The new Dugard 1000 at DGF Engineering
Hertfordshire-based DGF Engineering Ltd
, a precision engineering specialist, has recently bought its first CNC machining centre supplied by Dugard
, a leading UK supplier of CNC machine tools. The sub-contract manufacturer, which was established in 2005, works with customers to undertake everything from design and consultation through to prototypes, small batches and production run machining.
With the three-axis machining centre marketplace being extremely competitive; son of company founder David, Liam Fernard explained why the business opted for the Dugard 1000 machine with its spacious X-, Y- and Z-axis travels of 1,050 x 640 x 660mm.
He said: “We were impressed — it is a robust and durable machining centre and ticked all the boxes for us. We do quite a lot of large workpieces and the 1m bed is perfect for larger work and we visited Dugard’s facility on the south coast for training and it was excellent and really comprehensive.”
The new Dugard 1000 will be tasked with machining a wide range of sub-copntract components for the scientific and laboratory equipment sectors, including gas analysers and chemical detection systems, telecommunications and optical fibre and cable manufacturing work, as well as bespoke machining for the automotive and agricultural sectors.
The machining centre features a powerful Mitsubishi M80 CNC control, a spacious work envelope — the bed of the machine can accept a maximum table load of 1,176kg while the BT40 spindle taper is supplied with cutting tools from a 24-position drum type tool changer.
With cutting feed rates in the X, Y and Z axes of 12m/min and rapid traverse rates of 30m/min, the robust and well-built Dugard 1000 VMC provides stability, rigidity and productivity levels that are ideal for a wide variety of sub-contract manufacturing work.
With most machine shops tending to keep to a CNC control platform that they are familiar with, Mr Fernard, who joined DGF Engineering in 2007, found the transition to the new Mitsubishi platform straightforward.
He said: “I certainly believe it is the right decision for our business. From my understanding, the Mitsubishi M80 control is a more powerful control than other control units that we have been used to. So, with the work we have planned for the future, it will certainly aid us as we go forward.”
Like many sub-contract businesses, DGF Engineering frequently undertakes repeat work, When asked if transitioning parts from one machine to the new Dugard 1000 with the Mitsubishi M80 CNC could be an issue, Mr Fernand said: “There have been no issues whatsoever. There may be compatibility changes that we may need to make with existing programmes, but they are very small tweaks.
“The programmes will be as they are on any other machine that we have here already. I was initially dubious about the touchscreen control, especially in the engineering environment with dirty fingers, but it works really well and makes things a lot easier for us.”
“In the future, we are aiming to look at more 3-D machining and more complex work, so the Mitsubishi M80 control will position us well for this work. I have been told that the processing unit on this Mitsubishi M80 CNC control is far superior to anything else we have used before.”
He concluded: “We have been really impressed with the Dugard 1000 so far. Everything has been faultless, the service from delivery through installation and the after-sales support — nothing has been too much trouble for Dugard.”