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Thanks to its quiet operation and low energy consumption, the Green Press FX Servo press brake, which is one of Ermaksan’s green press group machines, features about 69% less energy consumption than hydraulic press brakes.

The new generation press brake Green Press FX Servo, which has been developed by the Ermaksan R&D engineering team, uses servo-electric motor technology and makes a big difference in the sector by its environment-friendly structure without any contaminant. The machine is supplied as   standard with 3 meter length and 100 tons of power but is also available with 1.6 meter, 2 meter, 2.5 meter length and 40, 65 and 80 tons of power alternatives.


Not only low energy consumption, but also low maintenance cost

While a high energy efficient servo motor is used, the motors will not work while the upper beam is not moving, which provides 69% energy savings; on stand-by mode the energy saving is 98%. Motors work only when ram is moving down and no hydraulic system and cylinder were used on the machine. As it is a completely mechanical machine, it can be used with less maintenance cost.

Sliding front support arms with stoppers

With precise linear bearing and the sliding front support arms that can move right and left on the rail, the sheet can be easily controlled by the operator from the front. Also, the length of the parts can be measured by means of a measuring device mounted on the front support arms. The sheet can be fixed from the front with the aid of the flip stop which is mounted inside the T slot.

Silent operation with below 70 decibels

While high energy efficiency is provided, there is no oil usage at Ermaksan’s green technology   Green Press FX Servo model. Thus, no problem is encountered in terms of contamination of the working area caused by oil leakage. Pressing is executed by two synchronized servo motors moving the top beam via belts and pulleys and the return of the beam is realized by spring force. With below 70 decibels the machine is very silent and there is no noise pollution to disturb the environment.

Unlimited Full length bending capacity

With unlimited full length bending capacity, the operator can perform full length bending between the columns. The body construction is bolt connected and the back gauge system is matchless resulting in maximum precision.

Safety is at maximum level

The coloured Plexiglas windows at the rear guards provide the ability to see inside the machine with safety at maximum level. Front light body guard Leuze MLC100 is in line with CE regulations. Furthermore front top, lateral and rear sides of the machine are surrounded with closed guards. LED lights at the front and rear of the machine both ease operators’ working conditions.

Includes Industry 4.0 solutions for smart factories

The ER 4.0 software developed by Ermaksan engineers under the scope of Industry 4.0 processes and reports data transferred via the inter-machine communication network and has been designed to ensure continuity and productivity. All components on the machine are collected on a common network and data can be easily accessed. Thanks to this software, users will increase performance and productivity by reaching the widest range of data from the machine in real-time.

For More information, contact WD Hearn – Tel: 021 534 5351

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The focus of the global manufacturing industry will be on South Africa next year as representatives of 22 countries meet in Cape Town for the 16th World Conference of the International Special Tooling and Machining Association (ISTMA). Tooling and machining are key constituents in the supply of manufactured goods.  The International Association’s triennial World Conference, General Assembly and constituent meetings of regional groupings ISTMA Europe, Americas, Africa and Asia will coincide with the All Africa Expo and the event will collectively be known as All Africa Expo ISTMA 2023. The Production Technologies Association of South Africa (PtSA), the industry representative body for the tooling manufacturing industry in SA and the only African member association of ISTMA World, will host All Africa Expo ISTMA 2023.

Bob Williamson, President of ISTMA World.

The President of ISTMA World, Bob Williamson, says the 16th ISTMA World Conference will take place in Cape Town from 18 to 22 September 2023. This follows a unanimous decision by ISTMA World to move the Association’s 16th World Conference, originally scheduled to take place in Shanghai, China in 2023, to Cape Town due to Covid-19 restrictions in China. The decision was made at a General Assembly meeting attended by 14 member countries in Stuttgart Germany in May this year.  Williamson says the decision was supported by the China Die & Mould Industry Association (CDMIA). CDMIA will now host the 17th ISTMA World Conference in Shanghai in June 2026.

