cross dimensional manufacturing

A custom fit

Tailor-made metal signs of various shapes and sizes

Johann Gg. Schopper GmbH & Co. KG in Zirndorf near the German city of Nuremberg has been manufacturing all manner of metal products and toys since 1928. The medium-sized family company is now in its third generation and its products include metal signs. To make these metal signs even more efficient to manufacture, Schopper GmbH turned to the robotics team at toolcraft. The result was a robot cell capable of automatically machining customised embossing plates that can be used to produce metal signs.

Used technologies:


Johann Gg. Schopper GmbH & Co. KG

The starting point:
A wide range of shapes and sizes

The brief was to construct a robot cell that could produce plates of various shapes and sizes. The completed cell uses a Stäubli TX90 robot and has two vacuum tables for the machining of positive and negative feedstock. The machining time had to be kept under 45 minutes.

The Challenge:
A custom fit

In addition to providing the necessary hardware, toolcraft worked with software company unicam to supply the compatible software. Mastercam was used to program the paths. Meanwhile, the offline programming software Octopuz translated the program for the robot, providing everything needed for the automated processing of the embossing plates. The quality meets the high standards of manual production processes.

the approach:
Working together to achieve success

  • Creation of a project team comprising specialists in design, robotics and electronics
  • Close collaboration between toolcraft and unicam
  • Design stage followed by commissioning and development of the design
  • Creation of the milling programs and in-house construction of the cell
  • Initial milling tests on the cell and acceptance by Schopper GmbH
  • Delivery and start-up at the client's premises

The results:
When tradition meets progress

The project took a total of 20 weeks to complete. During this time, toolcraft provided everything from A to Z – from the hardware to the offline programming. In doing so, toolcraft has equipped the traditional process of manufacturing metal signs for the future.

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Automated production of embossing plates

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Andreas Bauer

Business Unit Manager Robotics

Daniel Distler

Business Unit Manager Robotics