The JLA Fire & Security family now incorporates some of the UK’s most widely known and respected names in fire safety. Headquartered in Ripponden, West Yorkshire and formed in 2019, the division employs over 1000 people. Unable to find a consistently premium quality fire door supplier, JLA opted to manufacture its fire doors in-house.
“Our reputation is built on keeping people and premises safe when fire strikes, and high performance fire doors are one of the key elements that help us achieve this,” enthuses JLA Fire & Security’s National Operations Manager, Chris Fox. He continues, “The initial machinery the business purchased wasn’t ideally suited to the manufacture of fire doors. As the department grew, we recognised the need to invest in equipment that was more advanced and could do everything required to produce first-class fire doors.
“With the old machine we had to do much of the routing for locks and finishing by hand. This was not only time-consuming and inefficient, but also prone to human error. To ensure we found the best machine for our needs now and in the future, we asked five companies to tender for the supply of the new CNC machining centre.
“When the responses came back HOMAG’s was outstanding. I’ve always been well aware of the reputation HOMAG has in the market, so it came as no surprise that its sales team was so professional. From the way they conducted the initial site visit, through to the recommendations they made and the pricing for the package, everything was totally professional. They never once tried to over-sell us with options we didn’t need and they never talked-down the competition; it was very refreshing to deal with a company with similar ethics to our own and it gave us tremendous confidence in them as a potential business partner.”
Specifying the HOMAG CENTATEQ P-110 CNC machining centre
“HOMAG eased the potentially challenging task of specifying the machine. We told them what we wanted to achieve with it, and they came back with a couple of options including a tandem load model.
“In the end we opted for the 5-axis version of the CENTATEQ P-110 CNC machining centre with the woodWOP control software and tapio (which opens up a host of digital solutions including faster service for machine issues, live video diagnostics and cost savings on maintenance).
“The package we agreed with HOMAG included comprehensive training for our operator and a trainee both of whom attended a week-long course at HOMAG UK’s Castle Donington head office. This was extremely thorough and gave our people the tools to maximise the features of the P-110.
“The new CNC enables us to manufacture our fire doors quicker and to a much higher quality than before, with no need for hand-finishing. This has freed up skilled team members who can now be employed more effectively elsewhere in our factory.”
Out with the old and in with the new
“Before we could have the new CNC installed we had to have the old machine dismantled and removed from site. There were a few delays with this process, but to their credit the HOMAG installation engineers were able to claw back the lost time to ensure the new CENTATEQ was in place and commissioned on time.
“Since it has been operational we have been able to stand toe to toe with any other manufacturer of fire doors in the country. Given the throughputs we are achieving and the potential we will have when a new HOMAG edge bander arrives, we believe the CENTATEQ P-110 will have paid for itself within 18 months.”
A powerful machining centre with a small footprint
“Although the CENTATEQ P-110 takes up a bit more space than the old machine, for its capabilities and power, it has a relatively small footprint. This was a key consideration for us as our manufacturing facility is only 1,832 sq. ft.
“The old CNC and edge bander limited our production capacity to six doors a day. With the new CENTATEQ machining centre and soon to be installed HOMAG edge bander we will be capable of manufacturing 80 doors a day. Not only that, but the quality of those doors will be much higher and more consistent than before.
“Our new set up is already enabling us to attract bigger customers because we are confident we can meet the higher volumes and premium quality they demand. That is only going to improve further once we have the new edge bander in place,” concludes Fox.
If you would like a demonstration or further information on HOMAG woodworking machinery or software, please contact Adele Hunt at HOMAG UK
T: 01332 856424