Version 8 of the Flexible Pallet Container

June 07, 2022
FPC 8 for Simple Automation of Milling Machines in a Smaller Footprint

Fastems is introducing Version 8 of their Flexible Pallet Container (FPC 8), which provides easy and extendable automation for one to three CNC milling machines with 400 mm to 1,000 mm pallets. The FPC 8 also includes the new FPC-1800, which accommodates twelve to 36 pallets measuring 630 mm to 800 mm in a small 2.4 x 9.2 -meter footprint. Featuring a library of hundreds of ready-made machine interfaces for over 100 brands, the FPC 8 integrates with horizontal machining centers and offers machine tool utilization of up to 85 percent, short setup times, and high lights-out production capacity. The system can be extended to include up to two additional containers, increasing capacity to 24 or 36 pallets running on two to three machines.

The FPC 8 is controlled by Fastems’ Version 8 Manufacturing Management Software (MMS) which offers a new single-view user interface with drag-and-drop production orders, EasyRoute feature for bringing new workpieces into production in under 60 seconds, and an advanced automatic Order Generator for recurring orders or maintaining a certain stock level.

The FPC 8 features an optional Basic Loading Station (LSB) with pallet height adjustment, specifically designed for jobs with various fixture heights, to provide personalized work positions for each operator while clamping and unclamping workpieces. For systems with a single fixture height or with just a couple of users, Fastems’ standard option Compact Loading Station (LSC) remains a good choice.

“FPC is one of our most popular systems which is not a surprise – it is extremely cost-efficient and easy-to-deploy linear pallet automation solution,” said Kalle Peltonen, Vice President of Pallet Automation at Fastems. “And it can be extended to multiple machine tools to scale capacity and run unmanned even for the entire weekend. The FPC 8 offers improved space efficiency and better-than-ever ergonomics for operators working on either the hardware or software side. The new size, which can accommodate 1,800 kg payloads in a small space, along with the new easy-use features, meet the needs expressed by many of our customers.”

Related Glossary Terms

  • centers


    Cone-shaped pins that support a workpiece by one or two ends during machining. The centers fit into holes drilled in the workpiece ends. Centers that turn with the workpiece are called “live” centers; those that do not are called “dead” centers.

  • computer numerical control ( CNC)

    computer numerical control ( CNC)

    Microprocessor-based controller dedicated to a machine tool that permits the creation or modification of parts. Programmed numerical control activates the machine’s servos and spindle drives and controls the various machining operations. See DNC, direct numerical control; NC, numerical control.

  • fixture


    Device, often made in-house, that holds a specific workpiece. See jig; modular fixturing.

  • gang cutting ( milling)

    gang cutting ( milling)

    Machining with several cutters mounted on a single arbor, generally for simultaneous cutting.

  • milling


    Machining operation in which metal or other material is removed by applying power to a rotating cutter. In vertical milling, the cutting tool is mounted vertically on the spindle. In horizontal milling, the cutting tool is mounted horizontally, either directly on the spindle or on an arbor. Horizontal milling is further broken down into conventional milling, where the cutter rotates opposite the direction of feed, or “up” into the workpiece; and climb milling, where the cutter rotates in the direction of feed, or “down” into the workpiece. Milling operations include plane or surface milling, endmilling, facemilling, angle milling, form milling and profiling.