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Cold Forging Basics

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Riveting is one of the oldest forms of fastening

Solid rivets have been found dating back to the Bronze Age (ended 800BC)

You will have seen rivets hidden in plain site on bridges, ships, Aircraft and Trucks to name a few a few common applications

They are also common throughout your home, if you have double glazing then you will probably have our rivets in the hinges

Rivets are formed by a process called Cold Forging, this process produces no waste as the head of the rivet is formed by upsetting the shank of the rivet. This ensures the grain flow of the material remains in-tact thus strengthening the fastener.

The rivets are inserted in the material to be fixed together and “set” by deforming the end of the shank of the rivet to product a permanent fix

The more popular, semi-tubular rivet is set in a similar way but require a lot less setting load and provides a “Clinch” fix which pre-stresses the material

Many engineers are unaware of the advantages or even the function of rivets, tending instead to fall back on threaded fasteners which are more widely available.

The most recent development in Riveting is the self-piercing rivet, where you do not need a hole in order to rivet two materials together. This process is now commonplace in state of the art automotive manufacturing plants. JLR being pre-eminent in this regard

The process used to produce these fasteners has been developed in order to use the same manufacturing technique, cold forging, but to enable finished components to be forged outright, with the same benefits, no waste and a very strong structural integrity

We are happy to help customers or prospective customers with any queries that may have regarding riveting or cold forging. We have recently helped a number of companies by producing and riveting prototype designs for them.

We have been in this business since 1939, over that time we have provided innovative, low cost solutions to many fastening and cost reduction requirements, thrown at us by our customers.

In the first instance, contact me, Steve Hardeman either by e-mail (sales@clevdonfasteners.co.uk ) or by telephone on +44(0)121-378-0619

Productivity

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Many pundits bemoan the lack of productivity in the UK. They may have a point but then again…

Measured productivity is the ratio of a measure of total outputs to a measure of inputs used in the production of goods and services. Source UK Gov’ Stats.

 

International Comparisons of Productivity – Final Estimates, 2016
Table 3: Constant price GDP per hour worked
2007 = 100
  Canada France Germany Italy Japan UK US G7 G7 exc. UK
1995 85.3 80.5 80.8 92.7 81.7 78.2 77.9 79.9 80
1996 85.2 81.4 82.7 92.9 83.5 79.4 79.8 81.4 81.6
1997 87.2 83.5 85.2 94.4 84.7 81.3 81.3 83.1 83.3
1998 88.6 85.8 85.9 94.3 85.3 83.4 83.7 85 85.1
1999 90.9 87.6 88.9 94.8 87.3 85.6 86.6 87.5 87.6
2000 93.5 91 92.7 97.7 89.4 88.4 88.2 89.8 89.9
2001 94.5 91.7 94.7 98.2 90.8 89.6 90.1 91.4 91.5
2002 96 94.5 96.3 97.8 92.7 92.4 92.3 93.3 93.4
2003 95.8 95.3 97.1 97.6 94.3 94 94.5 94.8 94.9
2004 96.5 95.9 98.4 98.1 96.8 95.4 96.9 96.8 96.9
2005 99 97.3 98.5 99 98.6 97.3 98.6 98.4 98.5
2006 100 100.1 98.9 99.4 99 98.9 99.2 99.2 99.2
2007 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 100
2008 99.9 99.3 100.1 98.7 100 99.3 100.6 100.1 100.2
2009 100.6 98.6 97.7 96.6 99.2 97.7 103 100.6 100.9
2010 102.1 100.1 99.8 98.9 102.5 99 105.6 102.9 103.3
2011 103.9 101.3 103.1 99.4 102.8 100.5 106.2 104 104.3
2012 103.6 101.6 104.1 98.9 103.6 100 106.4 104.3 104.7
2013 105 103.1 104.5 99.6 105.7 100.4 107.2 105.3 105.8
2014 107.6 101.7 105.1 99.5 105.7 100.3 108 105.8 106.4
2015 107.6 102.1 106.1 99.3 107.3 101.1 109.2 106.9 107.5
2016 108.6 103.4 105.7 98.4 107.6 101.6 109.1 107 107.6

Sources: OECD, Office for National Statistics

And there we have it in black and white, the UK’s productivity is worse than our international competitors with the exception of Italy. Case proven m ’laud…

This is where it gets tricky. The government statistics include services and the public sector. I am not clever enough to calculate the productivity of a service, but my experience of public services suggests that productivity is not high on their agenda.

As manufacturers, I am only interested in manufacturing (someone has to be!)
Contrary to widespread perceptions, UK manufacturing is thriving, with the UK currently being the world’s eighth largest industrial nation. If current growth trends continue, the UK will break into the top five by 2021. In the UK, manufacturing makes up 11% of GVA, 44% of total UK exports, 70% of business R&D, and directly employs 2.6 million people.
Source: The Manufacture

We are simple “metal bashers” (read some of our other blogs and you will realise we are much more than that, but it helps my case to keep it simple!). As far as I am concerned, productivity is the labour input against the productive output.

As you may know, My FD and I bought out our major shareholders in 2015. We started to seriously focus on Productivity towards the end of 2016.
I looked at various publications and went to a number of seminars on the subject. Most were by their nature, generalisations, many were purely academic exercises which bore no resemblance to the real world and I gained no new insights to how we may improve our productivity.

So back to basics, literally.

Our measure of productivity is labour hours against productive output (number of parts produced in our manufacturing plant, number of dispatches made in our warehouse)

We switched off half of our ERP system and re-wrote the key data requirement to enable our managers to have the information specific to them, that they used on a day to day basis, in Access. This had the effect of freeing up their time inputting information into the ERP system and saving time by them not having to trawl through reports to find the information they needed. We are an SME, this drastic course of action may not suit all companies, but it certainly helped focus departmental responsibility and accountability in the correct areas.

