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From Dr. Karl Hüller up to Zuse Hüller Hille Werkzeugmaschinen GmbH

A highly dynamic German machine tool engineering history

The Maschinenfabrik Diedesheim is situated in beautiful rolling hills next to the river Neckar near Mosbach. Machine tools have been produced here since 1947 and distributed worldwide. The brand name ‘Hüller Hille‘ exists since 1994.

What about the history of this internationally renowned quality brand for high-precision macnufacturing, and what does the name ‘Hüller Hille’ stand for?

Read on these pages about the origin and decades of growth of Zuse Hüller Hille premium machining technology.

Short clip 70 Years Hüller Hille:­ Remembering the roots

Join us for a short cinematic tour through history!

Experience our rich history from the beginnings of the Maschinenfabrik Diedesheim in 1947 up to our restart as Zuse Hüller Hille, heading directly into the future of manufacturing.

Winds in our sails

From the first transfer line in 1969 up to the Hüller Hille innovation PROCASS PC 601 in 1984 to the take-over by Zuse Automation: Learn more on the stations of our rich history.

1923 - 1965

Karl Hüller GmbH: Beginnings in Ludwigsburg

1923 - 1965

Karl Hüller GmbH: Beginnings in Ludwigsburg

Dr. Karl Hüller (1882-1965) was one of the founding fathers of machining technology. The machine fitter founded the company Vorrichtungsbau AG in Ludwigsburg in 1923, later called Karl Hüller GmbH. The company produced technical devices, cutting tools and dies, as well as drilling units.

In 1931, the first Hüller machine tool was built – a thread cutting machine, basis for the later production of special machinery. Starting in 1932, unit construction machines and rotary indexing table machines were produced, in 1936 the development of hydraulic controls began.

Deep-hole drilling units from 1940 already were equipped with full hydraulics. The portfolio was extended with the development of a fine-boring spindle for precision machining for the automotive industry. In 1936, production of larger special machines commenced, including semi-automatic production lines. During the war, production included special machines for the machining of v-motor engine blocks, tank engines and gear boxes for aircraft engines.

Grinding and lapping machines for lenses were produced for Zeiss in Oberkochen in 1947. The first transfer line for the machining of gear boxes in Germany was realized for the company Adam Opel AG in 1953. The building of standard machine tools commenced in 1954, including console milling machines, articulated spindle boring machines, turning machines and multi-spindle drilling machines. Karl Hüller died in 1965.

1923 - 1965

Maschinenfabrik Diedesheim: New start in Mosbach

1923 - 1965

Maschinenfabrik Diedesheim: New start in Mosbach

The Maschinenfabrik Diedesheim has been founded in 1947 using the remains of the dismantling of a temporary operation of Daimler-Benz. In Berlin-Genshagen, aircraft engines had been produced since 1936. A large part of the mechanical engineering units had been transferred to Obrigheim under the code name ‘GOLDFISCH’ during 1944. 5000 employees and 2200 machine tools produced crankcases, cylinder heads, cylinder blocks, device carriers and more.

After dismantling, Dr. Reinhard, former head of accounting with Daimler-Benz, decided upon the formation of a new company. Daimler-Benz members of the former temporary operation became the new employees. On October 10th, 1947 the first lathe went into operation. The plant was fully operational from 1948 on: 30-50 employees produced vehicle spare parts and overhauled old machine tools.

After 1949, devices and special equipment were delivered for the engineering office Hofmann, and the production of machine tools started with the DREBOMAT. At first, rotary transfer machines were manufactured, e.g. the turret head drilling machine RB 4 after designs of Dipl.-Ing. Witzig. During the same time, a second production was erected and the number of employees rose to 100.

Special machinery in Diedesheim

With the engineering office Hofmann, special machines and devices were produced for Daimler-Benz, NSU, KHD, Heinrich Lanz and other customers. The DREBOMAT became a real best seller. Besides the DREBOMAT, two other types of drilling head machines existed – the BKM 340 and the BKM 450. BEKOMA Boehringer KG took over executive distribution, a cooperation that was successfully retained over many years.

