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Manufacturing Investment at Qi  /  Jul 2016

We are continually seeking ways to improve efficiency in our business, to support growth and customer demand. The latest innovation will see Qi invest half a million pounds in a state of the art Laser and improvements to our powder coating plant.

Fibre Sheet Metal Laser


In Partnership with the University of Wolverhamptons' Green Shoots Plus+ initiative, we have been awarded a grant to assist us in purchasing a new state of the art Laser cutting machine. Green Shoots Plus+ aims to help small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) operating in many areas including Telford and Wrekin, to create new jobs and promote growth in the region.
This machine creates a laser beam wave length that is only 1 tenth of the width of a CO2 laser. This allows for much faster processing of thinner materials using compressed air rather than Nitrogen gases. The investment enables us to produce a wider range of steel and nonferrous metal products faster, whilst reducing our Carbon Footprint. One of the key benefits is we can efficiently cut high tensile steel which can replace standard steel and reduce the racking weight by 25%. Thus we can help our customers increase payloads as part of vehicle conversions. We expect this new laser to increase capacity within our manufacturing facilities, and in turn provide kit for the fitting shop at a quicker rate.

Powder Coating Plant

The investment in development doesn't stop with our new laser - part of our strategic review of our manufacturing facilities will see changes in the way we operate our powder coating plant. We are installing new recycling water tanks that offer significant water savings. We estimate a clean water saving in the region of 60% due to the recycling of spent water going through cleaning tanks and then being re-used. The introduction of these new recycling water tanks means that we will reduce water consumption from fifteen cubic metres of water per day down to six. We are replacing the entire pre-treatment tank and heat exchangers which allows us to run the plant at a significantly lower temperature (40% lower) reducing the total running costs of the plant and reducing our carbon footprint. The current heat exchanger runs at a temperature of around 300 degrees. The new heat exchanger, coupled with the new tanks will run at around 200 degrees but will produce the same results.

In Short...

  • Increased investment
  • Additional staff training
  • Increased efficiencies
  • Reduction in manufacturing timescales
  • Reduced carbon footprint
  • 25% weight reduction, to increase payloads
  • 60% clean water saving
  • Reduced running costs

Here are a few photos of our old laser being removed and new laser installed: