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Flexible machining systems & cells.

Flexible machining systems & cells

This section contains manufacturing systems with cell capabilities and includes flexible manufacturing, transfer lines, and advanced fabrication centers. For more information on any item described, visit the indicated show exhibit or circle the appropriate number on the reader service card.

Bit-bus cell link

Designed for mid-volume production, a dual horizontal machining cell will be shown, serviced by a rail-guided vehicle transferring pallets to and from a nine-position, single-level stocker system. One of the two FH45 machining centers is equipped with a high-speed spindle. Designed for cell use, the machines feature traveling columns, lower table heights, and a high mean-time-between-failure vital to multimachine cells.

A key advanced feature--not readily apparent--is a proprietary bit-bus machining-center card and the use of bit-bus technology for communication between all cell components. The card is a custom module for GE Fanuc 11 or 15 CNCs that eliminates a large number of wires from machine to cell controller. It speeds the communication of part programs, tool offsets, status information, and machine inputs and outputs. The serial link runs at 400,000 bits per second over a single twisted pair for distances of 5000 ft with repeaters.

Tied to the bit-bus technology is the stocker system that uses a CNC automatic guided vehicle, continuously real-time monitored.

Toyoda Machinery USA, Arlington Hts, IL.

Tool-cassette FMS

A working model of the FMS 400 flexible manufacturing system will demonstrate a unique tool-cassette concept that delivers workpieces and tools through a common transport system, reducing the cost of system peripherals. Transport speed is 90 m/min, and pallet transfer takes 7 sec. The SC 1 modular cell control unit coordinates and monitors all operations, using an industrial PC in conjunction with the transport control system.

The TC 400 machining center boosts productivity with spindle speeds of 12,000 rpm, drive power of 30 kW, and torque of 300 Nm at 1000 rpm. Large machine-integrated tool cassette can be expanded from 80 to 200 tools, and tools are handled by a two-axis robot. A manipulator loads both the toolchanger for internal tool exchange and the toolchanging cassettes for external tool exchange.

Also demonstrated will be the entry-level Kolb Cubimat C system featuring universal five-side machining in a single setup. It will consist of one horizontal and one vertical machining unit, a shuttle-cart pallet transfer system, setup stations, and CNC control. This system provides automatic toolchanging for both machines from a single magazine, and automatic head-changing for angular milling and boring, grinding, contour facing, multiple spindles, special heads.

Fritz Werner Machine Tool Corp, Carol Stream, IL.

Turning and machining

Tsugami System TA-3 precision turning and machining center has a 126-tool ATC and 10-pallet automatic pallet changer. It is ideal for small job lots and offers increased flexibility with both milling and turning capabilities. ATC accepts both milling and turning tools to reduce setup time and machine complex parts in one operation. Ten-pallet changer allows work to be fixtured within the machines cycle time. The B and C axes provide five-face machining, and Y axis adds milling capability above and below spindle centerline. CNC tailstock can provide center support for untended operations. The 20-hp work spindle and 10-hp tool spindle are each driven by a two-speed gearbox. CNC integrates tool and work handling, and 60-deg slanting structure allows free chip flow.

REM Sales Inc, East Grandby, CT.

Strip forming machine

Three-dimensional CNC wire and strip forming machine fills the gap for automation in the 100- to 35,000-piece range. The system uses the AB 8600 controller and can be interfaced with a robotic system and IBM PC with point-to-point programming.

North America OMCG Inc, Bensenville, IL.

Dual-spindle cell

TH-102M dual inline-spindle turning cell combines dual-spindle efficiencies with tool turrets to transfer parts for secondary operations. One station on each turret has a work gripper to transfer parts from one spindle, on to the next turret, and then on to the other spindle--two flips, end-for-end. Spindles are 15-hp AC, and eight-station turrets can carry multiple tools at each station. Up to four rotary spindles (each 5 hp, 2500 rpm) can do milling and drilling occupying positions on one or both turrets. The Model SR-2 on-board gantry loader adds compact part loading/unloading. Because each spindle head has its own CNC, cell can operate as two separate turning machines.

Wasino Corp USA, Wayne, NJ.

