Orbitform LLC
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Orbitform’s Assembly Products & Services

Orbitform designs and builds assembly equipment for manufacturing. Since 1984, Orbitform has delivered over 7,000 assembly machines and custom assembly systems to a wide range of customers and industries around the world.

We Build Machines For:

  • Orbital Riveting & Fastening
  • Impact Riveting
  • Roller Forming
  • Hot Upset Forming & Riveting
  • Projection & Resistance Welding
  • Assembly Automation
  • Conveying Systems

We Provide Services For:

  • Assembly Analysis
  • Tooling Development
  • Batch Production Runs

Orbitform Overview Video

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For more information about Orbitform, the services we offer, and permanent part assembly, read our white paper, catalog, or journal.
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Processes & Services
Blog Posts

Orbital Riveting / Forming

A smooth, non-impact cold forming process used to create permanent joints with a high aesthetic appeal and a range of articulation potential.

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Radial Riveting / Forming

Radial Riveting Head

A process similar to Orbital, using a peen to form from the center outward. Best used with delicate or unsupported rivet applications.

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Impact Riveting

An assembly process using force to fasten two things together permanently using a wide variety of rivet and material options.

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Roller Forming

A non-impact process using spinning rollers to symmetrically form a cylindrical part. Used for flaring, forming a lip, crimping, or forming a groove.

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Hot Upset Forming

A forming process using heat and pressure to form a fastener to produce heavy duty joints able to withstand high forces.

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Process Monitoring

Touch Screen monitor on Orbitform Equipment

We offer optional process monitoring and process control solutions on all of our systems.

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Conveyors Palletized

Use pallets to carry individual parts between forming stations, even allowing assembly operation to be performed directly on the line.

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Conveyors Part on Chain

Parts ride directly on roller or flat-top chain with minimum contact force. Used for high volume production and part buffering.

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Tooling Development

Orbitform Assemble Solutions Lab

All Orbitform tooling is developed in-house. Our engineers can make special recommendations based on your application to deliver ideal tooling for your machines.

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Turnkey Solutions

Multiple Orbitform Systems

We utilize every single one of our areas of expertise to bring our customers the answers to their assembly equipment needs.

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Batch Production Runs

Batch Production Crates

Orbitform has you covered for your small production run needs. Whether you need 5, 50, 500, or 5000 parts, Orbitform can help

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Welding Systems

We offer welding systems in either Projection or Resistance configurations. Each system is designed to suit each application.

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Jan 27

A bee keeping supplies manufacturer and retailer from eastern Illinois was having difficulty assembling their bee hive smokers.  Orbitform helped by designing and building two (2) Milford impact riveting machines.  Each riveter was tooled to automatically feed and insert a specific stainless steel rivet prior to the machine forming the rivet to attach different parts to the bee hive smoker assemblies. The Milford model 305 rivet setters built by Orbitform are now helping the customer’s skilled work force assemble the bee smokers faster, more consistently, and with higher quality.

 

Milford Riveting Machine Assembles Several Bee Hive Smoker Components

Efficient product manufacturing companies demand smart assembly solutions from riveting machine builders as is evidenced by the bee hive product business that approached Orbitform with the challenge to design and build impact riveting machines to attach several different components to it’s bee hive smoker.
The smoker is comprised of various parts including a housing, top cap, clips, brackets, wire hanger, etc.  Two (2) different rivet lengths were involved in the production process thus two (2) Milford model 305 riveting machines were tooled to automatically insert and upset the rivets to assemble the bee hive smoker components into the final product assembly.

 

Reducing Cycle Time and Improving Quality with Orbitform Impact Rivet Machines

Design and debug time was invested to develop the machines with narrow anvil bracket lower tooling in order to allow the fastening of several components to the stainless steel housing and top cap.  Riveting safety devices were installed to keep the production staff safe while also promoting easy and fast component alignment with the rivet machine tooling. The Milford cold form riveting machines decreased the customer’s assembly cycle time and enhanced the final product’s quality.

