Orion flatbed cutter helps Dutch sailmaker

Blackman and White Orion Flatbed cutter The Orion high-speed CNC cutting machine has a 1.6m by 10m cut area. Credit: Blackman and White
Industry Database

Blackman and White has supplied Dutch sailmaker De Vries Maritiem with a new automated Orion flatbed cutter to improve productivity and efficiency.

Designed for accuracy, speed and ease of use, the Orion high-speed CNC cutting machine has a 1.6m by 10m cut area and will replace an older Blackman and White machine. It will be used in De Vries Maritiem’s sail loft in Lemmer, where manufacturing involves a range of materials from canvas and woven polymers to modern composite materials like Dyneema.

De Vries Maritiem MD Ruben Hoekstra said: “We purchased a Blackman and White cutter about 16 years ago, which has been in operation for up to 8 hours every day.

“While it did an excellent job, the cutting bed was only 5 metres long. As modern sails can be much larger, we needed to update to a more modern machine with a much larger cutting bed and it allowed us to update the pattern cutting software to improve our efficiency.”

Vacuum system

The new machine was supplied with a complete vacuum system for holding the sail cloth and materials in place during the cutting process. The vacuum system consists of premium grade tables with internal aluminium honeycomb support, vacuum pipework and a powerful vacuum pump.

Ruben added that the nesting software can be used to calculate the best layout for other products and save the files for future use which decreases production time. As it is automated and easy to use, the software can be used by employees to do more jobs and increase productivity.

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