Production Machining

JUN 2018

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

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Q Contributed by Raymond Varady The Biggest Bang for Your Automation Buck uestions surrounding the availability of reliable, skilled labor, its cost and related liability issues are top of mind these days for manufacturers as the unemployment rates continue to plummet. Shop owners are looking for creative ways to increase productivity and reduce labor, and automation is considered in every new project. For turning operations, bar feeding brings the biggest bang for the buck, but a shop needs to select the bar feeder type that best suits its needs. By most estimates, short bar feeders are the most popular type, accounting for about half of all bar feeders sold in the United States and about 35 percent of total dollar sales. Full-size magazine-style bar feeders account for about 30 percent of total unit sales in the U.S. and about 35 percent of total dollar sales. The numbers are different in Europe, where full-size bar feeders are the rule, and short bar feeders are comparatively rare. The numbers may be inter- esting, but, unfortunately, they cannot help a shop in its decision. Run sizes, part diameters, types of materials, accuracy requirements, the need for unattended Bar feeders are the primary automation option for the precision turned parts shop. Selecting the best bar feeder for the application is important for maximizing the production benefits of this technology. :: Various factors, including part length and diameter, should be considered when selecting the most suitable bar feeder for a shop's needs. machining capabilities, and other like considerations will determine the type of bar feeder that is best for each shop. Each type of bar feeder has unique advantages that must be weighed against the shop's specific needs. Here are the top considerations. Lot Size What lot sizes will typically be run on the lathe? If the CNC lathe will be used primarily for short-run work with frequent setup changes, the spindle-length bar feeder is the more logical choice. On such bar feeders, the entire Q 28 PRODUCTION MACHINING :: JUNE 2018 BAR FEEDERS

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