In 1951, the engineering office Hofmann was taken over and integrated into the site at Diedesheim. In the following year, the number of employees rose to 250, and the first machine tool was delivered to overseas customers. The name ‘Diedesheim‘ gained international renown for high-end specialty machining centers. In 1954, the FRONTOMAT was realized, the first front-wheel drive lathe – a forerunner of the successful FRONTOR series. In 1957, the first multi-directional semi-automatic machines were produced.

First transer line and cassette center

In the years that followed, the plant continually grew thanks to a series of take-overs of companies like Tilker Maschinenbau Seckach, Herbert Lindner GmbH in Berlin (1964), the transfer of the subsidy BEKOMA Boehringer KG to Diedesheim (1965), as well as the take-over of the Spanish company CUMBRE S.A. in Barcelona (1969). Meanwhile, the factory halls in Diedesheim were extended step by step, enabling the realization of the first transfer line in 1969. In 1975, the VERTIFRONT was built as the first NC vertical lathe. The development of the VARIOCENTER in 1979/1980 convinced with high production flexibility. In 1983, the Maschinenfabrik Diedesheim was integrated into Thyssen Maschinenbau. In the year 1984, the cassette magazine PROCASS PC 601 was developed, which was delivered as part of the first flexible system (VARIOCENTER – PROCASS) to Opel the same year.

Interlude in Ludwigsburg

Due to economic turmoil in the wake of the oil crisis, the Karl Hüller GmbH in Ludwigsburg was taken over by Rheinstahl (later Thyssen Industrie AG). Already part of the Rheinstahl group had been the tool company Hille Henschel. With the merging of the two companies, the name Karl Hüller GmbH was changed into Hüller Hille GmbH.


Hüller Hille GmbH – Diedesheim with a clear focus on centers from 1994 on


Hüller Hille GmbH – Diedesheim with a clear focus on centers from 1994 on

In 1994 and 1995, Thyssen merged Hüller Hille and the Maschinenfabrik Diedesheim to become the Hüller Hille GmbH. The manufacturing site at Mosbach-Diedesheim was gradually developed into a factory for centers, resulting in the transfer of Hüller Hille CNC standard centers from Witten to Diedesheim.

The NBH 170 signaled the success of an entire series (NBH 230, NBH 290, NBH 350), which were all developed in Mosbach-Diedesheim. In 1998 followed the innovation of the four-spindle center 4-CUT. In 2003, all ThyssenKrupp machining units were pooled under the label ThyssenKrupp MetalCutting GmbH. In 2004, modern flow line assembly was installed for NBH centers with palette size 630 x 630 mm. In 2005, Maxcor, Inc. took over the MetalCutting group from Thyssenkrupp, later MAG Industrial Automation.

In 2006, Hüller Hille contributed to a world record for Siemens. A Siemens locomotive ES6404 (‚Taurus‘) reached 357 km/h on the high-speed line between Ingolstadt and Nuremberg. The locomotive had had railway wheels from the company Bonatrans Group A.S. that had been machined on Hüller Hille vertical lathes of the type VDM 120 RW.

The success of the NBH series continued from 2007 to 2009 with machines of the third generation (NBH 630, NBH 800, NBH 1000), that year also marked the success-series’ 40th anniversary. With introduction of the swivel head in the NBH 630 in 2010, simultaneous 5-axis machining became possible. 2011 saw the largest individual order in the history of Hüller Hille machine tools: 100 type NBV 250 DUO machines were delivered to the company Foxconn for an Apple project. In 2012, Hüller Hille expanded its material expertise for the aerospace sector with titanium machining. In 2014, the FFG group took over the MAG division Industrial Equipment.


Winds in our sail – Zuse Hüller Hille Werkzeugmaschinen GmbH (2017)


Winds in our sail – Zuse Hüller Hille Werkzeugmaschinen GmbH (2017)

In 2017, the long-established brand Hüller Hille is acquired by the engineering startup Zuse Automation. A new company emerges: Zuse Hüller Hille Werkzeugmaschinen GmbH.

Zuse Automation values the experience of Hüller Hille and takes over all employees at the production site in Mosbach-Diedesheim. There exist plans to transfer the head offices of Zuse Automation from Bad Tölz to Mosbach. In cooperation with Hüller Hille, Zuse Automation realizes sustainable manufacturing solutions based on a portfolio of additive and reductive production methods.

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