PROGRESS REPORT NUMBER ONE – AUGUST 2020 EMORY BIKES
The purpose of this new series of alerts is to keep the purchaser and future customers abreast of progress made and that we are making month by month toward full production by January 2021. It could happen that everything is perfect on our end; we’ve been successful, but because of shortages of say…tires worldwide (a component we can’t make in-house) delivery is delayed. So this screed is to keep you informed of our manufacturing journey.
So far we have completed all CAD engineering. CAD is short for computer aided design and now the finished bicycle and every part in exact detail is a digital twin of the actual finished bicycle. This is no small feat. Yes we have physical handmade prototypes but they have required engineering plans to allow them to be made and virtually tested for interference and fit in the computer. Additionally we have purchased a new, up to the minute, tower computer with enormous computing power in order to house the newest version of Solid Edge (CAD) and CAMWorks. CAM stands for computer aided manufacturing.
We will manufacture in excess of 38 different parts for the new Emory C-4 line of coastal cruisers and this is accomplished in our Eurotech mill/turn machine. This machine is tuned to make parts from various bar stock diameters twelve feet long; continuously. In order to know what tools to bring on line and what to do with those tools the machine has to be fed a diet of code: NC code. NC stands for numerical control. So first the concept (human brain) then the virtual digital twin produced by CAD and then into CAM which will show in the computer the equivalent of CAD for the part but also show the machine (Eurotech) and all the fixturing and tools necessary to actually machine the required part, and in simulation mode it will run the part in real time; tell you what set-up to mirror on the mill/turn machine warn of any “potential crashes” and spit out the NC code which is then entered into the machine. Upon which time the machine can do its job; pull in raw bar stock and with tools whirring around like crazy produce bicycle parts.
We have almost completed set-up of the Eurotech; gone through twelve hours of classroom training on the machine brain console which is the software in the machine that accepts our NC code. Items can be programmed by hand using the FANUC software on the machine. CAM is much faster and much more convenient than loading a program by hand but one has to know the FANUC functions and code in order to tweak the CAM NC code as necessary.
We have started a tracing system for the raw bar stock and are anticipating getting material over the next few weeks, after we finish constructing a large rack to hold it. The rack steel is currently in house awaiting fabrication.
Ancillary to setting up the Eurotech it was necessary to purchase a new rotary screw air compressor and we ran all the necessary piping to several machines and in fact air can now be used in the whole plant if we had to, although we have other compressors we made sure this one could tie into those as well, if we ever needed them. Our team also had to set up a coolant supply of hundreds of gallons of especially pure water and we bought the coolant and a 55 gallon drum of oil which the mill/turn machine requires.
In order to be able to paint our mild steel Emory frames and forks we had our shot peening machine and batch oven inspected and upgraded where needed and we replaced the 6,000 sq.ft. roof as well.
We secured over a dozen VIDMAR cabinets in order to have a base to store all the various parts in various stages of production.
We have reached out to dealers and shown prototypes across the state and attended a score of bicycle, and Made in America exhibits and conventions; Charlotte N.C., Indianapolis IN, Austin TX, and Sacramento CA to name a few. Here we talked and met with suppliers for things we don’t make like the GATES transmission belts and we are O.E.M. with every supplier. Plus we displayed at nearly every One Spark held here in Jax.
The www.emorybikes.com web site has gone live and we are set up to receive pre-orders for our projected production completion at year end. The first 100 customers will receive a beautiful and unique “first 100” tee shirt of special design…those are in the works.
In future blogs we will endeavor to keep the customer and curious reader informed of our greater progress. As you can see we’ve already committed a decade of time and hundreds of thousands of dollars in order to provide THE BEST BICYCLE EVER MADE to folks who appreciate quality American made product; bicycles and parts made right here in Jacksonville Florida USA!