Ryobi Aluminium Castings (UK) Ltd required the highest levels of cleanliness in the production of a vehicle oil pan for an international luxury vehicle manufacturer.
Increasing production levels without compromising quality necessitated a new washing system at its manufacturing facility at Carrickfergus in County Antrim, Northern Ireland.
Ryobi turned to MecWash Systems, the Tewkesbury based specialist in the design and manufacture of aqueous parts cleaning and degreasing equipment, to provide the solution.
Founded 75 years ago, Ryobi is renowned for its high quality die casting techniques and products. It has maintained this reputation throughout its growth globally, producing products for a range of blue chip clients, predominantly in the automotive sector.
To ensure Ryobi’s cleanliness requirements were surpassed, MecWash considered the process involved, the component geometry and contamination to develop the best cleaning solution.
In addition to the levels of cleanliness, the Ryobi die-casting process involves automated (robotic) loading and unloading systems and so the washing systems were designed for both manual use and to be integrated into this automated system.
“There was no room for complacency. We had to ensure the end product was leaving Ryobi’s manufacturing facility with cleanliness levels surpassing its own customer’s requirements,” said Paul Jarratt of MecWash.
“Most manufacturers and their clients require cleanliness levels with particles under 500 microns almost as standard nowadays, for precision components often far smaller. In the case of Ryobi, its high cleanliness specifications and the need for a faster process time to clean the parts - gravimetric 20mg per part – meant our Solo parts cleaning system would sit perfectly within the process.”
The Solo systems selected provide rotational spray washing with dedicated rotational jetting of critical features and hot air drying in a compact footprint, which meant they would fit neatly within the manufacturing environment.
“We provided two Solo machines and a stand-alone vacuum chamber to clean and dry the oil pan product. Working with our in-house chemist and design department, we ensured the machine focussed on the difficult to clean areas. The special dedicated jetting system was designed to focus the cleaning power on key oil ways and concealed galleries. The results surpassed the cleanliness specification by a considerable amount,” added Paul.
Steve Mulvenna, Project Engineer at Ryobi Aluminium Castings (UK) Ltd, said the success of the MecWash washing system meant they were investing in a further two systems.
“MecWash has been providing solutions for us for almost 10 years. Their machines are well priced within the market of industrial wash systems and they provide excellent cleanliness results for our automotive parts.
“The range of standard and customisable systems have been excellent in meeting our needs, key of which is the solution provided for automated (robot) loading/unloading. Their installations are smooth and the equipment is very robust and reliable.
“We run 24/7 with minimal downtime as a result of a MecWash system. The design of the machines is also a major plus.”
He said that in the next 12 months they would be investing in further washing technology to cater for increased production.
“We will be purchasing a total of five MecWash systems and integrating these into a fully automated wash cell to be installed in 2019.We look forward to working with MecWash on future projects.”