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Hardinge, EMAG Link in JV to Build Inverted VTLs.

EMAG Maschinenfabrik G.m.b.H. (Salach, Germany) has had a lot of success with its design for "upside-down" vertical-spindle lathes, having even done deals to private-label-manufacture them (as for gear-machine maker Liebherr). Now it's announced a 50/50 joint venture company with Hardinge Inc. (Elmira, N.Y.) to build a version that will carry the names of both companies. The machines will be built in Leipzig, Germany, in what had once been East Germany's machine-tool-production district.

The first machine went to Mach 2000, the British national show that ran last week. The partners are calling the inverted-spindle vertical turning lathes "Lean Machines." They'll be sold worldwide through both companies' sales and marketing networks.

EMAG president and majority owner Norbert Hessbrueggen sees the JV as a means to expand into markets where Hardinge is strong. For Hardinge, says its president Robert Agan, it means quickly establishing a presence in a rapidgrowth market, that of inverted-spindle vertical lathes, in which other builders like Okuma are expected to launch offerings.

The upside-down-machine design with the tool approaching from the bottom uses gravity to clear chips. In EMAG's version, with the chuck capable of some auto-loading, it's suited to production of small lot sizes and lends itself to hanging on more automation for high-volume manufacturing. The Lean Machine version is said to be a no-frills version with pricing at under $130,000.

Hardinge Inc., Elmira, N.Y. 607-734-2281.
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Comment:Hardinge, EMAG Link in JV to Build Inverted VTLs.
Publication:Metalworking Insiders' Report
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Apr 15, 2000
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