Two new FMS cells

Display will include two new flexible cells demonstrating advanced manufacturing. The first is a modular pre-engineered cell for machining prismatic, palletized parts in high variety and low- to medium-volume production. If features a T-10 machining center (shown) with Acramatic 950MC control, a single-level, rail-guided pallet-handling system, and a new shop-floor cell controller.

The second cell incorporates a new Sprint high-performance machining center with Acramatic 850MC control, and uses a linear gantry parts-handling system. This cell is configured for high-volume, short-cycle-time production of non-palletized prismatic parts.

The cell controllers run on a DECstation [TM] workstation with pull-down menu interface. Software is handled by a Unix-based Ultrix [TM] operating system and Oracle [TM] database-management system.

Cincinnati Milacron, Machine Tool Group, Cincinnati, OH.

Loaded turning center

HiCell turning center will demonstrate high-productivity turning, operating with an automatic overhead TR-10 loader, feeding from a pallet system. It is a single-turret, four-axis machine with rotating as well as conventional tools and automatic toolchanging at any Z-axis position. With four-axis control and Y-axis movement, it provides compound milling, drilling, and turning on a single-turret machine with no interruptions. It combines, in effect, the advantages of a small vertical machining center with a high-speed turning center, eliminating rechucking and reducing idle time.

Quick-change tooling is standard, with Q-Setter automatic measuring and adjusting of tools. ATC magazine holds 12 tools, and with automatic toolsetting and spare-tool call functions, the cell can provide long untended operation with superior accuracy control. Spindle speeds reach 5000 rpm, and rapid traverse times are 787 ipm X, 945 ipm Z, 394 ipm Y, and 33.3 rpm C.

Hitachi Seiki USA Inc, Congers, NY.

Wet-abrasive sawing system

Model SG-140 wet-abrasive sawing system is a totally integrated automatic load, position, cut, and unload system that sections flat bars of high-temperature alloy and titanium to exacting tolerances. Saw is available individually or as a complete system with computer automated controls and material handling options.

W J Savage Co, Knoxville, TN.

Turning center with ATC

STC-500/ATC turning center has the rigidity and horsepower (80) to hold up under heavy cuts. It features an automatic tool changer with magazine that holds up to 37 different tools. It also features the CC-4200 cell-control computer. This controller is both a control and an administrative computer that can act as an organizational foreman for all machining activities within the turning cell. The control takes into account the part to be produced, what is required to produce the part, and the manufacturing priorities of each workpiece.

SMG Swedish Machine Group, Elk Grove Village, IL.

Automated finishing

A variety of manual and automatic finishing equipment will be shown, including polishing, buffing, and brushing equipment for deburring, surface improvement, or gate and parting-line removal. This will include the K-456-6 finishing system, the FF-6-2 flat finisher, and Zeta-1 and Kappa-1 finishing robots.

Hammond Machinery Inc, Kalamazoo, MI.

Cell machining

Cell-Con CNC machining center, designed specifically for cell manufacturing, is a 15-hp, traveling-column, horizontal machine priced below $50,000. It features GE-Fanuc motors and controls, precision spindle and ballscrews, 6000-rpm spindle, Trabon automatic lubrication system, replaceable hardened and ground ways, and automatic tool-changer. Table mounts to machine base via a #3 JIC mount and can be removed to allow the machine to be used as a CNC wing unit for transfer-line and dial-index use. It can be configured as a duplex mill by mounting two opposing machining centers on one table. It also finds uses as a replacement for production rise-and-fall mills, borematics, and other conventional milling, drilling, and boring machines.

Cellular Concepts Co, Detroit, MI.

Vertical transfer

Kneissler KE trunion transfer machine is an eight-station vertical transfer machine for high-volume production of components requiring precision multistaged machining. It features a free-standing station support ring with eight workpiece-holding fixture positions and interchangeable jaws for fast changeover. Maximum fixture dia is 1". Machine can produce parts or components from blanks, wire coil, bar, or tube stock and perform secondary operations, and can be equipped with an optional automatic vibratory feeder bowl or manual chute feeder.

Also shown will be a multifactor rotary transfer machine and the Multimat, a 24-station rotary transfer machine for machining small and micro-sized parts that can be run wet or dry.

Mikron Corp, Monroe, CT.

