Our customer who develops and licenses laminate flooring and furniture solutions uses a mechanical locking system to assemble the products, known as a click-lock solution. The locking mechanism requires a machine that installs the small plastic lock tabs in the various components. We were asked to develop a faster, more cost-effective solution for this assembly.
The customer had certain specific requirements for the solution. It had to be faster than the one they already had. It had to be cost-effective without compromising operational reliability. We started out with a brainstorming session based on the various functions that were absolutely necessary and looked at alternative solutions that could resolve the problems. Based on this, we chose the best solution for each function in terms of performance, price and the most reliable solution.
We built test rigs to test each function in the machine separately. The biggest challenge proved to be reaching a sufficient speed on the machinery solution without compromising on cost objectives or reliability. We created an innovative solution for inserting the plastic springs, thus achieving the goal of 300 units per minute.