Archive for Wezag Tools

Global Technology Partners in Focus: Wezag Tools

wezag_logo_4c_07_2014

Wezag Tools is a valuable Global Technology Partner to Wire Process Specialties. Wezag is a global leader in loose piece crimping solutions. Our customers appreciate the quality of tooling and equipment that is used in their assembly processes.

I am pleased to introduce Mike Lobkovich, Vice President for Wezag Tools in the USA.  Mike has agreed to contribute to our Focus series. Thank you for your time Mike.

WPS: Mike, can you give us an overview of the Wezag Product line.

ML:  WEZAG’s focus is the design and manufacture of ratcheting specialty tools used in 3 critical applications.   Cable cutters, which are used by the utility and industrial industries to cut stranded cable ranging from 32 – 100mm in diameter, crimp tools used by the electrical and electronic industries for termination of open and closed barrel terminals and compression tools used by the plumbing industry.

Crimp Tools are our largest and most diverse market in the areas of customer base and applications.   We offer both a scissor and straight action frame to provide our customers with high quality and repeatable performance.   Because we have standardized our frames we can offer our customers flexibility to perform many applications

One of our key benefits is that we allow the die set to be removed from the hand tool and then inserted into our portable and benchtop power solutions.

WPS: Can you outline the Wezag locations here in North America and internationally.

ML:   Since 1949, WEZAG has been headquartered in Stadtallendorf, Germany which is 60 miles northeast of Frankfurt.   Our facility provides 100,000 square feet of floor space for our manufacturing, engineering and Sales & Marketing teams. 

WEZAG is a vertically integrated manufacture.  Outside of raw material and packaging, we machine, mold, and assemble over 1,000,000 hand tools per year. 

WEZAG’s North American Headquarters is in Naperville, IL which is 35 miles west of Chicago.    WEZAG’s first North American facility opened in 1987 in Addison, IL.   Opened in March of 2011, the Naperville facility provides WEZAG with enhanced office and inventory space convenient for our employees and local customers.

WPS: The Naperville IL office is the North American office for Wezag. On top of managing the customer base domestically, do you maintain an inventory of tools and machines?

ML:    We opened the Naperville facility with the intention of supporting both the existing customer base and allow for expansion with new customers.    Manufacturing is currently centered in Germany but we offer added value capabilities here in Naperville.   We have a large inventory of both frames and dies which gives us the flexibility to assembly tools to meet the customer application. 

Our inventory philosophy is based upon the understanding that when a customer needs a tool they need it today not 8 weeks from now.

The Naperville facility allowed us implement a “Demo Room” where customers can visit to see the tooling options as well as bring in their applications for review.   

WPS: As mentioned, Wezag supplies loose piece crimping solutions. Can you describe the range of processing capability for the hand and bench based tooling platforms.

CS30 Hand Crimp Tool

CS30 Hand Crimp Tool

ML: Loose piece crimping is a challenge for any OEM and Sub-Contractor.    The Quality Department is concerned about the integrity of the crimp while manufacturing is focused on the process and potentially the consequences of the process mainly carpal tunnel syndrome   

Semi-Automatic and Fully Automatic applications provide high quality and repeatable terminations through the use of specially designed applicators. The loose piece sector is not as defined so WEZAG’s goal is to provide our customers and their end users with comparable terminations.   

I feel many people under estimate the amount of engineering that goes into each crimp tool we manufacture.    If you start to map out all the different parameters in loose piece crimping you can quickly see the value of having a company like WEZAG as a partner.

Here are some of the parameters we consider when designing a crimp tool.