He welcomed the decision and said it created a win-win solution for ISTMA and both China and South Africa. Williamson says All Africa Expo ISTMA 2023 will focus on sustainable developmental approaches and ways to optimise technical and skills development in manufacturing.

ISTMA World is a non-commercial international association serving as a global platform for cooperation and knowledge sharing between 23 member associations in 22 countries in the tooling and machining industry. Collectively, ISTMA member associations represent more than 8 000 companies with a collective annual turnover in excess of 120 billion U.S. dollars.

The Group Chief Executive Officer of PtSA, Tapiwa Samanga, says the event will offer significant benefits to manufacturing in Africa as the local tooling manufacturing industries will be exposed to the latest global manufacturing technology, the world’s leading tooling houses and the most influential people in the industry. He emphasises that All Africa Expo ISTMA 2023 can serve as an important catalyst to ignite the growth of the African tooling manufacturing sector. “African countries have policy frameworks to promote manufacturing but sometimes lack the knowledge, resources and networks. Governments and industry should focus on the key role of tooling in the establishment of a sustainable manufacturing economy. This was the blueprint for the successful turnaround of the SA tooling industry and can offer valuable lessons to other African countries”, says Samanga.   Global linkages and relationships will be key to the success of the new African continental manufacturing renaissance. It will create awareness of how the factories of the future will look like and familiarise African tooling manufacturing companies with the advanced digital technologies of the 4th Industrial Revolution. It is the only way for Africa to become globally competitive” Samanga says. “The All Africa Expo will furthermore serve as the prime showcase for tooling manufacturing in Africa. It is expected to draw exhibitors and visitors from at least ten countries across the African continent. The Expo will feature country pavilions and exhibitions by African production technology companies. The comprehensive display will highlight manufacturing pockets of excellence on the continent, including high-end machine tooling products for the automotive, drone manufacturing and packaging industries worldwide.”

The Expo will host an African Investment Indaba Conference to solicit support and investment for the growth of manufacturing on the continent. The formation of an ISTMA Africa Forum will also be formalised at All Africa Expo ISTMA 2023 to assist with Africa’s economic recovery. This follows extensive discussions between industry and government representatives of Botswana, Malawi, South Africa, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Zambia, the SADC Business Council and the East African Economic Community.  Zimbabwe has consequently already established the Zimbabwe Tool, Die and Mould Association with the help of PtSA in anticipation of the rejuvenation of the continent’s tooling manufacturing industry. Zimbabwe Tool, Die and Mould Association will become the second African member of ISTMA.

Samanga says All Africa Expo ISTMA 2023 comes at a crucial time – “not only is global warming driving a move away from conventional forms of energy use, but the war in Ukraine underlined the world’s dependence on gas and oil. These events are speeding up the process of change to alternative forms of energy, including electric vehicles. From a resources point of view Africa boasts a significant part of the world’s cobalt, manganese, titanium and graphite – all the ingredients globally driving the development of new generation lithium ion technology. Africa needs to seize the opportunity for beneficiation of its resources by developing high-end technology in fields like green energy production. Africa has a history of incredible innovations and needs the access to the technology, networks and investment on offer at All Africa Expo ISTMA 2023 to take manufacturing on the continent to different strata.”


Amith Singh, Head of Energy at Nedbank, unpacks the turmoil and the potential in the manufacturing sector

The manufacturing landscape in South Africa has undergone a fundamental shift over the past two years thanks to several complexities that have had an impact, both locally and globally. In the country, the power supply remains a significant obstacle, while global instability, port complexities and rising fuel prices add their own challenges to the mix.

However, in spite of these issues, the manufacturing sector has shown impressive resilience and an optimism that is set to promote growth.

In the first quarter of 2022, the South African economy grew by 1,9% at the back of a 1,2% growth in the last quarter of 2021, returning the country to its pre-Covid-19 pandemic levels. The manufacturing sector showed an increase of 4,9% in the first quarter, making it a solid contributor to the overall economic performance of the country. That said, it is unlikely that this growth will be reflected in the second quarter of 2022 due to the floods in Kwa-Zulu Natal, the ongoing conflict between Ukraine and Russia, China’s zero-Covid measures and the strain on the electricity supply. The latter has hindered the sector as many of the specialised machinery and equipment required to keep manufacturing plants fully operational need start-up times. Plus, with a period of two hours without electricity, machinery is not optimised or fully used for up to eight hours.

