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Hans Weber Holzmaschinenfabrik GmbH combines design and ergonomics in a new operating concept
When Stefan Müller talks about “his” planing machines, he often uses words like “aesthetically pleasing” or “high quality” – because the machines are often used by companies that demand these characteristics from their products. In addition to manufacturers of high-quality kitchens and furniture, large furniture chains are among the customers of the company based in Kronach in Upper Franconia, Germany. The company stands out not just thanks to its perfect-quality machining, but also due to its reliability and efficiency. The latest example of how it embodies these three features is its use of an innovative control solution that combines elegant design with ergonomic operation.
Stefan Müller, sales manager at Hans Weber Maschinenfabrik GmbH, gets to see the importance the visual appearance of a machine carries as an argument for customers on a daily basis. “For many of our customers, the machine is like a store window for their own expertise. Especially in the field of high-quality furniture, it’s all about making an elegant, aesthetically pleasing product that isn’t merely functional – and the machine hall needs to match these expectations.” But appearance is also important for another reason, as Müller continues: “We almost always have a system operator with us at discussions with customers; in other words, the people who use our machines on a day-to-day basis. Their opinion on the user-friendliness of our machines is very significant to our customers – and now we can score even more.”
The planing machines are modular and can have up to eight different machining units for different types of surface and quality grades. This enables Weber to handle a very broad range of applications, from yacht-building to door production.
With an infinitely variable feed rate of between 5 and 70 m per minute as well as contactless workpiece detection by laser, high-performance machines like the new KSL automatic sanding machine are specifically designed for complex and demanding applications in the field of industrial woodworking – including door production, industrial furniture production, and the construction materials industry.
Weber consistently puts an emphasis on quality and efficiency in woodworking: The company’s goal is to enable its customers to achieve perfect sanding results with minimal use of resources. That’s why the operator station with a touch-panel, push-buttons, and switches is a key part of the machine concept.
The Weber Maschinenfabrik GmbH, rich in tradition, can look back on over 100 years of sanding machine manufacturing. The company is synonymous with innovation and high-quality machine construction. With the right products and excellent support, Siemens is a key element in the solutions made by Weber.
Based on decades of experience and constant innovation, Weber develops automatic sanding machines to meet the highest standards at its headquarters in Kronach. This is what ensures that the living material – wood in all its diverse varieties – will delight after processing due to the company’s efficient and resource-conserving production.
Quality is standard practice at Weber. It’s evident in the overall concept of the sanding machines, the intelligent solutions, and the numerous patented details that always yield the same result: perfectly sanded surfaces. The company only uses high-quality components for its mechanics, sanding units, and automation systems – a quality characteristic that’s greatly appreciated by the company’s customers.
Hans Weber supports the company’s customers with innovative sanding technology, ergonomic operation, and excellent customer support. Weber constantly develops new concepts that offer customers true added value – for example, with the new control cabinet-free control unit, another indication that Weber’s machines are constantly improving, bit by bit. The new unit gives its range of sanding machines the finishing touch, both in terms of technology and from an aesthetic point of view.
At the core of the concept is an extremely slim-line, IP65 enclosed Simatic HMI PRO Comfort Panel with a 15" screen diagonal and a matching extension unit for buttons and switches. This enabled Weber to mount the control unit on a support arm that can be independently positioned, with no need for extra protective measures, so that the operator can keep an eye on the process at all times.
The innovative operating concept with the fully-enclosed Simatic HMI PRO touch panel and the matching extension units for buttons and switches makes the operator’s work at the machine much easier. It also underscores the performance and elegant design of Weber machines– both of which are important arguments for the customers of Hans Weber Maschinenfabrik GmbH.
In the building materials industry, companies often literally work around the clock and all year round, making it practically impossible for them to compensate for downtime. That’s why Siemens is the automation partner of choice – and is often requested in their customers’ tender specifications.
Weber enjoys success with its top-quality, high-performance machines where quality, efficiency, and availability matter. Weber machines are also especially popular with small and medium-sized enterprises as a showcase for their own expertise – and therefore they also need to meet high standards in terms of aesthetics and appearance.
To automate its planing machines, Weber relies on Simatic products for control and visualization. “It allows us to plan the control cabinet-free solution with the PRO device using the same tools as our other visualization concepts with a control cabinet. We also plan the controller in the same environment in TIA Portal. The combination of compatible components for the various requirements and a uniform engineering environment for every aspect of the automation helps us efficiently manage and develop our expertise,” explains Roland Bätz. “At the same time, we can largely standardize our solutions and plan them on the basis of tested and flawless modules. That saves us a lot of effort and significantly simplifies commissioning on site.”
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