Trotec Laser is a cut above for Sheffield Knife Manufacturer

Samuel Staniforth Ltd reduce production times, improve quality of markings and increase flexibility by investing into a Speedy 300 fiber.


Metal marking - Branding and personalising a range of knives


Sheffield, United Kingdom

Laser machine

Speedy 300 fiber

Investing in a flatbed fibre laser engraver increased production efficiency for Sheffield-based cutlery manufacturer Samuel Staniforth Ltd. 
Supplying forged cutlery to professional and amateur users alike, Samuel Staniforth Ltd has been trading since 1864. Current owner Chris Hopkinson joined the business 34 years ago as sales manager, continuing to instil and deliver the same values that have made the business a staple name in the industry.  
Their extensive product offering includes The Smithfield range and their signature product, the Heritage range. Each knife features a handcrafted wooden handle, with the blade created using SF100 steel, a brand created in Sheffield and a nod to the company's regional history.  

Reducing production time

Samuel Staniforth's core product offering includes white-label products alongside their own traditional, bespoke knives, custom-made by staff.  
Within the workshop, each cutlery handle is handcrafted. Meanwhile, the business outsources the laser cutting of stainless steel for blades which are then ground in the workshop, assembled with the handle and, finally, finished with a "Made in Sheffield" mark and the Samuel Staniforth logo as standard. 
Originally, the marks on blades were made by acid etching in large batches. However, this method was not without limits. Alongside long production times and operational costs for consumables, the technology worked with stencils and therefore was not flexible enough to facilitate bespoke engravings without the added cost and time spent to create new templates. The acid-etched result also lacked the sharpness the team desired. 
To counteract the long production times and achieve a crisper contrast when engraving, a CO2 laser engraver was introduced. Alongside the improved results, the laser brought the flexibility to easily personalise knives and to cut materials which proved invaluable for jig making. The drawback to using a CO2 laser for this application was the requirement to apply a solution such as CerMark to achieve a black mark on the metal blades; this incurred additional costs and production steps.   
Owner Chris Hopkinson was keen to improve the production flow and remove unnecessary steps and costs, which led him to investigate new laser systems. Chris discovered Trotec laser and their range of fibre lasers.  

Durable and lasting results

The Speedy 300 fibre has brought new levels of efficiency to Samuel Staniforth's production.  
Thanks to the wavelength of the fibre laser, the team have significantly reduced production steps. Additional sprays and pastes are not required, with the laser directly marking the metal. The Speedy has become the go-to production tool for the team, with the acid etcher used as a backup when production demands are high, and the CO2 laser used for other tasks like jig production. 
The laser operators at Samuel Staniforth Ltd find it easy to personalise knives for different customer orders with a few clicks of a button in Trotec’s laser software. Using the laser software, text is easily customisable and there is no longer a need to produce new stencils as was required with the acid etching technique. The Speedy laser system ensures consistent high-quality metal marking at high-speed.  
Looking to the future, the team at Samuel Staniforth are keen to further develop their product offering, with a particular focus on their bespoke product range and delivering the same high standards that established the company as a market leader.  

"The flexibility the Trotec laser has brought our production has been invaluable. Personalising our knives is a quick and easy task and the software gives us the flexibility we previously lacked with acid etching. With reliable production tools, we can continue to deliver the same consistent, high-quality that we have provided throughout our history".  

Ben Hopkinson

Speedy series
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