Orbitform was able to satisfy the customer’s assembly process requirements along with maintaining the project timeline and budget.  One could say that Orbitform helped take the “sting” out of the product assembly challenges faced by the bee keeping product supplier.

Jan 22

Pat Beach – In Memoriam

10-23-1947 – 01-15-2016

Can you remember the first time you met Pat Beach?

I sure can. It was in 1993. I met Pat at a Trade Show in Chicago. She was working in the VSI booth. At that time, VSI was the dominant player in the niche industry of orbital forming and riveting. We had already poached a few good people from VSI…of which Pat was well aware.

As she approached me I can remember thinking “This is the Pat Beach everyone has told me about? This diminutive gal, with red hair and the look of a librarian…was the person everyone told me was the heartbeat and the energizer bunny of VSI?”

But after about 90 seconds the picture became clear. Her questions of natural inquiry, her soft but confident voice of command in the subject manner, her quick reference to common customers and applications… where we had prevailed in winning over VSI, her uncommon ability to get into “your space” without being intrusive, and her heart….yes her heart…that radiated her immeasurable love for life and for everyone and everything she interacted with…all removed any doubts about the strength and impact this little lady wielded.

With Pat, even though you may have been a competitor, you were never an enemy.

It took us about two years before it seemed to make sense to attempt to pry Pat away from what was a near 20 year career with VSI. It was still a risk on our part to add additional personnel to our sales and customer service team. We really didn’t know exactly what she would be doing. We certainly didn’t know at that time, in the words of Phil, how best to measure how she was going to ADD VALUE!

But it wasn’t only risky for us. Imagine how risky it must have seemed to Pat. Leaving a 20+ year career, moving from Auburn Hills area to the hinterlands of Jackson, working with a bunch of mostly guys who mostly talked about things like hunting and fishing, and going to work with a self- professed, hard core conservative. Which reminds me, Pat regularly told me I was the only Republican she ever voted for.

Risky indeed. And oh, by the way, Pat accepted a rather material pay cut in the process.

Why did Pat make the move? I believe it was because she saw two things. First, she observed that the customer service culture at Orbitform more closely aligned with her philosophies…even though our execution had much room for improvement. Second, I believe Pat saw an opportunity to help a young company further develop this notion of customer service excellence and she knew she could play a key role. That might be an understatement.

If you ever interacted with Pat, unless you were dead, you learned something. Those of us who have had the privilege to work with her a lot….learned a lot!

In Matthew 20:26 the Bible explains what the attributes of leadership or greatness are….“He who is greatest among them is first servant of all”.

Orbitform is blessed with terrific leadership. At all levels. Virtually everyone has some leadership traits in them that can be developed and nurtured. But greatness, that’s another level.

I don’t know about you, but I have not met anyone in my life who exemplifies “servant leadership” better than Pat. She demonstrated this for us every day for the last 20 years, three months, and 12 days.

She was forever buying something for someone or crafting something for someone….all intended to lift and encourage. Who can forget the creative greeting cards she routinely shared. Where she found these cards….that were always “spot on” for the celebration or life situation at hand…was yet another demonstration of how hard she worked….for the joy and benefit of others.

She was always giving something away. Even when we knew she didn’t have it to give. Most of all, she gave of herself.

Pat was a walking encyclopedia of knowledge. She remembered customers by name and applications by industry…and personalized these at every chance. She not only created a feeling of “home” for fellow employees, but for customers as well.

We can confidently say that Pat was responsible for hundreds of customers choosing Orbitform over our competition. She lured them in with her warm, confident phone demeanor, secured their interest with her depth of knowledge and unique ability to ask probing questions, and convinced them to partner with us…because she made them feel like they were a part of our team and we were part of theirs.

Pat was a story teller, a culture framer, an historian, and a legacy builder. There is no way to understate the impact Pat has had on our jobs, our careers, our business, and even our families.

She loved as big as her stature was small.

What many may not know is that Pat suffered significant and often severe health issues throughout her life. She never complained, always kept a stiff upper lip, and was eternally optimistic with the uncanny ability to inspire others thru her challenges and illnesses.

