Case Studies

Modified Outer Housing for a Lalesse 90 Food Extruder- developed by Hillside ADR Ltd


Precision Manufactured Light Emitting Diodes(LED)

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Hillside ADR Expand CNC Production with two new CNC installed - March 2012

In response to a growing order book for CNC machined parts and to ensure they remain competitive, Hillside ADR has installed two additional machines to increase the productivity and capacity of their busy machine shop.

A third Hurco VMX30 three axis machining centre has been added, replacing an aging Bridgeport Interact 3 axis machine. The new Hurco VMX30 is a much more up to date CNC machine, which enables significantly improved productivity. It will enable Hillside ADR to handle more orders for both metal and plastics milled parts in small to medium batch sizes, offer shorter leads times and remain price competitive.

The other new machine which has been installed is a XYZ Proturn SLX 425, which is a hybrid CNC/ manual lathe. It has a maximum chucking diameter of 250mm and a maximum length between the spindles of 1000mm. The addition of this XYZ Proturn SLX 425 lathe has provided much needed extra capacity for sub contact turning work to handle smaller batch orders for both metal and plastic parts; being a more modern, robust machine, it will make Hillside ADR even more competitive to help them secure additional small batch work in the future.

Alan Warren, Managing Director of Hillside ADR Ltd. commented “It is very important for the long term sustainability of the business that we continue to invest in upgrading and modernizing our CNC machine shop facilities, even in this tough business climate. To be competitive, we must continue to offer customers machining quality along with a responsive service and competitive prices”.

Hillside ADR takes on a New NVQ CNC Machining Apprentice - Sept 2011

Local student, Chris Dyson (18 years old) from Bugbrooke, Northants, has been taken on by Hillside ADR as an apprentice, who is currently doing a two year CNC machining NVQ level 3 qualification in mechanical manufacturing engineering. Chris spends four days a week working at Hillside ADR, where he is gaining valuable on the job training and work experience in all aspects of precision machining metal and plastics components. He is doing this apprenticeship under the supervision and mentoring of David Jones, technical director at Hillside ADR, who oversees all the operational activities on the shop floor.

Chris is working amongst a group of highly experienced machinists and engineers at Hillside, which is the ideal environment for a young apprentice. The current Hillside team individually have over 20 years of engineering and machining experience. Every machinist has proven expertise in making precision engineered parts, using the semi manual turning and milling machines, the CNC lathes and milling machines, as well as and the multi-axis machining centres for more complex parts.

Chris is also continuing his education at Northampton Booth Lane College where he is studying for a B Tech in Mechanical Manufacturing one day a week, which he will also complete in 2013. After he has completed his NVQ and B Tech studies, Chris is hoping to secure a full time position as a machinist at Hillside ADR Ltd.

New look and new website for Hillside ADR - April 2011

Hillside ADR has invested in a new look and a new website, which reflects the significant modernisation in recent years of its machine shop, with new CNC machines and additional services that the company offers customers. The new website provides a comprehensive overview of the company’s capabilities and services, and their expertise in machining both metal and plastic parts for a wide variety of different market and applications.

Alan Warren, Managing Director of Hillside ADR Ltd. commented “With the rapid increase in the use of the internet for business activities, it was vital to update our on line presence with a new website which shows Hillside ADR machine shop capabilities, our expertise and the wide range of services we offer customers looking for a reliable, high quality sub contract machine shop”.

Hillside ADR Retains its ISO 9001 Quality Accreditation - August 2010

Hillside ADR Ltd. underwent a thorough ISO 9001 assessment review carried out by Quay Audit UK Limited and successfully had its ISO 9001 accreditation renewed. The current BS EN ISO 9001:2008 certificate (number: 4011589), awarded to Hillside ADR Ltd. by Quay Audit UK on 1th August 2010 is valid until 2 Aug 2013.

Since 2001, Hillside ADR Ltd. has been ISO approved under section 2562, which applies to the approved quality administration systems that are in place for a company providing sub contract precision machining, general engineering and allied services.

