The UK based Fablink Group is a privately-owned company specialising in the manufacture of cabs, pressings and assemblies to a number of global OEMs.
Having commenced trading with just two employees in 2005, the company’s impressive growth over the last 15 years, achieved both generically and through acquisition, means that Fablink’s headcount has grown to over 700 people spread over five sites.
As a tier one supplier, Fablink has built a strong reputation in delivering comprehensive design and manufacturing solutions to some of the world’s largest OEMs within the automotive, truck, off-highway, power generation and material handling industries.
Based in Brixworth, Northamptonshire, Fablink’s impressive Technical Centre provides a state of the art provision to support customers’ requirements related to design, prototype tooling and product development activities.
To help Fablink’s inspection work keep pace with rising production levels and to improve the company’s measurement capabilities, it researched into market leading measuring tools that had both tactile probing and scanning capabilities as well as having the generous measuring capacities to cover the large assemblies that Fablink manufacture. After witnessing several demonstrations, an order was placed with FARO UK for an advanced, 3 metre measurement range FARO QuantumM FaroArm, fitted with a FAROBlu Laser Line Probe SD.
Fablink Head of Quality Glenn Wright explained. “As we serve a range of challenging industries where consistent quality and competitive pricing are of paramount importance, it is vital that we remain at the cutting-edge of the technologies that support our quality ethos and our continuing pursuit of efficiency improvements. This is especially true when supplying the demanding automotive sector, where expectations of enhanced accuracy and increased efficiencies are a given.
“It was these factors and an increased workload that recently prompted our search for a hi-tech, large capacity technology that would boost our inspection competencies and further improve our efficiency levels. After seeing three scanning systems from leading metrology companies perform demonstrations, we came to the conclusion that the FARO QuantumM ScanArm was both the easiest and fastest system to use. We were very impressed with its accuracy, repeatability and the standard of the useable real time data it provided, alongside its ability to reduce our previous scanning times by up to 75%.
Glenn Wright added “As we received excellent training from the staff of FARO UK, our operators were soon able to undertake basic inspection routines. Then, as the FARO operating system is logical and easy to understand, our staff were soon able to undertake more complex measuring tasks.
“Although intended for use mainly at our Brixworth site, as the FARO solution is portable and quick to set up, it is available for use at our other sites. The QuantumM has also proved invaluable for the regular inspection and calibration of our jigs and fixtures.”
Ideal for companies that want to maximize their manufacturing productivity, reduce scrap and waste levels and improve their production and quality control efficiencies, when launched, the Quantum FaroArm achieved an industry first by becoming the first portable coordinate measuring machine (PCMM) to meet the most rigorous ISO 10360-12:2016 standards.
Equally at home in a quality control department or on the shop-floor, the robust QuantumM ScanArm is designed to deliver market-leading reliability and precision even in harsh environments. The light-weight and portable nature of the QuantumM ScanArm enables it to be easily transported and set-up quickly within remote areas. Dual hot-swappable batteries and its wireless operation for scanning also help to provides unmatched reach across the manufacturing floor.
The QuantumM ScanArm enables plug-and-play 3D laser scanning integration with FAROBlu™ technology. The optically-superior blue laser technology has a shorter wavelength than a red laser and delivers improved scanning results with a higher resolution. The use of an extra wide scan stripe and fast frame rate boosts productivity by increasing coverage and reducing scanning time. FAROBlu technology makes it possible to seamlessly scan across diverse surface materials regardless of contrast, reflectivity or part complexity without any special coatings or target placement.
John Fry, Head of Site at Fablink, Brixworth, concluded. “This latest addition to our technological portfolio supports Fablink’s continued vision of enhancing products and processes through the use of state-of-the-art equipment. Not only do we embrace such technologies because we believe it gives us an edge in what is a competitive market-place, but also because we believe in upskilling our workforce. We have found that exposing our employees to advancements in technology creates an enthusiasm and passion that is of benefit to all.