That said, the country has come a long way in adapting to this volatility and it is likely to continue with this level of strength and resilience into the rest of the year. Some of the successes that have stood out over the past two years have come from companies that have streamlined their operations and diversified their offerings, both vertically and horizontally. This has meant they have been able to implement more stringent measures around cash flow and resources and this has kept the companies operating and measurably improving. There’s also been a visible increase in the adoption of e-commerce channels and companies embracing technological advancements to further optimise processes and drive performance.

Nedbank has developed a cohesive and holistic offering tailored to meet the rigorous and complex expectations of the manufacturing sector. Centred around a proactive partnering approach, the platform offers guidance and advice around growth and expansion strategies while introducing digital efficiencies that streamline admin and provide easy-to-use banking functionality. Our manufacturing solution is also designed to ensure that the sector remains agile with the tools it needs to execute at speed. We do this through a seamless end-to-end funding process that has reduced paperwork and enhanced disbursement capabilities for supplier payments.

We recognise that it is important for the sector to not just navigate local challenges with ease, but international ones as well. This is why we’ve made it simple to navigate international markets with a suite of international banking solutions and providing access to global networking opportunities that connect clients with international trade opportunities.

Our value proposition rests not just in our capabilities and customised solutions, but in our partnership approach. Our clients in the manufacturing sector benefit from a partner that’s committed and brings industry expertise that will support them as they grow and invest and provide sound financial strategies based on deep insight.

For more information about our specialist manufacturing services, email us at manufacturing@nedbank.co.za.


Alberto Martínez, Chief Digital Officer (CDO)

By Alberto Martínez, Chief Digital Officer (CDO) und Head of Competence Center Software Service, Bystronic Group

8 a.m. on just another Tuesday morning. A member of a sheet metal processing job shop’s sales team turns on his computer. As he drinks his first cup of coffee, he checks his emails, opens what looks like a quotation request from a customer, and clicks on the attachment. The ransomware immediately kicks in, and in just a few minutes all the files on the company’s server have been encrypted and can no longer be accessed. In the very best of cases, this results in several hours of downtime.

Many companies are extremely hesitant when it comes to introducing the industrial internet of things (IIoT) or cloud systems because they believe this will open the door to cybercriminals. However, they do not realize that they are already facing this danger on a daily basis. A simple email with an attachment or a link can result in the encryption of all the information on a server. You are at risk even if you have not implemented an entire ecosystem connecting customers and suppliers. Thus, it is essential to be aware of the threats and be ready to quickly respond in the event of an attack.

Cybersecurity is currently on everyone’s lips. There have recently been many widely-publicized cases of large companies falling victim to cyberattacks that compromised their operations in one way or another. In some of these cases, it was revealed that the companies’ security policies had not kept up with the past decade’s rapid changes relating to the use of digital technologies and tools, and that they apparently acted in the belief that a cyberattack could only ever affect others. The sheet metal processing sector is no exception to this reality.

In most cases, concern over the security of systems becomes more pressing when a company decides to increase its level of digitalization, for example by transferring tools to the cloud. This is when many companies start thinking: What are the dangers of connecting our systems and machines? What about networking with external systems? And what are the risks of using cloud-based systems?

In the following, we outline answers to these questions:

What risks are involved in networking systems?

The transition from manual or automated manufacturing to a digital factory involves the creation of hybrid areas, where systems (on-site or in the cloud) interact. Together with the IIoT infrastructure, these allow real-time information on what is happening to be accessed from wherever required, thereby paving the way to much more agile decision-making.

This reality is already within reach for many small and medium-size enterprises. Only a few years ago, this level of digitalization was accessible only to a handful of companies, but because of the democratization of systems, and above all because of the widespread use of pay-as-you-go and cloud systems, many SMEs are now facing the challenge of securing their systems.

