GrindMaster: The future lies here
Robotics is a breakthrough technology very dynamically changing not only the manufacturing world (especially the foundry industry) as well as other industries associated with technology. The earliest known Industrial robot, conforming to ISO definition was completed by “Bill” Griffith P. Taylor in 1937 and published in Meccano magazine, March 1938. The introduction of robots in industry is a part of the larger process known as Automation, and with the advent of Artificial Intelligence, modern robotics is also improving with increasing precision, high endurance and speed.
Before the establishment of Grind Master in 1984 by Mr. Milind Kelkar and Mrs. Mohini Kelkar, the industries in India and elsewhere in the world relied heavily on the manual process for industrial operations, so in order to harness these untapped opportunities, the firm was established and the company saw its vertiginous growth for quality metal finishing machine.
Offerings and the propelled growth
Grind Master is now a pioneer of various metal finishing technologies in India; it has further strengthened its position globally by developing NANOFINISH range of machines which caters to International Automotive Powertrain Industry.
GM group started its Robotic Machining Automation Business unit in the year 2011. Since the beginning, the firm was clear about doing applications that are specialized and of high technology. They focused on integrating their knowledge of finishing and grinding and machine building with a robotic system. This breakthrough technology has literally revolutionized the foundry industry in terms of productivity levels, health and safety standards and quality standards. It also provides specialized machinery – with turnkey solutions for achieving specific quality and productivity results using modular technology elements. It is this approach of delivering a total solution including machine, tools, support, process know-how that enables them to add value to the manufacturing operations of their clients.
Grind Master turnkey solutions are delivered with project approach & a gated quality management system that enables them to ensure high-quality results, their Project management system ensures quality assurance and check at each of the 6 phases of the project, including thorough proposal making, engineering, manufacturing, execution, installation and commissioning and continual improvements. They are one of the few automation companies across India which have ISO 9001; ISO 14001 & OHSAS 18001 certifications. GM provides surface finishing solutions for cookware, automobile, aerospace, heavy engineering, foundry, and abrasives industries. Their flagship products are world class Microfinishing and Super finishing machines supplied to all major Automotive OEMs and Robotic Machining Solutions in Foundries for fettling/deflashing of castings.
Continuous product innovation and technology development, including an entirely new product line like Robotic Machining Systems and expansion into international markets, including operations in China, France are the major factors for the company’s propelled growth.
The GM Group is attached with 1000+ satisfied customers over the period of 35 years. Their client list includes giants Bharat Forge Limited, BHEL, TATA, Maruti Suzuki, Renault Nissan, General Motors, Hawkins, Bajaj, TVS, Hero Group, Dongfeng Honda group, Shanghai General Motors China, and many more.
Manufacturing Industry is undergoing very rapid transformations due to several disruptive technologies such as the 4th Industrial Revolution & Electric Vehicles (EV) and others. GM solutions are well equipped to thrive in an IOT enabled world. Industry 4.0 concepts have been implemented in GM products since 2015; their ‘NANOSMART’ controller has been much appreciated by customers for being one of the most user-friendly systems in the machinery world. GM is developing technologies for various applications including super finishing of EV parts as well as finishing of EV castings.
The demand for Industrial Robotic Automation systems is rising exponentially. India is still lagging by large numbers if the statics of robots consumption is measured in relation with rest of the Globe. After initial hesitation due to lack of confidence about their capability to handle robots, now all major foundries in India are diving into implementing robotic fettling technology in their plants.
Grind Master started in a garage with the buffing machine for cookware finishing. 1992 was the year in which GM shifted from garage to the factory and this was also the year when the first belt grinding machines were built and a major breakthrough.
To support the growing population of belt grinders, the company introduced world-class abrasives from VSM Germany to the Indian market in the year of 1997. The next leap in technology development was with the first indigenous super finishing machine in 2002, the machine launched at Imtex was awarded by CMTI award for innovation. With a technical collaboration for micro-finishing technology, GM also started building micro finishing machines for Crankshafts and Camshafts in 2003. This range of machines captured over 60% market share in India. With a growing customer base in the highly demanding automotive Power train industry, GM China was established in 2014 and celebrated the introduction of 100th Machine in the market last year.
The Robotic machining technology unit was established in 2011 to diversify the product range, and over the last 7 years, they have delivered over 100 robotic milling/grinding/finishing/deburring solutions. Today they are one of the top three companies across the globe delivering Robotic Fettling solutions for various foundries.
The company’s technical collaboration with Italian Samputensili (2014) and American Micro Poise (2012), helped expanding its international operations, GM acquired SMPS France in 2017 and took a major leap in the European market.
GM group have received multiple Innovation Awards for developments in the field of robotic machining automation in their journey from 1984 to 2018 including, CMTI Innovation Award, 4 times consecutively EEPC National Award for Highest Machine Tool Exports, ECGC Award, India SME Excellence award, FIE Foundation National Award, CII National Innovation Award and many more.
The CEO profile
Behind every technological initiative, the primary focus is always on the Research & Development domain. The R&D domain of Grind Master saw new heights in the capable hands of an Intrapreneur/CEO of the firm Sameer Kelkar, a passionate explorer, a machine lover, an IIT Bombay Alumnus with a master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering with specialization in Robotics from prestigious University of California (Berkeley). He fell in love with machines during a 2 year R&D assignment in Gudel, Switzerland, where he worked on several breakthrough technologies in Robotic Automation.
As a team member of the Grind Master family, Sameer deeply shares the vision for the company for 2020 “We envision to become a global technology leader by fostering a culture of enduring excellence, exceed expectations through passionate and empowered people ensuring sustainable and inclusive growth”.
Grind Master team is eager to dive into sophisticated machinery technologies. Their research team is exploring various developments in Additive manufacturing, Laser technologies, and Battery manufacturing technologies. They will be working towards major product diversification into one/more of these in the next few years. GM is also on a mission to educate engineering students with Industrial Robotic Automation. They have developed Robotic Centre of Excellence for the various government as well as private engineering institutes and have also delivered India’s First Industrial Robotic Automation Cell to a school.
Grind Master group have recently created a separate business unit for Robotic Automation at their new facility at Waluj MIDC in Aurangabad. With an established product and market base in Asian markets, GM is looking to broaden the market spectrum by establishing itself in Europe and American markets in the next 5 years which will work extensively in the field of Robotics & Super finishing technology.