Rotary-transfer options

HB32/45-16 rotary transfer machine to be shown has 16 special B-32/45 collets with 1.75" capacity and toolspindle units mounted around the machine periphery. With the workpiece stationary in the collet, the table indexes to each machining unit and then performs one or more machining operations including drilling, boring, turning, cross drilling, milling, external and internal recessing, threading, tapping, or broaching. Air-operated parts pickoff system holds the bar during final turning and cutoff, removing it from the lathe for continuous operation.

Also demonstrated will be the Turmat precision multiaxis rotary transfer machine for machining complex families of forged, blank, or cast parts. It is available with four to ten stations, each with up to three machining units. Modular toolspindle units of up to 20 hp can be mounted at any angle and have independent feeds and speeds.

Hydromat Inc, St Louis, MO.

Multifunction short runs

Self-Line FMS provides cost-effective machining of short and medium production lots of families of small, close-tolerance parts. It consists of CNC six-spindle drilling and tapping units, a multi-operation programmer, parts-handling system, machine base, coolant system, and standard and optional component to complete the turnkey cell. Part handling can be via linear transfer or multistation rotary indexing. An alternative to dedicated machinery or standard CNC machining centers, the cell machines smaller parts--9 cu in--from aluminum, cast metal, bronze, and mild steel at rates one tenth that of conventional machining centers. Six-station ATC mounted on a three-axis traveling column makes the system applicable to any automated part-handling system. Drilling/tapping head is 3 hp AC, 3000 rpm. An optional 15,000-rpm spindle can be used on all turret stations.

Sugino Corp, Schaumburg, IL.

Pallet transfer line

CNC rotary-pallet transfer-machine line is designed for high-volume production. This flexible configuration will consist of two Toyoda Optimal Production (TOP) center horizontal-spindle high-speed machining centers designed for in-line applications. Each has a Tur-a-dex multiple-spindle, four-head index unit made by US Drill Head Co. The line will be cycling exhaust manifolds. The 360-deg pallet indexing permits multiple-part fixturing and working on all but one side of the part. TOP center machines feature 1000-ipm rapid traverse and 3.5-sec tool changes. Controls for each machine are GE-Fanuc Series 15 32-bit digital multiprocessors CNCs, necessary for processing the extremely high accelerations and decelerations of the TOP centers.

Toyoda Machinery USA Inc, Arlington Hts, IL.

Turning/milling center

GSC 42 twin-turret turning and milling center is a six-axis machine that combines both processes in a single automatic process to perform all the functions of a standalone flexible machining system. The turning process incorporates vertical Y-axis capability, plus an NC rotary workspindle C axis for machining contours. Power-driven tools can be provided for both turrets and a synchronous subspindle in turret 1, eliminating the need for secondary operations. Bar-stock capacity is 1.625" dia, and chuck work capacity is 4" dia. Up to six power-driven tools can be handled in each turret. Options include two-axis gantry for high-speed automatic loading and unloading.

By combining X, Z, C, and Y axes, the center can do turning, drilling, and milling in one chucking, and an additional three-tool backworking station allows machining on the cutoff side of the workpiece after primary operations have been completed. The machine can perform above- or below-center longitudinal milling, cross milling and drilling, and milling of an inclined surface with contour control, with simultaneous turret motion in the X, Z, and Y axes.

Index Corp, Shelton, CT.

Flexible punching/cutting

Model 3600 ATC flexible manufacturing center combines a 40-ton hydraulic punch with laser or airplasma contour cutting. Punching speeds reach 225 hits/min on 1" centers, and positioning speeds reach 2000 ipm with sheet sizes up to 60" x 120", weighing 1000 lb. Maximum sheet thickness is 3/8". Rotary ram allows automatic indexing of tooling from any station in the storage rack. Toolchangers can have 36, 80, 125, or 175 stations. Both raw-material loading and finished-parts unloading are automatic.

W A Whitney Corp, Rockford, IL.