The first basic and essential step is the implementation of cybersecurity policies that include training for users and that are based on an in-depth understanding of the partners with which the company is working, especially in the cloud, to ensure they meet the required standards.

The establishment of these policies must be combined with systems that provide security all the way from the design stage right through to their implementation and maintenance.

What is security by design?

The security of systems has ceased to be a matter that is addressed only at the outset, as used to be the case when systems were installed on-site and were not networked. However, once we start connecting systems with each other, either within our own environment or with third parties, security must be treated as a priority issue that has to be taken into account during the development of a system and every subsequent modification.

This results in the security by design concept, which consists of basing the development process on failsafe security measures. This is the only way we can ensure that development is backed by cutting-edge technologies and best practices in software architecture and design. Design of this nature caters for secure communications outside of the system itself, including the appropriate identification and registration of all the components and users. It should provide the possibility of defining access permissions for different roles and be capable of monitoring each component by logging events. Due to the increase in the number of system components, each component needs to be updated individually, while also maintaining the stability and reliability of the system as a whole.

In a smart factory, how should the security of the various levels of management be addressed?

The design of a digital factory is based on three levels:

– Systems that manage machines

– Systems that manage the production plant

– Systems that manage business

Each one of these levels can contain more than one system involving several suppliers. Besides management and control systems, there are also analytical systems that measure the machines’ performance and status either in real time or based on logs. One of the most common demands relating to digitalization projects is to gain an overview of the manufacturing status and to be able to remotely access this information. With regard to business management, the systems usually need to be connected to CRM software or to customer portals for the management of orders.

The exposure of these systems to open environments and the interoperability between them are key to successful digitalization. The solution to these challenges does not mean isolating systems, but rather creating different environments. Moving from one to another then requires passing through a single point, where we can establish control and verify the authenticity of the system issuing or receiving the message or request as well as the actual message itself. In other words, our security system is as robust as the weakest link in the chain.

And what about cloud systems in a digital factory ecosystem?

All levels that incorporate management software in a digital factory can utilize systems in the cloud. The machines are the first item we need to protect in order to prevent cyberattacks against a digital factory. The key to securely connecting machines to systems is the deployment of reliable machines based on state-of-the-art technology, and the incorporation of software ensures a simple connection with systems on the next level.

With regard to shop floor management, it must be possible to create a network within which all machines are connected to each other. This network should be connected with the next level via a highly dependable firewall. This requires following certain guidelines and monitoring the ports, communications, and thus the information that the systems share.

At the level of business management, it is important to implement different networks for the different groups working with the individual systems. These are connected to our servers via a single hub that is monitored and secure. Our in-depth understanding of the nature of our customers’ communications allows us to avoid non-authenticated and insecure sources or origins.

Systems in the cloud should secure the communications hub and computer ports, whereby communication is always initiated from our systems and not vice versa (from the cloud).

In conclusion, potential problems do not result from the networking of systems or from the cloud. Quite the opposite is true, and they both have an enormous potential for the development of a truly digital factory. Issues also exist in conventional manufacturing environments where attacks are already taking place on a daily basis. A robust interconnection system with a reliable provider who is committed to the security of your systems is crucial to ensuring the security of your digitalization process and is thus one of the keys to achieving a truly digital factory.

For more information on the please see www.bystronic.co.za or contact Bystronic on 010 410 0200.

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The joint Safety Unites: Compressed Gas Safety Conference held recently in Johannesburg, represented a collaboration by the Bolt and Engineering Distributors (B.E.D.) Group, First Cut, Gas Safety International (GSI) and Germany’s Messer Cutting Systems: a powerful partnership between industry peers, uniting stakeholders across the compressed gas value chain, for the ultimate safety and benefit of all.

The conference also served as a platform from which to launch a new patented oxyfuel system which will represent a revolutionary step forward for compressed gas safety in industry.

