BRANCHES

Arriving safely at the destination

Bihler technology has been an established part of the automotive industry for more than 60 years. Stamped and formed parts as well as assemblies manufactured using Bihler machines offer drivers maximum safety and driving comfort irrespective of whether they are driving on paved roads or off-road.

The close alliance started with the production of relatively simple stamped and formed components such as oil dipsticks or springs for headlights and gas caps. Today, complete oil filters, spark plugs, windshield wipers, seat adjusters, hub drives and batteries for electric vehicles, as well as the ABS/ESP coil assemblies, play a key role in the product portfolio of many suppliers.

Active driving assistance

The Electronic Stability Program (ESP) detects impending instability of a vehicle. It intervenes instantly, ensuring that the vehicle remains easier to control for the driver and does not start skidding. Similar to an ABS system, the ESP system also operates using valves which must be controlled precisely and reliably.

This is ensured by the coil assembly that a customer manufactures on a BIMERIC servo production and assembly system – from the infeed of all the components through to the palletized finished products. Retooling from one version to another is completed in a matter of minutes.

Power hydraulics

Agricultural and construction machines commonly use hydraulic systems to drive their work units. Electrically controlled hydraulic valves ensure that the pressures in these systems are regulated safely and reliably. Three and four-point connectors for hydraulic valves are made on a BIMERIC BM 4500 servo-controlled production and assembly system. The contact part is made first. It is punched, stamped and drawn, then a thread is cut into it.

Next, the connectors are assembled. The BIMERIC BM 4500 inserts a screw, adds the casing, separates the contact part, and then fits out the assembly in a pick-and-place operation. The process is exceptionally reliable because the stamped and bended part is handled directly on the punch strip. Up to 80 connectors a minute in 16 variants can be made on this end-to-end system. Changeovers from one connector type to another are managed by a central control system and can be completed quickly and easily in under 30 minutes.

Providing the power

Electromobility is one of the central issues facing us today. The battery that powers an electric vehicle consists of very many individual cells that are connected to one another by means of a cell contact system. It is important to use a high performance cell interconnect which minimizes power loss, ensures the best possible equalization between the cells and is also suitable for fast, uncomplicated assembly.

In practice, the pictured cell interconnects are manufactured on the BIMERIC BM 6000 servo production and assembly system. This versatile system outputs four completed cell holders per minute, manufacturing not only the interconnects themselves with absolute precision, but also placing them in a carrier frame together with other connecting parts. 

Reliable Support

Since the seventies, it has been the law that every new car in Europe must be fitted with a head restraint. Correct height adjustment is crucial for safety. This is done by pulling the restraint out from the seat until its top edge is at the same height as the top of the passenger's head. The two shafts of the head restraint have notches at regular intervals. These engage with detent mechanisms in the back of the seat, where they are kept at the correct height with locking bars.

These metal parts are successfully produced on a GRM 80E stamping and forming machine – at an output rate of 100 units per minute. In day-to-day practice, the benefits of the compact Bihler manufacturing system lie in the easy accessibility of the tools and the optimum arrangement of the bending dies in the linear tool. Each bend can be set separately, and the various processing steps are clearly assigned. This ensures not only ultra-precise components, but also long tool service life.