ST-Koneistus has ordered a new automated washing and drying line to improve the manifolds' cleanliness level and increase the post-processing lead time.
ST-Koneistus has processed all its hydraulic manifolds with a Kennametal TEM-P350 deburring machine since 2008. Processing is important, as it effectively removes the metal waste generated during machining from the finished products. However, the process utilizes thermal energy creating iron oxide, which must be washed off after processing.
In the new line, the products are washed twice, and the rinsing has been enhanced with a third rinsing basin. On the other hand, the tending robot handles the transfer between different work phases.
“With the current amount of rinsing, the products must be dried immediately so that detergent residues cause no stains. For this reason, we have been unable to wash products during lunch and coffee breaks, for example. The products also start to rust if they remain wet in the basket without drying,” says Jarkko Selin, CEO of ST-Koneistus.
In the future, drying will also be handled as part of the automated line. The new drying chamber evaporates the water from the surface of the product with the help of negative pressure, which lowers the boiling point of the water. For this reason, products at around 60°C dry in the chamber in no time.
Due to the new line, workplace ergonomics will also improve considerably. In the past, employees have had to blow the products clean with compressed air and then move them several meters away for washing. In the future, the products can be lifted directly from the deburring machine to the washing and drying line, and there is no need to intervene in the process after that.
Industrial automation provider JTA Connection Oy delivers the design and implementation of the line, while T Control Oy supplies the washing and drying equipment. Delivery of the line is scheduled for spring 2023.
ST-Koneistus Oy is Finland’s largest manufacturer of hydraulic manifolds and components specializing in demanding special series. For over 50 years, our mission has been to help hydraulic companies and the mechanical engineering industry manufacture high-quality end products. Over the decades, our hydraulic products have been delivered to dozens of countries worldwide.