When British-based LED lighting specialist Loxa needed die cast aluminium casings for their industrial lighting range, they sought a UK-based manufacturer capable of producing the large die castings casings in high volumes and with consistent high quality to withstand the rigours of exposure to the weather.
Introducing a UK manufacturer
Based in Colwyn Bay, Conway North Wales, Mark Aluminium Die Castings has many decades of heritage producing high quality, pressure die cast aluminium parts for their own water pumps. Used extensively in the automotive industry, these castings are required to meet the highest quality levels while produced in high volumes and remaining competitively priced. With such extensive manufacturing experience, the service MADC provides is ideally suited for non-automotive applications requiring similar die cast parts.
The supply relationship with Loxa started through MADC’s involvement with the Welsh Assembly Government (WAG) and business contacts developed by the closely related Enterprises Europe Network (EEN) programme. The EEN looks to place customers requiring an engineering or manufacturing service with potential suppliers. The local EEN contact was familiar with MADC, having visited the factory and noted it had received an enquiry for the manufacture of casings for LED streetlamps. EEN contacted the end customer, Loxa, to confirm MADC had the capabilities to complete the order and Loxa and MADC were introduced.
Manufacture through sound design
Loxa provided MADC with various casing specifications that the company was looking for and using existing contacts MADC has within the company group, worked with a quality tool making making facility in Asia to provide the tooling for their aluminium die castings machinery, while maintaining competitive tooling pricing.
The LED casing designs are challenging due to the large surface areas, along with the many ribs required for strength and heat dissipation to produce the strongest case, while keeping the weight to a minimum.
Several prototype die castings were produced and after a few minor casting issues were designed out of the tooling by the designers at MADC, Loxa was satisfied the castings would be of a consistent high quality.
Competitive volume manufacture
Loxa has now placed orders with MADC, who will manufacture all casings at their UK factory.
David Lewis, European Head of Operations at MADC, comments: “Customers work with us knowing we have the experience and expertise to produce to their requirements and production volumes. All of our aluminium die castings products are designed and manufactured in the UK and have been for decades. Therefore, we not only demonstrate extensive casting design and manufacturing experience, commercially we are in a position to offer a competitively priced product. By operating from a UK location and working in a transparent manner, we remove the customer risks associated with dealing with, and sourcing from, suppliers based on a different continent.
“In this instance, Loxa was looking for a UK source of quality casings, so a close control of purchasing and production volumes could be planned and checked. We have achieved a high quality end product and due to our location, the client feels confident we will deliver.”