Mark Scherler and John Horn with FANUC

On this week's Industrial Talk we're onsite at FABTECH in Atlanta, GA and talking to Mark Scherler, General Manager and John Horn, National Sales Manager with FANUC America about “The digitalization of CNC and giving new life to existing manufacturing assets”. Get the answers to your “CNC” questions along with Mark and John's unique insight on the “How” on this Industrial Talk interview!

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Welcome to the industrial talk podcast with Scott Mackenzie. Scott is a passionate industry professional dedicated to transferring cutting edge industry focused innovations and trends while highlighting the men and women who lead the world moving. So put on your hard hat, grab your work boots, and let's go. Alright, once


again, thank you very much for joining industrial talk and absolutely your support. Because this platform is dedicated to industry professionals all around the world. You are bold, you are brave, the dare greatly. You're solving problems, you're changing lives and you're making the world a better place. It's not hyperbole, it's fact. Take it to the bank. All right, well, once again, you can tell by the buzz in the background, we are on site at FABTECH. Atlanta, Georgia, once again, put this on your calendar you need to be attending, you get great people like market John right here. FANUC. All right. Let's get cracking. Talking about robots, automation stuff. Stuff. All right, let's get cracking. How you guys doing? It's been great. It's been busy, hasn't it? Yeah. It's been a lot of fun. I, for the listeners out there, you might have seen, we are getting ready to post but we did an exceptional speed dating series with FANUC at their location, and they're delivering the innovation that is necessary for you to succeed, but that you can take that to the bank. Okay. All right.


That's how I would give you give me a return on that.


So that's right. And you will you well, because I mean, your your tech is really pretty cool. I never, oh, no, I never. I always like it. I always liked it. And I just sit there and it's like watching something like, I can't stop staring at like I can't stop staring at you know, I


always feel like we're kind of squirrel. We've, we see this stuff every day. And then when I come to the show, I watch the people there. They see the robots moving around. And they're like, they surely have seen something like that before. But it's like they've never seen this stuff before. And we're spoiled because we're into it. Right? It's different.


And it's always getting better. And again, I think that's a that's an interesting art mark. It mark. And I didn't say Mike, I didn't say Mike, I didn't say Mike it's mark. But it's it's interesting, because you do your you just sort of see and you're in the you're in the middle of it. And it's just evolving into this getting better. And you're saying, Hey, how about this? What do we do this? How about this solution? Yeah, somebody like me, it's like, this is so cool. Discovery Channel living. All right. For the listeners out there. Let's start with you, John, give us a little background so that they understand who you are. All right.


I'm John Warren. I am the Sales Director for our CNC group in the US. So my group works with machine builders, and supplying FANUC CNC controls or custom machines and mills leads all sorts of manufacturing machines.


So one of the things that even even when we were at at your booth, it's this ability to be able to take a sort of, I don't know, correct me if I'm wrong, John, you step into by saying something that's way outside of my paygrade. But it's taking sort of these old legacy, very still productive type of CNC machines, and bringing them somewhat to an automated state. I thought that that was brilliant.


Thanks. A big part of our business in the US is retrofitting existing machines, we've got all these older machines from the 70s and 80s, giant, monolithic machines, they're huge, would cost us to be $3 million to replace the machine, you could retrofit it for a fraction of that amount, and still have all that good iron, that that could last another 30 years with this new control system.


We'll get to it more. I'm gonna pull on that thread, just a tad bit. Sure. So there are just multiple cysts systems are machines out


there. Large


aerospace machine. Yeah, they're just sitting out. There they are. How does FANUC just deal with the the uniqueness with each one, you sort of come up or you have to walk out there and say, oh, okay, so we got to


do this and many times, fly out to Utah. Go visit the machine, talk to the end users understand what needs to happen on this machine. Understand. See if that machine has gone down. How long does it take to get back up? Are there? Are there parts available for it? Usually the answer's no. And guys are buying parts off eBay to keep from one machine to keep another machine running. So we offer a new control system. Have a two year warranty and spare parts for the life of the machine. So it's a big benefit on a


large machine like that. Is each engagement sort of customized like


it is yes. And then we look for similar machines out there that we could use some of that same technology the same way we retrofitted the first machine to do more, or similar machines.


You can tell I like that, too. That's a good thing. All right, Mark,


give us a little background. My name is Mark Shermer. I started a Fanuc as a welding engineer, and I've grown up to become a general manager now. I'm in charge of the engineering group we have for arc welding and also our project management or execution side of the business.


