A trio of innovators: Springmann, Heimerle + Meule and Cooksongold are exhibiting at EPHJ

Springmann has been supplying industry with manufacturing machinery and peripheral equipment since 1920. This renowned supplier has been an exhibitor since the very start of EPHJ, so it’s no surprise that it’s back again this year. Together with the long-established Pforzheim company Heimerle + Maule and its subsidiary Cooksongold from Birmingham, Springmann promises to deliver one of the highlights of the exhibition on its stand: DMLS technology for precious metals in action!

H-M Electroplating job shop and CNC technology
H-M Electroplating job shop and CNC technology

This innovative technology has been specially developed for the jewellery and watch industry and breaks new ground compared with conventional processes. Precious metal alloys can be turned into fantastic one-off pieces or mass-produced products – live in front of the exhibition audience. With the aid of CAD data, this new technique can easily create “impossible” shapes using a special laser sintering process. This means that expensively produced models and lost-wax casting are now a thing of the past. Cooksongold gives jewellery and watch designers with DMLS a new level of creative freedom to come up with designs that would previously have been wholly unimaginable.

Springmann is highly regarded in the watch and jewellery industry. The company represents reputable European producers and acts as an area-wide organization offering consultancy as well as sales and customer service support in Switzerland and Liechtenstein. It will be presenting a variety of products at the exhibition including ZOLLER tools, measuring instruments and presetting devices and OTEC polishing and deburring machines. Alongside DISKUS double-surface grinding machines and GEIBEL & HOTZ and LIPEMEC flat grinding machines, Springmann will also be exhibiting INDEX and TRAUB lathes and turn-mill centres.

As a renowned supplier of a full range of precious metal processing and refining products, Germany’s oldest gold and silver refinery Heimerle + Meule is also showcasing some interesting innovations at EPHJ, including PVD processes that have recently been added to its portfolio. The eco-friendly coating technology offers an ideal complement or alternative to conventional galvanic coating processes.

Heimerle + Meule also specializes in separating materials and valuable substances containing precious metals. Moreover, this leading producer of precious metal products offers a range of high-quality materials and semi-finished products for the jewellery, watch and wedding ring industry. The company carries out galvanic surface finishing on almost all types of materials and for a wide range of industries. The innovations developed by the team of experts in Pforzheim also include investment products and new developments in galvanic chemistry and the galvanic equipment sector.


Plastpol 2015: Arburg presents extensive plastic parts production range

At the Plastpol 2015, to be held from 26 to 29 May in Kielce, Poland, Arburg will present a wide spectrum of plastic parts production – from the manufacture of one-off parts through to the mass production of medical technology items.

With an energy-optimised hydraulic Allrounder 420 C Golden Edition, Arburg will produce toy buggies at the Plastpol 2015.
With an energy-optimised hydraulic Allrounder 420 C Golden Edition, Arburg will produce toy buggies at the Plastpol 2015.

“The Polish economic trend is extremely stable and, accordingly, our assessment of our customers’ willingness to invest is optimistic,” says Dr. Slawomir Sniady, Managing Director of the Arburg subsidiary in Poland. “There’s a particular interest in increasing production efficiency as well as in the competitive production of plastic parts at minimum unit costs. This is precisely what we offer with our wide product range of modular Allrounder injection moulding machines and our reliable service. As a highlight this year, we will also be presenting the Freeformer, which operates without a mould and uses standard granulates to produce functional components as one-off parts or in small batches”.
Freeformer additively processes two components
With the Freeformer, fully functional plastic parts can be additively manufactured from standard granulate using the patented “Arburg Plastic Freeforming” process based on 3D CAD data, without the need for a mould. As with injection moulding, the granulate is initially melted in a plasticising cylinder. Plastic droplets are applied layer-by-layer onto a moving part carrier via the nozzle of a stationary discharge unit, using high-frequency piezo technology at a specified duty cycle of 60 to 200 Hertz.
The second discharge unit can be used for an additional component, for example to produce a part in different colours, with special tactile qualities, or as a hard/soft combination. At the Plastpol 2015, a Freeformer will combine a standard ABS material with a special support material to produce a key fob featuring a ball joint. The supporting structures are simply removed later in a water bath.

