Automation in the spotlight

XYZ Machine Tools (Stand J210) will shine the spotlight on automation, five-axis machining and the latest ProtoTRAK control system developments.

The company’s robot-based automation cell, Robo-Tend, will take centre stage. This modular and mobile robot automation system is designed for use with XYZ vertical machining and turning centres fitted with Siemens controls. At Southern Manufacturing, the system will be demonstrated attached to an XYZ 750 LR vertical machining centre.
Robo-Tend has been designed to bring automation within the reach of traditional subcontract engineering businesses, offering potential payback in just a few months. Also at the show, for those seeking full, simultaneous five-axis machining, the XYZ UMC-5X with front loading 600 mm diameter trunnion rotary table will be demonstrated.
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Parts loader for Haas turning centres

Haas says that its newly developed Haas Automatic Parts Loader (APL) is a simple and affordable way to automate part production and boost productivity on the company’s turning centres.

Connecting directly to the Haas control, APL is designed and built exclusively for use on Haas ST-10, ST-15, ST-20 and ST-25 turning centres, including Y-axis models.
The APL features a simple set-up interface that makes it quick and easy to realise automated loading and unloading. Answering simple questions, the operator enters basic information by either positioning the part grippers and pushing a single button, or entering basic numeric dimensions. All values are calculated automatically by the control.
Accommodating parts up to 147 mm diameter by 127 mm long, and weighing up to 4.5 kg, the APL features a light curtain for safe operation. Furthermore, component management on the APL table is achieved
using one of three included templates. Various part shapes – such as round, hex and square – can be loaded, and grippers can be adjusted or modified to best fit the specific parts.
Haas’ APL operates in the background during normal lathe operations, returning parts to the storage table and retrieving new raw workpieces while components are being machined. Near-continuous, unattended machining is the result. The double-sided rotating gripper saves time by taking a part from the spindle and replacing it with a different piece without having to return to the storage table.
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Schuler appoints managing director

Frank Klingemann has taken over management of the Industry division at Schuler. He is now responsible, among other things, for fully automated mechanical ‘ProgDie’ and transfer presses, which are mainly used in the automotive and supplier industries, blanking lines, systems for the production of electrical motor laminations, and coin-minting presses.

The graduate engineer has 30 years of experience in the industry, which he gained in various managing positions at robot manufacturer Kuka. Most recently, he was head of the Robotic Automation Business Unit at HLS Engineering Group GmbH in Augsburg. At Schuler, he is based in Weingarten.
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Hardinge SP support moves to UK

Sales and technical support for the Hardinge Super Precision (SP) range of turning and turn/grinding machines is now being handled in the UK and Ireland by Jones & Shipman Hardinge.

Based at its UK headquarters at Clifton Dunsmore near Rugby, Jones & Shipman Hardinge represents the interests of sister companies in the Hardinge group – Kellenberger, Hauser, Voumard, Tschudin and Usach – and now the SP products – which were previously sold and supported from Germany. In the UK the company also represents the interests of Okamoto grinding solutions.
As Jones & Shipman Hardinge UK managing director Mike Duignan explains, while filling a niche roll, SP machines are recognised for their calibre: “Machines in the SP and SP Quest range can offer combined turning and grinding systems specifically designed to optimise the production of precision, complex parts. As well as their turning capability, the machines can be equipped with grinding spindles, providing the potential to maintain a continuous accuracy of 3 µm over extended periods of operation.”
Super Precision machines offer a compact footprint and, with turnkey packages or optional automation, can operate as a stand-alone machine or within a multi-cell environment.
“These machines are a perfect complement to our well established capability across the spectrum of grinding,”
adds Duignan. “They allow us to offer an optimal solution for high precision, complex parts production, be it grinding, hard turning or a combination of both.”
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Reduce cycles with simultaneous cutting

The recently introduced TTL Series from CMZ offers numerous possibilities to reduce cycle times. One of these functions is ‘superimpose’ machining.

With this function, the movement of the master channel (turret) is added to the slave channel (sub-spindle); in other words, it makes possible to machine two tool trajectories using the same turret station.
When the geometry of the part permits, it is possible to cut with four tools at the same time, performing a double-balance cutting process. One of the turrets and the sub-spindle (tool 1 + tool 2) will be programmed with the superimpose function, while the other turret will be programmed as a single trajectory (tool 3), and the second tool from this station (tool 4) will benefit from movement of the sub-spindle without the need to link an ISO code.
Four-tool simultaneous cutting is recommended for roughing processes in symmetrical parts. However, it should not be used in finishing operations as one of the tools is not controlled.
Programming a superimposed operation should not worry machine users, says CMZ, as several macros have been developed to ease calculation. Tool and work offsets will be transferred to the slave path before starting the combined machining movements. If users need assistance on how to program the TTL, the company’s Service Department can assist.
With CMZ’s ‘a star is born’ campaign, users can configure a TTL for themselves, and receive a made-to-measure offer using the company’s online calculator.
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