Maintaining a schedule, a program, is essential in the production of engineered parts – but machine shops will take process improvements or technology updates, any time. For much of the current year that time has been the weeks leading up to (and including IMTS 2016), but the roll-out of new technology concepts and capabilities continues. As time moves forward, the new ideas continued. Take a quick look through the ten new technology ideas that caught our attention this week …
KENNAMETAL partnered with Haimer® to develop and introduce a modular cutting tooling system in 2014, promising it would be “the most rigid and most precise interface in the marketplace.” Today, with continued advancements, it reports that the Duo-Lock™ series is the only modular end-mill family that can compete “at solid-carbide levels.” It added that the Duo-Lock tools offer full-width slotting at depths up to 1x cutter diameter, and side milling up to 50% radial engagement at 1.5x the diameter deep, even in stainless steel, titanium, and high-temp aerospace alloys.
“We have over 400 line items coming in the first wave, with many more coming early next year,” according to Thilo Mueller, manager of solid-carbide end milling at Kennametal. “These include the most popular size end mills in both inch and metric, as well as a broad array of adapters, integral shank holders, and extensions.”
Many of those extensions are equipped with Haimer’s Safe-Lock™ secure clamping mechanism that eliminates concerns over tool pullout and creep in high-performance milling applications. HSK, CAT, BT, and comparable spindle tapers are also available.
Kennametal deployed FEA design methods to derive Duo-Lock’s "intelligent" thread design, optimizing the connection to eliminate any possibility of tool failure even at elevated loads. As a result, according to Mueller, Duo-Lock handles 25% more torque than its closest competitor, permitting higher feed-rates and axial depths of cut, especially in long reach conditions.
The cutting geometry uses an upgraded Harvi front end with an asymmetrical flute design. This breaks up cutting harmonics, reduces chatter, and provides 20% or greater chip load per tooth compared to the solid-carbide versions. The Harvi II 5 flute cutters are updated with a variable helix, offering full slotting capabilities in titanium. The eccentric relief behind the cutting edge with Harvi III is also a proven performer in titanium and other heat resistant alloys, and is sure to satisfy the needs of customers looking for larger modular versions as well.
Multiple carbide grades are also available, including Kennametal’s proprietary Beyond grades KCSM15 and KCPM15, making DUO-LOCK a go-to solution for everything from heavy roughing to semi-finishing. “Because of the very small amount of tool run-out, some of our customers are even seeing success in fine finishing applications,” said Mueller.
Learn more at www.kennametal.com/duo-lock
The a71nx is MAKINO’s latest next-generation horizontal machining center, extending the capabilities of the original a71 with new features and technologies, including an expanded work envelope, improved ergonomics, increased spindle torque, innovative tool monitoring, advanced motion controls, and the new Professional 6 control.
“The a71nx expands on all of the characteristics that made the original a71 an industry leader,” according Makino’s David Ward, product marketing manager. “By expanding machine capacity and integrating cutting-edge technologies, like Vision B.T.S. [broken-tool sensing] and advanced motion controls, Makino has successfully leveraged proven design attributes while enhancing the productive capabilities and overall reliability.”
Designed for machining mid-sized cast iron and light alloy parts, the a71nx features a 19.7-in. (500-mm) pallet and added extensions in the X, Y and Z axes, bringing full-axis travels to 31.5 inches, 29.5 inches and 32.7 inches (800 mm, 750 mm and 830 mm), respectively. The expanded axis travels increase the total machining volume 16% compared to the original a71. To accommodate these larger workpieces, the maximum payload was also raised, providing capacity for parts weighing up to 1,000 kg.
Because larger parts frequently require larger tools the a71nx has a standard 60-tool-capacity automatic tool changer (ATC) with six reinforced pockets, yielding a maximum tool length of 18.9 / 22.4 inches (Cat / HSK) and maximum weight of 30 kg.
The standard, worm-gear-driven NC rotary table has been replaced with a direct-drive (DD) motor B-axis table for significantly faster indexing time. The 1-second, 90-degree rotation improves production processes with a substantial reduction in non-cutting motion. The DD motor table on the a71nx also reduces B-axis complexity and eliminates backlash and key component wear for improved reliability.
Learn more at www.makino/com/a71nx
Vertical mills are essential for many machine shops (for surface metal removal) but these tools present serious danger when an operator comes into contact with their high-speed rotating draw bars, resulting in injuries and costly OSHA fines. To bring more safety to the shop floor, ROCKFORD SYSTEMS LLC developed and introduced a milling machine draw bar cover that protects vertical mill workers from rotating shafts 7 ft. or less from the floor or working platform. It guards the turning draw bar with a non-rotating, smooth, welded-steel enclosure, secured firmly to the mill with a powerful ring magnet and safety anchor chain. Simple to install, the draw bar cover prevents clothing, hair or hands from being grabbed by the moving shaft.
"Our new draw bar cover features high-quality construction with smoothed welding seams and finished edges, designed to protect mill workers from hazardous rotating drawbars,” reported Jason Swisher, Rockford Systems production manager. “It was engineered with input from machine makers and operators to ensure that it gets the job done right."
