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Joint effort produces large dual-head EDM.

HS Die & Engineering Inc, Grand Rapids, ml, wanted to purchase a third CNC EDM but had difficulty finding an affordable machine to handle the large molds it produces primarily for the automotive industry. Founder Harold Steele chose a Leblond Makino made with a disappearing worktank.

Steele wanted Leblond Makino to take two large vertical EDM machines and connect them with a common worktank and dielectric. The fixed table and disappearing worktank could handle much larger workpieces than the more common coordinate table design. HS Die would be able to machine very large workpieces simultaneously without purchasing a custom system.

Even though attaching two machines had never been attempted before, Leblond Makino agreed to provide the two EDNC-106 machines and on-site application and technical support during the design and installation. HS Die would provide the worktable and tank design. Leblond Makino delivered the first EDNC-106 from inventory. The second machine was specially ordered with extended cable length so the MGC-120 control and power supply could be placed on the left side of the machine.

Both companies agreed that every modification would be made with the ultimate goal of maintaining each machine's integrity and performance so the machines could be separated later, if necessary. When the second machine arrived, the two EDNC-machines 106 were aligned with a standard Hewlett Packard laser system. Within two weeks of the arrival of the second machine, the entire installation was complete.

The dual-head machine combination has 78" of total longitudinal travel-39" each head-and can EDM both ends of a mold simultaneously. The 148" x 45" x 27" work-tank straddles both machines and sits on top of the lowered original tables and tanks. Because of the extra-large capacity of the work-tank, a larger dielectric reservoir was added to serve as an operator platform, simplifying machine setup and operation.

Steele says the two Leblond Makino EDNC-106 machines "have done everything I expected of them and more." The ability to EDM both ends of a large mold simultaneously has paid big dividends for HS Die. Machine time and setup time have been reduced, allowing the company to give customers faster service.
COPYRIGHT 1991 Nelson Publishing
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Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:HS Die and Engineering and LeBlond Makino to produce a dual-head engineering design machine
Publication:Tooling & Production
Date:Aug 1, 1991
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