The trailer manufacturing market in Victoria has been under pressure in recent years. Aside from labour shortage, a gap in aluminium processing capabilities has resulted in inefficiencies in production and assembly for many manufacturers. As one of Australia’s largest steel and aluminium distributors, BlueScope Distribution has taken a step to ease the pressure on Victorian trailer builders by setting up a CNC flatbed router at its Clayton South warehouse in Melbourne.
Commissioned in February this year, the addition of this new capability complements BlueScope Distribution’s existing aluminium routing capability that already exist at its Perth and Brisbane locations. The new aluminium router will assist manufacturers and fabricators that build transport products including trucks, trailers, tippers and tankers by providing them with semi-finished components and ready to assemble kits ready for assembly.
It follows BlueScope Distribution’s commitment to an investment of $1.01M to install a custom-made routing machine that enables it to process aluminium plate and sheet products into custom sizes and componentry for its customers.
As one of the largest of its kind in Victoria, this new machine has the ability to profile complex custom shapes with precision, ease and accuracy, from large format aluminium plate and sheet up to 12.5 metres long, 3.2 metres wide and 150mm thick. The company is excited to offer this new product and service capability to customers across its broader branch networks in Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia and Tasmania.
The team believes that the extra-large bed will be of particular interest to customers within the transport manufacturing industry as BlueScope Distribution can now supply a single processed 12 metre sheet, creating efficiencies by reducing the need for welding multiple sheets in their own production lines.
“Strategically we are committed to supporting our customers with their own growth journey,” says BlueScope Distribution General Manager, Sam Gerovasilis. “Our new router will no doubt play a sizable role in assisting our customers to deliver on their own manufacturing deadlines in a more efficient way. The installation of this new processing capability enables us to better support our customers over the next decade and beyond.”
The prime feature of the aluminium router is its ability to process aluminium products with high precision and accuracy. BlueScope Distribution’s experienced programmers work closely with customers to provide workable solutions that assist with design and nesting capabilities, ensuring minimal wastage. The new router is capable of profiling simple or complex shapes, milling, hole cuts, material coding for identification and more.
BlueScope Distribution can also supply material to its customers in kit form, which provides significant efficiencies when assembling their end user products. Kitting enables the grouping of various products and custom cut aluminium components in the configurations required by customers.
The BlueScope Distribution team is committed to providing customers with efficient, high quality aluminium processing options that improves their operational efficiencies.
“Our customers told us that labour shortages and a gap in aluminium processing of this kind has created inefficiencies in their own operation,” says BlueScope Distribution State Manager VIC/Tas, Troy Gent. “It made a lot of sense for us to invest in state-of-the-art aluminium processing capability to enable us to better support our customers. The extra-large bed enables us to process significantly larger aluminium plate which is commonly used by transport and marine manufacturers. We look forward to working closely with them to help them realise new efficiencies this capability will provide.”
BlueScope Distribution Melbourne is one of 16 branches across the BlueScope Distribution network that provides high-quality steel and aluminium products and processing for its local and broader customer base.
The company says: “BlueScope Distribution is nationally aligned to support the transport and manufacturing industries and we are proud to announce our increased capabilities to better service customers across a wide range of manufacturing industry segments, such as marine, architectural facade and leisure.”
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