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Laser cutting Archives - Micrometric

Welcoming war veteran Frank Tolley

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Micrometric was very honoured by a visit from 93 year old Bomber Command veteran Frank Tolley, when he called in recently with a team from the BBC to film for a forthcoming documentary “The People Remember” which will be broadcast on BBC 1 this Remembrance Day – 11 November 2015.

Frank was a bomb aimer on a Lancaster Bomber with squadron 625 during WWII, and remains remarkably active and fit for a man in his 90’s.  During the war the squadron was based at RAF Kelstern in Lincolnshire, and they took part in many bombing missions as well as dropping food parcels over Holland.

BBC journalist Debbie Williams interviewed Frank Tolley and Micrometric Internal Sales Engineer Andrew Parker about the part Micrometric is playing in commemorating our fallen heroes, who flew from airfields in Lincolnshire during the Second World War.  Frank was thrilled to see the names of some of the 26,000 airmen that lost their lives while serving under Bomber Command being laser cut into sheet metal.  The finished plates will be mounted on the surrounding walls of the Spire Memorial at the International Bomber Command Centre (IBCC) located on Canwick Hill outside Lincoln.  Recognising names of friends and potential relatives brought a tear to Frank’s eye as he remembered some of the individuals commemorated.

Frank Tolley observes laser cutting at MicrometricImage – Frank observes the laser cutting of names of the fallen heroes at Micrometric

After leaving the RAF, Frank moved into engineering and described his visit to Micrometric “like coming home”, being fascinated by the range of high technology laser equipment in use at Micrometric.

Frank Tolley meets Andrew

Image: Frank Tolley with Andrew Parker of Micrometric

It was an honour for the staff at Micrometric to meet Frank and we hope he enjoyed his visit.

Writing the names of the fallen aircrew

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The geography of Lincolnshire, sometimes known as Bomber County, has made it an ideal location for military airfields, and during WW2 it was the epicentre of Bomber Command with numerous airfields being sited in Lincolnshire.   Micrometric, based in Lincoln, is extremely proud to have been chosen to provide precision laser cutting for the Spire Memorial which will be sited on Canwick Hill on the outskirts of Lincoln to commemorate the fallen aircrew who fought and died from the airfields around Lincoln.


Surrounding the Spire Memorial will be 120 plates on the curved memorial walls, which are to carry the names of the 25,611 men who flew and died from airfields around Lincoln.  In total there were 55,573 lives lost from Bomber Command, with 28% of them coming from countries outside the UK.  The plates are to be made from “CorTen A”, a type of steel designed to weather over time and provide a rusted appearance.  Each plate is 4 mm thick and will take around 6 hours of laser cutting time on the machines at Micrometric.  Laser cutting is a precise method of cutting through metals and other materials with low heat input and a fine cutting line, using a machine capable of handling large sheet sizes and cutting through over 12 mm thickness of material.


In total there will be more than 250,000 letters cut out by laser – the plates are produced in flat material for laser cutting, they are then sent to another local company, Hindles of Lincoln, for deburring and bending to the correct curvature to allow them to be mounted onto the walls.

laser cut sheet metal

Image 1 – Detail of laser cut letters on one of the 4 mm thick steel plates

The Spire Memorial, which has the same height as the wingspan of the Avro Lancaster bomber (102 feet  or 31.09 m), is part of the overall International Bomber Command Centre (IBCC) which is due to open in 2016 at Canwick Hill.  Created in 1936, the RAF Bomber Command served the country until 1968.  More than 125,000 served from all over the British Commonwealth.  The centre on Canwick Hill will be known as the Chadwick Centre, named after Roy Chadwick, the designer of the famous Lancaster aircraft.  On 2 October 2015, the Spire Memorial will be officially unveiled.

laser cutting sheet metal

Image 2 – The laser cutting machine in action

Micrometric, being a local manufacturer with expertise in precision cutting and welding of metals, is very proud to have been chosen to play an important part in this project to honour the heroes that fought and lost their lives to preserve our freedom.  Contact Micrometric for any subcontract laser processing requirements via our contact page.

Micrometric at Southern Manufacturing

Southern Manufacturing 2015 – let’s meet there?

Posted by | Laser cutting, Laser marking, Laser welding | No Comments


Micrometric will again be exhibiting at the Southern Manufacturing & Electronics Show this week, February 10-12 2015 at the FIVE  venue in Farnborough, stand W73.  If you are attending the show, come along and meet the team from Micrometric to discuss your potential requirements for subcontract precision manufacturing – laser cutting of challenging metallic components, laser welding of all metals, laser drilling or marking.

We look forward to seeing you there this week.


Micrometric order new Haas Vertical Machining centre

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To improve its capability Micrometric has just placed an order for a new VF-2 Vertical Machining Centre which includes a Renishaw probe for fast accurate measurement, rotary axis and through tool cooling. This will complement Micrometrics existing laser cutting and precision machining services allowing complete manufacturing solutions to be offered to customers.

Have an enquiry? Get in touch. Contact us