Irina Solovianenko, managing partner of Access Machinery, and Randy Farmer, president of Ranfar Steel, showcased the new Durma fiber laser and press brakes during an open house at Ranfar Steel’s Courtice, Ont., facility. Click image to enlarge

With pandemic restrictions lifting, Access Machinery pounced on the opportunity to provide information about its fiber laser and metal fabrication equipment offerings, along with some long-desired face-to-face contact with industry stakeholders, early in March. 

Access Machinery partnered with Ranfar Steel to host an open house at the company’s  newly expanded facility in Courtice, Ont. Dozens of industry people turned out on the sunny and warm late-winter’s day to tour Ranfar Steel’s 10,000 sq.-ft addition, which is serving as the company’s metal processing area, and to talk shop with proud company president Randy Farmer and his staff as well as Irina Solovianenko, managing partner of Access Machinery and regional manager, Sacha Lorquin. Ervin Umit, regional sales executive for Durma and Belma Altin, sales and marketing director, were also on hand from the Turkish machine maker, along with Mehmet Ekizoglu from the Turkish Consulate General. Also there to field questions were representatives from Mate Precision Technologies, the tooling partner for Access Machinery. With such an international flavor to the event, it was fitting that there was also a connection to the humanitarian crisis resulting from the invasion of Ukraine, Solovianenko’s birthplace. All the sales receipts that Access Machinery generates from the open house will be donated to Red Cross and UNICEF to provide humanitarian aid to war-torn Ukraine.

Ranfar Steel’s expansion includes a 4-kW and an 8-kW fiber laser and two press brakes, all of them from Durma. 

Hosting the open house right in Ranfar Steel’s shop floor provided visitors a rare opportunity to get a close look at the machinery involved and their capabilities under real working conditions and to speak with the machine operators. They got a chance to witness and inspect the lasers as they cut through a variety of part thicknesses and also to watch test runs on the press brakes. 

Ranfar Steel bought its first laser, the Durma 4 -kW, from Access Machinery in 2019. Doing so helped it attract business from other local fabricating businesses that needed the performance only a laser could provide in cutting parts. That justified the decision to invest in the Durma 8-kW laser. The recently-installed, 20-ft bed machine is the first thing you see when you enter the metal processing area.

Durma machinery is made in Turkey and several officials from Durma and the Turkish government were on hand at the Access Machinery-Ranfar Steel Open House event. Pictured left to right are: Mehmet Ekizoglu from the Turkish Consulate General, Irina Solovianenko, managing partner, Access Machinery, Belma Altin, sales and marketing director for Durma and Ervin Umit, regional sales executive for Durma.Click image to enlarge“We do a lot of plate cutting and our customer base is looking for more added value. The laser is much more accurate,” Randy Farmer, president of Ranfar Steel explained to Shop Metalworking Technology magazine. 

Why did Farmer settle on Durma for the lasers and his press brake equipment, which replaced a competing brand?

“I shopped around. I went to trade shows. I looked at a lot of different lasers from different brands. I did my homework and I think I made a smart choice. Durma builds good machines. I am very pleased with the quality and the workmanship of it and the price is where I want it,” confided Farmer. “Access Machinery is also a great company and (managing partner Irina) Solovianenko has great staff. Very knowledgeable, helpful people. I think our long-term relationship is going to be there and they have a built-in showroom to help with future sales. I see that as a win-win for us. As they bring in potential customers to buy machines, they might have a need for services while waiting for their machines to be delivered.” 

Although Access Machinery is capable of serving customers of all sizes, the 22-person welding and fabrication operation that is Ranfar Steel is a very typical size of customer served by Access Machinery. And what such customers are looking for is quite clear to Sacha Lorquin, regional manager, Access Machinery.

“First of all is providing good quality equipment. Second is on the service side, which is as important as the machine itself.  We have to make sure service is on point and we can serve the customer with a quick reply. We can connect on the same day remotely on the machine (90% of the problems can be fixed remotely.) If we need to send a technician we can do so the same day or the next day, depending on the location, “ Lorquin says. “It’s the same with parts. We make sure we have the spare parts available locally so we can get those quickly. Critical parts we make sure we have those in stock in our showroom so we can ship on the same day or next day.”  SMT

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