  • Wire Size: AWG or mm2
    • WEZAG views wire size in 3 categories
      • 30 – 20               Mostly Electronics   Carry more data than power
      • 18 – 10                  Industrial Applications    More Power than Data    
      • 8 – 4/0+ High Power and Voltage Applications 
  • Open or Closed Barrel
    • Open Barrel
      • Center conductor crimp and insulation crimp completed during the same cycle
      • Each has their own unique crimp attributes
      • Wire Stop and / or terminal locator
        • To support the repeatability of the crimp from terminal to terminal and operator to operator
      • Closed Barrel
        • Bare conductor inserted into 1 crimp barrel
        • With or without insulation sleeve
          • 10 AWG and Higher      Hand Tool Comfortable
          • 8 AWG and bigger Powered solution needed
        • Frame Style
          • Scissor Action
          • Linear or Straight Action Crimping Process
            • Provides uniform crimping force on all die pockets

A key benefit I mentioned early regarding WEZAG is the ability for the die set to “migrate” from a hand tool frame to a powered solution.    This further increases the repeatability and safety of the crimping process.   We cover the full range of applications listed above and can support your requirements from 1 tool to 100 tools.  

WEZAG’s powered solutions range from portable to benchtop.     Portable in the sense that the application requires you to bring the crimp tool to the work and benchtop in the sense that you bring the work to the crimp tool.   Machine set-up from terminal to terminal is as easy as changing the die set.   Powered solutions can be segmented the following way.

UP60 Pneumatic Crimp Press.

UP60 Pneumatic Crimp Press.

Force Generation

  • Rechargeable Battery Hydraulic Pump
    • Portable Solutions
  • Benchtop Solutions
    • Pneumatic
    • Electric
    • Hydraulic

Crimp Force

  • 5 Tons (Electric and Pneumatic)
  • Most hand tools generate about 2 Tons of crimp force. Customers can use these machines in a “High Mix, Low Volume” crimp application where only a die set is needed between applications or a “Low Mix, Medium Volume” crimp application where they want to ensure the repeatability of the crimp process and protect their labor force from the risks of repetitive motion injuries
  • 4 – 5 Tons (Pneumatic)
  • Larger terminals down to 6 AWG
  • “High Volume – Low Mix”
    • Dedicated machine set up for each terminal
  • 5 Tons (Pneumatic)
    • 8 – 4/0 AWG
    • Terminal construction can define largest AWG
    • Battery and High Voltage Applications
    • Flexibility provided by adapters for industry standard die sets
  • 13 – 19 Tons (Hydraulic)
    • Very large terminals used in power generation

WPS: WPS provides customers with the support they need and resources required to successfully operate their business.  How does support like what WPS offers its customers fit into the overall business approach of Wezag?

We identify ourselves as an engineering and manufacturing company with the goal to be the preferred supplier of loose piece crimp solutions.   Because of this philosophy we are seen more as a partner than a supplier.   Our process is to understand your production challenge and then provide solutions for you to consider.   We are also involved in the implementation process to ensure that the operators are happy with the tools.   We look to be a long- time partner for each customer

WPS: Any new products that have been introduced recently that you can share with us?

ML: Being an engineering focused company we are constantly looking towards innovation.  From manufacturing practices to alloy composition we constantly strive to enhance our products.    Some areas always under consideration are the following.

  • Ergonomics
    • Weight, Balance, Hand Force
    • LED Lighting in critical crimp areas
  • Production / Quality Management
    • Cycle Counter
    • Crimp Force Monitoring
    • Bluetooth Connectivity for quality control

A new technology that we are excited about and involved in is the development of material for 3-D Metal Printing.    Most people are familiar with 3-D Plastic printing.   Similar concept but with the result being production quality pieces such as die sets.   This will allow us to provide custom die sets within 48 hour period.

A new solution we are excited about is our CS10-APP hand tool frame.   We worked in conjunction with Delphi to develop a hand tool frame which will accept the perishable tooling (Punch & Anvil) from the applicator.   The challenge in the automotive wire harness industry is to provide production level crimps in the Post-Production environment.     Delphi recognized they had a gap in their loose piece hand tool portfolio and worked with WEZAG to bring a solution to their customers. 

Mike, thank you for your time to answer these questions and provide a peak into the operations of Wezag Tools. For more information on Wezag Tools and how WPS can help with your crimping requirements, Connect Your Way to WPS.

