When we get up in the morning, the first thing we do is to splash a lot of water on our faces so as to start the day afresh. The humble faucets installed in our sinks and bathrooms do just this and more and have undergone a radical change in both aesthetics and functionality over the last few years. Hindustan Sanitaryware Industries Ltd (HSIL), which already has plants at Bahadurgarh and Hyderabad, set up another plant near New Delhi where it manufactures faucets. Hindustan Sanitaryware Industries Ltd (HSIL) has been manufacturing a wide variety of bathroom products along with faucets for the past 55 years with plants in Bahadurgarh and Hyderabad and a new plant in Rajasthan forfaucet manufacturing.
“It was just six months ago that the company commissioned a new plant at Kaharani Industrial Area near Bhiwadi in Rajasthan where HSIL carries out only faucet manufacturing. Though it is a new plant, we have the capacity to manufacture 2.5 million pieces in a year. With around six decades of experience behind us, we are confident of increasing our annual productivity by almost 25 percent YOY depending on the sales and market conditions,” the vice-president of the company, Mr Ajay Jain said.
Explaining the manufacturing process in detail, Mr Jain said, “We purchase brass ingots, melt them in large furnaces after which casting and cutting is done followed by machining. Once the component is ready, it is then sent for grinding, polishing, electroplating before being assembled at a different section. The faucet is then ready for dispatch into the market.”
HSIL is a pioneer in India in the sanitaryware manufacturing domain that has set up fully automated plants and has exploited CNC technology optimally. “From foundry till the plating line, the entire plant is automated. Besides these machines, we have also placed an order for robots from Italy apart from forging and zinc casting machines. This way we have an entire blueprint ready to increase the annual production capacity at this plant at least four times (10 mn) pieces,” Mr Jain said and added that the company has 22 Haas vertical machining centres (VMCs) on which the machining process is carried out.
Apart from the bathroom product division, HSIL also manufactures glass bottles under the brand name of AGI while the sanitaryware products are marketed under the brand name of Hindware and Benelave. “All these manufacturing processes are carried out on Haas VMCs as we find our American made HAAS machines meet our expectations and provide real value for money. . These machines are manufactured at a single location in the US and there quality is good as far as production of our products is concerned. I had personally visited their plant in the US and after lot of deliberations and discussions as regards use of these machines to manufacture faucets, we were rest assured with Haas’ technology and placed a single order of 22 machines,” Mr Jain quipped.
On a query about the technical benchmarks that HSIL considered before finalizing Haas, Mr Jain mentioned that high rapids and feeds combined with quick tool changes and excellent spindle rpm/torque ratios resulting in increased productivity were among key reasons for this decision. The Haas team also helped us in design, development and supply of fixturing after studying our many components. This helped us in machining most of our components in a single set up. Our process involving machining in a single clamping ensures accuracy, reduces cycle time and makes redundant the need to change references.
The resultant flexibility and excellent component cycle times of 3 mins or less ensured that we did not look beyond HAAS for our machining requirements. Besides meeting all the technical product parameters, the HSIL management is also happy with the way the Haas engineers have been responsive towards company’s grouses, if any. “Right from prompt delivery to timely service, the Haas engineers have been supportive towards our needs and have cooperated with us in resolving all our problems right from installation of the machine to improving its productivity,” Mr Jain added.