Automated press

A 400-ton Minster/Tranemo DPAH press will be fitted with two Flex-Arm programmable part handlers (front and rear), moving aluminum blanks from an automated de-stacker through four die stations in the press. Straight-side hydraulic press provides production flexibility through three work motions, each independently controlled for timing, force, and duration. A quick-die-change system is integrated into the press control, making the combination ideal for short runs. Other important press features are large upright openings for blank feeding and part removal, eight-point gibbing to counter off-center loads, and an optional parallelism-equalizer system to further resist these forces.

Minster Machine Co, Minster, OH.

Turning cell

A turning cell will be demonstrated, featuring two CNC LB15 lathes (one shown) and a CNC single-carriage, high-speed gantry loader for horizontal and vertical part transportation. The 15-hp, two-axis, 75-to 4200-rpm lathes feature 12-tool turrets, 0.8-sec indexing, and 8" or 10" chucks. The LP-10 gantry serves a three-lane gravity conveyor, a part-rotation station, and an in-process gaging station with tool-offset capability.

The cell will be processing 2.5"-dia, 3.5"-long SAE 1018 steel slugs. The first lathe drills, bores, and turns; and the second finish-turns, bores, and grooves. Sixteen retrofit kits, including manual touch setter, high-pressure coolant, load monitoring, and loader-interface software support integration of cell components.

Okuma Machinery Inc, Charlotte, NC.

Traveling-wheelhead grinders

The T3 family of slant-bed traveling-wheelhead grinding machines allows quick changeover of small cylindrical parts.

This new machine family provides CNC control of all functions. The Universal T3U provides external and internal straight, angular, plunge, traverse, and face grinding on multiple ODs, IDs, steps, tapers, radii, and contours on parts up to 5.9" dia x 21" long. It features an indexing B-axis with one or two wheel spindles, and is capable of either cylindrical or taper grinding.

The internal, straight, and angular wheelhead T3 models are also specialized for applications requiring less flexibility, but where high accuracy and production are needed. Their design specifically supports applications where automated part-handling is required. The slant bed provides ample access for gantry-type loaders.

Sheffield Schaudt Grinding Systems Inc, Dayton, OH.

Fabrication machine

Peddiline miscellaneous fabricator model PLMF 300/3 is a total fabrication center consisting of two machines: a high-speed drilling machine and a structural cold saw. Machine processes miscellaneous structural shapes including beams, channels, angle-iron, flat-bar, and structural tubing. It can process shapes up to 12".

Drilling assembly features the patented Peddinghaus roller-feed measuring system for fast, accurate positioning of the workpiece. Positioning speed of 98 ft/min coupled with the two-speed spindle motor and 12"/min variable drill feed rate assure fast, accurate hole making. A cold saw encapsulated into the machine features a hydraulic feeding system for quick, burr-free cutting.

Peddinghaus Corp, Bradley, IL.

Variable transfer

Hahn & Kolb Model T5 Variomatic rotary transfer machine has built-in flexibility and speed, and is available in up to 16 stations. It's 3-ft-dia table can index in 0.4 sec with rotating chucks. All machining units can be easily adjusted 3" in any direction plus angular positioning from 0 to 360 deg.

Custom Products Corp, Machine Tool Div, Oconomowoc, WI.

Turning versatility

Turret-mounted rotary tools and a rotating/indexing chuck give the LV-24 MA vertical-turret-lathe/four-axis machining center exceptional versatility. In one chucking, it turns the part and mills, drills, and taps in both horizontal and vertical axes. The 20-hp spindle drive motor turns the 12" chuck at speeds to 3000 rpm. A ten-station turret carries up to four turning tools and four milling or drilling tools in fixed positions, and an 18-station ATC provides additional tool capacity. Maximum workpiece size is 10" dia x 10" length. Control is a Fanuc 15T.

Wasino Corp USA, Wayne, NJ.

Rebuilt machine tools

Dayton Machine Tools offers rebuilding, retrofit, contract maintenance, field inspection, and engineering services. The company specializes in the remanufacturing of large or highly-complex machines for job-shop and mass production in the aerospace, appliance, bearing, farm-machinery, oil, ordnance, power-generation, screw-machine products, ship-building, and steel industries. The firm also designs and builds special machines for requirements that cannot be met through existing designs.

Dayton Machine Tool Co, Dayton, OH.

