieved a large

step up in economization,” says technologist

Klaus Bugert. Two machine tools are operated

from a single Fastems flexible manufacturing

system. The 26.7 meter long and 9.7

meter high storage rack offers space for 31

machine pallets, 12 cage pallets and 120 Euro

pallets. The flexible manufacturing system

has two loading stations, in which workpieces

on the machine pallets can be clamped or unclamped,

as well as a material station through

which the material to be processed is channeled

in and discharged.

“With this system,” continues Klaus

Bugert, “we were so satisfied that we also

opted for a Fastems system when we designed

our flexible welding robot system. After six

years of experience, we all agree that the

technical data were confirmed. For example,

the Fastems system achieved up to 99% of its

targeted, high system availability. The missing

one percentage point was attributable to

servicing times and the replacement of wearing

parts. Overall, a very limited amount of

wear could be determined. This is the obvious

result of installing high-quality, low-wearing

components.”

a Flexible ManuFacturing

systeM For autoMation oF

welding robot cells

“The welding of the laying planks,” explains

technologist Rüdiger Schleidt, “begins with

the sheet metal cutting and the subsequent

bending operations. In the next step for a

concrete laying plank, the parts are bound

on a fixed clamping device in such a way that

they meet the high quality standards of the

Vögele company. After being bound, welding

is performed.”

Klaus Maurmaier, Fastems Sales Manager Germany, Uwe Jutzi, Head of Production for Steel

Construction, Rüdiger Schleidt, Steel Construction Technologist, Siegfried Köhler, Director of

Operations for Production, Klaus Bugert, Mechanical Production Technologist.

“With four welding robots integrated in

the flexible welding manufacturing system,”

Schleidt continues, “we have discovered

the optimal technological solution for our

tasks. All four welding robots are capable of

performing all welding tasks.” “The flexible

Fastems system,” adds Klaus Maurmaier,

the Fastems sales manager for Germany,

is a MLS-XMD system with a load bearing

capacity of 1.5 tons. The handling of

the welding workpieces is no problem for

Fastems.” The 67 meter long and 6.3 meter

high storage rack offers 152 spaces. The

transport of the welding fixtures is handled

by the Fastems stacker crane. The stacker

crane transfers the welding pallets to the orbiter

of the robot welding cells. The orbiter

has three numerically controlled axes, which

rotate and tilt the clamped workpiece so that

the welding robots can weld in the qualityensuring

flat position.

Flexible production system using the Fastems FPC pallet container and a StarragHeckert

HEC 630 Athletic machining center.

“We have,” emphasizes Siegfried Köhler,

“designed the flexible welding manufacturing

system so that only a minimum of material

transport with forklifts is required. This allows

us to not only economize in the material

flow, but at the same time increase safety in

this area.”

increase in caPacity in

Mechanical ManuFacturing

“A few days ago,” stresses Klaus Bugert, “we

were able to achieve the necessary increase in

manufacturing capacity by starting up a new

machining center. In accordance with our

economizing strategy, the machining center

incorporates automation from Fastems. We

followed the suggestion of Mr. Maurmaier

and combined the machining center with a

flexible pallet container (FPC). This gave us a

complete flexible manufacturing system. The

Fastems pallet containers offer space for ten

machine pallets, onto which we clamp and

unclamp the welding parts to be machined

through two loading stations. We are gratified

by this solution, since as compared to the

manufacture of smaller components in the

large machining centers, it has brought us a

considerable leap in productivity. With the

compact pallet containers and the compact

machining center, this solution will additionally

provide us with a large advantage if

we move to the opposite side of the Rhine as

planned.” “Our pallet containers,” underscores

Klaus Maurmaier, “can be relocated in

a single day.”

1 • 2008 | 9


10 | 1 • 2008

FASTEMS EXPANDS ITS ROBOT

TRAINING PROGRAM IN SWEDEN

FASTEMS IS OFFERINg A COMPLETE TRAININg PROgRAM IN INDuSTRIAL RObOTICS

FROM FANuC RObOTICS, A LEADINg gLObAL SuPPLIER OF RObOTIC AuTOMATION.

SINCE ThE 1990’S, FASTEMS hAS bEEN ThE PRINCIPAL AgENT FOR FANuC RObOTICS

IN FINLAND AND SwEDEN, whERE ThE PROgRAM IS bEINg ORgANIzED FOR

ThE FOuRTh yEAR RuNNINg. ThIS yEAR, ThE PROgRAM hAS bEEN ExPANDED TO

INCLuDE NEw COuRSES.