From left to right: Ian McCrystal, CEO of First Cut, Peter Rohlssen, Managing Director of GSI, Mike Giltrow, CEO of the B.E.D. Group, John Emholz, Global CEO and President of Messer Cutting Systems, Martin Zeller, Division Manager Sales: Oxyfuel Business Unit at Messer Cutting Systems.

Critical need for compressed gas safety and training

Mike Giltrow, CEO of the B.E.D. Group explains: “Compressed gases have multiple applications across all industries, including mining. However, incorrect use thereof brings with it some serious potential hazards. Gas safety issues can therefore cause injury and even fatalities – affecting companies’ productivity, share price and reputation – not to mention the obvious and most important consequence of loss of life and human tragedy.”

Peter Rohlssen, Managing Director of Gas Safety International (GSI) concurs: “Numerous incidents and fatalities have occurred locally and globally in the past. Yet most of these could have been prevented with proper safety awareness and training.”

Rohlssen notes that one of the worst compressed gas safety incidents South Africa has ever seen occurred on 16 September 1986, when the Kinross Mining Disaster, an oxy/acetylene- related incident, claimed the lives of 177 people.

“This infamous tragedy highlighted the dangerous consequences of not following the prescribed compressed gas safety procedures and protocols – and the critical importance of compressed gas safety awareness and training,” he explains. “As part of many investigations related to compressed gas safety, I have noted that its general awareness across industries rises and falls in a cyclical fashion. These days, adequate and appropriate compressed gas safety training is needed more than ever – but there are few who can provide it.”

Rohlssen advises that together with colleagues and fellow conference partners the B.E.D. Group, First Cut and Messer Cutting Systems, GSI is strongly advocating for industry to be more aware and proactive regarding compressed gas safety.

The four companies have therefore come together to underscore the importance of awareness, knowledge and training across all sectors of the local compressed gas value chain – and to introduce a revolutionary patented oxyfuel system to the market, in a global first.

Powerful partner synergy

Ian McCrystal, First Cut CEO, explains that the Safety Unites – Compressed Gas Safety conference came about because of the synergistic relationships already in existence between the four conference partner companies.

“In 2019,” McCrystal clarifies, “First Cut became the primary local distributor for Messer Cutting Systems. To ensure that our differentiating feature would be around safety factors, we entered into a relationship with Peter Rohlssen, owner of GSI, who brought tremendous experience and credibility to our offering via compressed gas safety training, consulting and auditing.

Additionally, we entered into an agreement with the B.E.D. Group in 2019, whereby First Cut and B.E.D. would jointly distribute Messer products in South Africa, with B.E.D. focusing on the mining industry, and First Cut remaining the primary distributor to the metal fabrication and other sectors.”

Giltrow adds: “This resulted in a deeply synergistic relationship between all four companies, with each party contributing to an excellent fusion of expertise and interests. The conference was therefore the perfect platform via which to launch our ground-breaking triple-patent product offering related to compressed gas safety.”

Martin Zeller, Division Manager Sales: Oxyfuel Business Unit at Messer Cutting Systems, adds: “Compressed gas safety is a critical issue globally, and it is imperative for us to protect the lives of those using it across multiple industry sectors. We are pleased that our synergy is working to highlight the importance of compressed gas safety, and that it has also produced this world-first patented oxyfuel system.

Internationally, we are not aware of any similar synergistic partnerships in the compressed gas safety and training arena – the collaboration between the four conference partners is truly unique.”

Conference highlights

McCrystal advises that conference highlights included live compressed gas safety demonstrations by GSI’s Peter Rohlssen and Axel Vogelsang, Key Account Manager Western Europe and Africa for Messer Cutting Systems.

Speakers included Leigh McMaster, Principal Specialist: Safety and Behaviour, Minerals Council of South Africa; Wilco Uys, keynote speaker and mining professional; Dr Thabo Mashongoane, Acting CEO of the Mining Qualifications Authority (MQA); John Emholz, Global CEO and President of Messer Cutting Systems and Dr Rüdiger Lotz, Deputy Head of Mission at the German Embassy in South Africa.

“Another key highlight was also the launch of the world-first patented product offering which our collaboration has recently produced,” he adds.

