When Hitachi excavators leave the Luyckx factory in Brecht, they have been extensively modified. Luyckx develops and builds customer-specific excavation solutions in-house, relying on Siemens NX technology.
With their digging arms up to 40 metres in length, they are ready to be used for the expansion of the Panama Canal. Or the special Starfish version can be driven into the sea up to five metres deep in Dubai.
Luyckx in Brecht is a typical family company with more than 140 employees. Globally active. The second generation is to the head of the business that once started out supplying tractors and other machines for forest exploitation. Founder Louis Luyckx - father Luyckx to our current staff - quickly expanded into excavators. The Hitachi machines from 800 tonnes upwards, Kubota for everything below that. In addition, 40% of the truck-mounted cranes on Belgian trucks are built in Brecht. What's popular in the last few years, are the products of the Special Applications department, they have attracted a lot of international attention.
When Belgian dredger Jan de Nul had to construct the palm islands in Dubai, the dredging company in Brecht knocked on the door for excavators with extra-long arms that can drive over the undeep seabed. "We are now building these long arms for many customers. Up to 40 metres in length. Soon we will probably develop a lever of 50 metres length. A world record," says Kis Meeus. He's in charge of the engineering department, where five engineers are working on the special jobs every day. Kris has also developed the Starfish. This is a special version of the excavator in which the undercarriage rides into the sea and the cabin is lifted hydraulically above the water surface. Up to 5 metres high. The Starfish is steered over the seabed with a very accurate GPS system. The operator sees on screens in the cabin where he is digging five metres deeper. Developing the first Starfish took Kris Meeus six months. Nowadays, he draws up a 140-tonne machine within two months and puts it into production at Luyckx. Thanks to Siemens NX.
ADOPT id PLM, the Siemens NX specialist located in Roeselare, has been providing support for the Siemens PLM package for some time now. "Support is now faster than ever before. When we call, we get the right people on the phone immediately, without having to enter 34 codes and numbers.", says Kris Meeus about the cooperation with ADOPT id PLM. He finds the support from the supplier important, even though he sees that the usability of Siemens NX has greatly improved in the latest versions. The new releases are much more intuitive to use. Working with this kind of software for the manufacturing industry is actually a continuous learning process. "We share a lot of knowledge with each other as engineers. I notice that the learning curve is faster because of this. But there are always new things that come up that we want to talk to one of the experts from ADOPT id PLM." In that case, he counts on quickly talking to the right expert.