Hybrid Allrounder produces syringe barrels
With the manufacture of syringe barrels featuring a thread, Arburg will demonstrate how disposable items can be produced in high quality and large volumes. Using a mould from Tim Plastik, Turkey, a hybrid Allrounder 520 H with a clamping force of 1,500 kN will produce eight 20 ml syringe barrels from PP in a cycle time of around eleven seconds. The part weight is around 7 grams. Sophisticated temperature control technology is used in order to meet the stringent part tolerance requirements. Before the mould is opened, an unscrewing unit is used to perform so-called Luer Lock thread demoulding.

Hidrive series: combination of electric and hydraulic machine technology
The hybrid Allrounder Hidrive series machines are characterised by high productivity, short cycle times and high energy efficiency and are therefore predestined for high-performance applications. The speed and precision associated with electric technology are combined with hydraulic power and dynamics for uncompromising production performance. This is further enhanced by performance-optimised hydraulic accumulator technology. Allrounder H machines bear the Arburg “e²” energy efficiency label as an indication of their energy-optimised operation.

Toy buggy in a single injection moulding cycle
Using a toy buggy as an example, Arburg will demonstrate the high-quality, automated and cost-effective manufacture of standard products. This exhibit demonstrates the performance of the proven hydraulic Golden Edition machine series. An Allrounder 420 C Golden Edition with a clamping force of 1,000 kN will produce all the components in a single step using a 1+1+2-cavity family mould. The cycle time is around 30 seconds.
After the injection moulding process, a Multilift Select robotic system then removes the sprue as well as the four individual components (roof, chassis and two axles with wheels) and joins them together on the assembly table to produce the finished buggy.
The exhibited machine will feature the Arburg productivity package. This package includes the Arburg energy saving system (AES) with variable-speed pump drive and water-cooled drive motor. Here, operation with two control pumps, which enable simultaneous machine movements, is rendered even more cost-effective. Advantages of the productivity package include a reduction in energy requirement by up to 20 percent, five percent shorter dry cycle times and minimised emissions.

Cost-effective entry into automated production
The Multilift Select is the entry-level model of the Arburg linear robotic systems. It features servo-electric drive axes and is fully integrated in the Selogica machine control system. For the operator, this means: only one data set, a familiar approach during programming and perfect synchronisation of robotic system and machine. Moreover, the Multilift Select is extremely simple to program thanks to the teach-in function.

Delcam launches new FeatureCAM for feature-based programming

Delcam has launched the 2015 R3 release of its FeatureCAM feature-based CAM software. This includes a range of enhancements to give high-quality results on all types of machine tool, including complex mill-turn equipment and five-axis machining centres, while retaining the rapid programming times for which FeatureCAM is renowned.

Turning-head holders have been added to the range of machining accessories supported by FeatureCAM
Turning-head holders have been added to the range of machining accessories supported by FeatureCAM

FeatureCAM was the world’s first feature-based programming software when it was launched in 1995. Constant development since then has ensured that the system has retained its leadership in programming speed and ease of use, while an increased range of strategies has been added to provide more efficient toolpaths that give greater productivity on a wider range of machinery, including mill-turn machines, five-axis mills and wire EDM equipment.

The most significant new option is the ability to duplicate the physical constraints of the machine tool in simulations in FeatureCAM. Machine-tool limits can be added to the models to be used in the simulation for three-, four- and five-axis milling machines, for turning equipment, and for mill-turn machines, including those with multiple turrets and/or multiple spindles. It is then possible to check that the chosen machine tool is capable of completing the proposed program for all types of equipment, from the simplest lathe to the most complex multi-tasking machine.

The simulation will pause whenever the program attempts to move the machine beyond the specified limits. In many cases, simply changing the position of the part on the machine bed will allow the whole operation to be completed. Alternatively, modifications to the fixturing or to the length of the cutting tools may be required. Whatever changes are made, the computer simulation can then be repeated to check that the modified program will run successfully. Proving out the program on the computer will save time and money on the machine tool, as well as checking that the part can be cut safely.