Launch of leak-proof oxyfuel system

Rohlssen continues: “Compressed gas safety risk is centred around people, product and process. However, the human factor is always the weakest link. We were therefore very pleased to launch our world-first patented leak-proof oxyfuel system at the conference today, specifically for the industrial and mining sectors, which will revolutionise compressed gas safety.

The system involves three newly-patented Safety Advanced Technology (SAT) components (process, valve and cutting torch) to mitigate for the risk of workers not checking for gas leakages before they use oxyfuel equipment. I believe this really demonstrates the relevance and success of this unique four-way partnership!”

Adds Giltrow: “B.E.D.’s infrastructure and footprint, and our strong relationship with the local mining industry, will play a key role in rolling out this new SAT patented product offering, via our Export division. This will ultimately greatly contribute to improved compressed gas safety within the local and pan-African mining sector.”


The Safan M-Shear’s extremely functional design satisfies current and future requirements with possible expansion plans, such as material-handling systems, already provided for. At its core is the advanced hybrid drive for the cutting beam consisting of a servo-electronic motor and hydraulic pump, a combination producing a remarkably quiet and energy-saving system.

While the robust hydraulic systems are controlled by modern electronics increasing both productivity and quality of products, the servo-electronic motor powering the hybrid drive only runs when the cutting beam is in motion thus saving energy and reducing noise levels while cutting.

Maximum ease of operation is provided by the Safan Touch Screen control TS 200 while the settings are indicated by clear symbols on the TFT colour monitor. The control operates with Microsoft Windows®.

With blades having four cutting edges, on both top and bottom, shearing is done very economically as blade wear is spread over the blade’s entire length, thanks to the programmable starting position of the cutting beam. Another feature includes independent left and right clearance adjustment and built-in measuring sensor with an accuracy of ±0.01mm. Due to the special frame construction, clearance is self- compensating so that, even with a load in the middle of the shear, the clearance remains constant over the entire length. When the clearance is changed, the back gauge setting is automatically corrected. Size of cut can be directly entered, after which the position of the back gauge is adjusted. The back gauge adjustment occurs by means of play-free guides and ball screws. Setting precision is 0.01mm and repetitions are accurate to within ±0.03mm.

The shear has extensive guards on the back and sides. These consist of mechanical side covers on the right and left sides plus a photo-electrical guard on the back. The machine’s foot-operated console is fitted with an emergency stop. Robust finger guards have been installed. For up to and including 6mm cuts, openings have been made in these guards, allowing the operator to safely get closer to the blade.

As an option, the M-Shear can be supplied with pneumatic sheet support equipment making cutting easier, especially when dealing with largersize blank sizes. The sheet to be cut is supported at the back of the shear, ensuring it can be accurately positioned against the back gauge, which can be equipped with sheet support arms, if requested.

In combination with the pneumatic sheet support system, a scrap separation feature is available.

For more information, please contact CML Machine Tools – Tel: 083 232 9470.

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With the Ergonomic design of the E-Brake, SafanDarley enables the operator and the press brake to work as a unit. The operator is partially seated inside the machine, surrounded by an edging table with his legs in a spacious cut-away below the lower beam, where the foot pedal is located.

Ergonomic ease of operation is assured as the seating position as well as the height and angle of the footrest can be adjusted. The SafanDarley E-Brake Ergonomic can easily be adapted to changing work situations, such as a different product or a different operator. The edging table can be adjusted enabling users to achieve perfect pick-up height, working height and cast-off height every time. In addition, the edging table can be fully or partially collapsed, enabling the operator to bend whilst standing up. Finally, the entire edging table can easily be removed from the machine to make the front freely accessible.

While the height of the rotating 17″ Touch Screen is adjustable, the unit can be placed to both the left and right of the operator, meaning that left-handed operators can use the machine with the same level of ease as right-handed operators.

The double-function safety light screen, integrated into the control panel secures the bending zone and allows the axis to move, while the operator turns, picks up or removes the product. These simultaneous actions of operator and machine lead to very fast cycle times.