This product can be used on any vertical mill that has up to a 7-in. extrusion. It compliments the full line of Rockford Systems milling machine guards, shields and controls that protect thousands of workers everyday around the world.
Note too, installing the draw bar cover helps machine shops comply with the OSHA 1910.219(c)(4)(i) safety standard: Projecting shaft ends shall present a smooth edge and end and shall not project more than one-half the diameter of the shaft unless guarded by non-rotating caps or safety sleeves.
Learn more at www.rockfordsystems.com/drawbar-cover
SPRING TECHNOLOGIES, vendor of software for the optimal and flexible use of numerical control machines, launched CAM WorkPackages, a set of interfaces between commercially available CAM solutions and NCSimul4CAM (formerly NCSimulCAM). WorkPackages are provided for Catia (Dassault Systèmes), NX (Siemens), CREO (PTC), TopSolid’Cam (Missler) and Mastercam (CNC Software Inc.). Ultimately, Spring Technologies plans to offer its users direct interfaces with all the leading CAM products on the market.
NCSimul4CAM is a "powerful, innovative” add-on for a CAM deployment that makes production environments even more agile. It allows users to harness all their CAM project data, "transparently,” so that they can quickly and easily switch from one NC machine to another without writing new code.
Now, more specifically, NCSimul4CAM enables programmers in any industry to retrieve a part assembly. a clamping system, and a rough stock model, with the machining and positioning coordinate system data, and associated cutting tool library, without having to go back into the tool path program.
In addition to the ISO files, the CAM WorkPackage gives users read access to CATIA, Esprit, GO2CAM, NX, Pro-E, or Surfcam — to automatically identify and separate the different machining phases, and facilitate the change to the new machine. This delivers further substantial time savings when changing between NC machines, addressing production and machine availability imperatives.
Among the customer benefits that the developer projects are greater machine availability, faster production rates, safer machine changes, broader monitoring of modifications, better time management for programmers, and improved data access and control during machining.
Learn more at www.ncsimul.com/WorkPackages
Shops seeking higher productivity as well as profitability will appreciate the design enhancements to MAZAK’s Quick-Turn-250MSY turning center, including a new direct-drive turret design, higher torque main spindle, a faster more powerful milling spindle, and the recently introduced Mazatrol SmoothG CNC control.
The Quick-Turn-250MSY – with multi-tasking functionality – has two turning spindles, a rotary tool milling spindle and Y-axis capabilities for single set-up (Done In One®) operations. The new 12-position, direct-drive turret eliminates the use of belts, for improved surface finishes and reduced maintenance. It accepts both VDI and bolt-on tooling.
The turret’s new direct-drive rotary tool spindle is now 10-hp, 6,000 rpm standard. The faster rotary spindle provides 52 ft-lbs of torque, essentially double of what was possible before with the previous version. And with an optional tooling package, 10,000 rpm is available.
The machine’s headstock features a 10-in. main chuck mounted on a 35-hp, 4,000-rpm integrated spindle motor for heavy-duty metal removal. To tackle tougher materials effectively, Mazak bumped up the torque output of the spindle by almost 30 ft-lbs. The main turning spindle also serves as a C-axis that is programmable in 0.0001-degree increments to accurately position parts for square facing and slotting cuts and precisely drilled holes. The C-axis spindle is a full-function CNC controlled axis for milling. A second turning 15-hp, 6,000-rpm spindle with a 6" chuck allows the Quick-Turn-250MSY to machine small diameter workpieces with speed and accuracy.
Quick-Turn-250 models without second turning spindles feature Mazak’s new NC servo-drilling tailstocks as standard.
Mazatrol SmoothC and SmoothG CNCs offer EIA/ISO programming as well as conversational programming, making it easy to generate programs for complex drilling, milling, or tapping.
As a higher level control, the Mazatrol SmoothG incorporates various advanced programming functions for ease of use and to ensure high-speed, high-accuracy machining performance. These include High Gain Feed Forward Control, Fast Rotary Axis Speeds, Variable Acceleration Control and Intelligent Pocket Milling.
Learn more at www.mazakusa.com/Quick-Turn-250MSY
JENOPTIK AUTOMOTIVE introduced the Hommel-Etamic AG380 pneumatic snap gauge to quickly, cost-effectively, and flexibly check a range of different diameters (from Ø 17-48 mm), providing measurements with consistent high levels of precision. Manufacturers previously had to constantly invest in new diameter-specific pneumatic snap gauges when producing a new type of workpiece.
Pneumatic snap gauges are commonly used in dimensional industrial production metrology to measure shaft diameters with strict tolerances. Pneumatic metrology is typically the choice for high precision, reliable measurement results with repetitive accuracy for years, particularly in rough production environments.
The flexible snap gauge is ideal both for small-scale and prototype production as well as mass production. The gage can be easily positioned and installed at the desired measuring stations on the shop floor. A retrofit kit making it possible to easily convert any existing measuring system is optional.
Learn more at www.jenoptik.com/industrial-metrology
SANDVIK COROMANT is rolling out a new high-feed milling cutter for diameters 13–25 mm and 0.500–1.000 inches. Among the advantages to users will be enhanced security thanks to iLock™ insert seat interface technology, and high metal removal rates as a result of high cutter density and high feed capacity.
