“That might work…”
At the TRUMPF Maschinen AG in Switzerland, Paul Büchel is well known as an expert service technician. He spurred punching expert Andreas Böpple, at the Demonstration Center, to maximum performance.
In the late summer of 2011 Paul Büchel talked with a customer in Täuffelen, on Switzerland’s Lake Biel. The topic was how difficult it was to manufacture a deflection panel (turbulator) for an oil-fired condensing boiler. It was cut on a flat-bed laser machine and then moved by hand to the press brake. First one surface was bent, then the second. It was expensive and time-consuming.
That can be done faster, in a single pass, on a punch-laser combination machine, thought Büchel. He quickly sent a sketch to Andreas Böpple, punch specialist in Ditzingen, asking whether the part couldn’t be shown as a sample during the customer’s planned visit to the Demonstration Center (DC). “Can you manage that?” was Büchel’s question. “That might work with the active die on the TruMatic 7000,” Böpple realized. In several phone calls Büchel and Böpple spurred each other on. And soon it became clear: It was possible.
Acid test in the Demonstration Center
The moment of truth arrived on September 7, 2011, but the result was hardly a surprise. The TruMatic 7000 made up the turbulator panel, bending sections upward and downward (see the illustration) in a single go. That convinced the customer to buy. Other parts of the package: Exact specifications for the tool, made up at the punching tool shop at Gerlingen, and an agreement that this demanding item would be produced as a fully serviceable part at the next INTECH company fair at TRUMPF.
Successful interaction between field sales and the application specialists is a prime example of how to reach customer-oriented solutions. The team at the Demonstration Center sees itself as a “facilitator” — matching what’s technically possible with the specifics of customers’ actual uses. Andreas Böpple: “We don’t just show functions. We present solutions, too.”
Thus the highly qualified consultants in the DC often tip the balance toward ordering a new machine. They are masters of everyday practice and see themselves as the interface with the customer. Büchel is generous in his praise. “These experienced colleagues take a deep interest in customer needs. Our visitors sense that at once.” That makes very exact preparation the standard procedure. Ultimately, the DC team wants to present the newest solution options. Böpple: “We’ve reached our goal when the customer realizes that with new technologies he can be more flexible and economical and can open up new manufacturing options.”
In its role as mediator, the team at DC is superbly networked. Direct links to development, marketing, sales and customer service are guaranteed. “The wealth of experience held by the many experts in the Demonstration Center cannot be overrated,” notes Büchel. Böpple modestly counters that with a metaphor. “The live demonstration at the DC is like a symphony concert. Only if everyone involved — and the machine itself — harmonize with each other will this be a worthwhile experience for the visitor.”
Contact us: MastersofSheetMetal@trumpf.com
This article was first published in summer 2012.