Alan Warren, Managing Director of Hillside ADR Ltd. stated “Maintaining our ISO 9001 accreditation is extremely important to the business and reflects our commitment to providing both high quality machined parts and a reliable, high quality service to our customers.”

Hillside ADR invest in 4 axis Hurco VMX30 machining Centre - October 2009

Hillside ADR has invested in a second HURCO VMX 30 machining centre; this additional Hurco VMX 30 has 4th axis capacity of 200mm chucking diameter, 260mm swing and 400mm between centres. Both Hurco VMX30 machining centres have a maximum machine travel of 760mm ( x axis) by 508mm ( y axis) by 610 (z axis)

This investment in a 4th axis capacity machining centre is in response to the growing demand from customers for more complex milled parts in both metals and plastics, which are most cost effectively machined using a 4 axis machining centre.

Precision Engineering Case Studies

Case study (1): Modified Outer Housing for a Lalesse 90 Food Extruder - developed by Hillside ADR Ltd

Customer Problem: Wear and damage to extruder die plate housing threads resulting in lost production, higher scrap and potential safety issues.

Because the die plate is removed each time the extruder is shut down for a product changeover, the original threads that secure the die plate to the outer housing become worn over time. This leads to assembly issues and eventually the threads fail and the complete housing needs replacing; this has both maintenance and lost production time cost implications for a business. Hillside ADR Ltd. came up with a cost effective solution to this common problem faced by companies running food extruders.

Engineering Solution:Hillside ADR developed an outer housing modification, which can be retro fitted to this type of extruder. The modified two component system has a precision machined, hardened and ground adaptor ring (top machined component part in photo), which is bolted onto the front of the original extruder housing (lower machined component in photo); the front face of this housing must first be machined away to provide a location onto which to fix the adapter ring.

Customer Benefits:This housing modification system provides a customer running an adapted food extruder with an OEM design upgrade, which improves overall productivity and reduces costs. By using higher quality, long lasting hardened parts that have been designed to be far less prone to thread wear and damage, quality issues and unexpected down time for maintenance and repairs are significantly reduced. The system provides the added benefit of only needing to replace this retrofitted front ring when it does eventually wear, rather than needing to replace the complete extruder housing. So, further savings are made on maintenance costs over the life of the extruder.

Case study (2): Switch Manufacturer Productivity Improvement for Producing Custom shaped Light Emitting Diodes (LED) connections

Customer Problem:An expanding tier 1 automotive supplier of electrical switches and display units needed to significantly increase productivity to meet new orders. The company manufactures a wide range of switches, with each needing specific LED connections shaped to fit the designed space in each switch unit. The configuration of the light emitting diode (LED) metal connectors into the complex, different shapes had become a production bottleneck.

A semi automated bespoke engineering solution without major capital investment was needed to significantly increase the production of finished, formed LED components up to 7,000 / day.

Engineering Solution:LEDs come pre supplied with a pair of approx 5 cm long straight metal connectors (usually made of copper). The switch manufacturer has to trim and form the metal connectors into the shape needed to fit inside the switch. Hillside ADR came up with a novel engineered solution which solved the customer’s problem.

They designed and manufactured new semi-automated operated forming tools for each of the LED configurations needed, which could be easily used by the customer’s operators as part of the existing production process. Each of new LED forming tools incorporated a combination of up seven cylinders, depending on the LED connector shape. Operators simply fed straight unformed LEDs into the forming tool and pressed a button; exactly configured LED finished parts were produced in less than 4 seconds, with their metal connectors trimmed and bent into shape to exactly to fit into the designed space for the switch model.

Customer Benefits:The LED bottleneck was eliminated without major capital investment. Using this engineering solution from Hillside, the switch manufacturer was able to cost effectively increase the production rate of LED parts up to the target 7,000 / day. They were able to keep pace with growing demand and to reliably supply orders on time as needed – a key factor to maintaining their vendor ratings as an approved supplier to their automotive customers.

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