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Best-in-class surface finishing from in-house expertise

Tecan : 17 October, 2003  (New Product)
A combination of in-house plating, unparalleled surface finishing expertise and X-ray analysis have brought about a significant business coup for Dorset based specialist, Tecan. As a recognised leader in the field of photo-chemical machining, the company has justified the importance and cost-efficiency of in-house plating, providing a range of tangible value-added benefits for its customers.
This case was proven recently when as part of a routine cost analysis programme one of the company's existing customers offered its work to various alternative suppliers. Based on preferential new pricing the work was withdrawn from Tecan and placed with a new supplier with no in-house plating facility. Crucially, some months later Tecan was offered test samples from the new supplier and by employing its in-house X-ray fluorescence test and analysis equipment, was able to prove that the new plating did not meet the original specification as it was much thinner than that specified by the drawing.

As a result, Tecan pointed out that if the specification had been rigidly followed by the new provider, then the price would have been identical to that previously quoted by Tecan for the original job. Following this chance discovery the component specification was re-evaluated and the work returned to Tecan.

'This case study highlights our unique total-solution capability and our ability to provide highly-effective QA systems and processes to ensure absolute fitness for purpose, ' said Neil Solly, business manager, Tecan Metal Finishing. 'We provide the highest specification metal finishing and plating services possible under one roof, which brings a raft of benefits such as speed and efficiency. Our design and manufacturing engineers offer a wealth of expertise and experience alongside proven manufacturing techniques which deliver cost-efficient components for the most discerning customers.'

In 2002, the company opened a dedicated new 1m purpose-built facility, providing OEMs and other discerning customers with access to market leading high-specification surface-finishing and cost-effective bespoke plating for both everyday solutions and the most demanding niche applications.

Finishes available include acid gold, pure gold, silver, bright tin, 60/40 tin lead, 90/10 tin lead, sulphamate nickel, electroless nickel, copper, Type 1 sulphuric anodising and Type 3 hard anodising (colours to specification), stainless steel passivating, and Alochrome 1200 chemical blackening.

Non-destructive XRF and atomic absorption test instruments are employed, to ensure consistently flat and even surfaces and desired thickness meet the required specifications. QA programmes can be tailored to suit individual statistical process control needs, with traceability reports generated as necessary.
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