Endeavor Engineering Ltd
— a leading sub-contract machining specialist based in Didcot, Oxfordshire — was established in 2012 by directors Andy Strong and Martin Bell and currently employs 12 people.
The company recently installed a new horizontal machining centre — a DN Solutions (formerly Doosan) NHP 5000 — at its 9,000ft2
premises, where it joins three Puma lathes and five DNM vertical machining centres. The latest machine to the line-up was supplied by Leamington Spa-based Mills CNC Ltd
— the exclusive distributor of DN Solutions’
machines in the UK and Ireland.
The NHP 5000 has already ‘proved its worth’ and has been central to Endeavor winning a number of machining contracts with both new and existing customers. Among these are orders to machine bespoke lightweight aluminium vacuum chambers used for a variety of applications, including: drying, degassing, sterilising, cooling and distilling medications for the bio-pharmaceutical industry; building and testing semi-conductors; and conducting controlled scientific experiments.
Director Mr Strong says these new contracts would have been difficult, if not impossible, to win and fulfill using the company’s existing vertical machining centres. “Our investment in the NHP 5000 is significant for a number of reasons, including that the decision was made during the pandemic at a time when many manufacturing companies had battened down the hatches and had either cancelled or postponed their CapEx investments.
“Furthermore, it is the first horizontal machining centre to be bought by us in the company’s 10-year history, and highlights our aim of providing customers with high-quality, best-in-class manufacturing solutions accessed from a single and reliable source.”
The outbreak of Covid-19 in 2020 and subsequent lockdowns had an impact on Endeavor Engineering and helped further crystallise the directors’ thoughts about the future direction of the company.
Mr Bell said: “The pandemic had an impact on the business, with some customers postponing orders and others cancelling them altogether. This situation made us think about what else we could do to improve and augment the services we already provide to customers.
“We had been exploring ways to increase our floor space as this would improve our productivity levels and operational efficiencies by enabling us to optimise the machine shop layout, create dedicated office space and a separate assembly area — plus give us space to install new machine tools and new technologies. We were able to acquire an adjacent facility in Autumn 2021 and double our floorspace.
“Moreover, rather than continuing to invest only in three-axis VMCs we began to consider multi-tasking machining centres — five-axis types and HMCs with integrated automation that would enable us to pick up new and different work from existing customers and win new machining contracts from new customers. Hence our investment in the NHP 5000, which is proving to be a productivity powerhouse.
“The twin-pallet configuration enables us to set up jobs on the free pallet while machining takes place on the other. Moreover, the B-axis indexing capability enables five-face/side machining to occur in a single setup. We couldn’t have entertained the idea of machining vacuum chambers and similar-type parts on our existing vertical machines.”