Manufacturing technologies are one of the backbone technologies for the today’s entire industry.
In manufacturing industries all over the world there is increased demand for tighter tolerances means controlling variation in manufacturing processes, more precision.
Designing critical parts and manufacturing them, there will be always gap. Parts are increasingly becoming complex and their functions are becoming more and more critical. Measuring Technology is connecting both design and manufacturing.
Modern manufacturing have challenging principles: Do it faster, cheaper and better. But how do we do it ..??
In view of this , Measuring Tool becomes extremely important aspect of manufacturing. Todays 3rd Generation SMART Tool Measuring & Presetter ( STP ) Machines does much more and beyond tool length and diameter checking. It is direct link between tool database and machine which produces complex, critical and precise parts.
Manufacturing needs Measure Tool– Why ??
To shorten machine idle time, accurate tool measurements, repeatable offline measurements.
Idle Time is most expensive in today’s manufacturing environment where profit margins are continuously reducing. It is impossible to eliminate idle time. However, it is certainly possible to reduce idle time by deploying high quality tool STP for quick, accurate and reliable, repetitive offline tool measurements. This makes possible to measure tools while machine is making parts – means making money. Offline STP offers better cost economics.
STP not only offers improvements in reducing idle / set-up time, but storage system for your tool components, tool assemblies and job assemblies, and bring consistency throughout manufacturing environment.
We are talking about digitization , Industry 4.0 , smart manufacturing. Through STP data can flow seamlessly across CNC manufacturing shops.
Manufacturing shops are spending time, money in integrating high precision, faster, accurate machines.
However, less importance and less time given for tooling, tool setting and how tool setting can significantly contribute in reducing idle times. Many times, expensive manufacturing machines, machine tools are used for tool measurement – length and diameter loosing production time. During this time, machines don’t make parts and don’t make money. So take it offline and make more money.
How to make more money?
Of course, by keeping the spindles rotating – by reducing spindle idle time? But when do Spindles stop? Sometimes out of material, sometimes tool is broken. But mostly importantly, when spindles are stopped during setup. To reduce setup time is to increase spindle time. What would happen to your setup time if you could take tool setting out of the machine and do it offline?
In STP you are not setting the tools but you are measuring the tools and then CNC machines are compensating the offsets.
Scenario in Indian Manufacturing:
It seems manufacturing in India have not embraced presetting to the extend european manufacturing have integrated presetting as tool management into manufacturing. Problem is resistance to change, and partly because the benefits of presetting are somewhat intangible. It takes much more to essentially understand how much time is spent manually setting tools and what impact it has on shop throughput, on cost and on profitability.
Manufacturers can take advantage of the time-saving, accuracy enhancing benefits of tool presetters to make their companies more competitive in today’s highly competitive cut throat competition in market.
The result – better parts, longer tool life, and less spindle downtime.
Advantage of Smart Tool Measuring & Presetter (STP):
- Improved Quality Of Parts – Accuracy & Repeatability of Tool Measurement
- Using Tools to the longer Tool Life
- Reduction in setting time
- Making more money – means increasing Productive Time.
- Ease of use.
Tool Data Management – Data communication across manufacturing.
How STP will help to generate revenue at least 20% with some thumb rule technique in Manufacturing we will discuss in Part II …. So Stay tuned .
Author: B P Poddar, Sr. Vice President, Fatty Tuna India Pvt. Ltd. (FEMCO)