Advanced Grinding Solutions Ltd

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Press Release

Advanced Grinding Solutions announces new UK agency:
FLP Fine Grinding and Lapping Machines & Consumables

Advanced Grinding Solutions (AGS) has been appointed as the sole UK Distributors for the FLP range of Fine Grinding and Lapping Machines.
Chris Boraston, Managing Director of AGS comments:
"We are very pleased to announce the start of our collaboration with FLP. FLP stands for Fine Grinding, Lapping and Polishing and their large product range fits perfectly into our range of grinding and finishing machines and associated equipment".

"In considering working with FLP we looked long and hard at their range of machinery and were especially pleased with their very wide range of machines but also with their large and professional support departments. These also cater for machine rebuilds of most makes and models of lapping machines, a vast range of consumables including diamond paste, powder, sprays and lapping and polishing fluids, as well as tooling such as carrier plates and rings etc. FLP also offers a large sub-contract lapping facility for their customers".

The 4 FLP product lines are new single and double sided machines (both standard and full CNC), fully rebuilt and refurbished machines, the supply of consumables and tooling, and finally a large sub-contract lapping facility. FLP is a relatively young and fast growing company that have just celebrating their 20-year anniversary being started in 1996 by Thomas Rehfeldt. FLP started off manufacturing Stahli machines in Germany and then progressed into designing and manufacturing their own. They employ over 60 people at their main HQ in Zorbig, near Berlin, and have a world-wide distribution network of dealers.

The broad range of FLP fine grinding and lapping machines includes for both twin wheel - double sided CNC Lapping Machines as well as single sided Lapping machines. The size of machines ranges from the most basic of 400mm in diameter having three working stations up to the world’s largest 100 ton 4-meter diameter monsters constructed from multiple 26-ton solid granite blocks. These are fitted with three working stations with each lapping wheel weighing some 1.5 tons on its own. These huge machines are 10 meters long, 5.5 meters wide and 4 meters high and an even bigger one with three wheels each of 5.5 meters in diameter is now being designed.

20% of FLPs sales are for so called Fine Grinding machines that offer 2-3 times the stock removal of more traditional lapping machines with 80% of sales being for Lapping or Polishing machines that are used where there is a low stock removal requirement with a mirror finish and perfect flatness being the main targets.

The FLP single wheel series of Lapping Machines comprises of very small and cost effective machines of 400mm in diameter having three dressing rings of 145mm diameter up to 3.5 meter versions with dressing rings of 1.3 meters in diameter.

The FLP Double Disc or twin wheel machines have 7 machines in the range offering a working disc diameter of between 540 and 1300mm. These are fitted with Siemens PLC controls, can all be offered with optional full automation, and weigh between 7 and 16 tons.

FLP also offers used machines, often from stock, that have been rebuilt to an as-new standard as well as supplying replacement spare and wear parts for all market established machines such as those from Stähli, Wolters, Wenzky, Melchiorre, Lapmaster, and Speedfam. Regardless of the type and size of a customer’s old fine grinding, flat honing, lapping or polishing machine – FLP will carry out process and technology orientated improvements and general overhauls such as the replacement of sub-assemblies for which spare parts can no longer be supplied, retrofitting of automation such as programmable logic controllers or replacement of materials with more wear resistant types, for example rustproof steel, in addition to the utilisation of frequency inverters with electrical drives to increase efficiency.

The many advantages of such a general machine overhaul are a large cost saving of up to 40% as compared with the cost of a new machine, shorter delivery times and of course an increase in machine uptime as compared with older worn machinery. Old machines are fitted with the latest PLC controls with integrated measurement controls with detailed graphic illustrations on new touchscreens with simple operator guidance.

FLP holds over £2.5million worth of lapping consumables in stock and offers end users of all types of lapping machine the largest range of wear parts and consumables. The range is vast and includes items such as Lapping and polishing oils, Fine classified silicon carbide, boron carbide, and special fused aluminium Lapping Powders, Lapping and polishing fluids in water derived concentrates with integrated rust protection, Honing oils for machining steel, non-ferrous metals, hard metals and ceramic, and Diamond sprays, suspensions, powders and pastes with micro-grains of various specifications and grades from 0.25um up to 45um.

FLPs final product line is the subcontract facility it offers customers using their fully equipped factory work-shop that has a large variety of single and double sided lapping machines and all associated equipment that’s needed to produce fine ground and lapped components for its customers. FLP manufactures in excess of 15 million lapped parts a year for customers needing a sub-contract facility with some customers needing very small batches produced for them and others needing 250,000 parts a week every week. The sub-contract facility comprises of the flat honing, fine grinding, lapping, polishing and deburring of all components including full process documentation, measurements and statistics.

Chris Boraston concludes; "FLP really does offer the one stop global solution for anyone with a lapping or fine grinding requirement including new machines, used machines, refurbishment of the customer’s own machines, tooling, consumables, spares, and a large sub-contract facility. More information on FLP including videos and brochures is available for download on the AGS website: Advanced Grinding Solutions

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