Seki Press developed and patented a metal splitting technology that has proven useful in many industrial applications from control panel manufacturing to the automotive industry. The Warisaki metal technology was developed in 2012 and has since been patented in Japan and several other Asian countries. Warisaki allows the company to provide end users with novel solutions to longstanding design problems that were simply not possible in the past. Seki Press (SP) no longer supplies their customers with standard products/ Instead it asks customers the question, “what can we create together”? Seki Press’s metallurgists worked hard to apply the Warisaki technology to split the high strength titanium alloy 64, an alloy that has long presented challenges in the machining industry.
Through vigorous experimentation Seki Press was able to all categories of metal forms including fine metal wire. This innovation is unprecedented and has allowed for new versatile applications in materials machining. The expansion of Seki Press’s business since patenting this technology has been exponential.
A Single Great Idea Often Starts with What’s Right In Our Homes.
The Warisaki story starts with string cheese. The stuff that kids eat. Or rather, the stuff kids play with. String cheese has had a recent boom in Japan and the CEO Mr. Masakatsu Seki was watching his children play with the cheese one day and asked the question, “can I split metal the way the kids split the cheese”? Mr. Seki brought this idea to his research and development team and they worked tirelessly at the problem throughout 2011 and 2012 until they came up with a reliable metal splitting method that worked on a diverse number of materials and forms such as sheet, coil and rod. The technology was patented in Japan in 2012 and in Taiwan in March of this year.
The creation of complicated three dimensional forms was not possible with traditional cutting, forging and die casting without apply complex and costly integral molding processes. Now with Seki Press’s Warisaki technology clients can custom order complex three dimensional designs that are made at a fifty to eighty per cent reduced cost compared to more labor intensive molding methods.
For example in order to manufacture a single T shaped metal object two L shaped parts would have to have been pressed then welded together in order to make a final product. With the Warisaki innovative technology only one step is needed in the manufacturing process. Warisaki products are seamless and are made at a much lower cost than molded products.
The Warisaki process was tested at Japan’s top technology universities and it was found that the technology reduced the number of weak spots normally associated with the pressing and welding processes. Researchers also determined that the integrity of the metal was preserved throughout the pieces created with Warisaki technology. The edges of complex R shaped metal molds were also inspected for microscopic cracks and it was determined that the Warisaki process was highly efficacious in crack prevention.
The Warisaki Way: Collaborative Applications, Innovative Solutions
As soon as the technology became patented Seki Press began bringing it out to the world presenting it to diverse industries in Japan, Germany, The People’s Republic of China and the Republic of China on Taiwan. Through participation in international conference Seki Press began to imagine new applications for the manufacturing process in diverse technological fields.
March 2015 was a month of major accomplishments at Seki Press. In addition to their Taiwanese patent Seki Press Internal Splitting Technology patent was approved in Japan. This technology allowed for grooves and holes to be made on material edges and on pipes. The Warisaki patented technologies allow for a diverse array of practical applications for industry. Seki Press opens up possibilities for manufacturers and uses strategic intuition to predict market demand.
Masakatsu Seki, CEO of Seki Press fervently attended international conferences in order to see what possible applications there could be for the Warisaki technology. This information gathering process included extensive dialogue with manufacturers interested in the possibilities that Warisaki opened up for them. Seki Press took a dialectical approach to innovating new applications of Warisaki responding to inquiries of interested parties. When a number of American automobile manufacturers asked if this technology could be applied to pipes Seki Press went into high gear applying the technology to different types of metal piping and would debut the finished prototypes at the next international exhibition. The research and development team at Seki Press worked around the clock to respond to the market’s needs. This approach became known as the Warisaki Way.
The Warisaki Way sees nothing as impossible and approaches all problems as solutions. The Warisaki Way is about questioning all traditional assumptions and redefining what is possible. What was said to be possible did become possible when Seki Press split Titanium Alloy 64.
