"As Quick And Reliable As The 24-hour Racing Cars"

Date: 26 August 2010
Source: Bystronic glass
The diversity and colour of the field for the legendary Le Mans 24-hour race is matched by the product range of Sotraver, a local glass processing company.

On an industrial estate located in the south-west of the city, Sotraver produces a huge variety of products, primarily using machines manufactured by Bystronic glass: Alongside laminated glass, customers can acquire the most diverse types of insulating glass from Sotraver, for example with metal spacers or TPS® between the panes. 
Approximately 250,000 square metres of insulating glass is currently being manufactured annually on a total of three production lines. In addition to this, Sotraver also produces around 100,000 square metres of laminated glass – also using machines manufactured from   the Bystronic glass group. A large area for glass cutting is located upstream. Here, HGVs deliver the panes of float glass directly into the hall. The glass panels are stored in a variety of compact'storers before they are separated into the glass sizes required for processing on two cutting tables. Two further tables allow for the cutting of laminated glass along with two storage areas for the remaining panels and the first'sort sorting system which round off the cutting area.
Satisfied with Bystronic glass for 32 years
For practical reasons, Sotraver almost exclusively sells insulating glass units up to jumbo size with TPS® as a spacer: "In this case, the application of flexible Thermo Plastic Spacer is much easier than handling metal spacers which measure many metres in length", says Managing Director Jean-François Sans, who is the second generation to manage the family company founded in 1976. His father initially started glass fitting before adding manual insulating glass production to the range of services two years later then shortly after purchased the very first Bystronic glass machine: A butyl extruder. As a result, Sotraver has been a Bystronic glass group companies customer for over 30 years. After Jean-François Sans entered the company in 1980, the family ceased glass fitting work and concentrated on glass processing. In 1985, the company invested in the first insulating glass production line from the Bystronic glass Bystronic Lenhardt Technology Center. In 1992, Sotraver then began with the production of laminated glass.
 New building for new machines
Up until 2008, the company of motor sport fan Jean-François Sans was located right next to the race track where the famous 24 hour race of Le Mans takes place every year. Due to the fact that the hall at this location was too small for further
expansions, Sotraver moved to an industrial estate located around ten kilometres away. At the new location, Jean-François Sans designed and created an impressive block of office buildings and production halls entirely according to his taste.
The company building of Sotraver in Le Mans (France) 
The architectural design ideas partially originated from his wife and Jean-François Sans developed the hall complex together with his staff members and Bystronic glass. "During the move, we sold many of the old machines then designed and built the hall specifically to house the new equipment", recalls the Managing Director who emphasises the excellent co-operation with Bystronic glass: "It is of great importance to me to work with somebody who tackles the project head on, recognises and understands our needs and arranges the planning accordingly".
Permanent quality as the benchmark
“Whilst we will buy machinery that is not in the Bystronic range, such as tempering ovens, from other companies, in general we only buy from Bystronic glass”, explains Jean-François Sans. He makes a comparison with motor sport in order to qualify this business decision: "The reliability of Bystronic glass machinery technology is as convincing as each and every car that has won the 24 hour race of Le Mans". The race that took place for the first time in 1923 originally served as a long distance test where car manufacturers could prove the durability and development stage of their vehicles. In this context, reliability of the machines and the quality of the final product is more important to Jean-François Sans than just price negotiations: "Every breakdown which stops our production costs the company a great deal of money", said Mr Sans who went on to emphasise: "I would rather immediately invest the money in machines that
I can trust – and I trust the machines from the Bystronic glass group".
Information online:
Bystronic glass media contact
Iris Minten
PR / Online Communication
c/o Bystronic Lenhardt GmbH
Karl-Lenhardt-Str. 1-9
D-75242 Neuhausen-Hamberg
Phone +49 (0)7234 601 120
Fax +49 (0)7234 601 114

600450 "As Quick And Reliable As The 24-hour Racing Cars" glassonweb.com

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