DJM installs first XYZ 500LR VMC in UK

Based in the village of Warkworth, near Banbury, DJM Engineering has recently acquired an XYZ 500LR vertical machining centre – the first of its type in the UK – to handle the company’s requirement for one-off and small batch work. A Siemens 828D control was supplied with the upgrade to Shopmill software, along with Renishaw Primo tool and work probing as part of the overall package.

“We are impressed by the capabilities of the XYZ 500LR machine, and are not holding back on speeds and feeds across a range of materials,” says director Colin Merry. “The machine is more than capable of maximising modern cutting-tool technology, and provides us with a working envelope that is ample for our needs in a compact footprint.”
The machine was purchased to meet growing demand for not only its own work on special machines, but an increase in subcontract jobs.
“From the word go, discussing our requirements with XYZ, we were confident that we were being pointed in the direction of a machine that would meet our needs, not just a machine that XYZ wanted to sell,” says Merry. “As a small family concern it is a refreshing change to get such service from a supplier, as it is how we like to think we treat our customers; the result being ongoing business.”
The XYZ 500LR was launched in 2017 as the first XYZ machining centre to feature linear rail guides, a decision taken as XYZ now feels that this technology meets its stringent quality/performance criteria. The three-machine LR series (500, 750, and 1000) also features the standard Siemens 828D, which allows customers to tailor the options to their requirements, such as the Shopmill feature used by DJM.
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Five-axis machine supports training

A training machine designed to raise the skill level of horizontal machining centre operators has been introduced by Heller Machine Tools. Available for demonstration in the new customer area at the company’s UK factory in Redditch, the latest CNC ProfiTrainer builds on the capabilities of an existing four-axis (rotary table) version by offering the option of an additional +30/-120° A axis.

The machine, which is powered by a single-phase electrical supply, is likely to be of interest to industrial training establishments, colleges and schools, especially as it is small enough to be transported between different educational centres if necessary. Larger OEMs and subcontractors may also choose to adopt the machine for operator training. There is a rental option, with payments subtracted from the purchase price if a customer later opts to buy the machine.
Fitted to the machine’s simulator is a full version of the Siemens 840D sl control, although Fanuc and Heidenhain equivalents can be specified if preferred. Having 200 mm travels driven by servomotors at up to 15 m/min over linear rails, the machine is designed to mimic the operation of a full-size Heller machine tool.
The multi-functional spindle is new. Driven by a 9000 rpm, 2.75 Nm motor, the spindle offers the options of an ER16 collet as well as manual and automated inserts for holding HSK25 tools.
Heller’s latest CNC ProfiTrainer, which is designed to tolerate operating errors, provides skills training without tying up a machine on the shop floor. With this in mind, the risk of a crash occurring on a real machine is eliminated.
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STT: for good measure

Castleford-based Specialist Tooling Technologies (STT), which develops cost-effective solutions to mechanical and measurement problems for a wide range of customers, has experienced substantial growth over the past few years and invested heavily in machine tools.
“Using reliable, accurate and robust Haas machine tools has allowed us to produce top quality components for integration into our finished products,” states director Craig Wigglesworth.

STT currently employs 17 people and its CNC workshop is home to four Haas lathes and five Haas mills, the latest additions being a VF-2SSYT vertical machining centre and a dual-spindle DS-30SSY with Y axis.
“The VF-2SSYT has been a real asset to the company, says Wigglesworth. “It’s the Super Speed YT version with a 12,000 rpm spindle and an extra 100 mm in the Y axis compared to the standard VF-2. When coupled with a side-mount tool changer, the work envelope is large enough to have a combination of vices and base plate fixtures.
“This means we can run multiple parts – or different parts – on the table in a single set-up,” he continues. “The high-speed spindle and rapid feeds allow us to remove material at faster rates; that saves us production time and therefore delivery time, and it also improves surface finish.
“With regard to the DS-30SSY, we’re experiencing tremendous productivity gains with our turning operations and increasing our use of the Y-axis. Furthermore, the double spindle on the DS-30SSY is trouble-free, versatile and very precise. It allows us to engineer the component so that we can finish the whole front side, part it off, and finish the back side in one process.”
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Toolroom investment boosts Bisley

Newport-based Bisley, a designer and manufacturer of premium steel storage for offices and workshops, recently decided to make a significant investment in its toolroom, which is used to produce new press tools.

“With the machines we had, we were always chasing accuracy, which in an environment such as this is very time consuming,” explains Bisley’s John Hancock. “As a result, we decided to upgrade our existing milling and grinding sections, and introduce some EDM capacity.” Around 50% of Bisley’s budget for the upgrade was allocated to bringing in additional milling, turning and grinding capacity, all supplied by XYZ Machine Tools.
The new machines are an XYZ SMX 3500 ProtoTrak bed mill, two XYZ EMX turret mills, an SLX 355 ProTurn lathe, and two XYZ1632 and one XYZ1224 surface grinders all with incremental down-feed capability. These are in addition to an existing XYZ SMX 5000 bed mill that was brought across from its former toolroom at the company’s Surrey location.
“Our previous experience with the XYZ SMX 5000 was instrumental in our choice to select XYZ for mills and lathe,” says Hancock. “The ProtoTrak control has all the functionality that we need; it is reliable and provides value for money. With the arrival of the SMX mills, we are seeing improved efficiency due to the versatility of the machines and are able to machine things that would have been either very difficult, if not impossible before. Features such as ‘TRAKing’, which allows us to work manually through a program prior to going full CNC, is very useful. In addition, the overall functionality and simplicity of the control makes the whole process straightforward.”
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Kiwa HMCs exclusively at Dugard

Dugard recently announced that it is the new exclusive agent for Kiwa Machinery throughout the UK and Ireland. Based in Nabari, Japan, Kiwa is renowned for offering affordable yet state-of-the-art technology based on a strong R&D background.


Specialising in horizontal machines, Kiwa says that its expandable tool and pallet technology sets the company apart from the competition, allowing for tailor-made designs to meet specific customer requirements. The tool changer and multi-pallet systems are upgradable on a retrofit basis, from a two-pallet, 120-tool machine, to a six- or eight-pallet machine with 220 tools. This gives customers the flexibility to meet any future expansion requirements without having to buy a completely new machine.
Kiwa machines feature high speed rapids (up to 80,000 mm/min on the KH-400 model) as well as direct-drive (up to 15,000 rpm) and built-in (up to 20,000 rpm) spindle options. What’s more, the patented hybrid slideway design of the machines, which combine roller and boxways, gives Kiwa horizontal machining centres both speed and rigidity.
A compact footprint is yet another distinctive attribute, at just 1.6 m wide for a 400 mm cube HMC with 500 x 500 x 500 mm travels in the X, Y and Z axes (Kiwa KH-4100). Cost-effective multi-pallet options are available on most models, as well as horizontal 5 or 4+1 axis configurations for optimum chip clearance.
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