April 2012 / Volume 64 / Issue 4|
DMG/Mori Seiki hosts open house in Germany
By Alan Richter, Editor
For the first time as a combined company, DMG/Mori Seiki hosted the open house held annually at the Deckel Maho Pfronten (Germany) GmbH plant. The event took place Feb. 7 to 11 and reportedly drew more than 5,000 industry professionals from around the world.
The machine tool builder exhibited 60 machines, with six being world premieres: the 4-axis CTX beta 800 4A turning center, the DMC 60 H linear horizontal machining center with optional swivel rotary table for 5-axis machining, the 5-axis DMU 85 FD monoBLOCK mill/turn machine, the 5-axis DMC 65 monoBLOCK universal machining center, the 5-axis DMU 80 eVo with pallet changer and the NHX4000 HMC for machining workpieces up to 24.8"×35.4".
The open house featured 10 technology seminars. “The Full Range of Modern 5-axis Machining” seminar took place Feb. 7 and focused on the savings and benefits of using a 5-axis machine. That includes using one machine instead of multiple machines to perform what is needed and thereby reducing the required work space.
The seminar presenters included Michael Zanth, sales manager, and Otto Bauhor, technical sales, for Deckel Maho Seebach (Germany) GmbH. Their presentation noted that 5-axis machining is a growing market, with about 60 percent of the milling machines sold in 2011 being 5-axis. Mirroring the market, 24 of the 38 milling machines at the open house were 5-axis.
All images courtesy of A. Richter
They noted that end users perform 3+2 machining (5-axis positioning) on 73 percent of the 5-axis machines, 5-sided machining on 22 percent and 5-axis simultaneous machining on 5 percent. The latter is least performed primarily because it requires more programming effort.
Although a 5-axis machine typically has a high initial cost, it eventually reduces costs by requiring fewer fixtures and cutting tools, shortening lead times and enabling higher flexibility and machine utilization compared to 3- and 4-axis machines, according to Zanth and Bauhor.
At the Feb. 7 technical press conference, Dr. Masahiko Mori, president of Mori Seiki Co. Ltd., Nagoya City, Japan, indicated that production of HMCs at the company’s new 200,000-sq.-ft. factory in Davis, Calif., will start at the end of July. Next year, the plant will begin building DMG-type machines, he added. At capacity, the new facility will produce up to 100 units per month, the company reports.
Dr. Rüdiger Kapitza, chairman of Gildemeister Group AG, Bielefeld, Germany, the parent company of DMG, pointed out during the press conference that the cost of linear drive motors has increased significantly because of price hikes for rare earth materials, but the technology is essential for boosting productivity while enhancing accuracy. For example, the DMC 60 H linear machine’s linear drives provide 1G acceleration and speeds up to 100 m/min. with a positioning accuracy of less than 4µm, which increases productivity by 25 percent, the company reported.
“We believe in linear drives for long-term productivity solutions,” said Christian Thönes, Gildemeister board member.
The press conference also presented information about “Invomilling,” a new multitask application for producing spur and helical gears. Ralf Riedemann, president of Mori Seiki GmbH, Stuttgart, Germany, and vice president of Mori Seiki Europe GmbH, noted that DMG/Mori Seiki licensed the technology from Sandvik Coromant Co., Fair Lawn, N.J. The process applies a disc-shaped milling tool that radially rolls from the gear OD toward its center while the gear rotates. “Invomilling shortens the process chain,” he said.
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