Industry leading graphic overlay and membrane keypad manufacturer, Fascia Graphics has been working with electrical and instrumentation manufacturers for over 20 years. Electrical Engineering spoke with Paul Bennett, Fascia’s Managing Director, who explained how their investment in technology and staff has kept them at the forefront of the industry…
What have been your more recent technology investments?
“We made £1million+ investment in two fully automatic Sakurai servo-driven cylinder presses. In addition to the increased productivity and product quality, the installation of these lines also reduced the company’s carbon footprint. More recently, we invested in a new ERP System and a one click colour matching solution. The new MIE Trak ERP system means that customers will benefit from prices based on highly accurate manufacturing data, ensuring the most competitive and accurate quotations in the marketplace. The colour matching solution ensures faster and more accurate colour matching to the most exacting standards and tolerances in the industry.”
Can Fascia compete with the Far-East?
“The investments made with the Sakurai lines, the automated pick & place assembly machines, the latest digital technologies and many process improvements have all been with the end goal. By minimising the running costs of the business and reducing waste across all areas, we have been able to pass the cost savings made onto our customer base and keep our prices globally competitive. The further benefits of the investments into the plant and equipment also ensure the products manufactured are of the highest quality and are delivered on-time.”
Do you have a low-cost solution for manufacturers taking a new product to market?
“We do. Fascia’s digital prototyping service has been providing design engineers and product managers with high quality prototypes with rapid turnaround times, for more than ten years. Research has shown that three quarters of electrical engineers say a professional prototype can enhance their businesses chance of a sale at a show or during a sales presentation by between 40 – 80 per cent.
One of our prototyping customers told The Manufacturer magazine that prior to finding us, they were paying £1,000 or so for a full prototype keypad – and even then, they might make changes, and consequently need another prototype manufactured.
Since working with Fascia, he has been receiving a realistic looking and fully working prototype in three days, rather than three weeks and at a fraction of the cost.”
How seriously do you take the quality of your products?
“We take the quality of our products very seriously and have a dedicated QA manager and supporting team. We have been ISO certified for more than 20 years, and are ISO 9001:2008 accredited for our Quality Management Systems. In addition to this, we once again worked with an external test house to approve our IP65 and IP67 rated membrane keypads – demonstrating the degree of protection these keypads have against the intrusion of foreign bodies such as dust and water.”
Can you help manufacturers reduce costs?
“We have experienced huge demand throughout 2017 from both new and existing customers for our Free Value Engineered Review (FVER) – available on all overlays, keypads, nameplates and labels. The review, which identifies cost cutting and product improvement measures, has saved between five and twenty per cent from many customers total manufacturing costs.”
Manufacturing Graphic Overlays for Extreme Conditions
A leading global supplier of rolling bearings, seals, mechatronics, services and lubrication systems approached Fascia Graphics after being recommended by another supplier.
The business needed a rear plate graphic overlay for its handheld series of analysers, which enables users to establish comprehensive periodic condition monitoring of moving mechanical parts such as bearings.
One of the particular challenges that Fascia faced was the extreme conditions that the products would be used in, so it was crucial the graphic overlay was strong and hard wearing and could withstand day to day wear and tear in an oily, greasy environment.
The Production Co-ordinator at the company commented:
“It is highly important that all the parts we source for our series of analysers are competitively priced and highly durable so no colour fading or general erosion of any part takes place. Fascia Graphics has delivered on both of these factors and their approach to problem solving is first class.”
“We have built up a very strong working relationship with Fascia Graphics and their name is now the first to go onto our supplier list when we embark on a new product development.”