As is well known, RACOM constantly improves the quality of its products. In 2020 we invested a few million Czech crowns in new technology for production of the aluminum chassis in which the RAy3 microwave link is mounted. This involved switching from lost wax casting technology to die-casting technology.
The main reason for making the change in technology is the ever-increasing demand for RACOM microwave links and the demand for the shortest possible delivery times.
There were a few waves this year, driven by distance learning and home office environment, when Internet providers were under pressure to immediately increase the capacity of their networks.
This required flexibility in the supply of RAy microwave links, widely used in backbone networks and high-speed last mile connections. Thankfully RACOM was able to increase its production and delivered more than 30% more links worldwide in 2020 than in 2019.
Using die-casting technology, the foundry is able to produce several hundred castings per shift and have them immediately available for delivery to RACOM. Previously used lost wax casting is significantly more complicated because a single-purpose mold is produced for each individual casting in several steps, with technological pauses necessary between each step. Unfortunately, this process cannot be shortened meaning flexibility and speed of delivery are significantly lower than with die-casting.
Another advantage of die-casting is higher accuracy, ensuring faster processing in later stages of production.
The new die-cast chassis can be distinguished from earlier ones by two visible differences. The handle is now fastened with screws as the handle is cast separately during die casting. Additionally, Aluminum is slightly porous during casting. This is visible to the naked eye at machined points, e.g. in threads for bushings. Fine pores do not affect the strength or other properties of the casting and do not change the properties and utility value of the RAy3 microwave link.
The new casting process has no impact on the weight of the new chassis. RAy is still the lightest and smallest microwave radio on the global market.
We are confident the investment we have made will allow us to be more flexible with production numbers and be able to respond better to customer requirements in the future.