In another improvement to FeatureCAM simulations, more accurate representations can be created of shanks and holders. These allow three-axis and five-axis collision checking to be undertaken more reliably.

Two enhancements have been made to five-axis machining with FeatureCAM. Firstly, more control is available with the ability to set the C-axis orientation about the Z axis so helping to avoid machine collisions and to make the program more efficient by avoiding over-travel. Secondly, support for five-axis operation is possible in 2D spiral operations, giving better control of the tool axis. This can ensure uniform depth of cut and cross-section when engraving onto complex surfaces, including parts with undercuts.

Additional accessories that are supported in the new release include turning-head holders and mini turrets. Turning-head holders allow turning to be undertaken on a milling machine, while mini turrets allow more flexible positioning of the tooling and faster tool changes. In both cases, the new options can be simulated on the computer before being sent to the machine.


METAV 2016: premiere for the Moulding Area. Tool and mould-making optimally integrated into the METAV’s structure

On 23 February 2016, the METAV will be pressing the power button. For five days, Düsseldorf will once again be the meeting point for international users interested in metalworking technologies. “Power your Business” is the motto displayed to exhibitors and visitors for boosting their business, not least in the field of tool and mould-making, in the newly established Moulding Area.

Tool and mould-making offers new and expanded solutions for implementing complex geometries in plastic, metal or glass.
Tool and mould-making offers new and expanded solutions for implementing complex geometries in plastic, metal or glass.

Among the companies to be showcasing its capabilities there right from Day One will be Georg Meusburger GmbH & Co KG from the Austrian town of Wolfurt. To quote Sales Manager Lutz Schaller: “Tool and mould-making is an integral constituent of the metalworking industry, and vital to its customers. So we’re delighted that this is being reflected in the METAV’s new concept.” And he continues: “The Moulding Area is ideally embedded in the METAV’s remit structure, focusing as it does on CAD technologies, production processes and quality assurance. That’s why we aim to set new standards at the METAV 2016.”

Dr. Wilfried Schäfer, Executive Director of the METAV’s organiser, the VDW (German Machine Tool Builders’ Association), concurs: “We know from surveys that almost one in five visitors to the METAV is interested in tool, mould and model-making. In the Moulding Area, these prospective customers will find applications and solutions for their own particular specialisms, both for metal and for plastic. Additional information can be obtained by visiting the other areas as well. For example, complex moulds can nowadays be alternatively produced using additive processes. The possibilities available here are on show in the Additive Manufacturing Area. Metrological questions, also extending beyond the confines of production technology, are covered in the Quality Area,” is how he describes the synergies for the visitors. “You won’t find anything like this at any other event,” to quote Wilfried Schäfer.

Tool and mould-making offers new and extended solutions for implementing complex geometries in plastic, metal or glass. Technical mould design, surface structures or kinematic and thermal considerations are all spotlighted in the Moulding Area, as are the competence fields of design and prototyping all the way through to series production.
In the Moulding Area, tools and moulds for the different production processes involved in forming operations are showcased, plus concepts for jig and gauge construction. Solutions for design work, computations and simulations will be spotlighted by the exhibitors of C-technologies.
The partner for the Moulding Area is the VDMA’s Tool Construction Working Group, a Special Section of the VDMA’s Precision Tools Department. The manufacturers of precision tools have traditionally been the second-largest exhibitor grouping at the METAV. The special section, one of the initiators for the inauguration of the METAV in 1980, is still its conceptual sponsor. Executive Director Markus Heseding also welcomes the Moulding Area at the METAV. “Firstly, tool and mould manufacturers can spotlight requirement-optimised tool technologies at the METAV. Secondly, the METAV offers its visitors from the tool and mould manufacturing sector a holistic overview of innovative production processes for tool and mould-making operations.” After all, besides conventional processes, more and more new process technologies are being used in mould manufacture, such as laser-aided production for fine-structuring design surfaces, or generative processes for producing close-to-contour cooling. Markus Heseding is certain that innovative technologies of this kind, in particular, can provide tool manufacturers with significant competitive advantages.

