There are many reasons why Precision Plus (PPI)’s customers are requesting that components as small as 1/8” in diameter be marked in one way or another: branding, material identification, serialization, and date coding, among others. In an era where the precision of a component could mean the difference between life and death, companies are taking component identification to the next level.
Paul McDonough, Manufacturing Engineer at Precision Plus, explains that investing into a laser marking system for relatively low volume custom jobs, addresses these types of customer customization requirements.
PPI recently purchased and installed a MeccoMark® Laser System, a desktop solution with a 4.3” marking area, and a rotary circumference marking area of up to 4” in diameter. The system in place at PPI accepts parts up to 10.5” high. “Although any MS font can be programmed to print,” explains McDonough, “to keep things simple, we are using Tahoma, and offering standard heights ranging between .040” to .160”.”
In addition, the system has bar and QR coding capabilities, can mark most metals and some plastics, can mark logos and images, and provides many serialization options.
The MeccoMark® System has become a part of PPI’s suite of secondary operations, which depending on the part and the process required to complete it (i.e., aluminum anodization, electropolishing steel, etc.), may come before or after another secondary operation.
Loading components into the fixtures for marking, however, remains a manual operation. The process can take from 3 seconds to 3 minutes to complete, subject to the size of the component and the complexity of the mark. “Because the parts going through the system are typically part of low volume custom orders, it does not justify any further automation,” adds McDonough.
Paul McDonough joined Precision Plus in May of 2015, after 17 years with Dentsply, a dental equipment and supplies manufacturing company, where he was dubbed “The Project Guy.” At PPI, he is looking to identify the increasingly specific needs of customers for precision components, and assess the viability to add in-house processes to reduce turnaround time and increase quality.
Precision Plus welcomes Paul McDonough to the team!