In fact, the renewed Fanuc Training Program

features six distinct course modules,

with greater emphasis on providing relevant

training and up-to-date information. The

courses have been tailored for end users who

work daily with Fanuc robots or Fastems applications.

The training platform covers everything

from basic robotics to advanced program-

ming, machine vision systems, simulations,

and the robot’s internal PLC. The learning

approach is flexible, focused, and intense.

The aim is to provide students with handson

experience in the latest robotics, with

course modules lasting 2-5 days. The instruction

language is Swedish or English.

The program will be held in Fastem’s

new facilities in Kungälv, Sweden, where it

is also possible to test robot applications.

Feedback from previous programs has been

good, with course attendance expected to

double this year.

More information is to be found at

www.fastems.se


FASTEMS gMbh IN göPPINgEN IS

TAKINg A CLEAR COuRSE TOwARDS

MORE DyNAMIC AND SPECIALIzED

LOCAL CuSTOMER SERvICES. ThE

göPPINgEN TEChNICAL CENTER IS A

REALIzATION OF FASTEMS’ STRATEgy

TO INCREASE EMPhASIS ON LOCAL

SERvICES. SIMILAR CENTERS hAvE

bEEN ESTAbLIShED IN SwEDEN AND IN

ThE uSA.

closer in central europe

Directed by Pekka Tuhkanen, the Managing

Director of Fastems GmbH, the Göppingen

Technical Center serves customers in the

Central European market. In addition to the

conventional subsidiary operations, such as

sales, marketing, and service duty, the Göppingen

staff of 20 people currently provides

sales services and is gradually adding all

functions from delivery up to commissioning.

This means that functions like installation,

start-up, training, software support,

project management, as well as all after sales

services, will be added. Accordingly, the

number of specialists is expected to rise in

the future.

More exPerts, More Flexibility

“With more experts based in Central Europe,

we are able to serve customers with a

faster response time and more flexibility. We

can provide, for instance, enhanced project

management, training, and installation and

start-up services. As the team grows, we will

add more experts in retrofits and modifications,”

says Pekka Tuhkanen, who has over

25 years’ experience of working for Fastems

on the German market.

“We at Fastems are very proud of the

fact that roughly 70% of our FMSs will be

extended and/or modified after delivery.

This is a clear sign of the satisfaction of our

customers. In the future we will be able to

do these tasks locally.”

“Having better local resources translates

into several customer values. For example,

customer training can be conducted in local

languages by natives. This is a value-adding

benefit for our customers. Or should we say

it is a necessity,” Tuhkanen continues.

sPecialist availability

Bringing product and software specialists

to local premises means expert knowledge

is easily and continually available for

customers in that market. “This means that

our sales team can always depend on quick

support for every technological issue. Our

customers gain in reliability and from quick

access to in-depth knowledge. For instance,

they don’t have to wait for us to check things

from Finland or for experts to travel from

headquarters to solve special issues here,”

Pekka explains.

“As a systems integrator Fastems often

negotiates about modifications of ERP,

CAM, or machine tool interfaces. For example,

modifications are often needed because

the customer would like extra features. We

are more able to fix and describe modifications

locally and this is a big advantage for

participants in a project, of course.”

liFe tiMe care

“Another important service aspect for the

new Technical Center is the ability to offer

life time care for all Fastems products and

solutions in this market area,” Tuhkanen

points out.

“As part of Fastems Industrial Services,

we can offer a complete package of services

ranging from preventive service contracts

and system condition audits to tailored customer

training. Currently, Teleservice provides

help on all weekdays, as well as providing

24h Call Center duty 7 days a week. A

scope like this moves service focus from traditional

reactive ‘fire fighting’ to preventive

maintenance planning,” Tuhkanen explains.

“For instance, Industrial Services goes

through a condition audit and defines the

service activities and spare parts needed to

enable reliable utilization of the systems in

the coming months.”

growing together

“In the future, we will be growing together

with the market needs. We can improve

our services by both strengthening our own

resources and by working with local expert

partners. Having experts in an office close to

our customers and partners makes it easier

for all of us to work together,” Tuhkanen

concludes.