She was strong and courageous…….right up to the end. Her nurses repeatedly commented on her resilience when it looked like the end was near. Even in her last days, even when she couldn’t speak, she did her best to cheer those who visited.

Kind hearted with everyone she ever interacted with…to many of us Pat was a heavenly angel walking among us here on earth.

It was a blessing when God finally called Pat home.

But somehow that blessing seems to pale in comparison to the blessing she was to us.

Mike Shirkey

May 09

Four Ways We Hold Things Together

We live in a world where things are put together. The computer you’re using, the desk it’s on, and the chair you are sitting in have all been assembled. At Orbitform, we specialize in permanent part assembly, processes like orbital forming, impact riveting, roller forming, and hot upset riveting and forming. These four processes are all unique and have their own strengths, weaknesses, and qualities. They have major advantages in assembling parts that don’t need to be taken apart, both in reliability and longevity. But what are they? Why do these processes excel when compared to non-permanent fastening solutions? If your product doesn’t need to be taken apart, consider these reasons to switch to permanent assembly.

Permanent Part Assembly Advantages

  1. Reduce the Costs of Fastening Hardware
  2. Leave behind the retaining rings, threaded fasteners, nuts, washers, and cotter pins. With permanent part assembly, the part and the fastener are formed together, creating a secure and permanent bond without the use of extra unnecessary hardware.

  3. Reduce the Costs of Machining Operations
  4. Save money by avoiding costly operations like machining grooves and threads, drilling and tapping holes, etc. With the time saved in these areas, quality and throughput is increased.

  5. Reduce the Costs of Assembly Operations & Cycle Time
  6. It’s the easy solution when it comes to reducing cycle times: reduce the number of hardware parts and operations that need to be done to a part. This could be installing a retaining ring or cotter pin, or driving a screw or a nut. Permanent part assembly means shorter cycle times and more parts moved down the line.

  7. Superior Retention
  8. Compared to cotter pins, retaining rings, and Loctite® adhesives, permanent part assembly has a much better retention level. There’s a reason the word permanent is in the title.

  9. Improved Aesthetics
  10. If you’re concerned with how your finished parts look, permanent processes deliver some of the best aesthetics. As we mentioned earlier, loose the retaining rings and cotter pins; make it look clean and finished with a formed head instead.
    There is not a “one size fits all” solution for permanent part assembly. But you could start receiving these benefits by switching your assembly process. If your product doesn’t need to be taken apart, for shipping, maintenance, or repair, then consider switching to a process like orbital forming, impact riveting, roller forming, or hot upset riveting. Orbitform is an expert in delivering unbiased approaches to help our customers find the very best process to fit their needs.

For more information on Permanent Part Assembly, read our white paper [attach link to whitepaper PDF]

Dec 17
Articulating vs. Static

Orbitform has been designing and building assembly equipment since 1984. One of the areas we have specialized in is Roller Forming. We have two different types, articulating and static. Both of these serve their own purposes, and can offer you an assembly advantage.
Roller Forming is a non-impact process using a spinning Roller Head with two or more rollers to apply a symmetrical force to form the part. Roller forming is used for flaring, forming a lip, crimping, or forming a groove in cylindrical parts too large for other processes. This is where the two types of roller heads come in.

Static Roller Heads

Static roller heads are used when forming a lip around a cylindrical part. These heads have spinning rollers that use down-force from one of Orbitform’s standard powerheads to create an aesthetically pleasing lip on a surface. These roller heads are both consistent and efficient, and the non-impact nature combined with precision and accuracy allow for the forming of delicate and brittle materials. Through use of an o-ring or gaskets, it is possible to form sealed caps on the end of cylindrical parts.

Articulating Roller Heads

Articulating heads are most often used for either forming a groove in a part or when there are obstructions to clear in order to form a lip. These parts use 360o Contact while forming, so there is consistent action while forming the part. These roller heads can deliver forming forces up to 5,000 lbs. @ 100 psi. These roller heads can bring new advantages to your forming process.

