Metal-cutters compete for a trip to China

CNC lathe operators have been invited to enter a competition in Germany, with holidays and a laptop among the prizes on offer for the best entrants.

The competition starts with a theoretical round where metal-cutting professionals must answer questions (in German) on topics such as  materials and tools, and different technologies and processes. They will also need to demonstrate their CNC and programming experience.

The top five entrants will go on to compete against each other - and the clock - at AMB, the International Exhibition for Metal Working, which takes place in Stuttgart at the end of September. In this final round they will be asked to program and produce a specified part on an Emag VL3 vertical lathe - machine manufacturer Emag is the competition’s main sponsor and will also be setting the questions for the first round.

“The questions are extremely challenging, and even cause problems for experts,” said Wolfgang Pittrich, chief editor of German trade magazine Fertigung, which is organising the competition. He added that to ensure a fair competition, the top five would all go on an Emag training course before being asked to program the machine before the AMB judges.

“The competition is also an ideal opportunity for our company to show the advantages of vertical pick-up lathes when machining small series,” said Emag managing director Dieter Kollmar. “We are looking forward to an exciting competition at a very high technological level.”

He added that the top prize of a trip to China for two people would include a visit to his company’s plant in Shanghai. Other prizes will be a European city-break, a laptop, and book or CD tokens. Entries for the theory round must be in by 9th July.

In case the pull of the trade show is not enough on its own to persuade people to attend, AMB organisers have added half-price beer. They said that this year AMB is running a week later than usual, to avoid its set-up time overlapping with IMTS in Chicago, and that means it will take place at the same time as Stuttgart's Cannstatter Wasen, the second largest beer festival in Germany. Discounts for AMB visitors have been arranged in five of the beer festival’s tents.

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