Buck & Hickman improves energy efficiency at Worcester HQ

Buck & Hickman improves energy efficiency at Worcester HQ

Distributor of tools, maintenance and health and safety products, Buck & Hickman, has lent a helping hand to one of its biggest clients, improving energy efficiency and reducing cost at its Worcester HQ.
Buck & Hickman has been the main supplier of power tools to Worcester, Bosch Group – high efficiency heating and hot water technologies – for the past three years.

The UK headquarters in Worcester houses the manufacturer’s national distribution centre and contact centre.
The project to replace air-powered screwdrivers with cordless and power tools demonstrates Buck and Hickman’s commitment to energy efficiency and cost saving for its customers.
As well as contributing to reducing the factory’s carbon footprint, the project has also helped reduce noise levels and improved health and safety on the production lines, with the reduction in air lines meaning reduced hazards for the operators.
John Jones, Account Manager at Buck & Hickman, explains: “Along with the need for new assembly tools, the specific requirement from Worcester, Bosch Group in the first instance was to help them to reduce their carbon footprint.
“We looked into how this could be done and through numerous trials we found that electric and cordless tools have lower carbon emissions than air-compressed tools, which has been the main tool of choice at the site.
“We presented our findings to Worcester along with a cost saving projection for using electric tools over air-powered and based upon our findings we won the contract to introduce electric and cordless power tools to the factory.”
The £70,000 contract saw Buck & Hickman supply the site with around 100 Bosch electric and cordless screwdrivers, replacing the traditional air-compressed tools used on the assembly lines making high efficiency gas-fired combination boilers.
The factory has now almost completely replaced all air-powered tools with electrical and cordless ones in line with its drive towards lean manufacturing.
David Cutler, Manufacturing Engineering Group Leader, at Worcester, Bosch Group, explains: “We undertook the project to come up with a new concept of assembly line to be a platform for the future, reducing our carbon footprint and making our products in a leaner, more cost-effective way.
“Together with Buck & Hickman we compared a number of criteria such as energy costs, ergonomics and handling, flexibility, environmental impact, and cost performance – and decided that electric and cordless tools were the way forward.”
The Lean Line at the Worcester manufacturing facility produces between 90 and 130 boilers per shift, with a flexible quantity of up to 15 Assembly Operatives working on the line at any one time.
David added: “The new tools have been well received by operatives, who were all used to the traditional compressed-air counterparts.
“Wherever we can improve our compressed air usage and contribute to reducing our carbon footprint we will. Furthermore, the fewer the compressed air lines, the better the working environment is for the Associates, with a reduction in the number of hazards and obstructions caused by them.”
For further information on the Buck & Hickman range visit www.buckandhickmanuk.com