A major draw card at Austro’s open day will be the Austro Mark, a two-dimensional coding system that will record critical information related to customers and their saw blades.
All customer blades will carry a QR code that will provide Austro sharpening personnel with all the necessary information they need to help customers extend the life of these consumables.
Critical data on the sharpening history of the blade and its use will be stored at Austro’s premises in Roodepoort and shared with the customer.
The company’s Leon Fourie says that one of the most important benefits offered by this system is its ability to prevent over-running the blade – a practice that he sees all too often in the industry.
“Over-running compromises the overall life of the blade, as too much tungsten-carbide has to be removed to sharpen it. Ideally, you only want to touch the blade – commonly referred to ‘licking’ the tungsten carbide in the steel-related industries,” he explains.
Fourie says that over-running can result in as much as 0,4mm of tungsten carbide being sacrificed from the blade, as opposed to the accepted practice of only 0,2mm.
This drastically impacts on the life-cycle of the blade and is therefore a serious concern for Fourie and the Austro team considering that the cost of an entirely new blade is 10 times the price of one sharpening.
In order to encourage better sharpening practices in the industry, the Austro Mark service will also allow the company incentivise best practice in sharpening.
He says that the system has been accompanied with a loyalty programme that will see Austro provide a free sharpening service after every eighth sharpening undertaken by its customers.
In addition to sharing trends collated from the blade with customers, Austro will also be able to streamline its own sharpening lines by being able to pro-actively respond to trends.
“This is a significant advantage for us. The fact that we will be able to merely scan the blades when they arrive at our facility is a major boon, resulting is significant improvements in efficiencies on our front. This will be complemented by being able to adjust our service to cater the trends and patterns we identify from the market,” says Fourie.
Wood Southern Africa & Timber Times has never missed an Austro open day and it looks forward to seeing you at this year’s event. See you there!