“When we first met with Leitz Tooling a few years ago we almost laughed them out of the room, their claims on tooling cost savings and increased quality were outrageous. It’s good for us that they have a sense of humour; it’s not just a claim that they are the best, they really are.” Jim McBride, factory manager, DM Design.
Based in Glasgow, DM Design is a family-run business with a wealth of experience in manufacturing and designing products tailored to customer specifications. They design and install bespoke luxury fitted kitchens and bedrooms across the UK, and exclusive to Scotland the company also supplies bespoke fitted bathrooms.
“The biggest issue we had was downtime. We would change saw blades more than we liked, the sets wouldn’t always match up and the cutting edge on the saws didn’t last. It was a major headache,” said Jim McBride. “We needed to find a solution, so our Managing Director Mr Donald MacLeod, contacted Leitz. Their reputation preceded them, and we were expecting them to be good, but expensive.”
DM Design’s production facility has beamsaws, point-to-point machining centres, panel saws, and edgebanders, including an edgebander dedicated to shapework. The company has a five-year machine assessment cycle, but their tooling costs were increasing year on year, into five-figure annual costs on servicing alone. DM Design is so committed to quality that they do not mass produce any aspect of their units. Each board is individually cut and fitted to create a truly bespoke unit. Unwilling to compromise on quality, they needed to find a way to decrease costs whilst still focused on achieving the blade precision and quality cut needed to produce each bespoke unit.
Leitz Tooling sales manager Brian Maddox said, “The team at DM Design is very experienced, and they produce high quality product for their customers, which was being compromised by the tooling they were using. We assessed their production and with the close cooperation of our dedicated in-house service team, recommended a saw blades and servicing package, with reassurances on quality of finish that they could not quite believe.”
Leitz Tooling has reduced DM Design’s tooling costs year on year by 35% based only on supply and service. Brian continued, “To that reduction, add the cost of downtime: as an example, you can conservatively say that eight tool changes per week takes 10 mins of downtime each. 50 weeks a year at whatever your per minute labour cost is, gives you further substantial annual savings, and reducing downtime by that 66hrs gives you 66hrs increased production. The more you know about the actual cost of your production, the better able you are to immediately see where efficiencies and savings can be made. We do this with most of our customers, and we offer the evaluation process to any manufacturer, so they can see it for themselves.”
Jim McBride added, “I am admittedly the biggest sceptic. I’ve worked with DM Design over 30 years and used all sorts of tools. I couldn't get my head around it - how can Leitz produce these fantastic results? But they do, and we are the ones who are benefiting.”
DM Design uses Leitz Saw Management, which enables Leitz to control and monitor the life of each individual saw from beginning to end enabling them to advise and plan ahead for replacement sets. Leitz does not sub-contract its servicing. The company has 8 service centres covering all major business districts around the UK, and the company’s local service centre for DM Design is on the outskirts of Glasgow. All Leitz service centres are held to the same exacting standards with tools returning to customers “as new”, retested and rebalanced.
Brian said, “The proof is in the combination of tool performance and monitoring. We hold ourselves accountable to our customers and provide as much support as is needed. It’s so important for companies to know exactly what their manufacturing is costing them per product. Leitz don’t just sell better saw blades, customers like DM Design see us as a long-standing manufacturing partner with the expertise to provide assistance across entire production lines and manufacturing cells.”
Leitz is focused on increased productivity, reduced downtime, noise, scrap, and improved quality and safety in tested tooling design. This dedication by Leitz allows DM Design to focus their time on what matters to them – providing truly unique and perfectly produced units for each customer. All tooling from Leitz is manufactured and safety tested to BS EN847 standards helping to ensure the welfare of customer employees.