3 different glass processing machines replaced with 1 systron proHD

In addition to standard VSG and ESG products, Interpane Sicherheitsglas GmbH also produces a variety of interior and exterior glass with complex cut-outs or shapes. To remain competitive for this, the AGC subsidiary invested in the vertical glassprocessing centre proHD with washing machine.

With around 120 employees and a production area of 10,000m², Interpane Sicherheitsglas GmbH, based in Hildesheim (Germany), processes around 200,000 m² of flat glass per year. The core competence lies in the production of safety glass. In 2022, approximately 102,000 m² was processed into laminated safety glass made of tempered safety glass and 98,000 m² into monolithic tempered safety glass, generating sales of more than 14.5 million euros. The special decor variants such as sandblasting, screen printing, digital printing, groove cutting as well as coloured foil combinations and laminated photos as well as glass with alarm transmitters and model variants in every shape result in an unrivalled product portfolio.

Expansion of capacities

To avoid bottlenecks in production, plant manager Frank Matz decided to invest in a new glass processing centre in consultation with the investment managers of the AGC Group. The specifications were extensive.  Decision criteria such as short setup times, high performance, space-saving operation, ease of maintenance, good spare parts availability, low operating costs, and top service were ultimately decisive in choosing the vertical glass processing centre systron proHD with integrated waterjet.

“For our requirements, the 5029proHD is the optimal solution for glass up to 5m in length,” says the plant manager.

Minimizing setup times even with batch size 1

Frank Matz sees the challenge in the further development of the company at the Hildesheim site, among other things, in the fact that it is a steadily growing factory. “We have to get along with limited space and we basically manufacture batch size 1. Consequently, we need very precisely coordinated, selective automation solutions. We don’t want to rebuild the entire production,” he explains.  With the installation of the 5029proHD vertical centre including the systron WM washing & drying station in February 2022, an important step was taken towards more efficient and space-saving production.

“We previously had to use 3 different processing machines to produce slightly more complex glass, a horizontal processing, drilling station and the single side edging machine.

Not to mention the handling effort and the washing stations in between, this was also very costly to map in the production planning system. Each step had to be scheduled one after the other and provided with transition grids. Now we clamp once and get the finished glass with free shapes, holes and a brilliant polish. This speed optimization was enormously important to us,” says Frank Matz.

systron proHD glassprocessing centre waterjet cut glass

Fully automated interface to the ERP system

Minimizing file post-processing, i.e. the processing of CAD or CAM data on the machine, was also an important optimization point for Interpane. “The systron glass processing machine can do a lot and is therefore a difficult operating tool for mapping in the ERP system, especially because it performs the complicated machining operations,” he says. “Sophisticated development work was necessary until everything ran smoothly, but the engineers from Albat&Wirsam and systron managed to implement our ideas with great coordination,” says the plant manager, who is extremely satisfied with the result. He adds: “I can also access various parameters such as m² of ground or polished glass, linear meters, etc. from my PC. For a good overview and planning, production figures, machine utilization, production backlogs, etc. are of course essential.”

Maintenance & Support

An essential point for every customer is the machine availability and, along with it, maintenance and service. “I was immediately impressed by the machine concept, i.e. the design and maintenance accessibility,” says Frank Matz. “We have now been using the system for a year and have never needed a systron technician on site. We have good maintenance staff in-house, in combination with systron’s competent, free remote support, you can work smoothly.”

Experience with systron TOOLS

After a year of empirical values, Frank Matz can also assess the tools specially developed by systron:

„We work exclusively with systron TOOLS because here the tool is perfectly matched to the machine.

Of course, know-how was also transferred from systron to Interpane in terms of machining parameters and tool selection. The feed rates and profile retention of these glass processing tools definitely justify the price. It’s like buying a new systron machine, the purchase price may seem high, but added up to the running meters of a finished product and the service life of this machine, the investment returns very quickly.”

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