The METAV showcases the entire value creation chain involved in the metalworking sector. With their own nomenclature, the fields of additive manufacturing, moulding, quality and medical will in future be integrated as permanent features of the fair in what are called “Areas”. Inside a particular area, vendors can exhibit their corporate capabilities as individual exhibitors or on shared stands. Each area will incorporate an integrated forum for communicating topical issues.

Hindsight Industrie Lyon 2015

2015 was a record-breaking year. In addition to a 10% increase of the exhibition area, Industrie Lyon proposed a comprehensive offer to nearly 20,500 professionals, an increase of over 17%. The 859 exhibitors met with project-bearing visitors looking for innovations and solutions to revive French manufacturing. They welcomed the business, with orders for investment and consumables signed at the booths. The trend toward recovery still lacks long-term visibility.


Innovation Awards

At the start of Industrie Lyon’s gala evening, the 4 winners of the Trophées de l’Innovation and the Special Mention entry were unveiled in front of over 900 guests. This was the most successful edition of the Trophées de l’Innovation, with 148 innovations showcased.

In the Environment category: Sogal, Cyanide-free silver plating processes
In the Ergonomics category: Mecanolav-Ridel, Loading/unloading system using a rotary table based on the MecanoFASTconcept
In the Productivity catogory: Emuge Franken, Taraud Punch Tap
In the Technology category: Faro, Measuring arm with Laser Edge Scanarm HD
Special Mention: Akeo Plus: Intelligent Kitting mobile robot IKR 4.0
For the first time, Industrie awarded a Manager of the Year trophy, recognizing the men and women who innovate within their company.

The Manager of the Year 2015 was awarded to Jean-Claude Gas, CEO of SGAME, which
began the ISO 26000 certification process in 2013 and received the highest level
(AAA excellence) in 2014 without any outside assistance. Since then, the work environment and financial results have significantly improved.

Ambition for the 2016 edition

The 2016 edition of Industrie Paris will be ambitious and continue to anchor the exhibition as the annual meeting of production technologies, thanks in particular to the price freeze on booths, the extension of Inside INdustrie to 3 major clients of French manufacturing, and the invitation of the top 100 managers of French factories to Industrie Paris 2016, at the Paris Nord Villepinte Exhibition Center (Parc des Expos).

Fully-automated inline cleaning system for machined precision parts

Whether it’s rotationally-symmetrical workpieces such as shafts, pistons, bearings, and toothed parts, or medical devices such as implants – if strict tolerances have to be met, each product is carefully checked by optical measurement during the production process. But in order to do this, component surfaces have to be clean. quattroClean from ACI AG is the ideal solution – an inline and fully-automated innovative cleaning cell.

The easy-to-focus snow jet makes use of four different mechanisms to remove particulate and filmy contamination from almost any technical material in a reliable and reproducible way.
The easy-to-focus snow jet makes use of four different mechanisms to remove particulate and filmy contamination from almost any technical material in a reliable and reproducible way.

To ensure product quality and cost-efficiency, machined precision parts are often optically measured. The closer the measurement system can be moved to the machining center, the better the results that are obtained. However, contaminants left on the parts’ surfaces, such as processing media residues, chips and flaky burrs, can be a problem. They may cause measurement errors and result in parts being rejected unnecessarily. To avoid this, it makes sense to integrate a needs-oriented cleaning step directly between the machining process and measurement step, and this can be achieved using the innovative modular cleaning solution quattroClean from ACI AG. The system can be integrated into a fully-automated production line in the smallest of spaces or used as a stand-alone device. Components can be advanced into the machine using any common automation system. Standardized interfaces allow for easy integration of the serial system controller into a master computer. All relevant process parameters are recorded and stored automatically, or sent to the master computer as required.