The Assembly Advantage

Orbitform has been delivering assembly solutions for manufacturing since 1984. With experience in riveting, forming, conveyors, assembly systems, and welding, we have the ability to offer you an unbiased assembly solution. For more information about Roller Forming or any other process mentioned here, visit our website at www.orbitform.com or call 800-957-4838.

Categories

Roller Forming
Dec 16
production batch run

When you need a small batch of parts assembled, Orbitform’s Assembly Solutions Lab can be a cost effective option. We have both the assembly equipment and the knowhow. The Assembly Solutions Lab offers a wide range of Orbital, Radial, and Impact Riveters, as well as Roller Forming and Hot Upset systems. With 30 years of assembly experience, or application engineers are the assembly experts. They know how to fabricate the proper tooling, and how to correctly fixture parts for a consistent and repeatable form. Orbitform customers are welcome to visit our lab and observe the assembly process in action. So whether you need 5, 50, 500, or 5000 parts, Orbitform has you covered.

The Assembly Experts

We have the know-how to bring your assembly goals into reality. To learn more about Orbitform, Production Runs, or anything talked about here, call us today at 800-957-4838 or click here.

Categories

Assembly Analysis
Nov 27

At Orbitform, we are dedicated to helping our customers increase throughput and reduce costs. One of the ways which we do this is through multi-form heads. These options operate similar to Orbital, but make it possible to form multiple rivets on the same part or rivets across multiple parts at the same time. These heads are used throughout the assembly automation process, providing advantages like cost reduction, quality increase, and cycle time reduction for high volume production. Multi-forming is typically done with one of two options: Multi-Spindle and Multi-Point. Both of these options allow the possibility of forming multiple rivets

Multi-Spindle Heads

Multi-spindle heads use an Orbital Powerhead to produce forming motion and force. Multiple Orbital heads attach to the multi-spindle head, forming multiple rivets at the same time. These rivets can either be across multiple parts or on the same part. Center distances for multi-spindle applications are dependent on rivet size and corresponding Orbital head used for forming. Multi-spindle forming is not restricted to a single plane since separate spindles and orbital heads are used for each rivet. These heads can be designed for different heights in relationship to one another.

Run more parts per cycle, increase throughput, and reduce costs.

Multi-Point Heads

Multi-point heads use fixed center forming peens on a single eccentric driven head to form rivets set close together. Multi-point applications form multiple rivets on the same part to reduce cycle time and part handling, leading to more throughput and higher efficiency. Anyone manufacturing small parts with rivets set close together can benefit from multi-point forming. Center distances for applications can range from as little as .188” (4.7mm) to 3” (76 mm).

The Assembly Experts

Orbitform is an expert in assembly solutions. Multi-point and multi-spindle are just the beginning when it comes to optimizing your assembly process. Options like x-y shuttle automation, index dial tables, multi-station forming systems, and complex conveyor systems are all areas that Orbitform has experience in. If you are interested in any of these products, visit www.orbitform.com or call (800) 957-4838 for more information. Orbitform…solutions delivered.

Categories

Orbital Forming
Nov 27

Orbitform designs and builds assembly equipment solutions for manufacturing. Among this equipment is our Palletized Conveyor line, helping parts get from each stage of the assembly process both quickly and smoothly. Our palletized lines utilize pallets with specially designs part fixtures to carry parts between stations. Conveyor automation by Orbitform can help you boost throughput, saving time while doing it.

Our Palletized Lines Feature:

  • High Volume Production
    • Keep production levels up with the high capacity of Palletized Conveyors. Integrate with third-party assembly equipment to ensure high throughput.
  • Part Buffering
    • Reliable part buffering technology ensures that parts will be ready for assembly on the conveyor line.
  • No Part to Part Contact
    • Parts ride on individual pallets to eliminate contact with surrounding parts on the line.
  • The Ability to Form Parts Directly on the Line
    • With accurate pallet stopping technology, lines can feed parts into assembly stations located directly on the conveyor line.