1 • 2008 | 11


a globally

unique solutio

ThE AuTOMATION OF vERTICAL MAChININg CENTERS IS A CONTINuAL SOuRCE

OF ChALLENgE EvEN FOR SERIES MANuFACTuRINg. IT bECOMES ESPECIALLy

PRObLEMATIC IF ONE ALSO wANTS TO MANuFACTuRE SMALL bATChES uP

TO SIzE 1 IN AN ECONOMICAL MANNER AND DO IT ON MuLTIPLE MAChINES

SIMuLTANEOuSLy. ThAT ThIS ChALLENgE CAN bE MET wAS DEMONSTRATED

by ThE COMPANy wILA bv IN ThE DuTCh CITy OF LOChEM, whICh, TOgEThER

wITh FASTEMS, hAS DEvELOPED A SOLuTION ThAT uP uNTIL NOw IS gLObALLy

uNIquE wITh ThREE vERTICAL AxA MAChININg CENTERS bASED ON RObOFMS.

Text: Martinus Menne

As a third-generation, family-owned business,

Wila produces clamping and embossing

devices for mechanical press brakes and,

with a turnover of around 33 million EUR

and 200 employees, is one of the world’s

leading companies in this field. The embossing

devices compensate for workpiece bending

when mechanical press brakes are used.

Wila has patented both embossing devices,

as well as the clamping devices. M.Sc. Berend

Kroeze, Director of Manufacturing and

R&D explains, “We have developed a system

with which our tools can be vertically exchanged.

The system consists of a safety device,

which can be pneumatically locked and

unlocked. This allows the tools to be simply

lifted and latched into the tool holder.”

Focus on Flexibility and sPeed

We manufacture our embossing and clamping

devices specifically for OEMs, so flexibility

and speed play a very important role for

us. Batch sizes of 2 or 1 are standard for us,

since we produce based on orders received.

In order for us to work as efficiently as possible,

we have to reduce our non-productive

times and achieve a high degree of automa-

12 | 1 • 2008

High degree of automation is the only way

to compete against production from the Far

East, claims Mr. Berend Kroeze, Director of

Manufacturing and R&D.

tion, since this is the only way that we can

continue to survive against the competition

from the Far East.”

highly-autoMated solution

targeted

In 2006, Wila invested in three new vertical

AXA machining centers. From the begin-

ning it was clear that these three machines

were to be part of a highly-automated solution.

“We had precise ideas of how this solution

should look. As system integrators, we

decided in favor of Fastems, since in 2000

we had already had very good experiences

with this company in connection with a

flexible manufacturing system (FMS) for

the machining of smaller tools,” remembers

B.Sc. Frank Kaemingk.

Practically all new territory

The tasks for the implementation of the new

AXA cells were enormous, because a flexible

manufacturing system (FMS) based on a

RoboFMS was constructed for the first time.

The RoboFMS supplies three machines with

nearly 4.5 meter long and maximally 750

kg heavy workpieces. The storage required

tremendous rigidity with regard to the dimensions

and weight of the workpiece holders.

The carrier system itself also did not yet

exist. For the clamping of the workpieces, a

custom system with an adapter for the robot

handling therefore needed to be developed.

The adapter with the workpiece holder in

turn placed enormous demands on the kine-


n

We have already had very good experiences with Fastems flexible manufacturing systems, says

Mr. Frank Kaemingk, Project Manager for the AXA cell at Wila.

matics of the Fanuc M900i. This also needed

to be taken into account. Finally, a further

huge challenge was the central control of all

the AXA cells through an FMS, whereby a

correspondingly open control architecture

for the vertical machining centers was also

needed. In short, practically everything was

new territory.

Flexible workPiece holders

For the clamping of the workpieces, Wila

developed its own holder based on its patented

clamping device with a zero-point

clamping system. These workpiece holders

are equipped with an adapter with a corresponding

counterpart on the robot for

picking up and handing over. The workpiece

holders are designed to be able to

pick up the most varied workpiece forms.

