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Shot-by-Shot Profitability

Enhanced productivity with laser melted pins

The plants of Adolf Föhl GmbH + Co KG supply several hundred million zinc diecastings and plastic injection mouldings each year. This enormous output indicates the dimension of the increase in productivity which the company way able to achieve thanks to toolcraft's metal laser melting technology.

Used technologies:

Customer:

Adolf Föhl GmbH + Co KG
www.foehl.de

The Starting Point:
Common Sets Among Innovation Drivers

At Föhl, too, the optimisation of machines and moulds has top priority. After toolcraft had delivered convincing solutions with its innovative metal laser melting process within little time, the team was asked to explore and implement the potential of the technology for further improvements of the diecasting and injection moulds.

The Challenge:
High Rigidity, Strength, and Internal Cooling

Next to optimum efficient cooling, the rigidity and strength of contouring mould inserts make an essential contribution to success in diecasting and injection moulding. The big challenge for toolcraft, therefore, was to apply the right innovative power precisely on those levers.

The approach:
Comprehensive Solution from Design to Finished Parts

  • Identifying the critical issues in the mould making process, and determining the optimisation strategy
  • Manufacture of internally cooled pins by means of metal laser melting
  • Heat treatment of the melted shapes
  • Subsequent milling to operational function components
  • Tactile and/or optical quality assurance of the finished components
  • Non-destructive testing

The Results:
Game-Changing Improvements

Shot speeds down from 10 to 8 or even 7 seconds – in other words: Up to 30 percent faster cycles thanks to the use of laser melted pins with internal cooling. A figure that can be called “game-changing” without exaggeration. In addition, the metal laser melting technology also provided for a dramatic reduction of scrap rates, as the optimised cooling efficiency of the pins clearly minimised the warpage of the manufactured parts.

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Stefan Auernhammer

Business Unit Manager Additive Manufacturing

Uwe Schulmeister

Business Unit Manager Additive Manufacturing

Andreas Kastner

Deputy Business Unit Manager Mould Making