New £2 million machining centre at KKI set to revolutionise valve manufacturing

Left to right: Takashi “Ike” Ikegaya, President and Founder of Nihon Koso and Denis Westcott, Managing Director of Koso Kent Introl

Koso Kent Introl (KKI), one of Yorkshire’s leading engineering firms, has officially opened its new, hitech machining centre at one of its Brighouse factories, representing over £2 million of investment. The new facility, opened by Takashi “Ike” Ikegaya, President and Founder of Nihon Koso, is set to transform the company’s valve manufacturing processes. It will result in increased manufacturing outputs, greater efficiencies and quality excellence for the global valve manufacturer.

The machining centre will speed up the way in which valves are manufactured at KKI. It combines turning, milling and drilling functions and accommodates much larger valves than some of the existing machines. Most importantly, it will allow for more efficient production techniques, enabling more flexible manpower planning and greater productivity.

Lynn Mowbray, KKI’s operations director said: “Our machining centre opening is a significant milestone for KKI and forms part of our Continuous Improvement Programme to achieve world-class engineering and manufacturing practices for our oil and gas customers across the world.

“The new pieces of machinery will make a huge difference to our operational capabilities, particularly for some of the high volume projects we have on our order books. It’s absolutely vital to KKI that we keep all production in-house to maintain the highest quality standards and production integrity. These machines also offer a greater degree of flexibility and improved production scheduling.”

Denis Westcott, KKI’s managing director added: “We recognise that to remain competitive as a global player, we need to continue to invest in our people, processes, facilities and new machinery. This latest investment marks our intention to remain at the forefront of the bespoke topside and subsea valves market and keep manufacturing in Yorkshire where we’ve had our roots for over four decades.”

The Machine Shop now accommodates several new machines. A new Dorries Scharmann Machining Centre has been installed. It took over 17 months to be produced in Germany Germany and a further two months to install. This machine will create a more efficient way of working on the shop floor, giving the team the ability to produce higher volumes in less time, with less waste. This new kit is in addition to the Mazak Integrex 200-4T that was installed last year, and is already proving its worth, reducing set-up and tooling time, and creating greater capacity and contingency.

“KKI… to offer testing services to other manufacturers for the first time.”

A state-of-the art submerged gas test facility, one of only a handful in the UK, is also now fully operational, enabling KKI to control cost, time and quality across the KKI product range. It enables the valve specialist to offer testing services to other manufacturers, for the first time.

Last year, KKI opened a third 18,000 square foot factory in Brighouse, a few hundred yards from its original factory on Armytage Road; part of a significant investment programme within Yorkshire. The new site houses the aftermarket team responsible for service and spares, and creates additional capacity for scheduled shutdown, maintenance or refurbishment programmes that demand high volume turnaround in short timescales.

Koso Kent Introl
Tel: 01484 710311

Published in Valve User Magazine Issue 24

Summer 2020 // Issue 53
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