May 31, 2024
At the Polish plant of WHITE, the world's leading manufacturer of orbital motors and steering solutions, an S110 internal cylindrical grinding machine from STUDER has recently been contributing to efficient production.

It is April when the truck sets off on its journey north from the STUDER plant in Biel, Switzerland, a distance of around a thousand kilometers. Its destination: the Polish production plant of WHITE in Wroclaw, the world's leading manufacturer of orbital motors and steering solutions. On board is a valuable cargo - the S110, a modern and high-precision internal cylindrical grinding machine. "It's always a great moment when a new machine is delivered," says Paweł Soćko, Senior Process Engineer at WHITE after the arrival in Wroclaw.

"We opted for the S110 because it exactly meets our high requirements in terms of performance and quality in production. Thanks to the cooperation with STUDER, we can grind our components with the highest precision and comparatively low costs - STUDER therefore contributes to our success," he explains. In the modern plant with around 600 employees, several STUDER machines are now in use together with the new S110, as well as other machines from sister companies in the UNITED GRINDING Group. Among other things, these enable the production of innovative electrohydraulic high-performance solutions, for example for steering systems in agricultural and construction machinery. WHITE has over 50 years of experience in this field and is now part of the internationally established Interpump Group.

Customers Benefit From Optimization.

"The relationship with WHITE has existed for decades and we are delighted that our grinding machines can continuously contribute to their success here," says Adrian Schürch, Area Sales Manager for Poland at STUDER. As STUDER has a local representative in Poland, communication went very well right from the start. However, before deciding on a specific machine model, the requirements of the component to be produced with it had to be determined. "As always, we examined this in detail with our specialist team to find the optimum solution for the customer," reports Schürch.

Specifically, it is about the internal grinding of hardened steel sleeves for hydraulic steering systems. It quickly became clear that the S110 from STUDER's wide range of models was ideal for the component geometry and production requirements. "In addition to high precision, reliability, and compactness, this internal cylindrical grinding machine also offers an excellent price-performance ratio," says Schürch. But that was just the beginning. The STUDER team specially configured and adapted the S110 for WHITE so that the machine could be optimally integrated into the production process.

Perfect Combination of Short Cycle Times and High Quality

This process fell within the remit of Cesare Mastroianni, who is responsible for project management at STUDER's internal grinding competence center in Biel. "The optimization is based on the specifications, where all technical specifications, the geometry of the component to be manufactured and operation plans are defined," he explains. His team worked closely with the specialists from WHITE. "We were very impressed by their technical expertise, professionalism, and constructive attitude. It was a very pleasant cooperation, and we found the perfect solution between customer requirements and technical implementation," emphasizes Mastroianni.

One of the challenges was to find the best mix of short cycle times in series production and high component quality. Thanks to the optimization, the S110 can grind around 350,000 high-quality sleeves per year at the plant in Wroclaw. WHITE is also satisfied with the result: "We produce in high volume, and this requires the best solutions in the world - because we cannot afford any losses due to insufficient precision or fluctuating capacity," emphasizes Paweł Soćko and adds: "The STUDER S110 meets our requirements perfectly, it is stable and reliable."

Automation Ensures More Efficient Production

Soćko cites yet another reason for choosing the S110: Its automation capability. In the optional loading and unloading cell, a robot picks up the raw parts from a pallet, clamps them in the machine, and places the finished ground sleeves in another pallet. This process only takes a few seconds per sleeve. The S110 can therefore operate autonomously for at least an hour without human intervention and internal functions facilitate quality control.

"In practice, we even have almost two hours of autonomy, which reduces labor costs enormously," reports Soćko. This also has major benefits for production efficiency: The employees can devote themselves to other tasks and the robot ensures a speed and consistency that would otherwise not be possible.

Overhaul Gives a Second Life to Ageing Machines

While the new S110 improves production with its high-tech capabilities, WHITE continues to rely on tried and tested technology. "The oldest of our eight STUDER machines is still working well after 30 years," emphasizes Soćko. One reason for this is the machine overhaul service that STUDER offers its customers. With this service, an aging machine is restored to as-new condition as when it was delivered. Steven Thiel, STUDER Customer Care Consultant for Eastern Europe and Northern Germany, explains the benefits: "Customers who are familiar with their machines and do not require new technologies for grinding components benefit enormously from this. This is because the machine overhaul only costs a fraction of the price of a new system and the customer can continue to work with the familiar machine in as-new precision and quality."

The ecological factor is also important for WHITE, which has already taken advantage of several machine overhauls. "Environmental aspects always play a role for us, which is why STUDER machines with their energy-saving solutions fit in with our corporate values," explains Soćko. This is because instead of replacing an outdated model that once required a lot of energy and resources to build, it can be used again for decades. It takes around three months to overhaul a machine in Thun, Switzerland, with STUDER taking care of all aspects of logistics. "During this time, we provide a loan machine so that there are no production downtimes," says Thiel, who is available to WHITE as a daily contact. Proven processes combined with the latest technology: WHITE believes it is well-positioned for the future. "Properly implemented processes ensure success," says Soćko, adding: "STUDER has shown that they are the ideal company to accompany us on this journey.

The S110 at a glance:

• Compact and flexible internal cylindrical grinding machine for processing medium-sized workpieces

• Center height of 102 mm (4”) and a maximum grinding length of 120 mm (4.72”)

• Optional loader for loading and unloading

• Up to three grinding spindles in a linear arrangement enable external and internal grinding in just one clamping operation

• The StuderSIM and StuderWIN operating systems enable safe programming of all basic cycles for grinding, dressing, and process-supporting measurement

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