After a machine operator has clamped the

workpieces, the workpiece holder is laid

in a buffer, removed by the robot and then

placed in storage. The machines are tended

by the robots according to the “first in – first

out” principle, whereby the holders with

the workpieces are clamped on the machine

tables in a zero-point system. During machining

of a workpiece, the robot moves on

a shuttle and either serves the other machining

centers through the storage, stores new

workpiece holders, or unloads them.

huge econoMic advantages

“When workpieces are machined in several

operations and thus require additional

clampings, the robot unloads the machine,

transports the unit comprised of workpiece

and holder adapter to the storage, and retrieves

a new unit for machining in a different

machine. After that, the robot transports

the previous unit to unloading, so that a

new clamping can be prepared,” explained

Berend Kroeze. He also stressed that, “the

AXA cells provide us with huge economic

advantages, since we are now in the position

to manufacture different tools in any

desired sequence on three vertical machining

centers. This requires, however, a central

Fanuc M-900i robot is installed on a floormounted

linear track to enable wider operation

range.

and extremely flexible controller with which

one can, among other things, freely select

the tools.”

central intelligence For

the axa cells

As a flexible and “intelligent” system,

Fastems developed a solution which likewise

represents an absolute novelty, since the

Fastems control room effectively handles the

central control of all AXA cells, whereby the

data from the job prep is directly transferred

to the master PC. Central control in this case

means that the management of the workpiece

holders within the AXA cells is done

through the master PC. When loading on the

master PC, the operator not only assigns the

required NC programs and the workpieces

to be machined to the workpiece holders, but

the communication of the RoboFMS with

the machines also occurs centrally from the

master PC. This means: that the robot always

knows precisely when a machine is available

for the processing of a workpiece and when

it can be safely clamped into the zero-point

system. In addition, the tool inspection and

tool management of all machines is also handled

by the master PC.

sPindle tiMes doubled

The high degree of automation combined

with flexibility in manufacturing has allowed

the Axa cells to achieve a completely new

dimension at Wila. “With this solution, we

were able to drastically reduce non-productive

times and have thus taken a decisive

step toward even higher productivity. In the

past, our stand-alone machining centers had

spindle times of about 40%, but now the machines

in the AXA cell achieve double that,”

was the positive summary of Berend Kroeze.

1 • 2008 | 13


14 | 1 • 2007 2008

Success from

autoMation

Manufacturers and machining subcontractors all over

Europe are confronted by the same challenges of ever

increasing demands for quality and output with higher

labor costs and a declining work force market. The biggest

competition is moving to the East. Is automation a

salvation? Five factories reveal their answers

on how FMS has enabled success.


50% reduction in set-up time at

doesburg coMPonents

FASTEMS SySTEMS hELP DOESbuRg COMPONENTS IN ThE

NEThERLANDS TO bECOME MORE PRODuCTIvE, AS wELL

AS KEEPINg ThEM AhEAD AS ThE COMPETITION MOvES

TOwARDS ThE EAST.

Doesburg Components is the component supplier behind such big

names as DAF, Leyland Trucks, Deutz, Daimler Trucks, CNH, Lely,

Isuzu and Yanmar. To meet the challenge of reaching more output

and better quality within the declining workforce market, the company

chose automation and FMS as the right answer.

Currently, the Dutch machining specialist works with four automated

cells and one FMS from Fastems. “The FMS project was

actually initiated by our customer Leyland Trucks, as they were keen

on hearing about an investment proposal for reducing costs and improving

quality,” says Jos Smeets, Managing Director of Doesburg

Components.

More outPut – More Flexibility

“By using FMS we could reduce set-up time by 50% through automation

and increase output at the same time,” Smeets continues. “All

the Fastems systems are integrated with our existing machines and

the FMS itself works with our Niigata 800 mm horizontal machining

center.”

“We run in three shifts, but with FMS we can run eight hours

non-stop. For weekends, we are planning to load the machine on

Friday and get 16 completed pallets ready on Sunday,” Smeets adds,

further describing the benefits of their FMS. “These 16 pallets mean

eight different parts produced in the desired sequence. This is what

we call flexibility,” he concludes.

1 • 2008 | 15


Photo by Pilatus Aircraft Ltd

SucceSS is the sum of ma

good thingS at a time

At the headquarters in Stans, Switzerland,

Pilatus is licensed to maintain and perform

upgrades on a variety of aircraft. This service

is complemented by three independent

subsidiaries in Altenrhein (Switzerland), in

Broomfield (Colorado, USA) and Adelaide

(Australia). With over 1200 employees at its

headquarters, Pilatus is one of the largest

employers in Central Switzerland.

reliable in the air

One of its products, the Pilatus PC-12, is today

the world’s best selling single engine turboprop

aircraft. It is used every day all over

the world as a national evacuation or rescue

aircraft or as a private or corporate plane.

“For instance, the Royal Flying Doctor

Service of Australia and the Royal Canadian

Mounted Police, as well as the Red Cross of

South Africa all depend on the PC-12,” says

Josef Blättler, Head of machinery and tool

procurement.

