All posts by Pierre-Yves Schmid

German machine tool industry puts in a notable finishing sprint for 2014

In the fourth quarter of 2014, order bookings in the German machine tool industry were up by an impressive 15 per cent compared to the final quarter of 2013, a steeper rise than expected. Orders from abroad rose by 24 per cent, while for the domestic market the figure was 1 per cent down on the preceding year’s equivalent result. For 2014 as a whole, there is a total plus of 4 per cent, with domestic orders up by 6 per cent, and orders from abroad by 4 per cent.

German machine tool industry puts in a notable finishing sprint for 2014
German machine tool industry puts in a notable finishing sprint for 2014

“So for the German machine tool industry, 2014 ended with a notable finishing sprint,” is how Dr. Wilfried Schäfer, Executive Director of the sectoral organisation VDW (German Machine Tool Builders’ Association) comments the result. The cause involved, following a mixed second half to the year, was a substantial plus in order bookings of 36 per cent in December. This very significant increase was attributable primarily to export business, which grew by 56 per cent. Domestic orders, meanwhile, with a modest increase of 3 per cent, stayed more or less static, compared with a strong reference month in the preceding year.

The increase in December was based not only on a few major projects, but additionally boosted by very sizeable projects from outside the Eurozone.In the year’s fourth quarter, the manufacturers of metal-cutting machine tools reported consistently good business, with a plus of 9 per cent, resulting primarily from export orders. Over the year as a whole, the orders for metal-cutting technology rose by 4 per cent, while forming technology orders, too, were up significantly in the year’s fourth quarter, by 33 per cent. In 2014 as a whole, order bookings for forming technology were up by 5 per cent.

Germany’s industrial sector is at present benefiting from falling energy prices, caused by the plummeting price of oil. The weak euro, moreover, is improving the price-competitiveness of capital goods abroad. For 2015, the German machine tool industry is anticipating a recovery in demand, from the domestic and export markets alike. “This means that the sector is well-positioned for 2015,” said the VDW’s Executive Director Schäfer.

Polydec set to relocate in 2015

To pave the way for growth, Polydec has acquired new industrial premises in Bienne. These much larger premises will enable the company to increase its production capacity.

Well-equiped industrial builgind for sale
Well-equiped industrial building for sale.

Due to the conversion, the relocation is planned for the end of 2015.
Located right next to a large well-known watchmaking group, the company’s former premises are perfectly placed and well-equipped for a bar turning workshop and are for sale.

More info available on the company’s website:

Polydec SA décolletage
Rue de Longeau 18
CH-2504 Biel/Bienne
Tel.: +41 32 344 10 00

Sandvik Coromant support for automotive sector embraces extensive machining solutions for transmission shafts

Range of tools and high-performance grades address challenges to deliver improved productivity, security and tool life in transmission shaft machining

Transmission shaft machining solutions include soft stage turning with GC4325 and GC4315 high-performance turning grades
Transmission shaft machining solutions include soft stage turning with GC4325 and GC4315 high-performance turning grades

The Sandvik Coromant portfolio of automotive component manufacturing solutions offers a selection of tools and insert grades designed to optimize the machining of transmission shafts.

Beginning with soft stage steel turning, high-performance GC4325 and GC4315 insert grades for internal and external operations offer superior levels of wear resistance, the ability to withstand high cutting temperatures and cutting edges that stay in shape for long times in cut.

Moving to hard part turning, CBN inserts are the first choice for turning high quality steel surfaces in the hardness range 58-65 HRc. CBN inserts from Sandvik Coromant have wiper options optimized for specific applications: WH (wiper HPT) generates low cutting forces for best surface integrity, while WG (wiper general) permits higher feed capacity.

The CoroCut® 1-2 grooving programme offers a number of benefits to those machining transmission shafts. For instance, patented spring clamping delivers high rigidity and clamping force accuracy, while both over- and under high precision coolant is available and easily connected via plug and play adaptors. What’s more, CoroCut 1-2 is now available in GC4325 high performance grade for steel.

