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A cut above the rest - especially when it comes to titanium

 

Joining Forces Wales

Llanelli based Translides Engineering Services Ltd (TESL) is a long-established company operating in a broad range of sectors including aerospace, automotive, electronics and construction. Its services are equally wide-ranging; for example: design, machining, jig & tool manufacture, sheet metalwork, and fabrication.

Faced with a particularly challenging titanium alloy machining job for an aerospace client, TESL took advantage of a Joining Forces Wales 'Product & Process Review' followed by a 'Feasibility Study'.

Working to stringent standards, the task for TESL was to prepare round-bar test piece blanks for various quality control tests to be carried out by the client. The blanks, about 15mm diameter by 150mm long, had to be precision cut from blocks of titanium, originally rough-sawn from large titanium billets.

The titanium alloy is valuable, making recovery of uncontaminated scrap very important to the client. Tungsten is a particularly undesirable contaminant but, unfortunately, this element is typically present in conventional cutting tools.

TWI's Feasibility Study for TESL involved identifying all relevant cutting processes, exploring their suitability, and short-listing the best two for further investigation. Abrasive Water Jet Cutting (AWJC) and Electrical Discharge Machining showed the most promise. Each was further analysed for cost and technical benefit compared with conventional machining.

AWJC came out on top, and TWI recommended trials to confirm cut quality and productivity. TWI also provided a User Requirement Specification for AWJC equipment.

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Translides Engineering Services has a installed a Power Jet abrasive water jet cutting system, which is being used to cut a variety of materials and types of component

TESL Production Engineer Mark Phillips said: "A number of our customers are involved with components that have to be produced to exacting standards. To stay ahead of the game we have to exceed their expectations for quality and turn-round as a matter of routine.

"Technical support via Joining Forces Wales has enabled us to insert water jet cutting technology with minimal risk and win valuable new business."

Translides Engineering Services Ltd is at www.translides.co.uk

For more information, please contact us.

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Part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund

For more information please email:


contactus@twi.co.uk