Wire Processing Solutions for Communication Cables

Wire Processing Techniques span a number of assembly categories. In this posting we cover some of the processing methods used in assembling a communication cable.

We will focus on a  few cable types that represent the wider variety of communications cable assemblies and share processing methods.

Coaxial Cable

Coax cable generally has several layers including an outer jacket, woven metal shield and dielectric insulation over a center conductor.  Most applications require two or three stage stripping. This wire is normally crimped into a round coaxial connector. Stripping specifications are specified by the connector manufacturer to match the connector. The connectors are loose piece and have a pin that is crimped to the center conductor and the housing is placed over the wire and crimped on. The trend of coaxial cable is consistent with other wire, that is the range is increasing. We are seeing micro coax cables and at the other end large cable such as LMR400 for large telecomm installations such as cell towers.

Wire Cut to Length.

As this wire is typically stripped in two or three stages in an offline process (see Wire Strip), wire is separately cut to length.

Model 31 manual cutter from Carpenter Manufacturing

Model 31 manual cutter from Carpenter Manufacturing

Wire Strip

As mentioned above, this wire is normally stripped in two of three stages in a fixed strip length that is specified by the connector manufacturer. These multiple stages are processed using a programmable unit which can process multiple strips in sequence. Or separating the two or three processes onto separately adjusted stripping heads. See illustrations below.

Carpenter Model 74

Schaefer ST730 Coaxial Wire Stripper

Schaefer ST730 Coaxial Wire Stripper

Rittmeyer Beri.Co.Max Coaxial Wire Stripper for large cable.

Rittmeyer Beri.Co.Max Coaxial Wire Stripper for large cable.

Crimp

Crimping coaxial connectors is also a two step process. A terminal is crimped to the center conductor. The connector housing is assembled over the wire and crimped to the insulation. The crimp is normally hex shaped.  Hand or bench equipment for loose piece terminals is used to crimp both the center conductor and connector housing.

Wezag CS30 Hand Crimp Tool

Wezag CS30 Hand Crimp Tool

CS300 Electric Crimper for Loose Piece terminals.

Wezag CS300 Electric Crimper for Loose Piece terminals.

 

Automated processing of coaxial wire is possible for high volume applications.

RJ11 and RJ45 Cables

Cut and Strip

Cut and strip of RJ11 or RJ45 is possible. This wire is either flat (as pictured below) or round. Flat or radius blades are required to provide the desired nick and scrape free results.

RJ11 Parallel Wire Stripped on Carpenter Compu-Strip 97A.

RJ11 Parallel Wire Stripped on Carpenter Compu-Strip 97A.

Strip

Inner conductors and the outer jacket (round cable) can also be stripped stripped using rotary or blade style of wire strippers as illustrated below. Results are application dependent as some wire is irregular in shape.

Carpenter Model 72C

Carpenter Model 78

Crimp

Modular plugs are loose piece and require a linear action crimp head to crimp (Insulation displacement) modular plugs. The crimp heads are designed to process all leads at one time. Crimping can be done on the CS300 as pictured above or a pneumatic powered crimper like the SSC below.

Multi-Conductor Cables

Cut and Strip

A cut and strip machine as described for the RJ11/45 wire above can also be used to remove the outer jacket of a multi-conductor wire.  Radius blades may be required for some applications. For larger volume applications, wire processing machines are available where the outer jacket and inner conductors are processed at the same time.

Strip

In addition to the outer jacket stripping using a bench top rotary as described above, larger cross sections and longer strip lengths may require a heavy duty wire stripper as illustrated below.

Crimp

Crimping can be loose piece using the CS300 or SSC as described above or reel form terminals on strip.

Side Feed applicator from Applitek.

Side Feed applicator from Applitek.

Summary

As shown by the above applications, there are cross over techniques to these three examples. And by extension, other similar communication wire types. Finding the proper mix of processing methods is important to optimize a specific customer requirement. And that requires a partner that has the broad application knowledge and connections to produce the desired result.  WireProcess Specialties is that partner. We have the resources and partnerships you need. Connect Your Way to WireProcess Specialties.

