Big aspirations for press tool specialist

A newly established press tool design and manufacturing business specialising in automotive ‘body and white’ tools has set out its stall with an impressive manufacturing capability based around two Quaser vertical machining centres.

Supplied by the nearby Engineering Technology Group, the machines purchased by Southam, Warwickshire based 2G Tooling Limited include the UK’s largest capacity Quaser – a MV234P VMC – which has an impressive machining envelope of 2000mm x 762mm giving 2G the capability to service its Tier One customers who in turn are supplying components to high end OEM vehicle builders.

The other Quaser is a smaller MV184E VMC which is a highly adept machine with a very compact footprint yet can still accommodate workpieces of 1000mm in length.

“We have a lot of experience in this sector and from the outset were determined not to fall short in terms of machining capacity,” explains partner Chris Peters who with his brother established the company which started trading in January 2015.

“Obviously, investing in two such impressive specification machines from a new business start-up we were a bit apprehensive but we had very positive feedback from the outset and a number of potential customers had been approaching us almost before we were in business,” he explains.

“Newly built premises to accommodate the new machines were acquired and from the New Year we haven’t looked back.  The two Quaser’s have been fantastic – I had not heard of them before we spoke to ETG – but they are extremely well built, have many features that on others are extra’s and obviously came at the right price.

“We spoke with ETG’s Business Finance team about the purchase details and they were most helpful.  Obviously a business start-up is pretty demanding on the cash flow but Andrew Bullard and his finance team at ETG were both knowledgeable and accommodating and helped us over the first few months.”

The larger MV234P VMC offers high speed, high power machining being based on a highly rigid cast iron frame with large X and Y travels accommodated in a compact footprint.

As explained, the table size of 2000 x 762mm with a 2,000kg table load capacity is ideal for accommodating 2G’s largest press tools. Supplied with a BT face and taper contact spindle, 48 tool magazine and thro coolant, the only addition Chris Peters made to the standard machine specification was the addition of thro air.

“Mostly we machine in tool steels such as Uddeholm Holdax and SV21 with some machined parts specified in aluminium,” he explains. “We also do a fair amount of prototyping offering customers a full CAD to machining service using VISI Series design and machining software.  These days pre-build tools have to produce parts to meet similar standards to the final production parts so we value the accuracy and repeatability that the VMC’s offer us,” he adds.

Working in tandem with its ‘big brother’, the MV184E makes use of Quaser’s unique spindle technology and grease replenishment system while offering coolant and chip management alongside machine thermal management.

Both machines are equipped with Heidenhain controls.

Concluding, Chris Peters is confident his new business is starting to fill a niche in an industry that has largely moved overseas.

“Being a small operation we can be highly flexible and we work very closely with our customers – to the point that they are often here to watch and contribute to prototyping,” he explains.

“The fact we have invested in a machining capacity to over 2 metres demonstrates we mean business and that customers know they have a reliable UK based resource almost on their doorstep.  Such close co-operation coupled with the toolmaking  expertise is we hope, a cornerstone of our future success,” he advises.