The Austrian Vorarlberg is home to Summer Metallbau GmbH. Whether locksmith work, sheet metal processing or welded assemblies – the family business supplies customers from industry and commerce in the border triangle around Lake Constance. A compact plasma oxyfuel cutting system now rounds off the versatile machinery and completes the cutting process. For Managing Director Andreas Summer, the MasterCut Compact is the ideal machine for the various requirements.
Furniture construction, horticulture, industry, subcontractors and trade: Summer Metallbau GmbH south of Bregenz in Vorarlberg supplies a wide variety of sectors. When cutting, edging, and welding have to be done according to plan and the customer is under time pressure, the Austrian family business blossoms. “Everything is very familiar here. The distances are short, we are flexible and very fast from the offer to the finished order,” describes Andreas Summer, Managing Director of the company founded in 1995 by his father Günther, and adds: “In addition, we are really broadly positioned with our machinery.” This includes a press brake, impact shears, modern welding equipment and also a waterjet cutting machine “with which we can cover and cut everything”.
Since February 2023, the machine park as a whole and the cutting area in particular have been enriched by a powerful member. Since then, the MasterCut Compact from MicroStep has been in use. The space-saving 2D system enables precise cutting of a wide range of material thicknesses with technologies for plasma cutting and autogenous flame cutting. “This allows us to do complete sheet metal processing for flashings: We cut base plates, flanges, exposed sheets for furniture or oven construction but also steel parts for horticulture,” says Summer.
A perfect technology combination in the company in combination with the already existing waterjet cutting technology and therefore also interesting as a service provider to perform the cutting for other companies. For Summer, this is a worthwhile investment to meet increasing cost and competitor pressure with more efficiency, flexibility and speed. The plasma-autogenous combination is usually used for structural steel and mostly covers jobs from 3 to 40 mm thick. For stainless steel and other materials, Summer uses waterjet. Mostly smaller series or smallest lot sizes are produced.
Found the right partner via the Internet
Andreas Summer’s investment in the MasterCut Compact was preceded by a lengthy process of research. Mainly on the Internet, he surveyed the market of cutting equipment manufacturers, selected the preferred manufacturers, which he later saw live. “It was only then that I realized that MicroStep was very close to us, and that immediately appealed to me. And also the customer friendliness and the fact that we were able to look at a machine right away,” Summer looks back. So the decision was quickly made in favor of MicroStep and, after an intensive exchange with the sales consultants, in favor of the compact system with dual technology.
For Summer, it was quickly clear that it was a good investment: “What the machine can do, what it costs, and what it covers: that’s ideal. We found what we were looking for. Even the entry into plasma technology went without a hitch, with the training we were well prepared,” says the company owner, who is fully convinced of his decision and his added performance. In-house, he can now flexibly design his own cutting to a high quality and precise fit and, thanks to still free capacities, also cut flat material for other companies. He sees himself well positioned for the future: “When you come to MicroStep, you don’t just buy a machine, you buy more: you simply have a strong partner, there was a good bond right away.”
Compact plasma cutting system with a processing area of 3,000 x 1,500 mm
The MasterCut Compact series is a plasma cutting system designed as a space-saving stand-alone solution that can economically cut different material thicknesses in high plasma quality. Summer Metallbau relies on a design with a work surface of 3,000 x 1,500 mm for 2D sheet metal processing. The plant uses the plasma torch mainly for cutting mild steel with a thickness of 1 to 30 mm. A Kjellberg Q 1500 is included as the plasma power source for digitally supported, precise cutting. A filter system specially designed for the compact plasma cutting system, the TEKA Eco 75 with 7.5 kW and integrated spark pre-separator, is connected for extraction.
For processing cutting tasks with higher material thicknesses, the MasterCut Compact has been extended by an additional travelling oxyfuel torch. The FIT+ three oxyfuel machine cutting torch from GCE with integrated ignition is used.
The Austrian metal construction company mainly processes structural steel between 30 and 60 mm with it. However, larger thicknesses can also be processed with the oxyfuel flame cutter if required.