Clearly, as a transmission shaft, these complex components demand numerous gear and spline milling operations. Among the tools ideal for addressing this challenge is CoroMill 176, an innovative indexable insert cutter for productive gear wheel machining that is designed for gears in the module range 4 to 10. Also, deployed widely for transmission shaft applications are the CoroMill 172 disc cutter for milling high-quality gear profiles and, similarly, CoroMill 171 for small gear modules. The latter features inserts with two cutting edges, while the same cutter body can hold inserts for different gear profiles.

Other gear and spline profiles on transmission shafts can be tackled using InvoMilling™, the unique Sandvik Coromant approach to milling spur and helical gears using indexable insert cutters, along with CoroMill 161 and 162. Using this single tool set on multi-task machines or five-axis machining centres it is possible to create many different profiles by simply changing the CNC program instead of changing the tool.

Cold heading oils: Innovative solutions for your process

Among a wide range of lubricants dedicated to the requirements of Cold Heading Machinery, Condat will present at the Fastener Fair in Stuttgart, new solutions to provide high duty lubrication with optimum safety.

Extrugliss-technology, phosphate-free-solution
Extrugliss-technology, phosphate-free-solution

For cold heading and warm heading operations, Condat has developed a complete offer adapted to each step of the transformation process for steel, stainless steel, copper, aluminum and special alloys, including surface treatment, soaps for skin-pass and cold heading oils.
At Fastener Fair Stuttgart, Condat will present 2 innovative solutions that improve overall performance and costs (consumptions, oil change frequency reduced, tool wear…) thanks to product complementarity and compatibility.

EXTRUGLISS TECHNOLOGY : phosphate free solution
Condat has developed a solution for a simple, efficient and more environmentally friendly surface treatment: Extrugliss ST. The mineral salts and organic-polymers of Extrugliss ST crystallize quickly on the wire creating optimal coverage. The deposit weight and crystallization ensure better adherence and an excellent distribution of the lubricant during the wiredrawing (Skin-pass) and cold forming operations. Extrugliss ST also presents fewer disadvantages than a phosphate treatment. Easy to handle and without usage of products classified as toxic2, Extrugliss ST also allows a reduction in the treatment and recycling of effluents.
Condat’s Extrugliss Technology concept associates Extrugliss ST surface treatment, Extrugliss WD skin-pass soaps and Extrugliss extrusion oils to ensure optimum performances and at least the same tool life as phosphate solutions.

EXTRUGLISS GREEN: new vegetal based cold heading oil
Thanks to the high level of lubricity of vegetal base oil (3 times more efficient than standard mineral base oils), Extrugliss Green enables to manufacture very difficult parts while improving the tools life. Due to its high performance, this oil increases the OEE (efficiency of your machine) and can reduce your tooling budget.
With a viscosity index higher than usual extrusion oils, the lubricant film is more stable at high temperature and allows replacing higher viscosity extrusion oils. The high flash point of Extrugliss Green ensures lower mist and smokes, giving operators a friendly working environment.
And above all, Extrugliss Green is a dual-purpose oil: it provides both superior lubrication characteristics to your machinery, as well as outstanding lubrication for your cold heading process.

Discover Condat innovations at the Fastener Stuttgart 2015 exhibition, Hall 8 X54.

Countdown to Moulding Expo 2015 is on

Great anticipation among exhibitors about their new exhibition Over the past few weeks, the two Moulding Expo project managers, Florian Niethammer and Florian Schmitz, have repeatedly stressed the importance of “organising an exhibition based on the requirements of the exhibiting companies”.


This is the only way the international event can really be implemented under the slogan “By the industry for the industry”. Statements from some selected exhibitors already show they are looking forward to the first Moulding Expo. Moulding Expo in Stuttgart, which will take place from 5 to 8 May, is the première for a platform where leading companies in the tool-making, model-making and mould construction industry will present their expertise and products to international customers every two years. The full range of high technology the industry has to offer will be on show – from dies for injection moulding and casting to the latest developments in model-making and prototype construction or additive manufacturing (AM) processes. In Stuttgart visitors can also expect to see technology highlights from all the renowned suppliers and service providers in the industry. Besides customers of the tool, model and mould making industries – for example users from the automotive, medical engineering and plastics industries – Moulding Expo also targets designers, product developers and tool, model and mould makers themselves.

