Fife Fabrications is a manufacturer of high precision, high quality sheet metal work and electronic magnet assemblies for the computer and telecommunications industries. All components that were produced by Fife underwent first article inspection, which could mean machine downtime of up to five hours, depending on the complexity as all measurements were done by hand using calipers. Each time a new production run was set up, the entire process would start again. A faster process was needed to maintain Fife’s competitive edge.
After viewing a laser inspection demonstration at a trade show of an advanced flat parts inspection device, Marketing Manager, John Penman, knew that he had found a solution for the company’s inspection process. Together with Archie Smith, they visited an area distributor with sample parts to test on the Virtek laser inspection machine several times and saw the LaserQC at work in an elevator manufacturer, the decision was made to purchase and install the laser system.
With Virtek Laser Inspection Fife saw immediate results – a 98% reduction in machine downtime for first article inspection. “The LaserQC is very accurate and since the inspection process is automated, there is no human error at the checking stage,” explains Mr. Smith. “The speed of checking has been enhanced, and now our high cost punching machines are only down for a few minutes at a time for the full check. LaserQC is also used for reverse engineering and statistical process control at Fife, although the biggest benefit is the quality improvements. “The quality of components being put out since installation is very much improved”, says Mr. Smith.