New Robot Tile Line Bolsters Durango Stone Production

February 10, 2006
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World Wide Stone Corp. is now producing honed and filled tiles of Durango Stoneâ„¢ on a state-of-the-art robotic production line at its factory in Durango, Mexico.


Since the strips are actually more than twice the thickness of standard tiles, they are split using a Levi Tunisi splitting machine from Italy.
World Wide Stone Corp. is now operating a new state-of-the-art robot tile line for Durango Stoneâ„¢ at its facility in Durango, Mexico, which is expected to triple the company's capacity for tile production.

Adding to its already impressive collection of equipment, World Wide Stone Corp. recently invested in a new state-of-the-art robotic tile line. The line was installed in at the company's factories in Durango, Mexico, in November of last year and began full production at the start of the year.

All of the new equipment was manufactured in Italy, and represents the latest generation of stoneworking machinery. During the production process for honed and filled tiles, blocks are cut into strips, which are then filled using automated machinery from Officine Meccaniche Spalanzani. During this part of the process, quality control personnel carefully monitor the operation to ensure that the filler is properly and evenly applied, and that the finished products will adhere to strict quality standards.

Levi Tunisi equipment is also used to separate the split pieces and load them face up on the conveyor before they move onto the finishing line.
Since the strips are actually more than twice the thickness of standard tiles, they are split using a Levi Tunisi splitting machine from Italy, and Levi Tunisi equipment is also used to separate the split pieces and load them face up on the conveyor before they move onto the finishing line.

The finishing line is comprised of calibrating and polishing machinery from Pedrini, and this includes the newest equipment on the market today. After being honed, the strips are cut into tiles using a Pedrini seven-head crosscutting saw, and an automated beveling machine bevels the edges of the tiles as needed.

Perhaps the most noteworthy aspect of the new tile plant is the level of automation. Material is automatically loaded and unloaded from the production line by means of robotic machinery with vacuum lifters, and the factory runs as a virtual “assembly plant,” where stone is moved through the space with optimum efficiency and automation.

After being honed, the strips are cut into tiles using a Pedrini seven-head crosscutting saw.
Perhaps the most noteworthy aspect of the new tile plant is the level of automation. Material is automatically loaded and unloaded from the production line by means of robotic machinery with vacuum lifters, and the factory runs as a virtual “assembly plant,” where stone is moved through the space with optimum efficiency and automation.

“We are right on schedule to triple our capacity to produce and deliver our exclusive filled and honed authentic Durango Stone products to our U.S. distributor network,” said Spencer Cunningham, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of World Wide Stone Corp. The installation and start-up of the line was completed by Frank Cunningham, President and Chief Executive Officer of World Wide Stone Corp.

In one of the final steps, an automated beveling machine bevels all four edges of the tiles as specified.
With the new line in place, the company expects 2006 to be a year of solid growth. “I see World Wide Stone maturing into the kind of company its founders envisioned many years ago,” said Kent Schweiss, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. “[We are] beginning a new journey of industry leadership. These are exciting times.”

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