optics are not generally covered under warranty as an industry standard, as optics manufacturers cannot control the cutting process, which if not optimised, can damage and stress the optics. In addition, when the warranty on a head runs out, most manufacturers believe investing in a new head every time a fault arises is the only option to get back up and running as quickly as possible. But firms such as

MBA Engineering offer refurbishment services that offer manufacturers the option to have their cutting head restored to working condition for a fraction of the price of a brand-new head, providing manufacturers an alternative when experiencing unexpected downtime.

Anticipating downtime

would benefit manufacturers massively, but unfortunately,

Engineering, for example, aims to refurbish a faulty cutting head and return it within 24 hours. In this case, the downtime equals the time taken to travel to the site, dismantle the head, return to the workshop and repair before returning and reinstalling. To demonstrate the benefits of this alternative: say, for example, purchasing and installing a new cutting head takes 8 to 10 hours, this would cost around £20,000. If instead our restoration service was used, took a similar amount of time and cost only £4,000, then you’re looking at an average of cost of £444 per hour of downtime compared to the £2,222 per hour when purchasing the new cutting head.

With downtime often

causing manufacturers a loss in production, having this sort

“Common faults such as problems with laser heads can cost a manufacturer up to £30,000 to replace”

not all issues can be seen on the horizon. But is there a way a manufacturer can prepare for the worst-case scenario? In some cases,

manufacturers will purchase two cutting heads when they obtain a cutting system, which while significantly increasing the initial investment, does result in a relatively small downtime. When one cutting head fails, the downtime is only equal to the time taken to install the second head. The faulty head can then be taken away for repair while the cutting machine continues working. Other manufactures

choose to only purchase the replacement head once the first one fails, which is not only expensive, but creates additional downtime, as they have to source the new head before they can install it. As an economical alternative

to both these options, the service offered by MBA

of option available can be very reassuring. The longevity of a cutting head is compromised by a number of influences, from cutting reflective materials to the power of the laser source, and replacement parts can be extremely costly. Taking this into account, the

head refurbishment service shouldn’t be overlooked. If two cutting heads weren’t invested in initially, the possibility of being able to minimise the cost of downtime by restoring a single head to working condition, rather than having to replace it with a brand-new one, can provide great peace of mind to manufacturers. In an industry where time is

money, manufacturers need to be constantly on the lookout for new means to minimise the cost of downtime, and being aware of these beneficial services can be a huge advantage for a manufacturer when a head can falter as much as twice a year. l


precSYS 515: Scan System for Challenging Micro Machining Applications

• Optimized for 515 nm ultra-short pulse lasers • Processing of flexible geometries with high aspect ratios • Smallest spot size for more precision

Five Axes and a Green Laser for Finest Structures


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