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The award winners from the Blaser Productivity Trophy award ceremony

MACHINE TOOLS When the coolant becomes a success factor

Oct 26, 2018

The role of the coolant in enhancing productivity is crucial. In this context, Blaser Swisslube recently hosted the Blaser Productivity Award Ceremony in Gurgaon, which not only recognised the end-users in specific areas of improvement but also emphasised on the significant role that coolants play in increasing productivity without compromising on quality.

Productivity, efficiency and quality of machining in a manufacturing process depend significantly on the selection of the right coolant. In this context, Blaser Swisslube recently conducted the Blaser Productivity Trophy Award Ceremony in Gurgaon. This distinction is awarded annually to end-users to reward the highest demonstrable added value.

For this year’s productivity trophy (2017-2018) in India, the results in the following categories were evaluated – tool optimisation, total costs of ownership, metalworking fluid optimisation, productivity increase and process optimisation. In the selection of this year’s award were those end-users, who were willing to document their achieved added value through collaboration with Blaser Swisslube. Key productivity projects were evaluated for the this productivity award ceremony.

The award ceremony kicked off with an address from Rajiv Gandhi, Sr. Executive Director – Production, Maruti Suzuki India, who was the Chief Guest for the ceremony. He spoke on ‘Productivity & Competitiveness in the Automotive Industry’ and emphasised on how the Indian automotive industry has to go local on a global platform in its pursuit for making world-class quality products. This was followed by a session with Patrick Mathys, Managing Director, Blaser Swisslube APAC, who shared his insights on ‘Being a true partner in the industry’ and elaborated on the importance of focusing on sustainability.

Then, the ceremony moved on to the next address by the first keynote speaker, which was given by Harbhajan Singh, Director - General & Corporate Affairs, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India. He emphasised on the role of human capital in productivity and the importance of cultural sensitisation in today’s workforce. This was followed by a session with the second keynote speaker, Carl Chakravarthy, Associate Director, KPMG Management Consulting, who elaborated on ‘Productivity Enhancement at Shopfloor’ and shared the attributes for enhancing productivity in shopfloors, which include asset reliability, process, workplace and the workforce.

Tool Optimisation

After these introductory sessions, the award ceremony started, where the winners for different categories were announced and awarded. In the category of tool optimisation, Bajaj Motors from Binola, Haryana, was the winner. Established in 1986, Bajaj Motors is a quality supplier of forging, casting, machined components and assemblies catering to all vehicle segments that include two wheelers, four wheelers, tractors, heavy equipment and industrial products for oversea and domestic markets.

They focus on continuous improvement of quality and competitive costs. Thus, there is always a need to reduce costs without compromising on quality. For a recent project, Blaser Swisslube was asked to examine the AAWA AAYA line for improvement potential. After a detailed on-site analysis, they found a good chance to improve tool life while reducing the tool cost by using the right coolant, reducing the tool costs with an improved surface quality.

Total costs of ownership

The next category of awards presented were for total costs of ownership, in which OSG (India) and Carbide Cutting Tools were announced as the winners. OSG is the world’s largest manufacturer of round cutting tools with top global market share in taps, drills and end mills.

OSG strives to contribute to the advancement of manufacturing industries by shaping their customers’ dreams into reality through continual improvement activities. As a part of this drive, the company wanted to improve the long-term process capabilities. Since the carbide grinding processes are extremely critical in nature, OSG has invested in specialised high technology machines. Hence, the critical aspects for consideration were to look at compatibility with machine parts and productivity.

Blaser visited the OSG facility and discussed about the added values through the Liquid Tool approach. A joint project, initiated with mutual collaboration at Falta plant, was undertaken using the innovative hydrocracked formulation, which made it possible to reduce cycle time and to achieve a 12% productivity increase. A joint study was also conducted to monitor the improvements in wheel loading, thus improving the process security and surface finish.

Metalworking fluid optimisation

The third area where awards were presented was for metalworking fluid optimisation, in which Highway Industries from Ludhiana emerged as the winner. The company, established in 1971, is a supplier of hot and cold forged components and sub-assemblies to a number of industries verticals in two-wheeler and four-wheeler segments, in India and abroad. In its drive to upgrade an entire manufacturing process, various parameters were looked into by Highway, including the metalworking fluids. Corrosion in the machine parts triggered a need to search for a competent coolant partner with a broad expertise in machining.

The company realised that there is a huge potential of improvement with regards to the coolant technology. After a detailed on-site analysis was carried out by the Blaser team, the goals were achieved by improving the sump life and the coolant stability with substantial reduction in tool cost.

Productivity increase

The subsequent category of awards was productivity increase, in which Mahindra Vehicle Manufacturers from Pune were announced as the winners. They are the world’s largest tractor brand by volume, India’s largest utility vehicle manufacturer and several of their businesses enjoy leadership positions in the industries in which they operate. For a recent project, it was found that there was a challenge to improve the quality parameters. Blaser submitted a proposal with a new technology product to reduce cut time of cylinder blocks and to machine with a better quality. A few weeks of intense testing resulted in a cycle time reduction of 15% (from 10 min, 30 secs to 8 mins, 56 secs) and the accuracy in machining cylinder blocks improved by more than 33%, which was an added value.

Process optimisation

The last category of awards was presented for process optimisation, in which Cummins Technologies India from Satara emerged as the winner. Cummins in India, a power leader, is a group of complementary business units that designs, manufactures, distributes and services engines and related technologies. A recent project revealed that Cummin’s Phaltan engine plant experienced corrosion issues on costly machined components and there was an urgent need to work on the process security. After a thorough research and a detailed evaluation, Blaser offered an innovative formulation, which has an excellent corrosion protection behaviour and a good cutting performance.

This concluded the Blaser Productivity Trophy Award Ceremony, which ended with a vote of thanks delivered by Punit Gupta, Managing Director, Blaser Swisslube India, who was the moderator for the day.

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