CoroMill 415 covers the application area between Sandvik Coromant's current round tools product offer and existing high feed products such as CoroMill 210 and CoroMill 419.
The cutter’s iLock insert seat interface has been designed to deliver high stability and reduce the potential for scrap workpieces. In addition, the insert seat itself ensures that the small inserts are easier to handle.
The extra stability during cutting is makes CoroMill 415 an option for machine shops seeking increased productive.
For example, the tool delivers elevated metal removal rates, an outcome that is supported further by the cutter’s high density and high feed capacity. In turn, high metal removal rates help increase productivity, and this is supplemented by the extra-close H pitch, which can be deployed thanks to the tool’s inherent high stability, ensuring more than one tooth is always engaged in the cut.
A further benefit to manufacturers is that, although the inserts are small, each offers four cutting edges to help reduce cost per component and boost competitive advantage.
For those looking to lower tooling inventories and minimize machine downtime, CoroMill 415 is available with the Coromant EH (Exchangeable Head) interface. With Coromant EH, manufacturers can access a wide assortment of solid-carbide cutting heads, indexable milling cutters, boring heads, integrated machine adapters and shanks to reduce their inventory of tools.
Learn more at www.sandvik.coromant.com/coromill_415
In January 2017, WALTER USA LLC will introduce Tiger·tec® Gold, a new variant for its Tiger-Tec series (Tiger·tec® and Tiger·tec® Silver) of milling inserts, promising the new coating will “dramatically improve machining effectiveness.”
Tiger·tec Gold with the WKP35G milling grade and its special titanium aluminum nitride (TiAlN) coating makes Walter among the first to employ this performance enhancing coating technology. Reportedly, the coating offers significantly improved properties (compared to CVD aluminum oxide-coated grades), resulting in longer tool life, increased productivity, and greater process reliability. This is partially due to the "ultra-low pressure” (ULP-CVD) coating process that Walter employs.
Walter tested the new Tiger·tec Gold coating on numerous steel and cast iron applications and recorded markedly improved properties compared with other coatings: These include considerably higher wear resistance on the flank faces, reduced formation of thermal cracks, greater resistance to plastic deformation and considerably longer tool life – often by up to 75%. In addition, the gold-colored surface layer facilitates wear detection.
Learn more at www.walter-tools.com/tigertec-gold
OKUMA AMERICA’s new GENOS M560-V vertical machining center combines a new, high-column design and CAT 40 BIG- PLUS® spindle to cut large, complex parts. The larger work envelope minimizes restrictions on workpieces, tool lengths, and the rotary table. A highly rigid, thermally stable, double-column construction allows the machine the ability to withstand thermal deformation, improving machining performance.
A powerful 30-hp spindle with 146 ft. lbs. of torque allows the VMC to cut titanium and Inconel, as well as stainless steel and aluminum. A separate automatic tool changer door makes tool changing seamless without interrupting the machining process. The table moves only in Y, while the spindle moves in X and Z, so the machine’s footprint smaller, but it’s able to achieve rapid feed rates, precise cutting and smooth surface finishes.
Okuma’s proprietary thermal deformation compensation technology (Thermo-Friendly Concept) is standard. Pretension ball screws and bi-directional spindle cooling allow for better control of the machining process. Optional Collision Avoidance and Machining Navi Intelligent Technologies are available.
Learn more at www.okuma.com/GENOS-M560-V
The SCHUNK SRM universal rotary unit promotes high performance for production automation, particularly when compared to other rotary modules now available, according to the developer. Compact and cost-effective, the SRM features up to 25% higher torque compared to previous models. Internal shock absorbers provide higher inertia capacity and faster swivel times, compared to the current top-rated SCHUNK SRU-plus.
The standard SRM offers a larger pinion-mounting surface for better stability and large center bore for feeding through items like cables and hoses. Modular air feed-though and electrical feed-though versions are available as factory options or as field installed items.
The SRM is available in sizes 16, 32 and 40. More sizes and options will follow.
Learn more at www.schunk-produkte.com/srm-universal-rotary-unit
Thanks to extensive user research and product testing, there are some significant improvements available in CNC SOFTWARE INC.’s latest major release for its machine programming platform, Mastercam 2017. Among these are new tools for prepping CAD models for efficient CNC programming; enhancements to make 2D machining more efficient; new features that make simplify programming of complex parts for manufacturing on four- and five-axis CNC equipment; functional improvements for mill-turn programming; and restyled CAM programming tools that will make set-up and operation easier and more efficient for machine shops.
“Our customers are very much our partners in Mastercam product development,” according to CNC Software president Meghan West. “In our Machining Lab, we replicate conditions they report so that our software can deal with issues they face every day. We’re eager to understand their challenges and add value to their investment by continually making Mastercam as comprehensive and easy to use as it can be."
Read more about the enhancements and additions to Mastercam 2017, ...
or visit www.mastercam.com
Machine shops will welcome process improvements or technology advances any time. Maintaining a schedule, a program, is essential in the production of engineered parts.
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