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Robotic Dispensing: Keeping a Lid on Costs
Loic le Naou, president of I&J Fisnar France, shows a teaching pendant in that company's robot dispensing demonstration area.
By Arnold Fletcher
Today's manufacturing processes call for dispensing fluids that include adhesives, acids, alcohol, anaerobic resins, conformal coatings, cyanoacrylates, oils, grease, lubricants, silicones, gels, solder pastes, sealants, solvents and UV adhesives.
Many of these dispensing requirements continue to be carried out by manual hand dispensing methods. While manual dispensing may appear suitable for some applications, a dispensing robot will offer many advantages, for even the most difficult of dispensing operations.
A key component in automating the dispensing process is a fluid dispensing valve, which must be carefully selected to provide the best dispensing solution for the project. But ensuring that the valve dispenses precisely in the right location and provides the correct amount of fluid repetitively calls for a dispensing robot system. Today's computer controlled robotics can be integrated with a variety of dispensing equipment that will apply most any fluid. These automated solutions will provide cost savings in labor and material, while performing accurate, repetitive automatic dispensing that will result in an increased production yield and a marked reduction in post-production rejects and rework.
Placing precise amounts of liquid and semi-liquid material in precisely the right location(s) is not ideally suited to bench personnel holding a syringe. While that solution might work for a single prototype, it is not a cost-effective strategy for a production process where precision placement and metering demands automation. Fortunately, the automation process does not have to be costly; there are modestly priced benchtop solutions available that can readily handle small to large volume applications.
The largest selection of such robots is available from I&J Fisnar, which currently features more than 38 different types of robots in its current catalog. These robots vary from single and dual-table desktop units to gantry and SCARA systems.
Not only does the company offer a wide range of robotic solutions, it does so at highly competitive prices. Company management strongly believes that a good quality product need not necessarily be a costly product.
The manufacture cycle of an I&J Fisnar's robot begins with excellence of design, followed by systemized engineering and strict quality controlled production. An important feature is the unique and versatile programming software, which has been designed for the particular demands of dispensing liquids and in addition provides easy and intuitive instructions. Finally I&J Fisnar offers its products at a highly competitive price.
Wholly Owned Subsidiary
One of I&J Fisnar's wholly owned subsidiaries is I.J. Fisnar France S.A., which operates from a suburban location in Paris and provides on-site sales, service and support for customers in France. The company prides itself on being able to provide a quality product, while undercutting the prices of competitors on all fronts. Coupled with the company's policy to provide the best value for price is the weak dollar, and these two factors combine to make I&J Fisnar products very price-competitive in Europe. The company's robot dispensing systems have found their way into the supply chain for major French automakers such as PSA (Peugeot) and Renault by supplying robots to major subcontractor Bosch. While Bosch also makes its own robots, it is far cheaper for the company to buy the I&J Fisnar machines. This price advantage is an important part of I&J Fisnar's U.S. and worldwide operations, since an important element of the company's mantra is to provide the best possible equipment at the best possible price, no matter where it is sold. Today, the company's range of dispensing robots includes over 38 types of robots — including gantry types that are suitable for every industry assembly purpose. Because of the company's total focus on dispensing products, I&J Fisnar's nameplate can be found in assembly operations worldwide.
Students at I&J Fisnar seminar in India learn to use the teaching pendant.
An important aspect of the company's marketing strategy is education for the company's representatives and distributors worldwide — the "front line" for making certain the proper equipment is installed for specific applications, and that the applications engineers know how to set up and program the robots.This strategy, plus tightly controlled cost of product are changing the way industry is evaluating robotic dispensing. With today's quality demands and outsourcing domestically and globally, quality issues are paramount in every facet of production. Thus robotic dispensing is preferable to manual or semi-automatic systems, wherever possible. If capital cost considerations are minimized it is far easier to justify the decision to convert to robotic dispensing.
By minimizing the cost to the client of its Cartesian, Gantry and SCARA type robots, the company has provided a cost-effective solution for a wide variety of assembly industries. Competitive pricing does not reduce the quality of the product or its standards; instead, it ensures that the company can remain focused on growth and maintaining its goal as the world's number one supplier of dispensing robots. At the same time, its worldwide network of representatives and factory-trained distributors assures that service and support will remain world-class, no matter where in the world the robots are being used. There are two general categories for dispensing robots: benchtop and in-line.
9000 series gantry robot.
An operator attends a benchtop system, loading and unloading the products during assembly. In-line robots are used in automated assembly lines. Programming the robots is highly intuitive, using a teaching pendant — a hand-held keyboard controller that specifies commands for each step of the dispensing cycle. After each instruction is entered, the point-by-point or continuous path can be confirmed with a "Go There" command, which confirms the programmed positions and line speed. Any errors can be easily and quickly corrected during the programming or after the program has been completely entered.
Seminar in India
The company maintains its presence through international I&J Fisnar companies and sales and a worldwide network of authorized distributors and factory sales representatives. Periodically, I&J Fisnar will conduct training seminars for these field personnel, such as one conducted in India earlier this year. At the seminar, participated in by a number of representatives and distributors in India, a comprehensive course in I&J Fisnar dispensing and robotics was presented, along with hands-on programming sessions for a number of different types of robots. Personnel from I&J Fisnar USA and I&J Fisnar France who are expert in dispensing automation, presented the seminar.
TMB200 benchtop SCARA robot.
In the seminar, and in future seminars planned for other parts of the world, the I&J Fisnar message is clear: the company has the widest range of total fluid dispensing application solutions, the largest number of dispensing robots, up-to-date training for involved personnel, and the most competitive pricing to be found anywhere. Even companies that manufacture their own robots — such as Bosch, in its automotive parts assembly plants — find that it is more cost-effective to use made-in-U.S.A. I&J Fisnar products for a complete solution.
For more information, contact: I&J Fisnar, Inc., 2-07 Banta Place, Fair Lawn, NJ 07410-3002
201-796-1477 fax: 201-794-7034 E-mail: email@example.com Web:
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