Most people and businesses want to go automatic to improve productivity. For those who are into craft and design, going automatic is also a great option to explore.
Cutting materials have been conventional practise since early mankind first began to create clothing, tools and other products. Though the first tools and techniques to come into play were rudimentary, technology advanced over the centuries.
During the 1800s when the concept of mass production began to take hold, the machine known as a die cutter was invented. These machines were designed to cut large numbers of shapes out of various materials using cookie cutter-like forms known as dies.
They brought about a far-reaching revolution of their own during a time when other developments were drastically changing the world.
A Brief Look at Mechanical Evolution
Early die-cutting machines were operated manually. These types of machines are still widely used today though their design, efficiency, and effectiveness advanced over the decades following their initial launch. Several decades later, semi-automatic versions entered the mix.
Eventually, fully automated die cutters hit the market as well. All three types of machines are used in a wide range of applications these days. This is usually from creating automotive parts out of sheet metal to fashioning decorative items for scrapbooking from paper, plastic, and fabric.
Making the Switch from Manual to Automatic
A number of businesses continue to rely on manual die cutting to create their products for various reasons. Some are leery of the cost of purchasing automatic machines whereas others are reluctant to invest time and money into learning how to use the new machines and training employees on their operation.
While those could be considered solid arguments for adhering to the older die-cutting equipment models, there are ample reasons for making the switch to automatic die-cutting as well.
#1]. Increased Speed
Before die-cutting machines were invented, skilled laborers cut individual shapes and pieces by hand. Although this was the only option available at the time, it left a great deal to be desired in terms of speed and efficiency. Manual machines sped up the process considerably by allowing workers to cut multiple pieces at a time.
That being said, if you’re using one of these machines right now, you’re well aware of the amount of time and effort still required to create products. With manual die cutters, materials must be loaded into the machines by hand. In many cases, double cuts are required, and inline stripping and blanking are separate processes altogether.
At the same time, dies and machine setups must be changed manually in order to run different materials and designs. Automatic machines eliminate all those extra steps. Everything is automated, so there’s no need to feed in materials by hand.
Inline stripping and blanking can be performed at the same time as cutting, so additional steps aren’t needed. Much of the changeover and setup process is automated as well, so production times are further reduced.
#2]. Greater Precision
When using a manual die cutter, workers are required to determine the best placement of shapes to minimize the amounts of material being used. This is a highly speculative and subjective part of the process.
Even the most skilled laborers often struggle with this task. Automatic die cutters are programmed to do this on their own, so there’s no guesswork involved, and waste is kept at a minimum.
#3]. Improved Safety
From setting up the machines and loading materials to following through with the cutting process and unloading finished products, a great deal of lifting, repetitive motion, and hands-on work is required for manual machines. This leaves the door open for any number of injuries. Automatic die cutters are much safer because less stress, strain, and direct contact are needed.
This could mean fewer days missed from work. Lost time due to injuries is a leading factor in reduced productivity across numerous industries. Lower employee turnover rates and higher productivity are among the other noteworthy benefits of switching to automatic die cutting machinery.
#4]. Reduced Expenses
All the previously mentioned points can certainly amount to lower operating expenses on a number of levels. For one, improved speed reduces the time needed to create products. This means you can turn out more product in less
Fewer employees may be needed to generate those products as well, so you’ll spend less on payroll and other related expenses. You’re likely to use less material due to the higher precision and reduced waste of automatic machines as well.
On top of all that, less money will need to be invested in employees’ medical expenses following injuries and training new workers. Plenty of overhead can be saved in all these areas, and the extra profit can be reinvested into developing new product lines and making other improvements.
#5]. Keeping up with the Competition
Your company most likely isn’t the only one operating in your chosen niche. Chances are many of your competitors have already made the switch to automatic machines. In turn, they’re able to produce higher volumes of products more quickly and cost-effectively.
This gives them the upper hand in a number of categories. Veering away from manual die cutters can help you keep up with the competition and give you an added advantage over any opponents who have yet to take advantage of automation.
Countless companies in a wide range of industries have already transitioned from manual die-cutting machines to their automated counterparts. These machines are available for an endless array of applications in various industries with numerous customization options at your disposal.
Don’t hesitate to learn more about SBL and the automatic die-cutters this company and others have made available to businesses. Extensive benefits can come from upgrading to the latest technology to hit the market.
Heightened speed, precision and safety, and lower operating expenses are only a few of the most significant. Plenty can be said for being able to remain competitive and outshine other companies in your field as well.
At the same time, you may be able to branch out and expand your product lines, further enhancing the potential advantages of either replacing your manual machines or supplementing them with automated models.