Looking to improve efficiency and repeatability, leading coffin manufacturer Lindner wanted to introduce an automated surface painting/grinding line at its production facility in Poland. However, the robots specified for these processes would have to meet a number of application-specific demands involving the use of paints and wood stains.

Engaging with sector automation specialist Wagner Service, FANUC P-series paint robots were identified as the optimal solution, thanks to their high performance, ATEX certification and safety features. The team also selected a FANUC R-2000iC/125L industrial six-axis robot for the surface grinding process.

Lindner can now rely on enhanced consistency in the painting and surface grinding of its coffins, removing any potential for human error. The highly safe automated paint line is also delivering a number of further advantages, including higher productivity. Lindner can today produce 7,000 coffins a month, up from 6,000 previously. Notably, the company is achieving this outcome despite reducing its number of shifts from three to two.

About Lindner

Poland-based Lindner is a leading manufacturer of coffins and the largest exporter of coffins in Europe. Established in 1991, the company has 250 employees who help produce approximately 200,000 coffins a year in 400 different designs. Lindner’s customers are wholesalers and other coffin manufacturers that want to embellish their portfolio. The company’s sales success centres on large batch orders, based on Lindner’s established premise of class-leading quality and brand reputation.

“What sets us apart from our competitors is our out-of-the-box thinking,” states Tomasz Kilarksi, Sales Specialist at Lindner. “We try to introduce new innovation and constantly develop new ideas. We also invest heavily in our production to help ensure we remain competitive.

Since its establishment, Lindner has focused primarily on technology and production rates at every stage of manufacturing. A case in point is the company’s latest investment, a fully automated paint line that is among the most modern of its type in Europe. The two new automated paint booths at Lindner’s headquarters and manufacturing facility in Wągrowiec, Poland, both feature FANUC robots.

To help turn the company’s ambition of an automated paint line into reality, Lindner engaged with Wagner Service, a leading specialist in technologically advanced equipment and systems for the application of coatings and paint to surfaces. Wagner Service set about designing a robotic application system in response to the customer’s needs and the challenges presented. At the heart of both paint booths, Wagner specified a FANUC P-250iB/15 six-axis industrial paint robot.

FANUC paint (P-series) robots are made entirely of aluminium to avoid any potential for sparks, with all wiring integrated inside the hollow wrist. These innovative robots carry ATEX certification, allowing them to work with solvent-based paints. In addition, the robot, especially its wrist, mimics as much as possible the dexterity of a human operator. FANUC P-series paint robot are custom-sealed with compressed air so that no dust or liquid can penetrate.

Each FANUC robot at Lindner features two application systems, allowing the company to change the high-pressure paint gun for a low-pressure gun when applying wood stain and patina. Spraying these products comes with special challenges, as Adam Leszczyński, Sales Director at Wagner Service explains: “Wood stain and patina are hard to apply automatically as the eye of the painter is of great importance. As a result, we had to mimic the sensitivity of an experienced painter in the software and control.”

He continues: “Another challenge posed by Lindner was an additional step in the process: surface grinding. Here, we designed a grinding head that we integrated with a FANUC R-2000iC/125L industrial six-axis robot.”

Thanks to the automated paint line at Lindner, the company has seen a significant increase in product quality and repeatability, up from 6,000 to 7,000 units per month. Another major advantage is a reduction in the number of shifts required, from three to two, saving significant costs.

Krzysztof Bromberek, Lindner’s Proxy, Production and Organisation Director, concludes: “A precisely positioned and programmed robot does not make mistakes. Furthermore, the automation of the paint line makes our work much faster, more ergonomic and above all, safer. We also see less damage on the production line as the coffins pass along very smoothly. More automation is inevitable in the future and we want to continue improving with robots.”