16 | 1 • 2008

PILATuS AIRCRAFT LTD wAS FOuNDED IN 1939 AND IS CuRRENTLy

wORLD MARKET LEADER IN ThE MANuFACTuRE AND SALE OF SINgLE-

ENgINE TuRbOPROP AIRCRAFT. IT IS ThE ONLy SwISS COMPANy ThAT

“To maintain this reliability, our production

must be competitive, too. Every day

it must stand up to comparison with other

companies and win.”

custoMer satisFaction and

keePing schedules

To secure its production processes, Pilatus

utilizes new technologies and flexible manufacturing,

including two Fastems FMS solutions.

“We produce only small series, so we

wanted to get rid of set-up times and achieve

high process availability,” Blättler explains.

Fastems FMS allows for more floor

space and eliminates extra transportation.

The MMS enables us to control the production

so that we can produce urgent components

or prototypes between the contract

series without any risk of delay. This flexibility

and high production reliability helps us

keep our schedules and increases customer

satisfaction.”

DEvELOPS AND PRODuCES PRIvATE AND TRAININg AIRCRAFT.

Pilatus Aircraft is the world

leading manufacturer of singleengine

turboprop aircraft,

starring here the PC-21.

To secure its production processes, Pilatus

utilizes flexible manufacturing, including two

Fastems FMS solutions.


ny

not just the systeM – it’s all

about the PeoPle, too

“With the help of automation, we are better

off against the competition,” Blättler

states. “We have achieved excellent productivity

and a high utilization rate with

our systems. Automation allows for an

unmanned shift, which serves our people,

too. After all, it is the sum of all the important

factors that makes our success. And

our people play an essential role in this

whole,” he concludes.

20% machine output

increase at Nefit in the

Netherlands

NEFIT INDuSTRIAL wAS FOuNDED IN 1948 AS PART OF ThE POST-wAR MARShALL

PROgRAM FOR REbuILDINg ThE NEThERLANDS. TODAy, ThE COMPANy IS AN

INTERNATIONAL COMPONENT SuPPLIER FOR SEvERAL INDuSTRIES IN EuROPE.

Nefit supplies serial castings in whiteheart

malleable iron for the automotive and

building industries, the heating industry

and utilities, as well as the agricultural and

installation industries. Their component

manufacture includes, for instance, gearboxes,

steering systems, central heating

vessels, gas installations and so on.

coMPeting against

the low cost countries

“The biggest challenge in our production

line is achieving a competitive cost-price

ratio compared to manufacture in the low

cost countries,” says Cees Alberts, production

manager at Nefit. “Other critical goals

are striving for maximum equipment with

minimum manpower, as well as finding

educated employees – a problem, which is

well-known throughout the manufacturing

industry in Central Europe.”

To meet these challenges, Nefit studied

several ways to increase their machining capacity.

As a result, they found that a flexible

manufacturing system would be the best for

them. “We have worked with Fastems Multi

Level System (MLS-LD) since 2004, and

have managed to increase our machine output

by 20%,” Cees Albert boasts. “With the

Fastems system, we can produce several different

products over 1 to 5 machines at the

same time without changing tools, programs

or product clamps. So we don’t lose any time

for machine set-up,” he continues.

Flexible manufacturing helps meet production challenges at Nefit in the Netherlands.

Cees Alberts,

production

manager at Nefit.

1 • 2008 | 17


the key to growth

NOMET Oy wAS ESTAbLIShED AS AN

ENgINEERINg OFFICE IN FINLAND IN

1950. wORKShOP OPERATION STARTED

IN ThE EARLy 1970’S AND AFTER STRONg

gROwTh ThE COMPANy IS CuRRENTLy

A KNOwN AND RECOgNIzED

MAChININg SubCONTRACTOR IN

FINLAND.

Nomet today works with several machine

tools and a multi-level storage system. The

8.80 m high and 48 m long storage is designed

for a maximum workpiece size of

1,900 x 1,800 x 2,000 mm and 4,500 kg.

“The investment into this system was

rather high at the time, but it has been the

right solution,” explains Markku Ketola,

Production Manager at Nomet. “The multilevel

storage enables us to run some of our

machining cells 24h per day. This result in

high – up to 80% – utilization rates, which

for their part ensure effective price competition,”

he continues.

the strategy oF controlled

growth

Investing in automation and high technology

is part of Nomet’s strategy of controlled

growth. The key factors of this strategy are

technological superiority and efficient development

of manufacturing methods.

