Machining equipment Open to successive manufacturing automation
Austria - Using a combination of standard machining centres from Hermle and the customer's own workpiece handling system, Austria-based company Julius Blum implemented automated manufacturing of parts for toolmaking in steps. By Udo Hipp, Hermle
Blum is a company with worldwide operations specialising in the manufacture and sale of furniture fittings. The main product groups are lift, hinge and pull-out systems for furniture, primarily in kitchens. Founded in 1952 by Julius Blum, the company is a market leader in the furniture fittings industry today.
With just under 6,400 employees and annual sales of more than €1.4bn, exports account for 97% of all business. Blum is a fully family-owned company, as it always has been, and is deeply bound to local traditions, producing consistently at seven plants in the Austrian state of Vorarlberg and at additional plants in Poland, the USA and Brazil.
To be able to meet the demands of its customers plus the very high delivery and quality standards it has set for itself, Blum relies on a high level of internal manufacturing, including all equipment, tools and special machines required for production.
Blum's equipment manufacturing could more accurately be called an industrial toolmaking factory. Several hundred skilled employees and over 250 apprentices produce a large number of prototypes, sample parts, die cast and injection moulding tools, punch tools as well as machine construction parts and spare parts. Skilled employees and technological equipment are divided into 10 departments and additional, technologically oriented teams (T teams) to ensure both interdisciplinary and parallel work for on-time deliveries.