At Benjamin Steel, we look for ways to increase our ‘value-add’ for customers, especially in processing the materials we supply. We saw that many of the fabricators we serve needed complex operations performed on the tube we supplied them – special cutoffs, holes, notches, bevels. They used saws, cutting torches and drills to get the job done, but these multiple operations are costly and present challenges in finished part quality and consistency.
The newest ‘3D’ rotary tube lasers perform all of these operations incredibly fast and with pinpoint accuracy. However, these machines are enormously expensive – beyond the reach of most of our fabrication customers. So we spoke to several of them to gauge their interest in having Benjamin Steel provide them with fully fabricated tubes. Their interest was strong, indeed.
In 2006, we invested in our first 3D tube laser, the Mazak 3D FabriGear 220. This fully automated laser cutting system can cut up to 5/8” thick steel and can also process structural angle and channel, in addition to tube. Not only does the FabriGear perform all of the cutting, drilling and beveling steps needed, it eliminates potential human errors by importing the CAD files for the tube design to generate the laser cutting instructions. It even performs nesting analyses to determine how to get the most product from a fixed length of stock.
The success of the FabriGear 220 motivated us to invest in a second 3D Tube laser that could process longer, larger diameter tubes. In 2017, we installed a Trumpf 7000. This state-of-the-art machine offers an even higher level of productivity and is a ’workhorse’ for turning our precision fabricated tubes.
We could go on about the capabilities of the Trumpf 7000, but isn’t more fun to watch a video ?
Video courtesy of TRUMPF GmbH + Co. KG
Many of our fabricator and OEM customers now rely on the versatility and precision of our 3D rotary tube lasers. Here’s what a few of them have to say:
“Benjamin Steel supplies us a lot of specially cut tube, run on their 3D lasers, with very short lead times. That is a huge advantage on some of our products.”
John Remlinger, Owner/Chairman
Remlinger Manufacturing Co.
“We discovered some problems on cut tube that we had in stock, and went to different suppliers for quotes on re-cutting these. Everyone quoted two week turnaround, except Benjamin Steel. They quoted two days and, thanks to those 3D tube lasers, they met that promise.”
Chris Merz, Senior Buyer
“Benjamin Steel’s 3D tube lasers are amazing!”
John Kochenderfer, President
Harris Welding and Machine