Reflections of Progress (slip rings, cable reels) Part 1

Posted on Friday, July 16, 2010 in UEA Blog

Throughout the 20+ years that I have been employed at United Equipment Accessories I have seen some things change substantially, and have seen other things that continue to remain the same.

In the realm of the manufacture of electrical slip rings, cable reels and shift controls, the basic principal of creating  sound, reliable and durable products that consistently outperform the competition has remained the top priority at United Equipment Accessories.  Meanwhile, the processes and equipment used to achieve this end goal has evolved dramatically.  The production of electrical slip rings at UEA involves several operations that tend to be specialized.  In the past these operations were sometimes completed with the combination of workers with special skill sets or custom built equipment, or a combination of the two.  Over the years I have been involved the design and building of several of these specialized machines.  As technology has advanced in the marketplace of CNC (computerized numerical controlled) machinery, several of these specialized or “purpose built” machines have been replaced by more standardized CNC machines that can perform the functions of the old machines as well as in some cases also perform additional “bonus” functions, and do it all in equal or less time than was required by the specialized equipment.  It can be a little bit of a mixed emotion to see one of these old machines that was designed and built in house and worked so well in the past be pushed to the store room or scrapped when a new CNC machine arrives.  But this is overcome when you see the new capabilities being utilized to do operations and make parts in ways that weren't possible just a few short years before.