GF Machining Wire EDM Interface Delivers Speed, Efficiency and Ease of Use

Originally titled 'Wire EDM Interface Delivers Speed, Efficiency and Ease of Use'

AC Cut from GF Machining Solutions is designed to be a fast, efficient and easy-to-use human-machine interface (HMI), and provides a common language for the company’s entire Cut line of wire EDMs.

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AC Cut from GF Machining Solutions is designed to be a fast, efficient and easy-to-use human-machine interface (HMI), and provides a common language for the company’s entire Cut line of wire EDMs. The interface shares the same basic platform and functional layout as the company’s AC Form HMI for sinker EDMs, enabling experienced wire EDM operators to seamlessly transition to also running sinker EDM machines, and vice-versa.

Based on a standard Windows platform, all functions in the AC Cut HMI, including measurement and machining cycles, are illustrated by graphics/icons for fast operator understanding and ease of use. The interface also features a “sequence” screen that automatically organizes machining flow. Programming steps are in logical and chronological order, and there is an on-board CAM system for quick programming at the machine from common part-file formats such as IGES and dxf.  

AC Cut also offers several automatic wire-EDM machining strategy functions that are said to optimize both machine setup and performance, including wire recommendations through the GF Machining Solutions EDM Expert, reverse-cut and skimming-in-the-gap functionalities, and backward program compatibility.

The EDM Expert recommends specific types of wire that will give the best performance and surface finish based on workpiece materials and desired machining parameters.

With the reverse-cut function, wire EDMs, once at the end of a burn path, automatically reverse direction and cut back along the same path just traveled. This capability is said to be particularly beneficial when machining punches. Machines are able to rough-cut clockwise around the punch shape, then counterclockwise for the finish pass, resulting in significantly shorter part cycle times. 

For thicker/taller workpieces, the two skim-cutting technologies—skimming in the open and skimming in the gap—ensure both absolute parallelism and straightness from a part’s top to its bottom.

The backward compatibility function of the AC Cut HMI enables shops to work backwards and run older part programs generated for existing GF Machining Solutions EDMs on newer and future machine models. Instead of older programs having to be rewritten for use on today’s machines, the new HMI includes a converter that automatically updates these programs to increase workflow-scheduling versatility.