Compact cell with integrated CO2 snow-jet cleaning system
Available in three different sizes, the new cleaning cell carries out a dry, selective cleaning step on the surface to be measured, either in the one-piece flow of the production line or in a rotary indexing table. Tailored to specific application requirements, the cell is fitted with a CO2 snow-jet system from acp, a company belonging to the ACI Group. The environmentally-neutral cleaning technology uses liquid carbon dioxide as a medium, which is generated as a by-product from chemical processes and from generating energy with biomass.
Liquid carbon dioxide is guided through the patented two-component ring nozzle of the acp system where it expands on exiting to form fine snow crystals. These are then bundled by a jacketed jet and accelerated to supersonic speed. A combination of thermal, mechanical, sublimation and solvent mechanisms take place as the easy-to-focus jet impacts at minus 78.5°C on the surface to be cleaned,. These four mechanisms enable the QuattroClean system to reliably remove film-like contaminants, e.g. residues of cooling lubricants, processing oils and polishing paste, or particulate contaminants, such as chips, flaky burrs and dust. At the same time, the low degree of hardness of the snow crystals makes sure that even sensitive and finely-structured surfaces are cleaned gently.
Thanks to the aerodynamic power of the compressed air jet, the detached contaminants are instantly carried away from the component surface. Together with the gaseous sublimated carbon dioxide, the contaminants are then removed from the cleaning cell by an integrated suction unit. On completion of the cleaning process, parts are completely dry and can be measured immediately.

Successfully used in serial production
Among other things, the quattroClean system is used by Mahle GmbH to clean the lateral surfaces of engine pistons in an inline process prior to their optical measurement. Parts are handled by a robot which places the pistons both in the cleaning cell and later in the measuring system. To do this, the robot is fitted with two grippers – one for contaminated parts and one for cleaned parts. To avoid measurement errors, parts are re-tempered after cleaning. The quattroClean system operates in the one-piece flow of the production line and is capable of cleaning 11 cm2/sec.

Individually-adapted systems, even for cleanroom applications
To determine the exact process parameters required for each application, material property and type of contamination, e.g. volume flow of compressed air and carbon dioxide as well as blasting time cleaning tests are performed. This enables the quattroClean system to be adapted for use in coating, assembly and packaging lines as well as in conjunction with other processes where clean surfaces are required. Depending on the task at hand, ACI also designs cleaning cells for cleanroom use. In order to perform cleaning tests under cleanroom conditions, ACI has its own application center with an ISO Class 7 cleanroom (which can be adapted to ISO Class 6 if required). Equipment is also available for determining cleanliness levels before and after cleaning.


Vibration damper for deep hole machining

Sandvik Coromant has introduced a new vibration damper that helps to maintain stable production during Deep Hole Machining (DHM) operations and support increased machine tool utilization. Using the machine control adjustment unit, the new device allows operators to step away from the machine and manage process modification without hand tools or the risk of personal injury.

The new vibration damper from Sandvik Coromant improves efficiency and guarantees security during deep hole machining (DHM) operations.
The new vibration damper from Sandvik Coromant improves efficiency and guarantees security during deep hole machining (DHM) operations.

High material removal rates and precision are the defining characteristics when it comes to DHM, along with hole straightness, dimensional tolerances and surface finish. With this in mind, it comes as little surprise that security is paramount to success.

When producing long parts on STS (Single Tube System) machines, operators face a number of process-critical challenges. Many DHM operations are extremely demanding, pushing machining performance to the limit. This can generate higher forces and stresses within the tooling system, which in turn can become problematic in terms of vibration. As a consequence, operators are often faced with manual adjustment of the clamping unit on the vibration damper. When a large workpiece is rotating, adjusting the clamp by hand is not a straightforward operation – it is difficult to get right immediately because of the accuracy needed. What’s more, the risk of injury is elevated considerably.

The Sandvik Coromant vibration damper provides the solution. The device dampens vibration, leading to first class precision and surface finish. In addition, it does this using the machine control, facilitating a stable production process, safely. There is even a self-locking unit in the event of a power loss. Of course, when vibration is under control, another benefit arrives in that excessive tool wear is no longer an issue. The result is increased machine uptime and a safer working environment.

The new vibration damper from Sandvik Coromant offers bi-directional functionality ensuring it can be deployed for both push and pull applications.