Recycling scrap metal is seen as a good thing to do. However, isn't it better though not to create scrap in the first place? That is the best approach for producing contact pins. A combination of efficient manufacturing processes, automated inspection, and standardized working practices minimizes waste and drives down costs. It's good for the environment too! Here's how it's done.
Processes like stamping and single point turning are inherently wasteful. Stamping, though fast, leaves a web of material that goes into the scrap metal bin. Turning transforms excess metal on the bar or billet into chips, and does so relatively slowly.
Bead Electronics makes contact pins with a technology called swaging that is scrapless. In this cold forming process, a continuous strip is drawn through a pair of opposed forming dies. Each cycle entails advancing the strip by the length of the contact being formed, then closing the dies.
At each step the dies add a little more deformation, progressively forming the required pin geometry. The last step shears the fully-formed pin from the strip, after which it goes to inspection and plating as necessary.
The beauty of this process is that almost all the material is turned into the final part being made. Why only almost? Because a little is used when setting up the process, and more is lost when changing over for the next machine. Minimizing this is one reason for standardized working practices.
Consistency is Key
Bead Electronics uses a ‘closed die’ process which delivers excellent part to part consistency. This allows for downstream uniformity which reduces waste and saves on costs. In addition Bead’s commitment to their Quality Management System drives standardization and continuous improvement throughout the business, including on the factory floor.
Feedback from Automated Inspection
Bead Electronics has deployed automated vision systems throughout manufacturing. These perform 100% inspection, checking that the diameter, thickness and length of every pin are within limits. These systems work faster and more consistently than any human. That means customers can be confident they'll receive only high-quality contact pins that assemble and function without problems.
Low Cost, High Quality
The processes and systems used by Bead Electronics were developed and chosen for their ability to minimize waste and lower manufacturing costs without sacrificing product performance. Bead takes pride in accountability and the quality of the standard and custom contact and electronic pins manufactured: customers can be confident they will function exactly as expected.