Flywheel Automates Multiple Machine Tending and Welding Tasks Using ActiNav Bin Picking and UR5 Cobot Flywheel Supply is a family-owned machine shop that produces about 29,000 unique metal parts for antique machinery, steam and boiler controls, valves, and gauges, for both industrial and government applications. The company moves a single UR5 cobot between an ActiNav automated bin picking application for machine tending and TIG welding applications to drive productivity and help the company compete nationally and globally.
The business transformation
Flywheel’s high-mix, low-volume production made it difficult to cost-effectively automate many processes such as repetitive, manual machine tending and welding tasks—especially with no prior robotics experience. Additional challenges for the machine tending application included parts that are oily from upstream machine processes, making them difficult for a robot to accurately pick and place, but a wash station between processes would add costs and delays.