Electrical Wire Processing Technology Expo 2015 in Review: Part One

The 15th annual EWPTE show is behind us. It was a good year with great attendance and new technology in display. WireProcess Specialties continued our strong presence with nine Global Technology Partners showing the latest in assembly solutions for wire processing technology. This is part one of a two part Expo in review. In this issue, we are focusing on Etco, Schaefer Megomat and Wezag Tools.

Schaefer Megomat

Schaefer Megomat displayed technology ranging from bench top processing solutions to the Megomat series of full processing solutions. Customers received demonstrations of unique automation configurations including a new block loader.  The Megomat series machines are going through feature upgrades including a new operating system (Wirestar 20). The latest versions were displayed. We now have several options for customers to choose from.

IMG_1226

The Primo XLT. A four station processing machine at an attractive entry level price point. High performance without the premium price.

The model 600 is an ultra high speed processing machine with new anti vibration technology. Capable of mounting weather seal applicators in addition to the presses.

IMG_1228

The model 800 is a multi station work center with a total of six stations. The 800 is used where flexibility is required without the need to remove and replace processing modules.

Other Items on Display at Schaefer Megomat

Sam1 Cut and Strip Machine

Sam 1 Cut and Strip Machine

IMG_1250

K1002 Hot Melt Mold Machine

New Megomat Terminal Block Loader installed on the 800 Wire Processing Machine

ETCO Incorporated and Schaefer Megomat automate the ETCO closed back flag system.

Our Global Technology Partners ETCO Inc and Schaefer Megomat  joined up to demonstrate the ETCO Insulated Closed Back Flag on the Primo XLT automation platform. The ETCO closed back flag is a two step process where the terminal is crimped and insulator inserted over the terminal in one step and a cover is inserted over the open end on the second step. This demonstration showed how a two step manual process can be automated and how it is accomplished on the Primo XLT.

Terry Curtis and John Stiness (ETCO). Primo XLT with ETCO Closed Back Flag.

Terry Curtis and John Stiness (ETCO). Primo XLT with ETCO Closed Back Flag.

The Wire and Cable Technology Article featuring this application can be downloaded by clicking here.

Wezag Tools Presents the new CS300 electrical Crimper

Wezag Tools unveiled the CS300 electric Crimper.  The CS300 (pictured below) is the next generation to the CS200 crimper. The CS300 has a rotating crimp head and can accept a wide range of crimp dies. A new digital display for entering set up parameters.

CS300 Electric Crimper for Loose Piece terminals.

CS300 Electric Crimper for Loose Piece terminals.

Mike Lobkovich and Thomas Glockseisen from Wezag displaying the CS300 crimper.

Mike Lobkovich and Thomas Glockseisen from Wezag displaying the CS300 crimper.

For more information on the CS300, please click here.

Click here for part two of our Expo review. WireProcess Specialties is your resource to Wire Processing Solutions. Connect Your Way to WireProcess today.

Wire Processing Solutions for Automation Assembly and Electrical Paneling.

Producing a wire assembly can be a simple process such as a simple hook up wire.  It can be as complex as a multi circuit wire harness.  Processing solutions for these wire assemblies can also be simple to complex.  The appropriate solution generally is dictated by the lot and global production size of a particular sub assembly.  Companies who’s core product is a wire assembly generally use a mix of processing solutions from manual hand tools through single process bench equipment to multi process automation.  Companies who process a wire assembly as a sub assembly installed into their core product typically use hand tools and bench top single and multi process equipment. This article focuses on solutions for low to moderate wire assembly requirements.  Companies who process electronics and printed circuit boards also fit in this category.

Manual Assembly Tools

 

Wire and Tube Cutting

Wezag SH CutterThe Wezag SH series of wire cutters are designed for cutting heavy cable.  Ratchet design and long handles provide high compression force with less physical effort.

