Big Kaiser Marks 30th Anniversary
Now a member of the Big Daishowa Group of companies, Big Kaiser plays an integral role in the group’s worldwide R&D and manufacturing strategy.
Big Kaiser Precision Tooling Inc. is celebrating its 30th anniversary. On August 1, 1990, KPT Kaiser opened its doors and began making Kaiser CKB modular boring tools, developed in Switzerland.
When the company began in 1990, many shops used boring tool technology developed in the 1950s, making tool changes a costly and a time-consuming process. KPT Kaiser’s modular boring tools were designed to provide greater efficiency and time savings. These modular connections are still the same, meaning a tool built in 1969 can still be used on a machine today.
“I started the company out of necessity,” says President and CEO Chris Kaiser. “I knew we needed to change how we were selling the boring tools manufactured by my father’s company in Switzerland, Heinz Kaiser AG.”
Now a member of the Big Daishowa Group of companies, Big Kaiser plays an integral role in the group’s worldwide R&D and manufacturing strategy, developing high-performance toolholders, boring heads, workholding, measuring instruments and custom engineering support for machining companies.
“After 30 years, I’m proud to say we’ve had a good number of customers from the very beginning,” Kaiser recalls. “Possibly the first was a Swiss-born machinist who carried Heinz Kaiser boring tools back from his vacation in Zurich to his job in the repair center at United Airlines in San Francisco. We’re grateful that companies like United, Bell Helicopter, Sikorsky, Caterpillar, John Deere, Metalex, Vermeer and Viking Pump — among others— are still with us to this day.”
Horn USA has developed quick-change tooling systems to drastically reduce set-up and toolchange times for Swiss-type lathes, including those with through coolant.
Companies concerned about strict quality requirements regularly check toolholder tapers for wear or inaccuracy because these conditions can jeopardize the results of a critical operation. However, a shop can check tapers quickly and reliably with air gages. These devices can be used effectively without special operator training. For measuring taper in a production environment, few other methods can match the speed and performance of air, as multiple-circuit air jets can be placed in very small taper gages.
A seemingly small amount of runout can still be too large for the tool. Reduce this runout, and tool life or productivity may dramatically increase.