Production Machining

APR 2018

Production Machining - Your access to the precision machining industrial buyer.

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Page 36 of 59

:: B axis provides better feature accessibility and contouring capabilities, allowing the part to be addressed in such ways as to often eliminate the need for secondary operations. given the attention it deserves. Software companies are constantly updating their products to help shops optimize all of their shopfloor equipment. Updates to postproces- sors and simulations are required to keep pace with the release of new machine tools. Other programming features may be added to ease the implementation of sophisticated automation equipment or multitasking capabilities. I recently sat down with John Buehler, brand manager for production CAM at Vero Software (Tuscaloosa, Alabama) to discuss his views on what his company is doing to meet the needs of shops in this quickly changing manufacturing environment. He provides insights about how CAM systems can help bring out the best in machine tools, tooling, automation and monitoring systems. Taking Advantage of B Axis e evolution of machine tools has brought us new ways of cutting parts to help reduce handling, and thus also reduce cycle times and the potential for error. Multitasking functionality and B-axis capabilities allow the part to be addressed in such ways as to often eliminate the need for secondary operations. e significant benefits of the B axis are in finish, feature accessibility, contouring and the ability to reduce cycle time. But these features also bring with them new programming challenges. As an example of applications in which B axis is well suited, Mr. Buehler says shops that put a finish turn on high-value parts where controlling the angle of the tool tip allows a consistent contact point normal to the component while following the contour of the part. e shape of the part will require varying the angle of the tool. Other times, the B axis can eliminate the need for multiple tools that would otherwise need to be inserted at different angles to access certain features of a part or for multidirectional cutting, further reducing the need for tool changes. Mr. Buehler says, like any other process optimization, it's about taking seconds out. "A few here, a few there," he says. "When you have hundreds of operations on a component and you can eliminate a couple of seconds each for half of those operations, suddenly you're saving minutes per part. ousands of parts later you're seeing huge savings." One of the keys to successful use of the B axis is the ability to confidently and productively program its functionality. e CAM system needs to be capable of handling the complexity of five-axis simultaneous machining, and the programmer needs to be able to imple- ment these capabilities. Vero's Edgecam software is designed for precise control of the tool as it follows the cutting path. For ease of use, each toolpath has a standard template of the most :: B-axis machining on both the main and subspindles maximizes productivity for optimum machine performance. :: Vero Inspect is designed to facilitate on-machine, in-process measurement by running a probe as a tool within the machine. Optimization with B xis :: 35

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