With what operational philosophy does your company face today’s complex market and its challenges?
Nord-Lock Group is in the forefront on a world scale in safety systems for bolted connections. We started the production in 1982 and we rely on a sale organization that is living an expansion phase. With branches in Europe, USA and Asia. Besides, we are supported by a world network of sales partners and authorized distributors. Nord-Lock Group is owned by Investment AB Latour, company listed at the Stockholm Stock Exchange, and in 2011 it took over Superbolt Inc and P&S Vorspannsysteme AG (today Nord-Lock AG), coupling two of the most reliable bolt fixing technologies in the world. The competence of our Group allows us to offer a wide choice of safe and profitable solutions for critical applications.
What mission did you set and are you pursuing with your activity?
Our mission consists in protecting human lives and customers’ investments, being a reliable partner for the optimization of bolted connections.
In your opinion, what needs do customers, and the market in general, most highlight today?
Our customers, and the market in general, pursue the target of the qualitative excellence of their products, to succeed in being competitive on the international stage. We offer a service that ranges from design to the control and maintenance of customers’ production. We can provide a complete traceability of our products and the whole opportune certification concerning the used materials.
What relevance have research and development activities for a reality like yours?
A reality like ours, which operates in an international context, cannot leave an effective research and development activity apart. Moreover, also the recent distribution of the washer Nord-Lock X-Series, innovative evolution of the standard washer, witnesses it.
How is your production subdivided and what aspects most characterize it?
We propose a broad range of innovative products, in-house designed and developed. The Nord-Lock X-Series washers, the standard Nord-Lock washers and the Superbolt technology satisfy customers’ needs while complying with the highest standards. Our certifications and approvals include: AbP, ABS, DIBt, DNV and TÜV, and our production sites are located in Sweden, in Switzerland and North America. Nord-Lock Production System is strongly customer-oriented: we create added value thanks to products standing out for high and uniform quality and we intend to go on increasing customers’ satisfaction. The PDCA (Plan-Do-Check-Act) cycle allows us to implement the continuous improvement and the 5S methodology (Sort, Simplify, Shine, Standardize, Sustain) to obtain standardized working methods. Drastically reducing wastes, we aim at an economic production based on lean principles, on the collaboration and on inter-functional improvement areas.
Besides, in this context, what products of the Nord-Lock range do you consider as most relevant?
First of all, all of our products conform to the same requisite: safety. Today we can rely on the standard Nord-Lock washer based on the wedge-locking principle, our wheel nut, the screw/washer group, the brand-new Nord-Lock X-Series (winning not only against the unscrewing due to vibrations and dynamic load, but also referring to the loss of pre-load due to the settling and the stress-relieving of the junction), the Superbolt MJT wedge-locking and the Expansion Bolt. Not less important are also the solutions engineered in collaboration with customers.
What are the industrial sectors that you preferably address?
The technologies that we propose find natural application in all industrial sectors, wherever there is at least one bolted connection to be made safe.
With what solutions, in particular, do you address the foundry and the die-casting sector and what products do you deem most suitable for this market?
The steel production has radically changed starting from the industrial revolution but it remains a difficult and demanding sector. Under these conditions, bolted junctions must resist despite the constant exposure to corrosive agents, high vibrations and extreme temperatures. An unloosed junction implies not programmed maintenance and repairs, as well as expensive production delays. The most appropriate product is certainly our Superbolt MJT wedge-locking, which allows making safe also big-size joints with simple instruments, being a pure tensioning element. Also the Nord-Lock washer finds several applications, in a sector where safety is certainly one of customers’ main targets.
What services can you offer in the pre-and after sale phases?
Our staff of engineers and experts in bolted joints is always ready to support customers since the design and test phase, adding value to the whole project. Our promise is to grant the most critical bolted joints, according to a strategy of profitability of the junction itself; therefore, we offer also a service of Life Cycle Profitability (LCC) and of Return of Investment (ROI). A team of Field Application Engineers concretely supports customers through the tested internal structures of Perfomance Services and of Technical Verification Center. If necessary, we collaborate with customers starting from their first installations and it is possible to carry out a short technical training through our e-learning.
Virtuous behaviours towards the environment as distinguishing factors and competitive opportunities for today’s enterprises: what is your opinion about that?
The environment is certainly one of the heritages at our disposal that we must preserve with all means. According to this vision, Nord-Lock Group answers with a productive cycle that pays attention to environmental regulations, in conformity also with the latest EU Regulations concerning ELV and RoHS.