Frankfort residents rely on VOLLMER and Loroch 2022-05-18

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At the US company Phillips Saw & Tool (PSAWS), almost everything revolves around the circular saw: The company produces them, sharpens them and distributes them across a total of 48 US states. For over 25 years, the company from Frankfort (Indiana) has used sharpening machines and automations from VOLLMER and their subsidiary Loroch to machine their carbide-tipped and high-speed steel circular saws. In the past year alone, the globally active VOLLMER GROUP has sent three new sharpening machines on the journey overseas to PSAWS.

Phillips Saw & Tool (PSAWS) is not located in Frankfurt on the Main river in Germany, but rather Frankfort on the Prairie Creek in the US state of Indiana. However, the town, which has 17,000 inhabitants, was founded almost 200 years ago by descendants from the German city of Frankfurt. The history of PSAWS goes back as far as 1959, when Ted Phillips founded his tool- and mould-making company, which has operated as a sharpening service since 1962. Today, his daughter Kathy and son-in-law Jeff Chynoweth run the company, which also includes services for both circular and band saw blades in its portfolio.

Customers from the east coast to the west coast come to them

Operations at PSAWS revolve mainly around circular saws: Regardless of whether these saws are carbide-tipped or made from high-speed steel, the company produces, distributes and sharpens carbide-tipped and high-speed steel circular saw blades. Furthermore, the company is always on hand to offer advice and information to their customers, for example regarding suitable saw blade geometries as well as individual sawing solutions. The company has sales partners in the USA, from the east coast to the west coast – deliveries with saw blades from 48 different states arrive in Frankfort every day. PSAWS now sharpens, maintains and manufactures tens of thousands of circular and band saw blades every year in their in-house sharpening centre.

"Our business developed in tandem with the growth of automotive production in Indiana, whereby we looked after and supplied the suppliers for the large automobile manufacturers as a priority," says Jeff Chynoweth. "Since our customers required high-quality circular saws with low tolerances for their precise metal cutting, we looked to the grinding machines from VOLLMER and Loroch. We set the same requirements for them as our customers set for us – and we were not disappointed."

A customer of Loroch and VOLLMER for over 25 years

Since the mid-1990s, PSAWS has relied on the precision of Loroch and VOLLMER sharpening machines. These include, for example, a Loroch SW 630–ST machine for grinding in chip breaker grooves, as well as a Loroch EKOSTAR 760 automatic saw blade sharpening machine for machining circular saw blades. The latest acquisition from Loroch in Mörlenbach, arrived in Frankfort at the end of 2021. PSAWS opted for the compact, fully automated evolution K850-M Service Centre in order to sharpen and chamfer metal circular saw blades with diameters up to 850 millimetres. Loroch's parent company, the VOLLMER GROUP, which is based in the Swabian town of Biberach, has also already shipped to them multiple sharpening machines, including automations, for round-the-clock, operator-free machining.

"Only recently, we were able to expand our grinding centre by adding a new VOLLMER CHF 270 grinding machine," says Jordan Chynoweth, Vice President of PSAWS. "Furthermore, we replaced the previous ND 230 handling system with the larger ND 360 and now have six loading carriages at our disposal. As a result, we were able to raise the automation to a new level and now have three CHD machines in a single line."

The new arrivals from Biberach are the CHD and CHP

PSAWS commissioned the new CHD in 2021. This is an individually configured grinding machine with special mounting carriages in order to achieve even greater precision. The main group to benefit from this precision is customers who use their carbide-tipped circular saws for metal machining. Furthermore, more than a year ago, VOLLMER delivered a new CHF 1300 to Frankfort. This is used to machine the flanks of carbide-tipped circular saws. The CHF 1300 complements the existing CHP 1300, which is used to sharpen the tooth faces and tooth tops on saw teeth. Thanks to this new purchase, PSAWS is expanding their business in the niche area of large carbide-tipped circular saw blades.

"Our customer, PSAWS from the USA, is not only testament to how VOLLMER, together with Loroch, can provide international customers with a comprehensive service, but it also shows how we, as a full-line supplier, cover the entire value creation in the manufacture and machining of carbide-tipped and high-speed steel circular saws," says Jürgen Hauger, CEO of the VOLLMER GROUP.

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