Lightweight, strong and secure handcuffs are on the wish lists of both national and international security services Several of the most important components of these handcuffs, reports Demcon, Enschede, the Netherlands, can be produced most effectively using Metal Injection Moulding. Commissioned by SHN International, Demcon MIM redesigned an existing lightweight handcuff which enabled SHN to win the contract for a national security service. Demcon MIM now produces various components as well as the entire assembly.
Ritsaert Willemse, SHN International, stated, “The opportunities for MIM largely lie in the combination of serial production, high product complexity, freedom of form and high-quality standards. Where required, our products offer a high degree of precision and satisfy high standards with respect to aesthetics, partly because of the material’s corrosion resistance. The lightweight handcuff is a fantastic illustration of this.”
Demcon MIM was responsible for the partial redesign of the existing SHN handcuff. MIM was selected as production technology for several important handcuff components, explained Rob Egberink, Demcon MIM Managing Director. “This technology enables the manufacture of lightweight and often thin-walled products with complex geometries that satisfy stringent handcuff standards for strength and rigidity.” Demcon MIM optimised the design of these components and the associated production process, produced test parts and demonstrated that these satisfy all specifications. The new handcuff is reported to be not only lightweight and thus comfortable to use, but it is also strong and secure.
As SHN is a relatively small business and this is an attractive and large contract, it was recently reported that Demcon would take over SHN. The aim was to safeguard SHN’s continuity and growth, stated Dennis Schipper, Director of Demcon. “Being part of our company gives SHN a much greater operational and financial strength in the development, production and marketing of its innovative handcuffs. Moreover, we have a diverse international clientele, which means we are familiar with having to conform to a diverse range of client and market demands.” SHN International is continuing under the name Demcon Safety & Security Systems, with Willemse as Business Developer tasked with further exploiting the international market. “Under the wings of the Demcon group, we have an outstanding growth perspective for our handcuff range.”
Demcon Safety & Security Systems and Demcon MIM are now exploring the opportunities for growth. Together with a specialist in government purchasing, they are investigating opportunities for the supply of handcuffs to security services in various European countries. “We cannot yet say which countries that will be,” stated Egberink. “However, it is the case that each country sets its own requirements for handcuffs, so we will first need to make prototypes for tests and qualification.” The semi-civil market is also interesting. Demcon Safety & Security Systems and Demcon MIM are therefore developing ‘civil’ handcuffs, for instance for special investigating officers and authorised security companies. Authorised personnel can be equipped with these handcuffs.
The production of the MIM parts and the assembly of the handcuffs currently takes place at the Demcon site in Oldenzaal, but will relocate to Enschede this year. As part of its growth strategy, Demcon is opening a new technology centre there with space for 200 employees. The Demcon Technology Centre comprises a Smart Industry Experience Centre, a metrological demonstration and service centre, instrument manufacturing, as well as space for production and clean room assembly. This space is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities for Metal Injection Moulding and assembly and the opening of the Demcon Technology Centre is planned for this summer.
Demcon, with 600 employees, develops, produces and supplies technology and products worldwide for areas such as high-tech systems, medical systems, industrial systems & vision, optomechatronic systems and robotic systems.