Whether manufacturing parts for leading industries such as aerospace, automotive or medical, or operating as a custom job shop, achieving high tolerances and precision surface finishes.
More than 200 exhibitors in the Abrasives, Sawing & Finishing Pavilion will showcase a diverse lineup of new and improved equipment. But the varied equipment has a few things in common: ease of use and improved communication; higher productivity with fewer setups; and, for many, the ability to operate almost unattended.
Although a lot has happened since the last in-person IMTS in 2018, manufacturers are facing many of the same issues. Labor shortages, for example, continue to plague the industry. As a result, companies are increasingly turning to equipment that simplifies operation and maintenance.
Data analysis is also essential to productivity. This is evident throughout the pavilion, with many exhibitors touting the ability to access machine data remotely. Cloud-based apps crunch numbers and provide graphical displays on smart devices, enabling managers and need-to-know staff to get real-time reports on cycle time, uptime, times shutdown and error alerts.
Russell Riddiford, President of Anca Inc., based in Wixom, Mich., looks forward to returning to in-person industry events and meeting with customers.
“With a long wait of four years since the last IMTS, I am delighted to show our visitors the latest technological advancements from Anca,” he said. “We will showcase technology that helps solve the challenges faced by many manufacturers.”
Several heavy-duty grinders that use the Anca Integrated Manufacturing System (AIMS) will be showcased at the company’s booth (237406). The platform optimizes cutting tool production through streamlined manufacturing, automation and connectivity. With AIMS, customers can achieve continuous, unattended production that reduces non-productive machine time, with intelligent automation that connects sequential tool production processes and provides plant-wide connectivity, according to Riddiford.
At IMTS, AIMS will pilot a manufacturing cell in Anca’s booth configured with various equipment, including an unattended manufacturing workflow of two varieties of end mills on an MX7 machine.
“An important part of this workflow is the closed-loop measurement and compensation process using Zoller Genius as the measurement station,” said Jan Irzyk, AIMS Product Manager. Depending on customer requirements, he added, AIMS can “automatically transfer a tool from the ground batch, clean it, measure the required geometries and transfer the results to the respective grinding machine where compensation of the grinding parameters takes place. to achieve the required dimensional tolerance of the lot.”
Next generation HMI
United Grinding, Miamisburg, Ohio, is showcasing a next-generation human-machine interface called CORE (Customer Oriented REvolution) that features a new controller and operating system that makes the interface simple for training and learning. use, said Jacob Baldwin, director of the company. business marketing.
“This interface reduces the learning curve to get operators up and running on the machines in a much faster time,” he said.
IMTS attendees can visit United Grinding at booth 236802, which will feature CORE panel demonstrations on a Magerle MFP30 five-axis grinding center, a Walter Helitronic Vision 400 tool grinder, and a Studer S31 universal cylindrical grinder.
Partnerships are always a big part of IMTS. This year is no different, with suppliers teaming up with customers to improve the overall productivity of their equipment.
One such collaboration involves filtration specialist Transor Filter USA, Arlington Heights, Illinois, with Star Cutter, a grinder manufacturer based in Farmington Hills, Michigan. Partners will demonstrate Transor’s One Micron filtration system on Star Cutter’s line of equipment.
The filtration system can help produce carbide and HSS cutting tools, according to Transor CEO Irv Kaage. “The combination of micron filtration and temperature control (0.1°C) maximized their productivity,” Kaage said.
He added that Star Cutter will offer Transor as a filtration option on its specialty tool and cutter grinders such as the NXT, which will also be on display. The NXT five-axis automated tool grinder will be equipped with a robotic loader and flat blade/insert clamping device for live demonstration of automated production.
Transor is at booth 237440, while Star Cutter is at booth 237013.
Second opinions and opportunities
Vendors also use IMTS to market their products, including equipment typically used in the medical industry.
Royal Master Grinders Inc. (Booth 236626), based in Oakland, NJ, introduces a “new concept” to the world of machine tools: automated needle point grinding. The grinder is currently used in the medical device industry for orthopedics, but the company is looking to expand into industrial manufacturing applications such as core pins for injection molding.
“We are bringing this crusher to IMTS 2022 to open up new markets for us,” said John Memmelaar, Vice President of Royal Master. “It has great potential in many new applications and maybe a few that we haven’t considered yet.”
Meanwhile, Medical Manufacturing Technologies (MMT), a provider of medical device manufacturing solutions, has expanded its equipment portfolio to include electrochemical and centerless grinding applications, catheter laminators and tipping, catheter cutting, drilling and punching.
“We are excited to showcase the grinding and cutting technologies available under the MMT banner,” said Robbie Atkinson, CEO of Charlotte-based MMT (booth 237307).
The company’s Glebar and Tridex brands, he added, are “recognized throughout the industry for their precision, quality and reliability.”
The Abrasive/Saw/Finish pavilion will house powerful heavy-duty grinders. The equipment is impressive in terms of hardware and software.
For example, Unison Corp., based in Ferndale, Michigan, offers its Model 3000, a five-axis CNC profile grinder that uses the company’s EZ software to customize and modify tool geometry with an HMI that is powered by a “fill-blank” and then verifying the part using the machine’s real-time 3D part predictor.
The Model 3000 computer control monitors machine functions and alerts the operator to problems encountered while grinding. It can be networked and monitored via the Internet and has a remote connection system.
The unit is designed for the preparation of tool blanks and can grind rough and finish in a single pass with its 9,000 rpm and 10,000 rpm direct drive spindles. The crusher is equipped with Yaskawa AC Drive amplifiers and servo motors, as well as an automatic Pick-n-Place parts loader/unloader for continuous crushing. Spectators can see the system in action at booth 236630.
Steve Yulga, sales and marketing manager for DoAll Sawing Products of Savage, Minnesota, said the company has improved several products. IMTS attendees can “understand better how our sawing products can help them streamline their sawing operations,” he added while visiting DoAll at booth 237067.
DoAll’s SC-150A Circular Saw is designed for high throughput and can cut a range of metals. The cold saw features automatic operation, fully digital controls and a solid, rugged construction, providing more rigidity and reduced vibration resulting in higher cut rates, exceptional precision, surface finish superior quality and increased blade life, according to the company.
Cosen Saws International Inc., based in Charlotte, North Carolina (booth 236931), will showcase bandsaws featuring the company’s V_Drive technology. Working with a PLC and software, the system adjusts machine amperage based on material density to improve cutting efficiency.
The Cosen G320 bandsaw, which is used to cut different grades of aluminum, can now cut harder and denser materials such as titanium, Hastelloy and other nickel base metals. The G320 also features Smart NC-100 technology which is programmable for up to 100 different jobs including amount and length of cut. The controls automatically compensate for kerf loss and do not need repeated manual calculations to index.
Norton | Saint-Gobain Abrasives, Worcester, Massachusetts, has developed several new products to meet the changing materials needs of the metalworking industry, said Will Lang, Technical Business Development Manager.
One example is Norton’s Quantum Prime wheels, which feature a nanocrystalline ceramic grain. The technology “delivers exceptionally high grinding efficiency and part quality, as well as significantly longer wheel life than traditional ceramic grains,” Lang said.
Norton’s Abrasive Process Solutions (APS) program can determine the most optimal grinding or finishing system for an application. The APS program, along with the APS Robotic Automation Cell, provides abrasive process development, optimization, automation and in-house testing.
“With the development of new materials that are harder to grind, tighter finish specifications and a move towards more automated and controlled manufacturing processes, we need to adapt to meet the needs of our customers,” Lang said. “To meet these needs, we continuously develop customized solutions that improve the performance of grinding processes.”