Ponsse chose the modern and safe Cajo Tailor™ marking system — Every forest machine is laser-marked sustainably and permanently with a unique VIN production code
Like Cajo, also Ponsse Plc delivers sustainable solutions for the benefit of customers and the environment. Today, Ponsse is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of cut-to-length forest machines. The carbon steel frames of Ponsse forest machines are marked with unique VIN production codes for reliable product identification and full traceability using sustainable laser technology. The high-quality deep marking remains protected against corrosion even in challenging environments.
In the global forest machinery market, everyone knows the Finnish forest machinery manufacturer Ponsse Plc. The more than 50-year success story of a company from Vieremälä, Finland, is one of the most inspiring growth stories of Finnish export companies. Ponsse still remains true to its roots, respecting tradition, while the company also more than keeps up with modern standards. The family business is still going strong: Ponsse’s turnover last year in 2021 was 750 million euros, and it has already manufactured more than 18,000 forest machines for the world’s foresters.
Each Ponsse forest machine is identified by a 17-character production code. The code is a string of numbers and letters called the VIN, which is used to identify cars as well as other motor vehicles. VIN is a commonly used acronym derived from the words vehicle identification number. Thanks to the VIN code, valuable data can be found about the vehicle’s history and technical information, among other things. The code is crucially important, and today Ponsse marks it on the frames of its machines with deep marking technology using Cajo’s comprehensive laser marking system.
Watch a video showing Ponsse’s beastly Scorpion harvester in all its glory. Ponsse’s high-quality machines are marked permanently with Cajo’s sustainable and extremely durable laser marking solutions that can withstand even harsh conditions.
“As the owner of the final product, the customer receives all the documents related to the machine from Ponsse with the production code. The code helps with the traceability of the product, and especially in trade across borders, the identification code is always checked. If the series of numbers and letters is wrong or incomplete, the vehicle stops at customs,” notes Ponsse’s Production Development Manager Heikki Selkälä.
The cooperation between Ponsse and Cajo Technologies started a couple of years ago when the forest machine manufacturer began to contemplate replacing the old marking systems with new technology. The dot peen and powder-actuation tools Ponsse previously used were expensive, their quality varied from marking to marking, and above all, they were loud.
A partnership built upon shared values
In modernizing serial production industry, the old marking methods were starting to hit the end of the road. Cajo Technologies caught Ponsse’s attention because the company shared the same values as Ponsse.
“We support domestic business whenever possible, and we also expect traditional supply chain requirements from domestic operators, such as quality and delivery reliability. In addition, we want to act responsibly and with us, you must commit to the same operating principles. Integrity warrants sound continuity in this world of turmoil,” Selkälä acknowledges.
After the needs assessment, the cooperation started rapidly. In order to secure the business partnership with Ponsse, both creativity and resilience were demanded from the marking system supplier.
“We had our individual and even challenging marking and labelling needs, for which we could not find a solution directly ‘off the shelf’. At Cajo, however, they got excited, planned away and proposed a solution that could be implemented in a customer-oriented and safe manner,” Selkälä recalls.
“Occupational safety was also one of the prerequisites for the procurement decision,” he adds.
Cajo’s laser marking systems have been awarded the Key Flag symbol by The Association for Finnish Work in recognition of a product made in Finland. Cajo’s high-quality machines and intelligent software are designed and manufactured in Cajo’s headquarters and factory in Kempele, Finland. By supporting Cajo you support valuable, high-quality work. Read more here.
Cajo Tailor™ integrated smoothly as the heart of the marking unit
The new tailor-made marking unit was built around the Cajo Tailor™ laser marking system. From the beginning, the system was designed to be integrated into industrial production lines, which helped meet Ponsse’s individual needs. The mobile Cajo Tailor™ marking head could be combined flexibly with other systems, which also enabled the marking unit to be equipped with various auxiliary devices.
“Different lift assist devices are needed for the marking, and the fume that the marking process produces is taken care of with a fume extractor. In addition, we wanted to add a handle design for the marking machine. All in all, the entire unit was tailor-made just for us, performing well,” Selkälä says.
Any fume coming from the marking material can be extracted during the process, which is beneficial for the longevity of the laser marking system. It takes about three minutes to make one deep marking so in serial production that amounts to a lot of marking time. The system was implemented in the spring of 2021, and the marking journey continues.
“During the first official annual maintenance, the lens cover of the laser was replaced, and of course, the filters have been exchanged more frequently. Also, when the users don’t say anything bad about the machine, it’s a sign that the machine has performed well,” Selkälä quips.
The Cajo Tailor™ laser marking system for universal product marking and cost-effective production process automation can be integrated efficiently into any production line.
High-quality markings withstand corrosion and are made to last
Ponsse has set high-quality standards for markings on the frames of forest machines. The coding is protected from corrosion by covering it with a painted thin protective layer. The layer does not affect the readability of the marking but it does improve resistance to corrosion for both the marking and the machine. Markings and all, the forest machines have to withstand both arctic and tropical conditions.
“For example, in saltwater climate during sea freight, all unprotected steel will corrode. That is why also the markings must be protected well,” Selkälä explains.
The VIN code has been commonly used for decades to identify motor vehicles and guarantee full traceability. The identification code is in accordance with the international ISO 3779 standard, and especially in the machinery industry, the entire deeply associated marking and labelling industry is highly standardized and regulated. The regulations are updated constantly, and sometimes industry operators are obliged to react to various changes in marking and traceability requirements even on a tight schedule. New requirements to mark emission regulations, for example, arise from time to time. Ponsse will turn towards Cajo in future projects as well.
“I am fairly confident we’ll talk shop again. When we move towards deeper integration into different systems, the easiest solution is to deal with a familiar and domestic expert,” Selkälä predicts.
Ponsse and Cajo have customers and partners in several dozens of countries around the world. The high quality of the products and the iron skill of the personnel have been key factors in reaching the top even in the most challenging environments.
Get the world’s best coding and marking solution from Cajo HERE.