We focused on the simple things, why our overtime bill was static when in some months we didn’t meet our output targets, but when we exceeded them, overtime increased. OK I know you are reading this and saying “that wouldn’t happen here. Do the exercise, you might be surprised how many people come in early to avoid the traffic!

We shared much more cost information with our employees that specifically related to their areas, so they could see the costs rack up for little gain.

We employed a coach to work with our managers to ensure they managed and gave them the support to improve in areas that they recognised their weaknesses. This was a key move as the coach was not a member of the senior management team and was tasked with improvement not weeding out failing managers. Buy in to this took time but the results were better than I could have hoped.

Using 2016 as a base                                100%
Productivity 2017                                      107%
Productivity 2018                                      114%

This has resulted in higher profits, a lower break-even, better cash flow and less fire-fighting.

It’s a little like sport science, get the basics right and make small steps.

That’s our journey so far regarding Productivity (please note no employees were harmed during this process!)

If you have any queries or comments call me on 0121-378-6950  or e-mail me steve@clevedon-fasteners.co.uk

Brexit: No Deal

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October 2018

 

Impact of Clevedon Fasteners Ltd and Clevtec in the event of a no-deal outcome to the EU withdrawal negotiations

We are beginning to get letters from customers asking what our position will be in the event of a no deal Brexit

The following seeks to give the reader a flavour of our view on the subject

Clevedon Fasteners Ltd use sub-contractors for Heat Treatment and Plating processes who are predominantly local to us and all are in the UK. These entities are relatively immune to the effects of a no deal scenario as their main drivers are Gas (heat treatment) chemicals and Electricity (plating plant). We have our own tool room but occasionally sub contract tooling. Again, these companies are not expecting a problem as they have well established workforces and there their material stocks are high

The only product we purchase from outside the UK is wire which we use to manufacture our parts.

There has been no suggestion in the literature available that either the UK or any of the EU27 are expecting to cease work when we leave the EU. The main focus has been around potential tariffs, added paperwork and delays at the border.

We sell all over the world and so we are used to paperwork

We hold relatively high (3 months) stock of fast moving raw material

We source our wire from the UK, the EU and non UK companies

In the UK, British Steel have just upgraded their rolling mill with a £50m investment and we can switch EU product to non EU suppliers relatively easily if we need to

The other big unknown is the exchange rate and in the event of a no deal the GBP will fall significantly in value in the short term, but so will the Euro, therefore it will be pretty much the same, but lower. The fundamentals of the UK economy are sound and any hit will be short lived as it was when the UK voted to leave the EU

We are in the relativity enviable position of not having to purchase anything from outside the UK for approximately 10/12 weeks, during which time the effect of a no-deal scenario will be well on the way to being resolved.

Not wishing to stray into the political arena, but no matter how much of a hash the politicians of all complexions make (and are making), in the end it all boils down to trade and pounds, shillings and Euros.

As things stand I believe we are well placed to cope with the short term disruption and will be able to continue to provide the excellent service our customers have come to expect

As more information comes into the public domain that significantly changes our view I will update this notice

Yours sincerely

 

Steve Hardeman

Managing Director

PS: Clevtec is a trading division of Clevedon Fasteners Ltd. Clevedon Fasteners Ltd is the legal entity

 

Clevtec

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In  2008 when the world stopped due to the financial crash, we had to re-evaluate our business model as we realised that if people didn’t want the fasteners we manufactured at Clevedon, we were pretty much sunk. As a result we created Clevtec. Clevtec is a trading arm of Clevedon Fasteners Ltd and unlike Clevedon who are a purely a manufacturing entity, Clevtec is able to buy and sell product all over the world, as long as it made a return. This meant that as well as fasteners, Clevtec could venture into other parts of the fastener market, that we were unable to make at Clevedon.

Clevtec soon found that there was a latent demand of high quality threaded fasteners, particularly if they were of UK origin and so in 2012 we purchased a company called Blakeacre who specialised in high quality threaded fasteners and they became part of Clevtec. In addition to threaded fasteners, Clevtec over the years has got into Commercial Vehicle brake shoe platforms and various types of setting machines, the latest of which being spin riveters.

Clevtec’s latest market offering is a range of services that we believe our existing an new customers will find of interest. Over the past year we have been developing with a selected number of existing customers, two specific services:

 

Supplier reduction service

Design Support service

We are now in a position where we are able to offer these services to other customers. The details of these services will be on our new Clevtec Services web site and will be the subject of further Blogs in the future

Clevtec Services  https://www.clevtecservices.co.uk/

Contact us on 0121-378-5967

or email me on steve@clevtec.com

Bolt Lok™

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Bolt Lok

As well as specialised cold forgings, we also make our own trademarked pin and collar fastening system Bolt Lok

This is for use when customers require a fastener with superior joining capabilities for demanding high strength assembly applications

The Clevtec Bolt-Lok™ is a quick and easy pin and collar fastening system in which the material to be fastened is permanently clamped between the pin and collar providing a high strength vibration proof fixing.

Available in Steel, Stainless steel and Aluminium and any commercially available finishes to suit customer requirements our Bolt Lok™ range includes truss, brazier and countersunk head styles. There are 12 products to choose from covering grip ranges from 1.6mm – 22.2mm.

More information can be found at https://www.clevtec.com/products/bolt-lok

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@clevtec.com

Or call us on +44 (0)121 378 5