Aerospace manufacturers are experiencing high demand for parts and components. And many are struggling to meet that demand, let alone seize new opportunities as they arise. Manufacturers who make smart moves toward automating key processes can set themselves apart in this busy market. When you consider and calculate the manual processes that take more time and resources versus their potential with automation, do you consider your deburring and finishing methods?
In most metalworking industries, manufacturers and engineers are surprised to learn the drastic difference automated deburring and finishing can make in terms of productivity, efficiency, quality and cost savings. Compared to an automated deburring process with Xebec ceramic fiber brushes, which perform more like cutting tools, this seemingly small step takes an excessive amount of time and physical effort when performed manually. And it also leads to unnecessary waste.
Xebec ceramic fiber brushes, tools and accessories can automate these processes in the aerospace industry, allowing manufacturers to save time and money without reducing quality or precision. In fact, there are significant gains in quality and precision with these automated tools. With them, manufacturers can realize:
- More consistent and higher-quality outcomes.
- Less time for setup and cycle time per part.
- More capacity to achieve greater throughput.
- Greater ability to meet high-precision expectations for both deburring and finishing.
- Opportunities to reallocate resources for greater productivity overall.
Manual aerospace deburring methods don’t cut it.
Manual deburring holds aerospace manufacturers back by absorbing time and resources that automated deburring can easily save. Operators and employees must set up, move and reset parts several times to perform deburring and finishing separately and manually. These activities can take hours.
Additionally, this industry demands high precision and involves handling parts that are complex and/or extremely large. Manually deburring to spec takes a great deal of time, which means higher labor costs, constant physical strain on employees, and risk of injuries that could be avoided with automated deburring.
Not to mention the fact that achieving a high-precision finish manually is a challenge in and of itself, and inconsistency here frequently leads to scrap and rework.
Aerospace manufacturers that continue with manual deburring and finishing methods face the difficult task of getting consistent and high-precision quality parts with each run. They also have less capacity to optimize the time of both machines and operators as those resources are backed up by manual processes and rework. With automated options available that demonstrate consistent quality results and meet the tightest tolerances, aerospace manufacturers deburring manually is like using Stone Age tools in the Space Age.
Automated deburring benefits the aerospace manufacturing industry.
Using Xebec ceramic fiber brushes and other Xebec tools and accessories to automate deburring and finishing, aerospace manufacturers gain several advantages and address common challenges in the industry.
- Reduce risk of injury and strain for employees.
Taking care of your employees is a priority. And with the size and complexity of aerospace parts, working in aerospace manufacturing can easily cause strain and injury. In fact, this industry’s rate of worker injury is considered high.
To deburr and finish parts to precision and quality expectations, aerospace workers often spend lengthy stretches of time contorting their bodies, reaching, bending and holding heavy tools. It’s often uncomfortable work, and it’s difficult to improve the ergonomics of the manual process.
Improving safety and protecting your employees is worth the investment, particularly with critical activities that are performed as regularly as deburring and finishing. Automated deburring and finishing reduce the need for such manual activities on the shop floor.
- Optimize machine and workforce productivity.
Reducing manual deburring and finishing work in your manufacturing processes frees up time and resources, such as machines, employees, shop space and equipment.
Consider how much setup time goes into moving large parts for different phases of deburring and finishing. Now, consider that automating the process with Xebec ceramic fiber brushes accomplishes both deburring and finishing at the same time – while the part is still on the CNC machine.
This alone saves time. But combined with the incredible speed and efficiency of automated deburring with Xebec ceramic fiber tools versus hand-deburring, you also reduce cycle time and make room for greater throughput. And operators who would otherwise be hand-deburring and setting up parts can now perform other jobs and even run multiple machines.
- Improve quality and consistency for less scrap and a reputation for results.
It’s difficult to meet aerospace manufacturing standards for clean edge breaks, tight tolerances and fine finishes with manual processes. And a part that is “almost” perfect won’t perform the way your customers require. Every detail counts toward aerodynamics, performance and safety. A small error in the finishing process can mean scrapping an extremely expensive part.
Introducing Xebec ceramic fiber brushes to the process automates deburring and finishing and produces consistent, high-quality results you can depend on. These tools can meet tight tolerances, achieve proper edge breaks, and produce the desired finish. You’ll reduce the risk of having to scrap parts and the costs associated with starting over, backing up other orders and wasting resources.
Additionally, you’ll maintain a reputation for producing consistent quality parts at a time when the industry is seeing high demand.
- Devote time, resources and money saved to greater throughput and new initiatives.
These benefits all add up to savings in costs, time and resources. The opportunities these savings create are benefits in and of themselves. You can reinvest and reallocate, and you can take on new initiatives for your business. You will also be better positioned to take on new jobs and more work as demand for your services increases with the market demand.
Are you an aerospace industry manufacturer or engineer looking to introduce cost- and time-efficient automation tools in your processes? Get in touch to discuss your needs and ambitions with one of our experts.
For an in-depth look at the benefits and applications of Xebec products in aerospace manufacturing, download our Aerospace Industry Use Case.