Stauff, the international components manufacturer for hydraulic lines, is investing worldwide in in-house tube bending centres. Stauff UK, based in Sheffield (UK), has been routinely designing complex line systems and preparing tubes for 30 years.
Stauff’s subsidiaries in Russia, India and Brazil have been equipped with high-tech tube bending machines in recent years. The centre in the United States followed at the start of 2019. Stauff companies in Italy, China, Korea and Australia have been offering some tube preparation services for years. The capacity in Russia is currently being expanded, with more manufacturing sites in Europe and Asia at the planning stage.
Stauff is therefore systematically continuing to develop its Stauff Line concept of scalable hydraulic line services: “We take more complex steps in manufacturing processes away from OEMs by integrating connection-ready tubes into prefabricated assemblies in more and more countries,” states Jörg Deutz, CEO of the Stauff Group, explaining the strategy.
All popular materials and designs of tubes, with diameters ranging from 6 to 50.8 mm and wall thicknesses of 1 to 4.5 mm, can be bent into highly complex forms in Stauff tube bending systems. Components, such as nuts and cutting rings, can be mechanically assembled and tube ends prepared for the fitting of tube connectors, either by flaring or forming. Other steps include the welding or soldering of connecting parts with subsequent coating and/or surface finishing. The pre-assembly of further system components, such as clamps, flanges, valves, manifolds etc. – all in-house developed and manufactured – is also done at Stauff. The tubes prepared for assembly are combined to form assemblies and modules and assembled on shadow boards or A-frames until they are delivered to the machine and plant builder’s assembly line.
The benefits are clear to see: procurement complexity and stock levels for individual components are decreased, efficiency and safety are increased due to shorter assembly times and the avoidance of assembly errors and the end-to-end responsibility for entire sections of line, from connection to connection, is transferred to a single manufacturer.
The role model for all sites is the global Stauff Competence Centre for Tube Preparation at the Stauff Group’s British subsidiary. All Stauff subsidiaries are equipped with the same high-tech tube bending machines as are used here to ensure global results are produced at a constantly high-quality level. They are linked to each other through a cloud application, allowing manufacturing parameters, determined at Stauff UK if required, to be transferred directly from machine to machine.
“We benefit from the transfer of knowledge from our experienced British colleagues to the worldwide sites in place of a long learning process,” explains Jörg Deutz. “However, this close international collaboration is of enormous benefit to global companies, as they can then rely on obtaining 100% identical high-quality line modules worldwide. We guarantee this as a full-line supplier that solely works with its own in-house produced components and as the owner of highly competent tube bending centres.”