Flexible rotary transfer

IMAS rotary transfer system offers new levels of flexibility. Part changeover can be made in 2 hours or less, with design features including preset tools and quick-change fixtures. The system includes eight three-axis modules, plus four single-axis modules for bottom-feeding operations. All are programmable, including spindle speed.

Machining capabilities include milling, drilling, reaming, threading, sawing, and profiling of turned, stamped, and die-cast parts. It's ideal for families of parts. Automatic SPC part gaging and tool-wear detection are available options. The system can also be equipped with automatic bowl feed, conveyor feed, pick-and-place robots, and automatic barfeeds to integrate raw material throughput, machining, gaging, and material handling.

Kurt Manufacturing Co, Minneapolis, MN.


SP/P4 flexible fabricating system combines a punching machine with built-in right-angle shear with a bending machine with standard universal tooling. The P4 performs [+ or -] 180-deg part bends with varying radii in one operation without special tooling. Machines are fed automatically with various sizes and thickness metal sheets with automated interfacing of material-handling equipment to shuttle parts between machines. The result is automatically formed rectangular parts.

Salvagnini America Inc, Hamilton, OH.

Six-axis mill/turn center

TNS 26 CNC mill/turn center offers a Y-axis for milling and drilling left or right of longitudinal centerline. It's available with one or two turrets, and each turret accommodates up to 12 tools. The individual toolholders may be used for either stationary or powered tooling.

Both ends of the workpiece can be machined. The machine's second spindle, with independent rotating C-axis, is located directly opposite the main spindle.

Traub Automatics Inc, 185 Adams Ave, Hauppauge, NY.

Versatile robot

The Erowa robot, produced in right-handed and left-handed versions to fit any CNC EDM sinking machine, is also available for machining centers and grinding machines as well as for wire EDM machines.

The robot makes it possible to extend a CNC machine into a flexible, fully-automated production cell. It is a universal handling system with control unit that becomes operative as soon as it receives a starting signal from the machine tool.

The robot is capable of changing its three gripper hands without assistance. It can retrieve or store electrodes and workpieces in the integrated magazine. The kinematic concept of the transfer arm enables it to clamp pallets weighing up to 90 lb for horizontal and vertical movements in the quill chuck or on the machine table. The swivel mechanism makes it possible to empty the rest of the dielectric in the workpiece on an EDM die sinker.

Five magazine levels hold up to 50 Erowa ITS electrode holders and workpiece pallets. The magazine position can be recalled in any given sequence.

Erowa Technology, Inc, Windsor, CT.

Large-part cell

Mycenter [R] -H400 Supercell horizontal machining cell is designed to handle larger workpieces untended. It offers five-axis machining of complex shapes and random angles in one operation, adding A and B axes to table travels of 24" X, 18" Y, and 20" Z. A and B rotations are 0 to 90 deg and 0 to 360 deg, respectively. A 15-hp AC motor produces spindle speeds from 20 to 7000 rpm with a gear-driven head.

Unmanned 24-hr machining runs are made possible by an automatic recognition system that recognizes a maximum of 31 workpieces, calling up the correct program for each. A 100-tool ATC has a fast toolchange time of 1.7 sec. A 20-pallet APC is equipped with a special three-axis robot. Workpiece capacity is 14" x 12" and maximum weight is 14 lb.

Kitamura Machinery USA Inc, Wheeling, IL.

CNC periphery grinder

Waida has further developed its four-axis throwaway insert periphery grinder by strengthening the four-axis robot loading system and improving the automatic dresser. In addition, Model AP-40 R II has an optional four-pallet system with capacity to 1000 inserts. This version is also available with automatic ultrasonic cleaning and drying.

The strong design (10-hp and 10,000-lb weight) makes this machine especially productive in grinding inserts of advanced cutting materials like ceramic and CBN. Negative inserts with combined thickness up to 0.79" can be automatically loaded and ground together. The fourth axis controls the Y-axis for oscillation width and grinding-wheel offset; and the X, B, and C axes function simultaneously.

Prema Int'l Corp, Charlotte, NC.
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Title Annotation:Metalworking Product Guide
Publication:Tooling & Production
Article Type:buyers guide
Date:Aug 1, 1990
Previous Article:From the machine up.
Next Article:Productivity in higher volumes.

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