“In realizing this strategy, Fastems has

been just the right partner with top-level

technology products and services,” Ketola

says.

18 | 1 • 2008


gARDNER DENvER IS KNOwN FOR ITS

TOP-quALITy COMPRESSED AIR SySTEMS

ThROughOuT ThE wORLD. SINCE 1994, ThE

PRODuCTION OF ThESE COMPRESSORS hAS

RELIED ON FASTEMS’ FMS.

Meet the market demand

WITH AUTOMATION

Gardner Denver produces screw compressors for industrial and

marine industries, and OEM suppliers at their Tampere factory in

Finland. “These high-quality products set high demands on production,

which can only be met through excellent machining,” says Production

Manager Kai Piiroinen of Gardner Denver.

“The first Fastems FMS solutions were applied as early as 1994,

and the system has been modernised and extended step by step. The

second FMS solutions were needed to meet the huge growth on the

global market – especially in China,” Piiroinen explains. “Our most

important goal was to manage our material flows better,” he continues.

90% availability

Gardner Denver has broken all utilisation rate records and has typically

achieved 90% availability at their six machining centres and

three loading stations, all of which have been connected to FMS by

now. “Our aim, however, is to achieve 95% availability, which we

think will be possible, when we replace three of our machines that

are constantly having too many service shutdowns,” Piiroinen reveals.

“Pure production capacity is not what keeps you competitive in

today’s world; to win one also needs reliable and flexible produc-

The manufacture of the world-famous Gardner Denver ESP 22-37

series compressors relies on the flexibility and reliability of the Fastems

FMS solutions.

tion methods,” Piiroinen analyses. For him the major FMS solutions

benefits have been flexibility in product mixture variations and the

high utilisation rate in partly unmanned production. “We have been

able to exceed 6,000 operation hours with several of our machines,”

Piiroinen comments proudly.

“Last but not least, even FMS solutions require some maintenance

from time to time. Then, quick response and skilled personnel

is essential,” he adds.

1 • 2007 | 19


ThE FINNISh ShEET METAL wORKINg

MAChINE buILDER FINN-POwER hAS

ALREADy bEEN ONE OF ThE LEADINg

COMPANIES IN ITS FIELD FOR SEvERAL

yEARS. ThE COMPANy wAS ORIgINALLy

FOuNDED by jorMa lillbacka.

CuRRENTLy IT IS OwNED by PRIMA

INDuSTRIE S.p.A

1 + 1 > 2

– Getting Stronger together!

After the boom of the year 2000, the sheet

metal working market was in a global recession

until 2003 when a time of new growth

began. The growth has become rapid during

2006 and 2007. Finn-Power has increased its

market share during these hectic years and it

has had to carefully consider how to use its

financial and mental resources to fulfill the

obligations brought about by the growth.

The five largest suppliers in sheet metal

working have a 30% share of the market.

Finn-Power has managed to become one of

them with exceptional innovations, a good

sales and delivery network, and most of all

by maximizing the benefits available from its

own know-how. Part of the success story is the

alliances formed with capable partners in both

product development and manufacturing.

vice President r&d at Finn-Power,

juha Mäkitalo:

“Five years ago we came up with a renovation

plan for Finn-Power with the goal of

transforming the company to become more

agile, well-adapted to volume changes, and

able to represent the peak of innovation in its

sector of technology. This changed our strategy

in a big way. The traditional ‘do-it-yourself’

model was changed by first outsourcing

the workshops focused on machining and

manufacturing of sheet metal products. The

change has continued during the past couple

of years by seeking larger and more complete

wholes and changing the way of working to

modern networking. Our value added chain

20 | 1 • 2008

was carefully analyzed and Finn-Power’s core

functions were defined. The absolute core

functions are naturally sheet metal working

machinery product development, manufacturing,

and customer management. Western

Europe is currently afflicted with a labor

shortage, especially of competent employees,

and we came to the conclusion that in the future

our own resources will not be sufficient

for all the things that are important to us.

For example, the storage automation of sheet

metal cassettes is a very important field in our

strategy, but its volume is clearly smaller than

the machine business itself.”

“Technology is developing at a quick

pace and significant know-how requires investments.

It was natural that we sought a

partnership with a strong company in the automation

field and thus after reviewing some

companies we selected Fastems. Fastems

stood out from its competitors with clearly

the most advanced technology, its globally active

network, and its desire and capability to

work with Finn-Power and keep our point of

view in mind.”

