In a “UK first”, Runcorn and Ewloe-based electrical engineering firm, LCA Controls, has switched its control panel operations from manual production to laser-machining. The move is expected to transform its productivity and efficiency.
LCA Controls, which recently came under new ownership, has invested in a Rittal Perforex LC 3015 3D laser machining centre – a system which will revolutionise construction of its stainless-steel panels by automating processes previously done by hand.
With its with integrated 3D-modelling and computer-aided design (CAD) capabilities, the Perforex LC 3015 can be programmed to manage measuring and machining to an extremely high degree of accuracy, processing panels in a fraction of the former time.
It will allow LCA Controls to service higher volume orders going forward, as well as rapid turnaround of bulk orders – including next day delivery.
“Our investment in this new Rittal Automation Systems machine is incredibly important for the growth of our control panel manufacturing and design business here in the UK,” said Alan Sheppard, Managing Director of LCA Controls.
“It is a statement of intent in terms of our growth, as it means we can deliver more, faster, better, more efficiently for customers across the world without compromising on the quality we’re famous for.”
LCA’s control panels are used across a range of industries including nuclear, food manufacturing, power generation, water and utilities, oil and gas and pharmaceutical companies.
“This new Rittal Automation Systems machine will give us capabilities that are way ahead of the curve on our competitors in the UK,” added Alan.
“Combine that with our new 3D CAD capabilities and we can immerse our customers in the design and build process like never before. They can literally fly in and fly out of the designed products we build, and we can deliver them to their door within days.
“Not only that, but we can now do one-off jobs or high volume, mass manufacturing of control panel boxes at the touch of a few buttons, which is why we’re earmarking 2018 as an incredibly important year for our business.”
Paul Metcalfe, Rittal’s product manager for Industrial & Outdoor Enclosures comments: “We’re really keen to encourage UK companies to adopt technology which is revolutionizing panel building and electrical engineering across the world.
“When it comes to processing panels, machining centres from Rittal Automation Systems, are light years ahead of the alternative, manual approach. They speed up processing by as much as 66 percent compared to the traditional hand-tooled method.
“All you have to do is go to our online Return on Investment (ROI) Calculator and it will tell you how quickly the machining centre will take to pay for itself before you place the order –we expect you to be pleasantly surprised by what you find!
“But that’s not all. We have a comprehensive range of equipment for professional workshop operation, which enables fully automated end-to-end mechanical engineering. That’s everything from milling and laser machining, through to wire processing and wiring, cutting cable ducts and support rails, to panel handling and assembly. It’s so much faster, and the finish is consistently second-to-none.”