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R E Thompson & Co. (Vacuum) Ltd


FMS systems palletised storage allows 24/7 machining

The Fastems system offers us considerable advantages over conventional manufacturing processes in that it allows us to flexibly manage our production scheduling and process repeat orders faster. Benefits include:

  • For repeat work there are a number of advantages of using R E Thompsons Fastems lines over more conventional machine shops.
  • no repeat set-up charges - workholding and cutting tools stay set.
  • no minimum run quantities.
  • shorter lead-times.
  • much reduced inventory.
  • prove-out scrap on repeat batches eliminated.
  • reduced inspection cost because the manufacturing process is effectively 'stored'.

The backbone to the Fastems system is the Flexible Pallet Magazine (Linear Pallet Pool) which allows for multiple pallets to be set up in advance of machining operations. R E Thompson currently have two Mori Seiki NH5000 Fastems systems in place, each with paired NH5000 horizontal machining centers supported by 20 & 24 pallet systems, making a total of 4 NH5000 units with 44 pallets.

Combining the Fastems system with the increased performance, reliability and accuracy of the Mori Seiki NH5000 machining centers we are truly placed to offer companies a first class service from now to well into the future.

Built for the lean manufacturer, the new Mori Seiki NH5000 horizontal machining center is designed for stable running 24 hours-a-day, 7 days-a-week allowing us to maximise productivity.

After setting up a job for the first time, we can store it in the Linear Pallet Pool where we can recall it at any time. When we receive additional orders for parts, we simply schedule it and with zero setup time can complete the order. We can also run lights out by loading up the Linear Pallet Pool with blank parts.

This latest investment has literally transformed our operation. We are now able to undertake much higher volume work as well as reduce our leads times. Because jobs can be stored in the Linear Pallet Pool repeat jobs completely skip the production engineering department and can go straight to the shop floor saving considerable time and allowing for far greater production flexibility.