Cutting Tool Engineering
July 2012 / Volume 64 / Issue 7

Metalworking product review

By CTE Staff


New shop floor CMMs focused on portability

Hexagon Metrology, North Kingstown, R.I., ( launched its Brown & Sharpe 4.5.4 SF, the latest generation of shop floor coordinate measuring machines. “Metrology trends are pushing dimensional inspection from the quality lab to the shop floor so inspection becomes simply another operation in the manufacturing process,” said Eric Bennett, product manager for Hexagon Metrology.

Designed for harsh manufacturing environments, the SF series focuses on portability: the new CMM measures 52.2 "×32.8 "×79.5 " and fits through a standard door. It uses standard 110/220v outlets and doesn’t require shop air. The CMM has thermal isolation and temperature-compensation elements to ensure accuracy in changing shop floor environments. The CMM’s standard elastomeric dampers isolate the measuring platform from most vibration. Inverted, high-resolution Heidenhain scales, covered ways and internal cable management protect machine components from ambient dust and debris while minimizing friction, according to the company. For extreme environments, an optional active vibration damping system is available.

The SF series comes with PC-DMIS metrology software. PC-DMIS STI+ (single touch interface) is controlled via a touch screen, expediting inspection program selection and launch. The software allows shop workers to check parts without becoming CMM experts, according to Hexagon. STI+ graphically guides users through part setup and measurement and produces reports. STI+ makes the CMM an alternative to functional gaging on the shop floor, according to the company.


Portable tramp oil separator for multiple machines

The portable coalescers from Eriez Hydroflow, Eriez, Pa.,( are simple, effective and low-cost tramp oil separators that can be moved from machine to machine, according to the company. Use of a coalescer extends the life of coolants and cleaners, improves machining and preserves tools.

The coalescer uses an oleophilic (oil-attracting) coalescing plate pack media to remove oils. This plate pack consists of more than 100 sq. ft. of coalescing area for maximum oil removal. The unit uses a standard electric submersible pump but can be upgraded with an air pump or a heavy-duty electric pump for deeper sumps. Other standard features include an adjustable oil-removal weir pipe, tank lid, floating oil collector to skim off oils and dirty fluid, pre-pump strainer and tank drain valve for cleaning. A single machine can support tramp oil removal for an entire shop or can be made stationary to work on large sumps or central systems. Larger flow rate systems also can be ordered.


Zirconia alumina products get an upgrade

Saint-Gobain Abrasives, Worcester, Mass., ( is upgrading its “better” tier of Norton metal fabricating abrasive products for portable grinding. Products in the tier will now be sub-branded as Norton BlueFire and feature a zirconia alumina grain.

“Our new generation NorZon grain has been tested across many product lines and has consistently resulted in performance improvements of up to 30 percent compared to the previous NorZon product,” said David Long, director of marketing and strategy at Norton Abrasives.

Norton “better” fiber discs, flap discs, coated abrasive belts and portable wheels, cones and plugs have been upgraded to the new grain. Current Charger depressed-center and cutoff wheels and NorZon paper discs, nonwoven wheels and quick-change discs for portable grinding will be upgraded to the new BlueFire grain over the next several months.


Index plungers for pressure and indexing fixtures

Fixtureworks, Fraser, Mich., ( offers Kipp hand-retractable index plungers for its workholding and fixturing products. The index plungers, available in inch and metric sizes and locking and nonlocking styles, are used to locate, stop, align and hold parts. They are for fixturing applications where pressure and indexing are required, according to the company. The locking style allows the plunger to remain in the retracted position.

The index plungers are available in stainless steel pull knob, Novo-Grip pull knob, plastic pull knob, threaded end, cam action and L-handle configurations. Hardened and nonhardened plunger pins are available.


New electronic dial bore gages easy to read and use

Sunnen Products, St. Louis, ( has added optional, large-readout electronic indicators on its dial bore gages. The new electronic dial bore gages are easily visible in shop environments and have indicators with six-digit LCD readouts, 11mm character height and three large buttons. They are capable of checking bore sizes from 0.054 " to 12 " and bore lengths up to 24 ". Users can set upper and lower tolerance limits for GO/±NO-GO judgments, which are then displayed in full-size characters. Standard analog indicator-equipped gages readout in tenths; models with five-tenths readouts also are available. Operators can toggle between inches and metric measurement readouts.

The electronic indicator dial bore gages, accurate to ±0.00012 " with 0.00005 " resolution, perform scaling calculations, judge tolerance, hold data and perform general comparison measurements. Internal calculations using a simple formula are also possible. The gages are ideal for shops honing production runs of parts that require SPC data at multiple points in the bore, according to Sunnen.


Expanded line of safety monitoring filters

Camfil Farr Air Pollution Control, Jonesboro, Ark., ( has expanded its line of integrated safety monitoring filters (SMF) for Gold Series cartridge dust collectors.

In addition to the current HEPA filters for critical applications, the company now offers ASHRAE-grade filters for less critical applications. Integrated on top of the collector, these after-filter modules prevent collected dust from re-entering the workspace should there be a leak in the primary filtering system. In addition, the SMF modules function as flame arrestors for combustible dust.

The new filter module uses two Camfil Farr Riga-Flo filters rated at 95 percent ASHRAE efficiency (Merv 14) and are capable of handling 2,650 cfm (4,248 cmh) of air per filter. The HEPA filter module has the same design and capacity but incorporates filters rated to remove 99.97 percent of airborne particles 0.3µm in diameter and larger. CTE

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