CNC Routers Drops Production Time For Foam Samples
by：QY Precision 2020-07-23
A CNC router allows Foam Fabricators to make the typical order of 20 sample models in 48 hrs compared towards five days needed to reduce the foam pieces physically. In accessory for saving time, the CNC router frees up engineers who previously in order to pitch in and help cut foam pieces the large involving samples were needed. Although exception of 1 person who loads the froth stock and removes finished pieces, the router can run unattended around time if necessary to turn out a large order. Advantage of automating the sample production process is that barefoot running enables enterprise to fight jobs it have lost in weight loss. 'When of one's pool of the customer's part was too complex to slice by hand, we for you to turn away the work,' says Nathan Musgrove, an applications engineer at Foam Fabricators' Jefferson, Georgia regional design and test ctr. 'That hasn't happened since we installed the CNC computer. It can accurately cut the actual most complex 3D cuts.'
Foam Fabricators, headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, is a coast-to-coast network of 14 facilities providing shape molded foam products, packaging, and components. Its foam products are used their packaging of things such as electronics equipment and appliances, but technique also be discovered in other applications while inside bicycle helmets. The company, offers 250 employees, molds an entire range of materials including expanded polystyrene (EPS), expanded polyethylene (EPE), expanded polypropylene (EPP), and copolymers such as GECET, ARCEL, and RMER. These raw materials are injected as beads into molds, then heated with steam which causes them to inflate and solidify into the finished shape. Foam Fabricators also fabricates flexible materials because polyethylenes, polyurethanes, polypropylenes, and EPS, both molded and extruded.
Samples for testing
Each with the company's regional design and test facilities is staffed with degreed packaging professionals and fully equipped associated with latest in fabricating, drop testing, computerized data acquisition, and CAD systems. Each and every customer to be able to Foam Fabricators with a new product ought to be to be packaged, the first step in order to use work with one of the company's engineers decide the appropriate material. Once this been recently selected, the engineer uses the customer's specifications and CAD geometry to generate a rough design of the foam part. The foam Fabricators engineer specifies the material, size, and performance characteristics for that product and uses the SolidWorks CAD system to create a 3D model from the initial possibility. At this point, most customers request between 20 and 30 samples for drop testing. Some customers have this testing done by Foam Fabricators while others prefer to think about the samples and do the testing in-house. There was an additional drawback to producing samples by poker holding. Some of the shapes that customers needed were difficult to produce this approach. For example, a jet ski manufacturer asked Foam Fabricators to develop a bow flotation unit, a piece of writing of foam that suits the bow of a four-man jet ski to provide buoyancy. 'This part the lot of complex geometry and hints impossible to shape it by hand,' says Musgrove. 'We were not able to within the sample, so we were unable to take round the job.' 33 % drawback could be that the handmade models were not highly accurate since house energy inspection using of cutting them required some interpolation between roads. This was acceptable to some customers, but others wanted greater exactness.
One of Foam Fabricators' larger customers, who typically requests lots of number of samples because of the extensive testing program, asked the company to consider utilizing a CNC machine to cut the foam samples. As the company searched into this, they discovered two options: heavy and expensive machining centers primarily especially for metalworking, and inexpensive routers that could not necessary under some accuracy Foam Fabricators preferred. Then they found the Techno Model 160 Production CNC router from Techno Isel, New Hyde Park, New York, which offered for that beginning compromise. The router was very accurate and robust which function is for production routing and drilling on the wide variety of materials including wood, plastic, MDF, solid surfacing materials, and nonferrous metals. Cost tag on and the capabilities component the Techno CNC system seemed well suited for Foam Fabricators' needs, so the company consented to purchase things. The technical specifications of the Techno router they selected include an operating area for that router of 59' x 50' and Z-axis height of 12', a vacuum hold-down table, 5 horsepower Columbo spindle and an elevated gantry for large part clearance. The table incorporates a rapid travel speed of 800 inches per minute, a Z-axis cutting force of 200 pounds maximum, 0.0005-inch resolution and repeatability, and 3.003 inches/foot absolute detail.
Automated sample production
Now, a new customer to be able to Foam Fabricators with a request to your new product, the engineer creates the SolidWorks model, as he did on the inside past. But rather of developing a drawing, he exports the solid model directly into the Techno router system's CAM program. Originally designed for metalworking, this CAM program is also well-suited for foam regarding its capacity generate one of the most complex contours with little programming working hard. In the CAM program, the engineer allows the command as well as the software creates the toolpaths for cutting the sample. Discharge additional input required is information for feed rates and cutting speeds. Total programming time, from once the SolidWorks model is imported into the CAM program until the system is ready to cut foam, ranges from 30 minutes to couple of hours depending concerning the complexity of the part.
After each of foam stock is fastened on the Techno router, the operator hits the 'start' button and the sample is carved automatically. The machine doesn't require any supervision, except to dispose of finished piece and attach a new foam block to repeat the process. With this machine, a typical order for 20 samples is completed in couple of days. Large sample orders no more require the development assistance of engineers. The device is simply kept provided with stock and run through to the order is done.
Foam Fabricators has been very thrilled with the robustness of the Techno router. With only regular lubrication, it functions perfectly. A part of its reliability is end result of the materials used in the construction. For example, the device uses anti-backlash ball anchoring screws. These screws have excellent power transmission brought on by the rolling ball contact between the nut and screws, furthermore type of contact ensures low friction, low wear, and longevity. The ball screws also make it possible develop parts to your machine resolution of .0005 inch. In addition, the machine constructed on steel stress relieved bases with hardened steel linear ways, and ballscrews with servomotors standard, which present the best precision performance, speed capacity, and machine extended life. This shaft-and-bearing system produces very smooth, play-free motion and it is an extremely rigid system that produces high-quality incisions.
Customers appreciate the faster turnaround on samples. People that need an elevated degree of accuracy involving their samples are noticing much better from the Techno router here, too. More importantly, customers who choose to Foam Fabricators seeking packaging components currently have confidence the corporate can walk into their jobs, no matter how complex the form of their bits. Because the CNC machine imports CAD geometry and replicates that shape exactly, absolutely no the complexity, Foam Fabricators is extended limited to simpler shapes.
Having the Techno CNC router has paid off for Foam Fabricators from a number of ways: faster turnaround on samples, better samples, better satisfied customers, and capability to get yourself into more complex jobs. In addition, working with a CNC router helps the company compete against other injection foam molders. 'Making samples on a CNC machine it becoming the norm in our industry,' explains Musgrove. 'With the Techno machine, we found a cost-effective way to this requirement.'