FasteMs’ Point oF view:

“We have been a leading global supplier of

pallet handling automation and a recognized

supplier of robotics applications for years,”

tells Juha Pihlajamaa, General Manager,

OEM business. “Our cooperation with Finn-

Power began in 2004 when we designed and

started delivering a stacker crane for their

systems. The agreement was later extended to

cover all of their cassette handling automation.

We have operated in an international

workshop environment for decades, and we

have had a good vantage point from which to

watch western companies struggle for their

profitability and continuity. It is a recognized

fact that automation pays off, and for that reason

more and more manufacturing companies

are automating their production. Several

machine tool manufacturers are in the same

position as Finn-Power in their respective

markets, and that is why I believe that also

machine tool manufacturers are increasingly

willing to solve these issues.”

“In the negotiations between Fastems

and Finn-Power we reviewed the entire value

added chain, and discovered the factors that

motivate both parties. This agreement is not

a typical resale contract between Fastems

and Finn-Power, but instead a genuine longterm

cooperation agreement that takes facts

into account”, says Pihlajamaa. “Finn-Power

obtains state-of-the-art technology, and also

savings in product development and supply

chain control, whereas Fastems receives a

ready sales channel for these products.”

“We also utilize, for example, each others’

service resources in after sales in market areas

where our partner has a strong presence.”

“Both companies operate in a global environment

and face similar opportunities and

issues. This keeps the discussions realistic,”

concludes Mäkitalo.


ARCHIVE EDITORS CONTENTS

EDITORIAL

������������������

LATEST NEWS

EVENTS

�� ����������������������

�� ��������������������

�� ��������������������

�� ��������������� ���

� �������������������������

�� ������������������

�� �������������������������

�� ������������

���������

Fastems web magazine:

�����������������������������

CONTACTS FRONT PAGE

LIVE

VIDEO

NET NET INTEGRATOR INTEGRATOR STARTS STARTS OFF OFF

This summer, Fastems will be publishing a new web magazine,

Net Integrator, for its customers and other System Integrator readers.

1 • 2008 | 21

Send me thi

YES

AUTOMAT

�������������

�����������������������������������������������������������������������������������

������������������������������������������������������������������������������������

���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������

�������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������

���������������������

�����������������������������������������������������������������������������������

���������������������������������������������������������������������������������

������������������������������������������������������������������������������������

������������������������������������������������������������������������������������

������������������������������������������������������������������������������

����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������

�����������

������������������������������������������������������������������

helena.reilin@fastems.com

Fastems ���������������������������������������������������������������������������

�����������������������������������������������������������������������������

���������������������������������������������������������������������������

���������������������������������������������������������������������������

�������������������������������������������

���

PROD

����������

����������

����������

���������


t i m E - o f f

fastems dirt

drivers start off

Photos: Juha Pihlajamaa’s archive.

juha PihlajaMaa MANAgES

ThE gLObAL OEM buSINESS wITh

NEARLy TEN yEAR’S ExPERIENCE AT

FASTEMS. whEN hE’S NOT wORKINg,

hE RIDES hIS MOTOCROSS bIKE

TOwARDS ThE CuRvES AND RAMPS

OF ThE SAND PITS IN FINLAND. hIS

LATEST AChIEvEMENT IS bECOMINg

ThE hEAD OF ThE FREShLy

ESTAbLIShED FASTEMS DIRT DRIvERS

CLub, whICh wELCOMES ALL OFF-

ROAD CyCLISTS FROM FASTEMS

AND ITS CuSTOMERS AS MEMbERS.

22 | 1 • 2008

Juha Pihlajamaa, General Manager of OEM

business and a speed enthusiast.

Juha Pihlajamaa, Fastems’ General Manager

of OEM business, started his enthusiastic

motocross career thirty years ago. “It was my

friend’s bike that set me off,” he remembers.

Nowadays, he rides two or three times a

week, mainly in the summertime, although

there is an indoor motocross track quite

near his hometown.

And believe it or not, motocross can

be a family hobby, too. At the Pihlajamaas,

both their 13 year old daughter and 15 year

old son speed around the pit together with

their father. “The summer camps are one of

the big family things, we travel for a week

around some camping sites and motocross

pits, spending memorable time together

with other motocross families,” Juha says,

listing the delights of his hobby.

