Supplier profile

All the advantages of lost wax casting

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The remarkable orientation to customers was for microfound and ats microfound the origin of huge investments in innovative services that allow providing wide-ranging support to end users.

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What is the strategic approach with which your company operates on the current market?

In a global market like the present one, which daily faces a great instability, it is important for us to offer the certainty of a structured company, able to satisfy all productive requirements. For this reason in 2011 we felt the need of enlarging our company, taking over the Ats factory in Bologna. We could not afford anymore being a small company in a niche market like the lost wax casting one where, due to dimensions and margins, it is difficult to invest in a business growth. We are investing a lot in technology and human resources, and this is giving important results.

In your opinion, what distinguishing features characterize your business reality and your activity?

First of all, certainly the strong customer orientation, which in these years has led us to invest in technological services able to support them, from the design and industrialization phase to the finished product, researching the best solutions together. Moreover, in the course of these years we have tried to diffuse the knowledge of our technology as much as possible, organizing courses and workshops in the company and by our customers, for the education of technical, research and development departments.

What targets have you set, in the short and long term?

Certainly an internal reorganization of the work oriented to a lean methodology, together with an increasing search for technical professionalism, in order to optimize machining times and costs. This is essential for us, also to approach new highly specialized product sectors and to widen our foreign market.

How does your company interpret the quality concept?

Quality must be total for us: we pay utmost attention to the qualitative aspect of the product, which must comply with all requisites demanded.

Prompt response and flexibility: how do you satisfy such requirements, so felt today?

Our customers’ demands are managed in two productive plants with different capabilities, which we have succeeded in specializing in these years, enhancing the peculiarities and the excellences of both. This will permit us to find the best solutions for each request. The Reggio Emilia factory has a streamlined organization, which allows working with great flexibility and rapidity, especially on special projects with high added value. The Ats plant in Bologna, highly competitive, is equipped with robotic plants able to cope with volume manufacturing.

Which services and solutions can you overall offer to customers?

As I have already said, we invested a lot to make innovative technological services available for our customers, such as casting simulation, rapid prototyping, cast engineering and controls with three-dimensional scanning. They are services still scarcely used in the mechanical sector, but essential to knock down times and costs in favour of higher product quality.

What are the major advantages provided by the precision lost wax casting in which you are specialists?

Benefits are uncountable, both of technical and economic kind. The lost wax casting allows a great design freedom while designing components with complex shapes, strict dimensional tolerances and materials difficult to machine. The main economic advantage resides in the possibility of replacing, with a single casting, small and big assemblies composed by different pieces, generally mechanically joined or welded, with a consequent decrease of cost and weight and better resistance. Another advantage is represented by the wide possible choice of materials (steel and aluminium alloys).

In what industrial sectors do the components that you manufacture mainly find application?

Considering the opportunities offered by this technology, we can find applications in the most various fields: from automotive to packaging, from food industry to furniture and design, from the hydraulic and electrical sectors to sports industry, earth handling machines, safety systems, shipbuilding and medical ambits. In other words, whatever field that needs steel castings, so difficult to obtain with standard machining operations, with special materials and good surface finishing.

Efficiency and energy saving: are there some initiatives that your company has undertaken or is going to undertake on the matter?

We heartily feel the environmental issue. We are working to attain soon the ISO 14001 environmental certification, which means constant commitment oriented to the reduction of emissions and to the recovery and reuse of residual production materials, through the use of innovative plants, increasing the energy efficiency, rationalizing the productive cycle, informing and training the internal personnel about the environmental effects connected with the executed activities. Microfound started this corporate policy already some years ago and has been precursor on a national scale, together with Assofond, of an important initiative aimed at making the enterprises of metallurgic sector aware of environmental themes.