 

31_9497The Carpenter 31 bench top wire and tube cutter is designed to cut wire and tube using a lever action.  The 31 has a 1″ high by 4″ high blade opening allowing for a large range of materials to be processed.  Separators can be added to accurately process multiple rows of material.

 

 

Wire Crimping

Featured Product

Wezag AE24-1 Wezag AE 24

The Wezag AE24 hand crimp tool is a universal hand tool designed to crimp ferrules.   A patented design from Wezag offers one universal die set to crimp ferrules from 24 to 10 awg.  No more guessing which crimp opening to use making the crimp process faster and more efficient. Ergonomic design reduces fatigue.

CS30STRATO

Wezag Tools supplies a full line of hand crimp tooling for open barrel terminals, closed barrel insulated and uninsulated terminals terminals and four point crimp for screw machine style pins.

.Powered Single Process Assembly Tools.

 Wire Stripping

Model 78
The Carpenter 78 is a pneumatic wire stripper which can process a wide range of wire sizes.  Using easily adjustable knobs to set the wire size, strip and pull lengths, the 78 can quickly change from one wire size to the next making small lots much more cost effective.  Other options for wire stripping include rotary wire strippers to efficiently strip the wire and twist the strands.

 

Terminal Crimping

62

The Carpenter Accu-Crimp 62 is pneumatically powered and can crimp a wide range of insulated and uninsulated terminals.  The die opening is always closed for safety purposes and is opened to load the terminals by pressing the upper knob.

Wezag CS 200

The Wezag CS200 is an electric powered crimp machine for loose piece terminals.  The CS200 can accept crimp heads for standard Wezag crimp tools providing the ultimate in flexibility.

Powered Multi Process Assembly Tools.

Wire/Tube Measure and Cut

Carpenter Compu-Cut 42C
The Compu-Cut 42C is a high performance wire and tube cutting machine with a large opening to process heavy cable, large OD tube, or several rows of material.  The 42C uses high accuracy feed motors and a powerful pneumatic cutter head.  In addition to the 42C, the Compu-Cut 33 is a smaller cutter for light duty wire and tube processing.

Wire Cut and Strip

eswthumb_97A

Compu-Strip 97A

For more information, please view our product focus on the 97A.

For high current or heavy cable applications, please refer to our article on large cable processing.

Other processing solutions include wire marking, ultrasonic wire splicing and shrinking of heat shrinkable tube.

Wire Process Specialties is equipped to supply your requirements for wire processing from simple manual tools to semi-automation and beyond.  Connect Your Way to WPS to find out how we can apply our technology to your processes to improve efficiency and reduce costs.

Terminal Crimping Technology

Crimping terminals is a common wire assembly process dating back several decades.  Over the years processing methods and procedures were established and improved to assure optimum crimp quality and electrical conductivity of the wire to terminal connection.  This article will cover the common crimp types, crimp methods used to provide a quality wire to terminal connection and migration path from manual processing to automation of the crimp process.

Crimp Types

Closed Barrel: Closed barrel terminals have a round crimp barrel that surrounds the wire being crimped.  There are two typical open barrel configurations, formed by progressive stamping process with a seam where the two sides come together and form a circle and solid machines connector where the crimp barrel is seamless, normally produced on a screw machine. Closed barrel terminals come insulated or non-insulated and are in loose form or on a reel. Examples of closed barrel terminals include rings, quick connects, ferrules and solid pins used in aerospace applications.

Open Barrel: Open barrel terminals are generally U shaped prior to crimping and are crimped around the terminal in a B shape or overlapped.  Open barrel terminals are generally available mounted on a reel but in some cases are available in loose form for lower volume processing. In addition to a barrel for the wire, some open barrel terminals include an insulation support for applications for additional strain relief (from vibration or wire movement).  Open barrel terminals normally are un-insulated but in some cases have a partially loaded insulator pod which is inserted over the terminal during the crimp process.

30160

An example of this terminal type is the ETCO pre-insulated terminal series.

