Smart wire technology unveiled

Smart EDM wire technology equipped with radio frequency identification (RFID) chips that enables manufacturers to fully exploit the potential of their AgieCharmilles Cut P wire EDM machines and, simultaneously, achieve Industry 4.0 level process control, has been released by GF Machining Solutions. The company’s premium wires featuring RFID chips facilitate greater process continuity and traceability, as well as improved process performance.

Due to Smart wire’s monitoring capabilities, the machine operator always knows how much wire is available for current jobs. The moment a spool of Smart wire is installed, the Cut P machine recognises and ‘logs’ the wire length. As a result, the operator knows, at a glance, the status of the wire spool and whether there is enough wire to complete the cutting operation without stoppages or interruptions.
Simultaneously, wire traceability is enhanced by the information in the machine report, which includes date of manufacture, type, lot and expiration date. Users of Smart wire can be confident they are using the optimum wire for every job because the technology checks and assesses the wire selected, and optimises the performance of the machine accordingly.
A wide range of Smart wires is available to suit different requirements. For example, if the machining priority is surface quality, GF Machining Solutions’ AC Cut AH 900/500/400 and AC Cut A 900/500 Smart wires are recommended. However, to achieve improved productivity, AC Cut VS 900+, AC Cut VS 900/500 and AC Cut D 500 Smart wires are the option to choose, while if maximised cutting speeds are required, AC Cut VH Smart wire and AC Brass 900/500/400 are offered as the solution.
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Vollmer upgrades VPulse 500 wire EDM

Vollmer’s VPulse 500 wire-erosion machine has been equipped with additional functions to dress diamond grinding wheels using erosive methods.

Another advantage of Vollmer’s latest technology is that using a hydrocarbon-based dielectric protects the clamping systems of the wheel packages from corrosion.
The method of how metal-bonded diamond grinding wheels are dressed determines their removal rate and operating life. When these wheels are dressed mechanically, the diamond grains partially lose their sharpness and break away easily. This effect results in only moderate grain protrusion, which does not allow the metal-bonded grinding wheel to be used at its optimum operating point. The solution of contactless spark erosion yields structure and retaining force in the diamond grains.
Dr Stefan Brand, CEO of the Vollmer Group, says: “Metal-bonded diamond grinding wheels are increasingly being used in tool machining. To improve their removal rate and operating life, spark eroding is the recommended dressing method. At the EMO 2019 exhibition in Hanover, we demonstrated for the first time how grinding wheels can be dressed using erosive methods with our VPulse 500.”
Unlike other eroding processes, the VPulse 500 uses a hydrocarbon-based dielectric, meaning that the sensitive clamping systems on the grinding wheel packages do not require special protection. With its five-axis kinematics, the VPulse 500 automatically measures and erodes every diamond grinding wheel.
As a benefit of the fine eroding wire, even complex geometries can be machined on the grinding wheel in one set-up. Internal testing of the VPulse 500 at Vollmer has shown that, compared with mechanical methods, the operating life of metal-bonded grinding wheels can be improved significantly. In addition, the removal rate is enhanced as a result of the open-pored grinding wheel with grain-free regions.
“Customers have the option of equipping the VPulse 500 with four different workpiece storage solutions, enabling up to 68 grinding wheel packages to be processed unmanned, around the clock,” says Brand. “This is irrespective of whether companies are manufacturing or re-profiling diamond grinding wheels.”
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High-feed mill range extended

The TungForce-Feed line of indexable, small diameter, high-feed milling cutters has been expanded by Tungaloy to include R2 inserts that feature a corner radius of 2 mm.

Available in diameters of 8, 10, 12 and 16 mm, the TungForce-Feed line is pitched as an economic profiling solution for the mould and die industry when compared with conventional solid end mills and indexable tools of similar size.
During the creation of a CAM program for the high-feed machining of complex 3D profiles in typical mould-making applications, it is common to use a theoretical corner radius for programming the insert radius. However, this method leaves excessive stock on the workpiece after machining, adding processes.
Looking to generate the ideal platform for subsequent finishing processes, many job shops are using solid-carbide square-end mills with large radii during roughing. The latest R2 insert requires no programming for the theoretical corner radius, as its 2 mm corner radius leaves no uncut material on the machined surface. This concept ensures that the TungForce-Feed series makes a good replacement for costly solid-carbide end mills.
Featuring an insert design that is 10% thicker than competitor products, the TungForce-Feed line is built to perform at higher machining parameters by withstanding fracture forces. The insert design incorporates a positive inclination angle for smooth chip evacuation which further reduces cutting forces by controlling chip formation, especially when shoulder and slot machining.
Designed for face and shoulder milling, as well as helical interpolation and ramping, the close insert pitch makes the TungForce-Feed line a good option for all milling applications. The series has been designed with a small entry angle for chatter stability that improves efficiency and tool life, even when machining in long-reach areas, says Tungaloy.
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Laguna invests in Tornos Swiss GT 13

As a manufacturer of small workpieces, St Petersburg based Laguna has more than 100 machine tools, including 25 Tornos Swiss-type lathes. Part of the company’s ongoing investment strategy has now seen the arrival of a Tornos Swiss GT 13.

The machine incorporates six-axis kinematics that make it suitable for complex parts. Laguna manufactures everything from connectors through to bolts, screws and much more for the electronics, instrumentation and control, automotive, aerospace, medical, transport, and telecommunications sectors. The installation was undertaken by Politek Co Ltd, the Tornos dealer in Russia.
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Ward Hi-Tech supplies large bed mill

Ward Hi-Tech has supplied and installed a large Kiheung KNC-U1200N universal bed mill from stock to a major multinational company in Ireland.

The machine, which has a fully automatic universal head, Heidenhain control, 4100 mm X axis, 1250 mm Y axis and 1350 mm Z axis, also has a 24-station ATC (automatic tool changer) and through-spindle coolant.
With its ability to accommodate parts weighing up to 10 tonnes on the table, the Kiheung KNC-U1200N is purposely designed for heavy-machining operations. Ward Hi-Tech reports that the machine is now up and running and exceeding the customer’s performance expectations.
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