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Centenary MACH exhibition - Monday 16 April to Friday 20 April, 2012

Post Date: 11 Oct 2011    Viewed: 1063

The Manufacturing Technologies Association (MTA) has confirmed the dates for the Centenary MACH exhibition as Monday 16 April to Friday 20 April, 2012. Covering 2 x halls at the Birmingham NEC, MACH 2012 looks like it’s shaping up to be a bumper show. The bi-annual engineering event has always been popular amongst the engineering fraternity, this exhibition plays an integral part in the promotion of machine tools, tooling and accessories. Normally staged over a 5 day period and often recording visitor numbers in excess of the 20k mark - MACH 2012 is a hugely useful resource for all involved in the machine tool and engineering industry.

The event is traditionally spread over 2 x Halls at the Birmingham NEC. Hall 4 plays host to tooling suppliers and Hall 5 focuses on machine tools and automation. MACH 2012 is already being described as 'the best MACH ever' and thanks to early exhibitor bookings, the show looks once again like it will be a real success.

Hall 5 - Machine Tools:

Throughout Hall 5 you'll find an abundance of technology, most of which will be running and cutting material. Machine tools including CNC Machining centres, CNC Turning Centres, Lathes, Travelling column machines, five axis machines and boring machinery will fill the Hall. Exhibitors will be displaying high speed machining techniques, robotic loading solutions and new methods in component manufacture.

Every show brings new developments in manufacturing and whilst the core of the event is focused around CNC milling and CNC turning – it also has a major presence from sheet metal, fabrication, grinding and laser cutting machinery suppliers.

Over the years MACH events have been the launch-pad for significant new technologies. For example, back in 2002 - DMG used that year’s show to promote and demonstrate their new linear motor machining centres. As you’ll know, these machines utilise magnetic forces and fields to drive their axes as compared to the common ball-screw. The idea behind bringing this level of technology into the machine tool arena was to deliver improved performance. These linear motor machining centres would prove to be twice as fast, twice as accurate and have no wearing parts. On first sight, it looked like it could be a winner and, even to this day, is still available as an option on modern machines – if you’re prepared to pay. Certainly the extra costs involved initially proved to be a stumbling block for many and, 9 years later in 2011, it is still very much a sticking point: the technology is available for sure, but at a price.

Other significant showcases at MACH events have included mill/turn technology, machining centres being used to perform grinding operations, turning centres being loaded by robots in cellular formats and machining centres submerged in water cutting metal. We even recall one year when a CNC machining centre caught fire as it was being put through its paces – not much fun that!

You can expect to find 50 - 70 exhibitors in Hall 5, all displaying several CNC machine tools. This area of the show is unquestionably the most popular and may at times be compared to boarding a London tube train in the rush hour! Often the best time to visit Hall 5 is early in the morning or later in the afternoon, this way you can be assured of a prime position when witnessing modern technology in action.

Not forgetting that the whole motivation for exhibitors in attending these types of shows, is to sell machinery - and MACH events are no different. Every one of the attending exhibitors will be aiming to convert stock machines and show machines into orders and MACH events provide a great trading forum for both buyers and sellers. Historically it is not uncommon for machines to be sold directly from supplier stands and, instead of returning to the supplier showrooms after the event, they are shipped directly to their new home. Exhibitions like MACH are the ideal place to visit when in the market to buy new equipment, as buyers are often rewarded with substantially juicy discounts.

Hall 4 - Tooling Accessories:

Equipment such as workholding vices, 4th axis units and barfeeds play a big part in the Hall 4 offerings. Also cutting tool solutions from suppliers such as Sandvik, WNT and Seko are ever-present. It's highly recommended you plan a day to visit this area of the MACH show: technology moves fast and every show serves as a real education.

Tooling and accessories play a major role in improving performance on both current and new machine tools and by optimising this area of your machining strategy you can save thousands of pounds every year and ultimately make your business more competitive.

Software for programming including CAD CAM, 3D machining and conversational programming packages are available to try-out in Hall 4 too. So be encouraged to bring components or drawings with you to the show, in order to try out new programming methods. All this, plus dozens of seminars on a daily basis, makes MACH 2012 an engineering event not to be missed. Its central location makes it easy to get to, it’s also free to attend, just apply online for your ticket.

MACH 2012 runs from the 16th -20th April 2012 and this year it’s celebrating its Centenary! 100 years of MACH and it is still the UK's largest manufacturing exhibition. Even with the Internet now playing a major part in searches for machinery, engineers still see this show as the ideal opportunity to search and compare suppliers.


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