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Challenge

When Wild Springs & Wireforms won the contract to manufacture the frame supporting the rear seat cushion in the latest Astra saloon cars, Vauxhall specified that the wire frame should be MIG welded rather than spot welded. Full volume production quantities of over 4,000 per week for delivery to the foaming plant, dictated the use of robotic welding at Wild’s Redditch factory.

Solution

The company chose YASKAWA to supply a twin robot MIG welding cell and an electrically  powered rotary table. Wild Springs had used spot welding cells from YASKAWA since the 1980s. According to Tim Clews, project manager at the Redditch factory, the ongoing reliability of these early cells and the good service back-up over the years gave Wild every reason to return to the same supplier for this project. The Astra seat frame comprises eleven formed components made from round, mild steel wire of 5 mm diameter, which are placed by an operator into a dedicated jig. During this time, 20 welds are deposited by the two MOTOMAN robots to produce the previous frame. The turntable then swings through 180 degrees in a matter of seconds to present the unwelded assembly to the robots and the welded frame to the operator for unloading, ensuring uninterrupted production.

Results

With the installed arc welding cell the cycle time is one minute, around 25 per cent less than for an equivalent spot welding cycle.

Motoman welding robots at Wild Springs & Wireforms

Customer

Wild Springs & Wireforms

Product

Seat frames

Country

UK

Industry

Automotive

Application

Arc welding

System Components

MOTOMAN EA1400N twin welding robots

Electrically driven rotary table

Cell enclosure with common base fabrication

Results

Reduction in cycle time: 25%

Contact

YASKAWA UK Ltd

SHORT FACTS

Robotic arc welding of seat frames