You can find our latest expert article “Insight into Smart Factory: How a wire factory implements digitalization” in the current 4/2023 issue of WIRE magazine.

In our expert article “Insight into Smart Factory: How a wire factory implements digitalization” published in wire magazine, we report, among other things, on the successful implementation of digitalization in a wire factory with 150 machines, using Drahtwerk Waidhaus GmbH as an example.  

Would you like to learn more about the Smart Wire Factory and the success story of digitalization at Drahtwerk Waidhaus?

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Insight into Smart Factory:
How a wire factory is implementing digitalization

The wire industry is going digital. Above all, the networking of production is seen as the decisive catalyst for a digitally networked factory optimized for increased productivity.

And yet companies are hesitant and continue to rely exclusively on ERP with operational data acquisition without machine connection for their production. The reason often given is that digitizing production is complicated or costly. However, the smart wire factory can be easily implemented and integrated into the existing IT structure, either piecemeal or comprehensively for the entire production.

Think holistically, implement step by step

The seamless interaction and reliable exchange between ERP and MES brings many advantages. Only in this way can the recorded data from the machines be profitably used and exploited across the entire production and all departments.

This enables, for example, near paperless manufacturing by digitally providing important documents and information exactly where they are needed. All information such as article drawings or setting plans can be displayed at shopfloor terminals. Goods labels or container numbers are printed out automatically. Maintenance work carried out is digitally documented. Real-time transparency also enables realistic planning of machine utilization with a navigation function.

Successful implementation

Norbert Pühl, Managing Director of Drahtwerk Waidhaus GmbH, and Harald Kimmerle, Managing Director of iT Engineering Manufacturing Solutions GmbH, presented how the digitalization of the wire factory with 150 machines works successfully at the Branchentag Draht 2023.

“When we introduced an MES solution, our technology status was anno 1990,” said Norbert Pühl. “Interruption reasons were recorded via socket wrenches. The quantity recording was sometimes incomplete and an evaluation was only possible via lists. In addition, the legacy system had specific firmware in use.”

Selection of the appropriate MES

Three primary goals were established: Innovative technology with shopfloor terminals was to be used. IoT adapters with a plug-and-play character were to ensure that the existing cabling and infrastructure could be used and that these would also function as an immediate interface to the newly deployed ERP. “And it was important for us to find a partner who understands the industry and knows its requirements,” says Norbert Pühl.

Value Statement: The effects

“With the MES Software EMC from iT Engineering Manufacturing Solutions, we were able to digitalize our production easily and successfully. Today, we have full transparency over all 150 machines and ongoing production with all information about interruptions, item quantities, quality losses, etc. Plan lists are no longer necessary thanks to digital planning with Navi function. The schedule sequence is now displayed directly at the machine terminals,” reports Norbert Pühl.

“Through a comprehensive analysis of the reasons for interruptions, we were able to reduce error times by 14% and thus increase our productivity by 18%. The evaluation of the recorded data enables us to continuously optimize our processes. We can no longer imagine working without it.”

30 years of industry experience

With around 30 years of experience in digitalizing the wire and forming industry, iT Engineering Manufacturing Solutions GmbH is successfully implementing the smart factory of the future for many companies with its modular MES Software EMC.

“Our goal is to create the basis for the digital factory and thus produce more efficiently,” says IT expert Harald Kimmerle. “We accompany our customers personally and competently from the first considerations, through implementation and rollout, to training and coaching of employees and continuous support during operation.”

Fachartikel Smart Wire Factory