We got to pull on this one now. What is a welding engineers? Well,


that's a good question. There's a lot of schools that have engineering degrees that are not many schools that have welding engineering degrees. And there's there's a few represented here are some schools that have booths here. I actually got to go further into it. I got a undergrad in electrical engineering, and a master's in welding engineering from The Ohio State University.


The number two in the country? Ohio State University. Yeah,


that a Columbus? Maybe they didn't didn't really answer your question, though. In the end, there's a number of aspects of welding engineering, there's, you know, the mechanical aspect of welds or somebody has to design that makes sure that the weld is gonna be strong enough, or whatever the part is, somebody has to do the process as well to develop the while process and it could be manual, it could be automated, it could be whatever it is inspect inspection, well, there's a number of things you have to be able to do.


So what's interesting is, and, you know, I've welded so I can at least talk a little bit about it. But there's a lot of science that goes into welding and getting it right, there's a lot of, and I didn't realize the level of accuracy that is necessary, or the ability or the need to analyze that weld and do it. i There's a lot of science there.


You know, when you have a mechanical engineer that wants to design a part, and he's got to weld some parts together, he needs to make sure that that part's not going to fall short Berta, after going down the road and hitting a bump or something, or whatever it is, whatever that part's designed to do. And he's to go. And so that's what the engineering aspect of


it, yeah, and you don't want it to fall apart, and you want to be able to sort of nail it, and you want to be able to do it pretty consistently with the level of quality that you're not, you know, throwing parts away. So, back to you again, Mark. So did you start your career, Annika,


I actually spent one year programming robots for another company. And then came the panic, and I've been there for I don't want to say, two, five years, you can tell like, I look very young.


So, so with that said, and that's going to go to you, John. Where do you see there's a lot of, we're here at FABTECH there's a lot of technology, a lot of innovation, a lot of automation that is, is being on, it's on display, and it's great, don't get me wrong, I think it's pretty cool. And me live in a Discovery Channel Live, I just soak it all up. But with that said, FANUC is always sort of your leading edge, you're constantly pushing, you're seeing what the market is, is in need of where do you see things sort of heading


through industry 4.0 Making sure all our products are ready to industry 4.0. So data collection, understanding how long parts take to make, understanding the mission of the machinery and what your output is your throughput, all of that. All those analytics are a big part of manufacturing going forward.


Yeah, it's a big deal. You don't mark now, with that said, Does FANUC provide a sort of that cloud base sort of solution, because data is data that I'm going to be collected data I'm going to be you know, and then I want to be able to analyze that data in such a way that makes me smarter as a manufacturer and do some tactical, you know, adjustments whatever because I want to make sure that I have my uptime, I quality and so on and so forth. This fancy just sort of like life knock on panic sort, sort of turnkey ish.


I just relative to my history, and on some of these things. We've had a number of customers So they want to see, you collect a bunch of data for us, then we've set up systems where it collects data. And then they don't know what to do with the data. And so


a common tale for data is


there, and it just never gets used. So we do have other other methods we've looked at to learn from that. And maybe I'd say, one of the, one of the things that we have right now is called zero downtime, or CDT for short. And it's a, it's a method where the robots will actually send information about, about itself, or the health of the robot, to the cloud. And then we have analytics, we've worked on developing these analytics by looking at all the data, and we try to determine if a robot is getting close to breaking down, having a problem or whatever reason. So the real goal, when we started this whole project, the real goal was that we would be able to tell the customer, hey, this robot that's running in production, right now, it's got a motor that's getting hot, for whatever reason, and you need to plan on doing some maintenance work on it. So repair that. And we think that you want to order those parts now. So that you'll have the parts to repair it, before the robot actually breaks down. And, you know, that way you can plan and not wait until rule breaks down and like, Oh, I gotta order parts, or it's got to arrive, I gotta schedule somebody to do the repair, all that all that work, because a lot of downtime we're trying to prevent, that's our zero balance.


This is interesting, because there's a lot of conversation around all of that, right? There's, there's gold in the data. And and it's always gets down to how do I mine it? What's important, what's not important? Where do I start all of that good stuff. But one of the things that's interesting, that, that I see a value because of the supply chain, and the challenges that exist there, if I had, if I had some clarity into, hey, it's beginning to fail, and then you have some sort of predictability to win, then I can sit there and go, Okay, good. And we have a long lead time item, I'm not gonna get caught with some asset being down. And I've been able to back up relatively, I like that.


