TOWN OF LEE — Investing in new equipment, enhancing workplace safety, and involving college students in exploring applications of advanced technology are among steps geared to help position Bartell Machinery Systems for the future.
Based at 6321 Elmer Hill Road, Bartell makes industrial manufacturing equipment for the tire and rubber, oil and gas, and wire and cable industries. It has about 160 employees.
The company cited various improvements and changes over the past year or so.
• A capital investment in an advanced vertical CNC (computer numerical control) machining production cell will enable the company’s designs to be produced competitively and efficiently for years to come, says Bartell.
The production cell and the equipment within it allow the company to be efficient and competitive in current manufacturing of parts, plus it allows the company to expand its capacity for developing more advanced and complex designs, said Bartell. Among the cell’s features are two vertical machining centers that provide state-of-the-art machine tool capabilities, industry-leading performance for accuracy, and various enhancements such as high-speed automatic tool changeover, the company added.
• An Omax Maxiem 1530 waterjet unit was added to Bartell’s production center, geared to take advantage of waterjet technology’s transformative impact on raw material prep and finished product realization, said Bartell. It involves a mixture of water and an abrasive exiting a nozzle as a cutting stream at very high speed.
The waterjet can handle the transition from 3D model to tool path much easier than other types of machine technologies due to the lack of multiple tools to complete a single job, the company said. The new equipment also expands Bartell’s capability to process a wide variety of materials in which components can be manufactured, the company added.
• Bartell was awarded “STAR” status in the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) Voluntary Protection Program (VPP). It recognizes an organization’s efforts in prevention and control of occupational safety and health hazards leading to industry-best safety standards.
The VPP certification process involves a collaborative effort with OSHA in which operations are reviewed and evaluated including environmental health and safety compliance, training, record-keeping, metrics and performance, facility condition, employee knowledge and safety awareness, management commitment, and demonstrated continuous improvement.
• Bartell has worked in cooperation with Syracuse University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts regarding augmented reality (AR) applications.
The AR concept involves a virtual environment or item, typically in a digital format, being merged with reality as a projected overlay or hologram. It allows for creation of various scenarios with real spatial awareness, without the expense of having physical components available, the company explained.
Students from Syracuse’s industrial and interaction design program are developing concepts applying AR technologies to challenges such as machine design, human-machine interaction, and smart machinery systems. Members of the Bartell engineering team have introduced students to the company’s markets, machinery, applications and technology.
The company says its objective is to educate itself in the emerging technologies, as well as to expose students to industrial environments of which they were not aware and widen their vision to what is possible.
Bartell is part of the Illinois-based Heico Companies.