50% manual labor saved by CNC belt grinding unit

Released on 12/16/20

The Austrian natural wood furniture manufacturer Team 7 made a name for itself in the 1980s as a pioneer for ecologically produced natural wood furniture. The special thing about Team 7 furniture is that the value chain is completely in the hands of the company - from the tree from its own 74-hectare forest, through a sawmill, a panel plant and two furniture factories, to sales in its own flagship stores or through partners in over 30 countries worldwide. And in doing so, the company consistently follows the "green path": it stands for furniture that combines the eco-thought with contemporary lifestyle.

With individuality increases the variety of parts

"Our customers benefit from our decades of experience. We implement every customer requirement individually. Each piece of furniture is therefore truly unique," says Stefan Weilbold, head of operating technology at Team 7's Ried im Innkreis plant. Production takes place on six different machining centers and three drilling machines. The batch sizes of the individual parts produced are rather small at 1-2 pieces. This is due to the fact that the variety of parts increases with individual customer requirements. In total, around 650,000 individual parts are produced on the CNC systems each year - and the trend is rising.

"Machines and tools are usually made for standard processes. However, Team 7 manufactures furniture tailored to individual customer requirements - this is one of the biggest challenges we face in production," knows Simon Hohensinn, Team Leader CNC. "Due to the wide variety of requirements, aggregates must be universally applicable at our company. Only then can customer wishes be optimally fulfilled. Due to the many variants, many tools are required, which in turn means high setup times. That's why we think very carefully about which tools really make sense."

Increased productivity and streamlined manufacturing process

It really made sense for Simon Hohensinn to purchase the Collevo+ belt sanding unit from Benz. Until the beginning of 2020, large and bulky wooden parts had to be sanded by hand with the edge sanding machine. This required up to two employees, depending on the size of the wooden parts. With the CNC belt sander, the edges can now be sanded fully automatically on the CNC machine, and only a maximum of one employee is needed to work on the edge sanding machine. The other has been deployed elsewhere. "After all, there is enough work at our company!" says the team leader. "Overall, we've been able to shorten our production flow thanks to the belt sanding aggregate, as manual processing has been drastically reduced." Another plus point that the aggregate brings with it is that it eliminates the risk of damaging the heavy natural wood panels during onward transport from the CNC machine to the edge sanding machine.

CNC grinding know-how developed

In the beginning, Simon Hohenstein and his CNC programmer Thomas Aigner still had teething problems. "We had zero experience in machine sanding on a CNC machine. Especially hardwood species like cherry or walnut gave us problems." Unsightly longitudinal streaks were the result. But the smart Team 7 tinkerers soon got to the root of the "problem": the oscillation speed at which the unit removes material, in conjunction with the feed rate. "When we understood the connection, we simply wrote a program for the machine software in which the feed and oscillation speed are also controlled depending on the type of wood," Thomas Aigner proudly reports. Through this learning-by-doing, they built up enormous know-how in CNC sanding over time. "Today, we even sand panels with a thickness of up to 78 millimeters, which is very, very much."

An argument for Benz: Many years of reliability

Benz units were introduced into Team 7 production as early as 2000. At that time, the first HOMAG machine was purchased. Some of these units are still in use today - 20 years later. "The units are very reliable, we have never had any major problems," reports CNC team leader Simon Hohensinn. For this reason, the company will continue to rely on the aggregate technology from Haslach in the future. "After all, our furniture is the result of state-of-the-art technology, such as machines and aggregates, fused with craftsmanship."