Ohio-based metal fabricator Raymath turned to Universal Robots to automate complex TIG welding, as well as MIG welding and CNC machine tending applications. The company’s new cobot applications significantly expanded production and helped Raymath meet customer needs, delivering ROI in less than 12 months.
The business transformation
"Customers want to have fewer suppliers," says Greg LeFevre, CEO and President at Raymath. "So instead of a hundred suppliers, they would like to have ten that can do more. We wanted to satisfy those needs." LeFevre knew automation would be key to meeting Raymath's expanded productivity goals, but his experience was in high-volume, low-mix manufacturing: "It was very easy to automate when you make millions of a specific part. Moving into the fab-shop, sheet metal-type business, we're now looking at a large number of different parts, but in much smaller volumes," he explains. Because traditional automation doesn't lend itself to high-mix, low-volume, Raymath needed a much more flexible approach.
When the Raymath CEO found a UR certified systems integrator, THG Automation, close by, THG invited him to bring parts and get hands-on with the company’s UR cobot-based MIG welding system.
“Within the four hours that I was there, we programmed 20 weld points,” says LeFevre. “I was actually practicing and sampling on the parts that I was going to make. It proved to me without a doubt: if I can program this in four hours and actually have my parts running, this can work in our shop. I wrote the purchase order that same night.”