Impossible is Just a State of Mind: Splitting Titanium Alloy 64
Titanium is famous for being a difficult metal to work with, because of its hardness. The idea of splitting titanium, at first, seemed to be crazy. Seki Press CEO was undaunted by the challenge of working with Titanium Alloy 64, but knew the risks that would be involved and that his company’s reputation would be at stake, particularly in the demanding and unforgiving Japanese automobile industry. Hundreds of experiments were run and through the laborious process of trial and error success was finally achieved. In the process of attempting to split titanium through Warisaki technology Seki Press became a world leader in understanding the industrial and design applications of titanium. Seki Press made a quantum leap in defining what is possible with titanium. At first it was thought that splitting an 0.8mm titanium plate would be impossible and once that feat was achieved it became possible to split 0.16 fine titanium wire.
Protechnology Japan recently interviewed Seki Press CEO Masakatsu Seki at the company’s headquarters in Hitachi. In this exclusive interview Mr. Seki revealed his own uncertainties about the process. He said, “I really started experimenting with applying the Warisaki method to titanium not knowing if it was possible. Titanium is a very expensive metal and notoriously difficult to work with in an experimental manner. I saw the potential utility of split titanium so I went out on a limb, took a risk and put up a significant amount of capital, time and resources to split titanium. At times I felt like a mad scientist working in his lab at all hours of the night. I also wondered if I wasn’t crazy to take on such a project. Now that I look back on it after having achieved what I unconsciously thought was impossible I am glad that I took the risk. I guess I didn’t allow myself to experience fear and dove right in.”
Mr. Seki went on to talk about the utility that split titanium plates, wire and rods could have for industry. From inverter busbar terminals to heat exchange equipment this technology applied to titanium can allow engineers to create designs that have far more durability than previous imagined. Mr. Seki is also excited to introduce the split titanium technology to medical manufacturing industry. “Our customer base is rapidly expanding in response to this particular innovation with titanium alloy, and existing customers’ orders of Warisaki split titanium products has far surpassed that of other split metals,” according to Mr. Seki.
Bringing Warisaki to the World
After the tragedy of the Great Tohoku Earthquake Seki Press decided that it was time to start anew. It was from the unerring spirit of resilience that so characterizes Japanese industry that Warisaki was built heralded by the call of the slogan, “No Technology, No Future.”
As Seki Press interfaces with more companies globally there has been an exponential rise in the number of unique specifications of the Warisaki technology. Because of its spirit of collaboration and innovation Seki Press is one of the five fastest growing Japanese medium sized industries exporting products directly to international clients. While Seki Press is expanding the fastest throughout Asia it’s extending its reach in Europe and the Americas.
Can Seki Press help your company to redefine possible? Contact Protechnology Japan to order Warisaki products and discuss possibilities to come up with low cost solutions to your most pressing manufacturing challenges.
Seki Press Co. Ltd.
Firm name: Seki Press Co. ,Ltd.
4-3-20, Chikoku-cho Hitachi-shi, Ibaraki 316-0013
Tel: 0294-36-0300, Fax: 0294-34-5947
[Die Fabrication Plant]
2-36-21, Kujicho, Hitachi-shi, Ibaraki
[Hitachiota Plant Address]
1495 Waku-cho, Hitachiota-shi, Ibaraki
[Vietnam (Hanoi) Address]
2F NO.75, Wenhwa 1st. RD., Lohshan Vill, Kueishan,
Taoyuan County, 333, Taiwan, R.O.C
Representative: Masakatsu Seki
Capital: 42,000,000 JPY
Major Items: Various die design and manufacturing, Transfer – Progressive – Single Press, Welding, Parts Assembly Process
Number of employees: 85
Quality standard: ISO9001
Capital： $1,000,000 USD
If you are interested in ordering sample items from Seki Press or are interesting in exploring the possible applications of Warisaki technology for your company’s needs please contact us at Protechnology Japan to set up a consultation.