Seasoned Experience

We work with you to come up with a solution that will fit your specific needs. Orbitform is experienced in complex controls, trafficking technology, and RFID integration. Benefit from our knowledge and get your parts into the loop. Visit www.orbitform.com to learn more, or call (800) 957-4838 to speak with our assembly experts. Orbitform…solutions delivered.

Categories

Conveyors Processes
Nov 27

If you need to install multiple rivets, you could benefit from our multi-head and multi-point Impact riveters. Multi-head riveters consist of two or more riveting heads, designed to work on the same part simultaneously.

We offer fixed and adjustable tool configurations to suit a wide range of applications. Consolidate equipment and reduce work area footprint with one of our adjustable center distance dual-head riveters, or increase production throughput with a multi-head fixed-tool riveter.

It is also possible to install multiple rivets simultaneously with a single fixed-tool or fixed-center (FC) riveter, configured with multiple rivet feeders, drivers, jaws, and rollsets.

Options:

  • Dual fixed tool, adjustable, multi-head, and multi-point configurations
  • Pneumatic, electro-mechanical, hydra-pneumatic, and hydraulic
  • Offset Driver package provides minimum distance between rivets (rivet head diameter + 1/16”)
  • Safety probe, light curtain, palm buttons, and Lexan ® and/or wire mesh guarding
  • Custom fixturing and part clamping
  • Vibratory rivet feeding system upgrade
  • Integrated load cell for monitoring rivet forces

Features:

  • Multi-head systems allows heads to be turned on/off separately, to use a single head for rework
  • Rotary Hopper rivet feeding system, mechanical or pneumatic, with track assembly
  • Install solid rivets up to .63” diameter
  • Install semi-tubular rivets from 1/16” and up
  • Multi-point riveting from a minimum distance (rivet head diameter + 1/16”) up to 4” apart.

The Assembly Experts

Additional options and features are available. Each machine is configured and tooled to suit your specific riveting application. To have our experts advise you on your application, visit our website or call (800) 958-4838. Orbitform…solutions delivered.

Categories

Impact Riveting
Nov 27

When customers approach us with rivets that are delicate, long, or unsupported, we often turn to radial forming as a solution. Radial riveting and forming, also known as Radial, is similar to the Orbital process, but the material is displaced from the center outward in a rosette or rose curve pattern; this creates less side force than the orbital process. Radial is ideal for forming small or delicate parts. Radial heads are also available with the standard or long reach peen options, giving a wider range of forming possibilities.

Unique Applications

Radial Form is for customers with unique or very light duty applications. It is also available as a “standard option” for new machines and systems and designed to retrofit existing Orbitform machines by means of a spindle change out. Additionally, Radial has been designed to accommodate an integral load cell into the spindle package. This allows radial to provide the same process monitoring capabilities as the rest of the Orbitform product line.

Solutions Delivered

Orbitform is an expert in permanent part assembly. We pride ourselves in offering unbiased assembly solutions for manufacturing. Radial forming is just one of the processes we offer at Orbitform. For more information about permanent part assembly, or so send us your sample parts, visit www.orbitform.com or call 1 (800) 957-4838 to speak with the assembly experts. Orbitform…Solutions Delivered.

Nov 27

At Orbitform, one of our specialties is in Orbital Forming and Riveting. Orbital forming and riveting is a cold forming process using a peen tool held at a fixed angle to create a sweeping line of pressure around a rivet, progressively forming the rivet throughout the process.

This peen is crucial to the forming process, making contact with the part being forming and doing the actual forming work. The peen fits into the orbital head and is typically held in place by a set screw.

There are a wide variety of standard peens that are used with orbital heads, each with a different purpose. Some ensure a certain aesthetic appearance while others are capable of flaring or crimping. Each peen is designed specifically for each customer part, developed by our engineers to custom fit the specific application.

The peen becomes the key to forming high quality parts. Orbitform will ensure that your peens and tooling will produce top quality parts with consistency. We are the experts in permanent part assembly, and we will put our knowledge to work for you. Orbitform…solutions delivered.

Categories

Orbital Forming
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