For more than a generation, Logitrans, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of material handling equipment, has been at the forefront of automated manufacturing. Recently, the Danish family-owned business invested in a new fully automated welding system from Migatronic Automation that ended up exceeding their expectations.
Logitrans is considered one of the leading developers and manufacturers of material handling equipment – from pallet trucks, high lifters and rotators to custom-made handling solutions.
The company exports to more than 55 countries worldwide, while the vast majority of its products are sold in Europe. Its main manufacturing facilities and headquarters in the Danish town Ribe, and is managed and co-owned by the third generation of the Pedersen family with the sisters Gitte Kirkegaard, CEO, and Dorte Pedersen, Production Director, at the helm.
With a view to renewing some of its older welding systems and further optimising its manufacturing process, Logitrans recently invested in a new fully automated welding system from Migatronic Automation.
"Welding constitutes an integral part of our manufacturing process, and we have employed welding robots for many years at our manufacturing facilities, with the oldest dating as far back as 25 years.
"We were in the market for a new automated welding system that could meet our demands in terms of cutting-edge technology, efficiency and welding quality – and Migatronic Automation ended up providing us with a tailored solution that exceeded our initial expectations," Dorte Pedersen says.
Logitrans already owned and operated five welding robots but required a new and modern welding system in order to stay ahead of its competitors:
"We were initially looking for a traditional and standardised automated solution for the manufacturing of stainless steel components and chassis for our pallet trucks and high lifters. However, that changed when Migatronic Automation invited us along for reference visits at some of their other customers. This was very inspirational and convinced us to begin the process of developing our new automated welding system together with Migatronic Automation – and we have not regretted that decision," Dorte Pedersen explains.
The finished system consists of a welding robot and a large six-axis handling robot with a capacity of 400 kg, which manipulates the workpieces in complete synchronisation with the welding robot. This ensures flexibility and optimal welding positions for the welding robot, which leads to uniformity and a higher quality in welding finish.
In addition, it results in a higher rate of completion of the chassis and components, reducing the need for internal handling and optimising the manufacturing process.
"The specialist knowhow and expertise of Migatronic Automation quickly became an important asset in the development process. They did not try to present us with a simple standard solution. Instead, they assessed our needs thoroughly and provided us with great consultancy throughout the process, which resulted in the best possible automated welding solution for us. Migatronic Automations project-based approach to the task has been exemplary," Carl Jørn Jacobsen, Welding Technician at Logitrans, says.
According to Henrik H. Christensen, Area Sales Manager at Migatronic Automation, working in close collaboration with customers is essential in ensuring the right welding solution and a safe investment process:
"We specialise in developing customised automated welding solutions that provide them with a competitive edge, and sometimes this entails listening to their needs rather than their initial inquiries. We see ourselves as consulting engineers and not as mere suppliers of a product, which is why we commit a lot of time and effort to thoroughly assessing the needs of our customers,"Henrik H. Christensen emphasises.
The handling robot is capable of automatically shifting between four different fixtures with high accuracy. All the fixtures have been co-developed by Migatronic Automation and Logitrans, while Logitrans has handled the manufacturing of the fixtures.
"The closed cell allows the robot to work very fast without the risk of having anyone or anything getting in its way, while it also shields our operators from the welding fume and ultraviolet light. In general, the automated welding system provides many health and ergonomic benefits, as it limits heavy lifting and awkward working postures," Carl Jørn Jacobsen explains.
Doubling the production capacity
Carl Jørn Jacobsen highlights the ongoing service of Migatronic Automation and the immense efficiency of the new automated system, which has led to a doubling of the production capacity compared to that of the previous robot:
"The efficiency of our new automated system is spectacular, and we are not even close to be using its full capacity. Combined with a higher welding quality, a better finish and a completion rate of about 95-100 %, it means that we are saving an entire shift compared to our previous robot. We are completely prepared for a future increase in our production capacity with our latest investment – and should we encounter any problem, we just give Migatronic Automation a call."
The automated system’s integrated welding power source is an advanced Migatronic Sigma Galaxy 400 MIG/MAG with pulse function, which is well-suited for welding stainless steel.