That's, that's been the goal of that product, itself. And we've added other things to it to try and help provide some production data and things like that. But it's a, it's a great product, the automotive customers that we have that users really love


is that John is that a product that can be deployed in all FANUC products for next gen or


whatever. ztt specific to the robot side of the business. On the CNC side, we have something very similar called MC link guy, we pull data, and there's all kinds of information that you have there. But I think the most important thing is just to get started, customers need just to get started and just do something fundamental, like spin, how much time of the day is your spindle running? If it's not running more, why, then that way, you get to understand how you can just get started with data collection. And get better at it and know what information is in accordance


with that said, the display is there, we all have been exposed. In a pure data scientists return. We've all been exposed because there's there's, there's this passion to try to continue to look into the data and keep on drilling down in the data and data, data, data data. But I don't want to do just a manufacturer I don't want to do just Can I have a dashboard that says red, bad? Yellow, Green, good, that type of thing


means on jeans off running alarm, whatever, that's a great place to get started.


And, and the ability to be able to say, hey, it's starting to turn yellow, the motors heating, what whatever it is, gives me some tactical, is there a vision of being able to and I might be just shut me down to step by you shouldn't be done with this question. But with that, there's there's this this push to say hey, there's some something going on with this asset. And, and I want to you work in conjunction with Banik saying a panic. Hey, guys, we've seen that our motor is or the motor on this particular unit is what happens. Do you have that also communication if I went down that road, I can ensure that Vanik will be there? Well remember, you can shut me down and we can go there's


there's a it's a great question because the the goal of being able to predict that downtime means that it has to an announcement has to come somewhere. Yep. And so we did. We did Have the notice going to customers. But we also have that notice coming to our hotline. And the goal is, we want to make sure that the customers are acting on it. And so we can contact customers also, and see if there's a problem coming up here, maybe they know something else is already going on. And they understand and they're, they're working towards it, maybe nice and neat looking elsewhere. And so we try to make sure we're responsive to help them with that


situation. That's, again, I think that there's a there's a beauty and the ability to be able to one sort of make it intuitive, simple. I don't have to, you know, exhaust too much of the gray matter calories to try to figure it out. That's one two, that because I have all these other challenges with my business, right, and they exist. But I there's a comfort to knowing that this asset is valuable automated asset right here. Has it covered. And I think that that's, that's a great message. And many of the companies around here are looking for that as well. I kinda like all that. You guys are pretty cool. All right. I hate to do it, but I have to. How do people get a hold of you, John?


Get a hold of us at FANUC


So to John? Yeah, I got FANUC. America. You I want them to go to a human. Not to say Fanox not human.


You can email me at John dot horn at FANUC America.


There it is. And you Mark,


Mark Surulere ch er l er, Mark server


You guys were great. I'm excited about the future. But I'm an old guy and i i I want to I want to participate. Can I participate? Well election. There it is keys to the kingdom I can participate. All right. Thank you very much for joining industrial talk. Once again, we are broadcasting from FABTECH. Here in Atlanta, Georgia, having a great time meeting people like John and Mark because they are special people. And they're delivering solutions and solving problems right here right now. You can reach out to them at industrial talk, all the contact information will be there. So fear not, we will be right back.


You're listening to the industrial talk Podcast Network.


Again, thank you very much for joining industrial talk and a hearty thank you to both of Mark and a John FANUC is the company incredible things in great innovation that is taking place there in that company. And if you ever go to their booths, like FABTECH, which is by the way, FABTECH 23 is in Chicago, September 11 through the 14th. Put that on your calendar Most definitely, you're going to be dazzled by the innovation that hap is happening at FANUC. Go to their booth, look around, talk to somebody, it's all their great stuff, great solutions, making manufacturing succeed. It is a fabulous, fabulous. I can't say that enough, apparently. Fabulous solution. FANUC. America is the company wonderful people wonderful company. All right. As I alluded to, we're building this platform. This platform is truly dedicated to industrial professionals. Your message needs to be amplified. It needs to be told and and people need to hear it most definitely. Industrial talk is the place for you go out to industrial Subscribe to the channel. Reach out to me. I'm a warm and fuzzy teddy bear. You'll get to know me. But let's have that conversation. It's easy. Go out to industrial and just say Scott, I want to talk. That's it. How about that? No friction there. All right, be bold, be brave. I say it all the time. dare greatly. Absolutely. Hang out with people like Mark and John, you're going to be changing the world. Thank you very much. Once again, put FABTECH 23 on your calendar because you will not be disappointed. We're gonna have another one coming from FABTECH shortly so stay tuned.

Scott MacKenzie

About the author, Scott

I am Scott MacKenzie, husband, father, and passionate industry educator. From humble beginnings as a lathing contractor and certified journeyman/lineman to an Undergraduate and Master’s Degree in Business Administration, I have applied every aspect of my education and training to lead and influence. I believe in serving and adding value wherever I am called.

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