Tomenson Machine Works is a world leader in the manufacturing of precision hydraulic manifolds. At the company’s HQ in Chicago, a UR3 cobot from Universal Robots works on a pin-stamping process, handling dozens of different part sizes. The cobot-powered solution delivered a 40% reduction in misloads, increased company profit margins and provided ROI within 6-7 months.
The business transformation
Tomenson experienced some difficulty with employee satisfaction due to the repetitive nature of pin-stamping tasks. “Operating the engraver is tedious. It’s not something people go by and say, ‘Yay, I’m going to go run the engraver for eight hours,’” explains Geoffrey Rose, secondary operations lead and quality supervisor at Tomenson Machine Works.
The company decided to introduce automation to alleviate the problem, but since this was Tomenson's first experiment with robotics, it was important to find a system that was easy to deploy. “No one in the company had ever dealt with collaborative robots or anything of this manner, especially not Geoffrey, who’s doing the programming every day and running the system,” says operations manager Alex Roake. “The first time he ever saw a collaborative robot was the first day we brought it in.”
Tomenson puts dozens of different of part sizes through its pin stamper, so the company also needed a flexible solution capable of handling part variance. Additionally, due to space constraints within the cell, Tomenson needed a solution that was both safe to operate around humans and would not require safety fencing.