Muscular Power and

sPeed enthusiasM

According to Juha, the charm of motocross

is speed combined with physical skills.

“Driving fast through curves and ramps on

difficult tracks calls for good balance and

a lot of muscular power. If you are not in a

good physical shape, you cannot drive fast

enough – at least not for long enough,” Juha

says. “This sport requires long-distance endurance,”

he continues.

Juha explains that the motocross bikes

themselves are rather easy to drive, but the

turns and curves of the routes can cause

risks when the speed increases. “One of the

biggest challenges in motocross riding is to

know one’s own limits,” says Juha. He knows

what he’s talking about as he broke both

hands in summer 2004.

ability to concentrate

At work, Juha Pihlajamaa is responsible

for Fastems OEM business throughout the

world. His work is international and requires

an understanding of international relations

in the field. The challenges are organizing

things and keeping customer promises.


“Investment in this business is always a strategic decision from

both parties,” he says.

Motocross, the hobby, is the total opposite to his work.

“When driving with full speed against the wind and sand there

is nothing else inside my head and helmet but the performance

itself at the moment,” Juha describes the feelings during a

ride. “Motocross riding is also a huge individual physical effort

whereas my tasks in the office require more teamwork. Mind

you, there is often a team around you in the motocross pit too,

and that makes it a social gathering, as well,” Juha says explaining

the differences between his work and leisure.

When asked about anything that combines these two extremes,

Juha thinks that both need an extensive ability to concentrate

on what you are doing at that exact moment.

a national sPort in belgiuM

During his rather a long motocross career, Juha has also seen

the off-road world outside of Finland. “The riding itself mainly

takes place at home in Finland, but I have traveled a lot to see

World Championships and other races. In many countries,

motocross is a much more common sport than it is in Finland,”

Juha admits.

“For instance in Belgium, it is somewhat of a tradition that

t i m E - o f f

To drive fast you need muscular power, good balance, the

ability to concentrate, and to know your limits.

the entire family gathers together for motocross on Sunday afternoons.

This also includes rather old ‘gentlemen’. So, although it may

sound quite awkward, motocross is almost like a national sport in

Belgium and it is also the second biggest motorcycle sport in the

world.”

The social delights of motocross – during a summer camp.

the dirt drivers get together

To make this fine sport known, at least in the world of factory automation,

the off-road cyclists at Fastems have established a club

of their own. The Fastems Dirt Drivers started off in the beginning

of this year and promise, with the current 12 members, to ride together

at full speed. Juha Pihlajamaa acts as the chairman of the new

club and welcomes everyone who fancies dirt and speed.

1 • 2007 | 23


“Whatever

it takes –

we’ll cope.”

come and see the new Flexible standard!

at Metav 2008, the metal working expert world will witness a new standard

for flexible manufacturing. Fastems FpM – Flexible pallet Magazine enables

cost-effective customization based on configurable modules. this automation

solution has been designed for professionals who want maximum flexibility

with minimum cost.

welcome to Metav from 31 March to 4 april.

Our stand is located in hall 15, section C32.

Fastems oy ab

Bultgatan 40 B

Fastems llC, 9850 Windisch road, West Chester,

tuotekatu 4

s-44240 Kungälv, sweden Ohio 45069, Usa

FI-33840 tampere, Finland tel. +46 (0)303 24 69 00 tel. +1 513 779 4614

tel. +358 (0)3 268 5111

Fax +358 (0)3 268 5000

Fax +46 (0)303 24 69 10

Hawley Mill-Hawley road

Fastems UaB

Kalvarijos str. 38

Hakkilankaari 2

Dartford, Kent Da2 7sY lt-46346 Kaunas, lithuania

FI-01380 Vantaa, Finland

United Kingdom

tel. +370 37 291567

tel. +358 (0)9 3450 48

tel. +44 (0)7818 427133 Fax +370 37 291589

Fax +358 (0)9 3450 5623

Fax +44 (0)1322 282250

Via Bruno Buozzi, 61

Heilbronner straße 17/1

99, rue de Gerland

I-20097 san Donato, Milanese

D-73037 Göppingen, Germany F-69007 lyon, France (MI), Italy

24 | 1 • 2008

tel. +49 (0)7161-963 800

Fax +49 (0)7161 -963 8049

tel. +33 (0)4 3765 2000

Fax +33 (0)4 3765 2001

tel. +39 02 365727.23

Fax +39 02 365727.24

www.fastems.com

More magazines by this user
Similar magazines