Over 20 per cent of companies exhibiting their innovations in Stuttgart come from abroad. At present, three exhibition halls, 4, 6 and 8, are already booked up with more than 390 exhibitors. By the beginning of May, it is expected that there will be more than 400 exhibitors and a total of 31,500 square metres will be fully booked.


LPKF Presents 2D and 3D Prototyping

Innovative prototyping solutions at embedded world
From the idea to the close-to-production prototype in just one day – for PCBs and 3D MID components. LPKF focuses on in-house prototyping processes at its Stand 507 in Hall 1. Systems and processes for the manufacture of three-dimensional molded interconnect devices utilizing the LDS process will be presented (LDS paint, ProtoLaser 3D and instant metallization).

The LPKF ProtoMat D104 also creates ultra-fine structures without etching chemicals.
The LPKF ProtoMat D104 also creates ultra-fine structures without etching chemicals.

LPKF will showcase its ProtoMat D104 top model circuit board plotter for the manufacture of PCB prototypes that eliminates the need for environmentally harmful etching chemicals. These systems mill conductor tracks from a fully coated substrate and simultaneously implement drilling tasks. Along with its mechanical tools, the ProtoMat D104 features an additional laser, which allows high-precision geometries to be realized and is used to create ultra-fine conductor structures.
Solutions for through-hole plating, assembly and reflow soldering will also be presented. And most importantly: seasoned prototyping experts will be available at the LPKF stand for your questions.


About LPKF

LPKF Laser & Electronics AG manufactures machines and laser systems used in electronics fabrication, medical technology, the automotive sector, and the production of solar cells. Around 20 percent of the workforce is engaged in research and development.

Laser & Electronics AG
Osteriede 7
D-30827 Garbsen


Watch industry: RJC certification complete for Sercab, ProsertoVal’Heure Group

Sercab, Val’Heure, Proserto Group, a supplier for the watch and jewelry industries, has announced certification by the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) for all three companies.


The certification is a reminder of the Group’s strict commitment to the highest ethical and environmental standards. The successful verification was evaluated by independent auditing firms not associated with the RJC. “We are proud of the RJC certifications”, says Ramon Iso,CEO of the Sercab, Val’Heure, Proserto Group. “These achievements are the result of our employees’ dedication. In their work, they always strive for ethical and responsible standards for the Group. We provide high quality services. And by the same token, our financial stability is built up on the quality of our human relations and our respect for the environment”.

About Sercab, Val’Heure, Proserto Group
Over a period of 25 years of continuous growth, the Sercab-Val’Heure-Proserto Group hasbecome a key player in stone-setting for high-end jewelry and watchmaking. The three companies work using a combination of traditional craftsmanship and state-of-the-artindustrial technologies. Focus is on the manufacturing of items with high value added. In addition to finishing watches and manufacturing the cases, the Group offers manufacturingof metal bracelets and stone-setting for watch components or jewels. The Sercab, Val’Heure, Proserto Group is a specialist in all types of stone-setting: grain,mechanical, traditional, watchmaking and jewelry, baguette and invisible for diamonds and colored stones. Founded with Swiss capital exclusively, the company employs 180 people in Switzerland. There are three sites: Geneva, Chêne-Bourg (Geneva) and Le Sentier (Canton of Vaud), one of the key locations of the Swiss watchmaking industry. – –

About RJC
The Responsible Jewellery Council is a not-for-profit international certification organization. It has more than 500 member companies that span the supply chain from the mine to the jewelry retailer. RJC Members commit to and are independently audited against the RJC Code of Practices. This is an international standard for responsible business practices for diamonds, gold and platinum group metals The Code of Practices addresses human rights, labor rights, environmental impact, mining practices, product disclosure and many more important topics in the jewelry supply chain. RJC also works with multi-stakeholder initiatives on responsible sourcing and supply chain due diligence. The RJC’s Chain-of-Custody Certification for precious metals supports these initiatives. The RJC is a full-fledged member of the ISEAL Alliance, the global association of sustainability standards:


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