A preview of the new generation of TP grades
Finnish component supplier Nomet’s relationship with Seco spans several decades. The degree of trust the two companies share was made clear when Nomet trialled Seco’s new generation of TP grades, based on Duratomic technology, ahead of its release.
Outside the Finnish headquarters of component supplier Nomet stands a large hydraulic rock-breaking hammer, jutting theatrically into the sky like a large harpoon. The hammer is an appropriate adornment to the plant, located in the town of Tampere in the country’s south, as many of its inner parts were manufactured here.
Today, theNomet workshop is abuzz with dozens of large milling and turning machines. Amidst them all, a Finnish puukko belt knife lies on a wooden table. Workmanship still plays a key role in the plant’s operation, despite its reliance on CNC technology.
These two tools – the hammer and the knife – symbolise some of the key industries that rely on Nomet for precision metal cutting and parts supply. Rauno Virkorinne, Method Engineer at Nomet, explains, “The mining industry has been our biggest customer sector in recent years. The electrotechnical industry is also quite important. So are the construction, forest, process and vehicle industries.”
Virkorinne says while sales slowed in 2008, the domestic market is now recovering. “We expect growth this year,” he says. “We have plans to go stronger into export. We supply machinery parts right across the Nordic region, within Europe and to countries including the US, Russia, Brazil and China.”
Nomet relies on Seco tools to maximise the speed, efficiency and profitability of its production. “The reason is reliability,” says Virkorinne. “We can trust them. And the support and knowledge Seco provides is also very important for us.”
When Seco staff visit the workshop, it’s immediately apparent how closely the two firms work together, as is the mutual respect and understanding that is felt. Seco Tools Finland’s General Manager Keijo Manner is accompanied by Technical Salesman Pertti Tingander. Tingander worked at Nomet for some 20 years before joining Seco in 2008 and he still maintains close contacts at the firm. Keijo Manner explains, “We have another technical salesman here in Tampere, Jorma Kivinen, who’s here at Nomet every second week or so, helping them to raise their productivity.”
The two companies have a long shared history. Established in 1950, Nomet has used Seco tools for decades. “The local Seco agent supplied our products to Nomet for many years,” says Manner. “We bought that supplier when Seco Finland was set up in 2003.”
Tingander discusses wear behaviour with a machine operator who is testing out Seco’s new TP grades ahead of its release in April 2015. The Duratomic technology based coating has been redesigned at the atomic level to make it even tougher and more abrasion resistant. This ensures improved thoughness, heat and wear resistance as well as chemical intertness for longer tool life, also at high cutting speeds.
“We’ll probably start using this new insert,” says Virkorinne. “Our tests show that it’s 25 percent faster and more durable than the competitor’s product, and it’s more reliable, which is very important in this case.” Manner explains, “Whereas an older insert might last for 20 minutes before you have to change it, the new TP grades may last 30 or 40 minutes.” Virkorinne chimes in, “Well, it’s close to a 50 percent improvement, so that’s a significant cost saving. It depends on the material and so on.”
Besides tools, Seco supplies the company’s staff with know-how, advising them on how to maximise operations by using the best turning grades. Both companies are keenly aware that Nomet’s use of cutting-edge technology can improve the firm’s bottom line and make it a more appealing partner for its own customers. Faster cutting speeds, with fewer stops to change tools, make everyone happier, and are also more sustainable. “We present all the new products to Nomet as they become available,” says Manner. “We discuss any problems and try to solve them together.”
Virkorinne says the most recent major challenge involved hard part turning. “Seco made suggestions of new ways to do it,” he says. “We changed to a different type of insert made of cubic boron nitride (CBN). We checked the insert quality and changed the tool holders because the inserts had a different shape. So, advice and suggestions are important.”
Manner says Nomet is an important customer. “They have great potential,” he says. “Today, our ideas and thinking regarding efficiency are even more in sync than before.” Virkorinne agrees the relationship is very good. Asked how the partnership could be improved, he smiles and says laconically: “There are no problems. It works fine now.”
By Wif Stenger Photos By Aleksi Poutanen
Relying on Seco
Seco is Nomet’s main supplier of milling tools, with hundreds of variations in use. For turning, Nomet has used the TP grades, based on Duratomic technology since it was introduced in 2007. Nomet was also one of the first companies to try out the new TP grades based on Duratomic technology, months ahead of its official release on 1 April 2015.
Nomet in a nutshell
Established in 1950, Nomet is a machine shop and component supplier specialising in metal cutting processes. Its main products include hydraulics components, screws, shafts, frames, semi-manufactured products and sub-assemblies.
The company’s key customer sectors include the mining, construction and forest product industries, as well as power transmission, generator and engine manufacturing.
Nomet’s 55 employees work in a 5500 square metre facility in Tampere, the largest inland city in the Nordic region. In 2014, net sales totalled EUR 8 million.
Cutting data using Duratomic based TP2501
Component: Sleeve (more details not available due to trade secrecy)
Material: 34CrNiMo6, a low-alloy steel containing nickel, chromium and molybdenum. Very tough and heat-treatable with high tensile strength.
Operation: Outside rough turning
Machining objective: Better reliability, chip control
Cutting tool: CNMM190624W-R7, TP2501
Machining data: cutting speed 175.5 metres/minute