While the innovative back gauge can be used across the full working length, it has a maximum depth of 1000mm and a height adjustment of 150mm. Combined with the possibility of setting the upper beam at a 5° angle, this means unparalleled flexibility. The back gauge comes with an X axis and an R axis as standard features, but can be expanded, depending on the model, with 5 optional axes.

For more information, please contact CML Machine Tools – tel: 083 232 9470.

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In 2019, Bolt and Engineering entered into an agreement with First Cut, distributor in South Africa for Messer Cutting Systems, a global supplier of cutting solutions for the metalworking industry. According to the agreement, B.E.D. and First Cut, South African provider of cutting, welding and grinding consumables and equipment, would jointly distribute Messer’s products and solutions in South Africa.

B.E.D. CEO Mike Giltrow explains: “While we are very pleased to be part of this collaboration, B.E.D. will focus on Messer Cutting Systems solutions for the mining industry, where we are particularly well-established and First Cut will remain the primary distributor to the metal fabrication and other sectors. We both have decades-long experience and faced many similar challenges, so our relationship is built on strong foundations.

Andrew Poole, Managing Director of First Cut, concurs: “B.E.D. was an excellent choice of collaborative partner, with many benefits for Messer customers. These include their strong local presence in the mining sector and nationwide footprint of nine branches, two of which feature dedicated welding and cutting repair centres. In addition, factors such as B.E.D.’s Level 2 B-BBEE credentials, together with their very active sales force and mobile welding technical support teams made the decision to partner with them a very good one.”

Giltrow adds that both companies are very pleased to be working together with the mutual goal of growing and elevating Messer Cutting Systems brand profile and market penetration locally. “This is a re-emergence of the brand in South Africa,” he enthuses. “From B.E.D.’s side, we are excited to be working as a certified Messer distributor along with First Cut to grow this global brand and introduce it to a new generation of Messer customers in South Africa.”

Gas safety training

Quality and safety are of paramount importance to both B.E.D. and First Cut. This is further evidenced by the recent merger of interests, in late 2021, between First Cut and Gas Safety International (GSI).

Explains Poole: “The welding process follows on naturally from cutting, forming the next integral part of the fabrication and manufacturing value chain. The merger of interests with GSI, headed by Managing Director Peter Rohlssen, brings synergies, strengths and new offerings to the table, specifically with regards to gas safety training, consulting and auditing.”

Poole points to the currently strong commodities market, which has boosted mining and that mines are consequently well-placed to reinvest in aspects such as gas and welding safety training, a critical factor in their daily operations.

“Together with GSI, we have developed three gas safety courses – Levels 1, 2 and 3. This includes an introductory gas safety course presented in English and several local African languages along with an oral test on completion, which takes into account those participants who perhaps are not fully literate and cannot complete written examinations,” he explains.

Giltrow remarks that these gas safety training courses will be well-received in the mining sector, and this will enable B.E.D. to add further value to customers in this pivotal national industry.

Peter Rohlssen, MD of GSI, comments: “Having presented gas safety courses in South Africa for the last 30 plus years largely on our own, it is now a fantastic opportunity to extend our reach via the very well established and connected First Cut and B.E.D Group.”

Martin Zeller, Division Manager Sales: Oxyfuel Business Unit at Messer Cutting Systems says: “We really appreciate the way in which this dynamic collaboration has developed and have great respect for the obvious trust that this shows between B.E.D., First Cut and GSI.

“We are also most appreciative of the high regard that is paid to the role of safety amongst the partners which aligns with Messer Cutting System’s own proactive approach to safety. These strategic partnerships have given us the possibility to roll out our knowledge and expertise into the African market and the mining industry.”

For more information, please contact First Cut – Tel: 011 614-1112.

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Amanuel Gebremeskel, Technical Director, SAISC
Denise Sherman, Marketing Director, SAISC

Despite the current turmoil in the Ukraine / Russian war zone, South African steel supplies have not been badly affected, even though these warring countries are two of the world’s largest steel producing and exporting countries, together accounting for some 20 percent of the European Union’s imports of finished steel products. Nonetheless, the local steel industry still faces challenges of its own, which the Southern African Institute of Steel Construction (SAISC) is poised to assist with. This is according to Amanuel Gebremeskel, Technical Director at the SAISC.

