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"We're bringing some parts back in-house that were manufactured in Korea and India.

We want to bring value-added operations to our parts by making more of them here in Canada, so we're just getting into machining now," says Paul Larsen of Multimatic Dynamic Suspension, a former Magna company based in Markham, ON.

Larsen was one of approximately 300 manufacturers who attended the 8th annual Joint Open House, an event organized by five machine tool suppliers: DMG Canada, Elliott Matsuura Canada, EMEC Machine Tools, Ferro Technique and SST-Canada.

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Paul Larsen, Multimatic Dynamic Suspension


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Justin Chan, left, with Ferro Technique's Jeff Velhoen.

Shop Metalworking Technology caught up with Larsen at EMEC Machine Tool's open house. The company recently purchased two Okuma milling machines to add to several other Okuma's, some of which run 24/7 at the 250,000 sq ft plant.

Justin Chan, owner of Rock Technologies Corp., Scarborough, ON, is a long-time Ferro Technique customer. The manufacturer of industrial valves and pipes says "the Daewoo machines are the best value on the market; sub systems on the machine are very good and service and support is excellence. Chan says he attended the JOH this year "because I'm looking more at tooling and fixturing to improve productivity."

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From left: Scott Leitch, Exsys Tools; Brian Vaandering, Rian Solutions; Hoan Vu, Rian Solutions; Kevin Smith, Elliott Matsuura; Joe Poulin, Hurco; Andrew Mooney, Elliott Matsuura; and David Vaandering, Rian Solutions.

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Rod Anthony, left and Genish Patel, both from Anthony Screw Products.

For Ron Doneff, CNC operator, and Keith Warner, programmer, who were at DMG Canada's facility and work at aircraft parts maker McDonco Machine Ltd., Fort Erie, ON, the JOH is a "worthwhile event," says Doneff. "We have lathes and mills at our shop and we don't really need five axis now, but we've been looking at the technology."

Uwe Toutiga, co-owner of Pro-Spec Inc., Stoney Creek, ON, a metal fabrication and precision machining shop, recently purchased a five axis lathe for his 15,000 sq ft shop. He and his colleauge, Mike Rafter, lead hand programmer, were at Elliott Matsuura's open house to view new technologies. "We've always purchased machines to get the work, but when the economy is tough, it is a challenge when you have new machines and have to justify the purchases."

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SMTCL invests in North American manufacturing

SMTCL is the latest machine tool builder to announce it's investing in manufacturing in North America.

Most recently, DMG MORI opened its manufacturing facility in Davis, CA. And Haas, which has always manufactured its machines in California at a 1 million sq ft facility, recently announced its intention to expand its facility to accommodate growing machine tool demand. Mazak Corp., which has been manufacturing in North America for 40 years, has expanded its manufacturing operations 15 times, most recently in 2012 with a 200,000 sq ft addition, increasing its total floor space to 800,000 sq ft.

SMTCL's COO Jerry McCarty says SMTCL, considered among the world's largest machine tool builders, will be manufacturing in the US by the end of 2015.

A manufacturing factory in North America will complement SMTCL's current manufacturing facilities in Europe (Germany) and Asia (China). "The United States was chosen because that is where our customers are and we know that we can find workers and vendors that have the dedication to quality that we need", McCarty stated in a press conference at IMTS earlier this week. "We will employ Americans and this facility will be managed by Americans. I can also tell you that although we will continue to use the world's best components in our machines, we will also use a number of local US vendors to provide contract machining, fabricating, and electronics."

The site of the new manufacturing facility has not been determined, but McCarty says SMTCL-Americas will begin manufacturing VMCs and expand with other products as the market dictates. 

SMTCL plans on purchasing or building a 100,000 square foot facility and employing between 100 to 120 employees. "We will need manufacturing engineers, machine assembly technicians, and service technicians, as well as purchasing, accounting, and general management professionals," said McCarty.

McCarty added that he hopes to be manufacturing in the US by the end of 2015. "These machines will be shipped to our customers in the United States, Canada, and Mexico and we look forward to helping our customers compete in the world economy."

SMTCL produces 80,000 machine tools each year and has revenues of $2.9 billion. The company has more than 300 products in its machine tool line-up.



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