History - A short historical glance.



The origins of Tornos go back to the year 1880, which saw the production of the first machines used to turn small parts for the horological (Swiss watch) industry in the Moutier region. In the 60s and 70s, three local companies - Tornos, Bechler and Petermann - merged to form one single group called Tornos-Bechler, whose reputation in world markets soon rose over the years.


Since the 90s, Tornos has been looking towards the future and is now one of the leading companies in the small parts turning industry. With its DECO 2000 concept, the company now provides the market with radically new solutions and unrivalled performance.



Company History


The oldest machine tool discovered is a turning lathe. During the bronze age, the craftsmen used bow lathes. Later, the potters' lathe was developed.


Around 1500, Leonardo da Vinci develops the idea of continuous turning. His lathe, like many of his inventions, was well ahead of his time.  It was only in the 19th century that da Vinci’s challenge was taken up and the basis of the automatic lathe was created.  The cam replaced the work of the man.


Since 1880, bar turning processes have been developed in the Moutier area. The first lathes competed with each other, in spite of their rudimentary tools, to reach a formidable efficiency for that time. One and even two camshafts were linked in the designs to optimize production. The basis of the fantastic rise in machine tool production was laid.


Moutier, the birthplace of the precision turned parts industry, was inextricably linked with the three local companies: TORNOS, BECHLER and PETERMANN. This competition, by its maximum synergy effect, was profitable to the three companies and allowed an uncommon development. Looking for excellence, these 3 companies joined together in one entity with one main concern: to meet the customers' requirements.


The introduction of the cams (jointly driven by a shaft) allow real tool paths in the form of curves that increase the diversity of operations and deliver fantastic productivity.  Directly descending from the historical models, this type of lathe, where rapidity, reliability and productivity are the strongest points, can turn out up to 40 parts per minute.


With the MS-7 lathe, TORNOS realized an extraordinary feat of strength, i.e. maintaining a lathe in perfect harmony with the market for 30 years!  As you read this, thousands of MS-7 lathes are still producing accurate parts, reliably day in and day out.


The productivity of these cam automatics requires a strong management and organization of the set-ups. The cams have to be calculated and machined, and the procedure suffers from a lack of flexibility. In order to overcome these restraints, another evolution was absolutely necessary.


The numerical control (NC): a new flexibility


The competitive environment of the 70’s caused companies to seek more flexibility in their machining processes.  Stepping up to the plate, TORNOS proposes the NC control to their customers.


From their conception, the TOP-100 and TOP-200 models were designed and produced for flexibility with enhanced performance that would give customers a competitive edge. The NC control for these machines, completely developed by Tornos-Bechler, was unrivalled as an information tool and revolutionized turned parts production procedures on a global scale.


Expanding the line to cover all applications


Tornos introduces the ENC 75, ENC 163, ENC 167 and ENC 264 with diameters from 1 to 26 mm to fully meet the market requirements with regard to batch and mass production of both simple and complex parts.


These machines are backed by the strength and experience of more than 110 years of continuous supply of over 100,000 machines to all parts of the world.  40,000 of these machines are still in production today!


The DECO 2000 was born!


Resolutely facing the future, Tornos crosses a new frontier with the birth of the DECO 2000.  Linked around a new generation of NC control called the PNC DECO with TB-DECO programming software and adapted kinematics, the Deco 2000 produces up to 20 parts per minute.


How to manufacture more?


The meet global productivity demands, Tornos came to the conclusion that the answer was to allow the finishing of several bars at the same time.


With six (SAS 16.6) or eight (BS 20.8) bars simultaneously machined, Tornos’ new range of cam operated lathes turns out a number of parts inconceivable for single spindle lathes: up to 100 parts per minute with two pick-up (counter) spindles!


These multispindle automatics feature exceptional rigidity and unbelievable reliability. They are the perfect answer to the extremely demanding requirements of mass production.


How to manufacture more?


In 2005, Tornos unveiled its new range of single-spindle turning machines, the Deco Sigma line, developed to produce workpieces of simple to average complexity, better than ever before.


Of course, these evolutionary changes have also been applied to multi-spindle turning machines, with the MultiDECO 20/6be now capable of reducing the production costs of simple components, when compared to a classic MultiDECO unit.


In contrast to the MultiDECO 20/6be, the MultiDECO 32/6c and MultiAlpha 8x20 machines were launched to tackle very complex workpieces.


Another contributing factor to the success of Tornos is advancement in the TB-DECO software which enabled mixed programming of single-spindle and multi-spindle units based on the same logical approach. The "TB-DECO ADV" expansion pack makes TB-DECO more powerful, more accessible, and much faster.


TORNOS, the Original Swiss Turning Machine manufacturer, is hard at work focusing on solutions that meet precise individual needs, both in terms of technology and in terms of price/quality ratio. 


In 2008, Tornos began offering a line of high precision machining centers.