He says, “we are satisfied that the war in Europe will not create a local steel supply shortage, at least for the moment. It should also be noted that as a country, we are a primary steel producer ourselves and an importer of steel from China, so there is still a steady supply of steel currently. Nonetheless, we are keeping a careful eye on the availability of supplies and other local challenges which must be addressed,” he adds.

“The SAISC is well-known as a custodian of steel industry knowledge and standards and proud of its willingness to innovate, adapt and be an industry trailblazer!” comments Denise Sherman, SAISC Marketing Director.

Sherman says that following two years of the global Covid-19 pandemic and several years of steel sector difficulties prior to that, the sector requires a champion now more than ever.

Gebremeskel points out that the steel industry plays an important role in South Africa’s economy. “As such, the SAISC has been the sector’s official representative body, pioneering and championing its interests, innovation and development since its founding in 1956 and the Institute is respected for its reservoir of authoritative technical knowledge and its role as the collective voice of the steel construction industry.”

In fact, with access to over 60 years’ worth of local steel industry project case studies and an impressive number of experienced and highly-qualified team members, the SAISC is one of only six Institutes of its kind in the world and an extremely valuable resource for the local steel industry.

“It is our particular strength to be able to see the bigger picture, while liaising with role players and organisations across the steel value chain. From engaging with the primary steel producer, merchants and fabricators to consulting with engineers, specifiers and architects on technology and design recommendations, we play a key role for decision makers across the steel industry. The SAISC therefore encourages interested and eligible professionals to join as members, particularly engineers and fabricators and also looks forward to partnering with an increased number of large engineering companies, which perform such a key role in building the nation,” he explains.

“In this way, we hope to play a unifying role, helping South Africa to reindustrialise and thereby strengthening our economy. We are currently hard at work on one of the most important events in our annual calendar, the SAISC Steel Awards, which celebrates the use of steel in both industry as well as daily life, and showcases our role in fostering a spirit of innovation and a paradigm of excellence across South Africa’s steel value chain,” he says.

Sherman adds that during the lockdown period, the SAISC and its members, like most organisations around the world, adopted a remote and digital way of working. “This model definitely kept the wheels turning during the first two years of the pandemic. At the same time, the SAISC was changing to keep pace with a younger average industry age of its engineers and the on-boarding of a new digital generation.

“We have, however, started implementing face-to-face meetings again, wherever possible. In essence, we are preparing to foster a hybrid future, in which we continue to embrace digital working, while preserving our strong heritage of facilitating in-person relationships and networking.”


Tools with Bottom Fed High Pressure Coolant Channel for Mounting on VDI DIN69880 Tool Holders

ISCAR is expanding the Multi Connection (MC) JHP Line by adding parting, grooving, threading and turning tools for VDI tool holders with a bottom fed coolant system to ensure efficient coolant supply internally through the tool and externally through the flange. The specially designed system integrates JHP-MC turning and grooving tools featuring a bottom coolant inlet hole, and VDI-JHPMC tool holders with a long coolant outlet slot to enable adjustment of the tool’s overhang.

The compact and light VDI DIN69880 is the most popular quick change adaptation system for CNC turning machines with disc-type turrets. This standard holder adaptation serves mainly stationary turning or drilling tools.

VDI DIN69880 characteristics include high accuracy and center height repeatability, easy and fast set-up, and high stiffness due to a straight shank and flange face contact. Rigidity is facilitated by the serrated clamping system.

The tools are widely used by European, Japanese, Korean, USA, Chinese and Taiwanese machine tool builders, due to their simplicity, low-cost and tool clamping rigidity and have applications particularly in the aviation, aerospace and medical industries.

JHP tools also provide advantageous performance when conventional pressure is applied.

For more information, please contact ISCAR South Africa (PTY) LTD – Tel: 011 997-2700.