 

Crimping Methods

Wezag Crimp Tool 1Hand Tools: A hand tool is used in low volume or prototype crimp applications. Tooling in a hand tool can be fixed and non-removable from the hand tool frame or can be removable. Crimp dies are available for open barrel and closed barrel terminals  A reliable method of crimping wire to terminals with good repeatability.  As volumes increase, repeated processing of terminals with hand tools can cause strain on an operator.

Bench Top Crimping: Crimping terminals with bench top crimping equipment provides moderate volume processing of loose piece and reel mounted terminals.

Wezag CS 200With loose piece terminals, the terminal and wire are hand loaded to a crimp nest and the operator cycles the press using a foot pedal or palm button.

62

Wezag CS200                                                          Carpenter Accu-Crimp 62

applicators2Reel mounted terminals are processed using a crimp press and applicator.  The applicator has a mechanical or pneumatic feed which positions the terminal on the crimp anvil.  The operator presses a foot pedal and the crimp press cycles, forming the terminal over the wire and advancing the next terminal for further processing.  A wide range of applications can be processed with bench top crimping equipment by the utilization of different press tonnages and applicators/die sets (fixed and quick change).

Automated Crimp Processing: Automated processing adds a wire cut and strip element to the crimp process.  The most basic form is the stripper-crimper which adds a wire stripping unit to a bench crimp press to strip the end of the wire and presenting the wire to the crimp nest for crimping.

Automated crimp centers process the wire from its source in a barrel or reel, cut and strip the wire to length and present it to a crimp press for crimping.  Reel fed applicators are the same as the bench top type.  In the case of loose piece terminals, a vibratory bowl is used to orient the terminals and present to the crimp press for crimp processing.

An example of an automated processing crimp center is the Megomat Primo XLT .

Manual to Automated Crimp, a Migration Path

As volumes increase, the need to automated also increases.  On occasion, the increase is dramatic, requiring a greater step through the automation migration path.  But normally the increase is controlled and slower so migration can take a multi step approach over time.

Hand Tool to Bench Top Migration: Migrating from a hand tool to power assisted bench top crimping requires a bench top crimping platform like the Accu-Crimp 62 or electric powered CS200 from Wezag Tools (both pictured above).

Wezag UP60

Heavy Duty Applications use higher tonnage to provide the power needed toprocess large terminals.  The Wezag UP60 is pneumatic powered and provides over 7 tons of crimp force.

Non-Fixed hand tool die sets may be removed and compatible with bench top crimping units.  This reduces the overall cost of the migration from hand tools to powered bench top equipment.

Bench Top to Automated Process Migration: Migrating from a bench top to automated processing machine like the Primo XLT or Uno multi-station machines is simple and straightforward.  Mini style applicators used in a bench press application as pictured above can be mounted directly from a bench top press to the press on the automation system.  Some applications require a different feed cam to feed the terminal on the press downstroke to allow for the robotic arm to swing into position with no interference from the terminal.

However, in the case of loose piece terminals, separate presses with integrated vibratory bowl fed systems may be required as they are not a standard set up on an automated machine.

Loose Piece to Reel Mounted terminal Migration: Converting from loose piece processing to reel fed terminals requires a crimp press and applicator as described above.  The first step is determining the compatible terminal on reel equivalent. If a quick change mini applicator can be used, then the crimp press can be quickly changed from one terminal type to another simply by switching out the terminal applicator.

Crimp Process Validation and Control

Assuring an adequate quality and repeatable crimp and crimp process is common among all crimping methods. Non Destructive and Destructive crimp testing is used as pre-process and in-process validation methods.  For more information on crimp quality process and validation, please refer to our three part series which can be found on our News Channel: Part One (crimp validation), Part Two (In Process Crimp Monitoring) and Part Three (Machine Process Capability and Calibration).

Wire Process Specialties has over 30 years of experience in processing of wire and cable including crimp technology.  Connect Your Way to WPS.  Our vision is to help our customers reduce processing costs and increase production efficiency.