Machine Tool Integration

Automated Solutions

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Machine Tool Integration offered by Methods Machine Tools, Inc. (Sudbury, MA) provides moldmakers with highly automated solutions to suit their unique requirements. An example of an automation solution from Methods is a 7-axis floor rail mounted robot servicing both a 5-Axis VMC to make electrodes and a EDM Die Sinker to produce the mold.

The 5-Axis high-speed vertical machining center is the FANUC TrodeMaster™ which is specially equipped for cutting graphite EDM electrodes. With full enclosures and a complete Torrit dust collection system, it is ideal for small job shops as well as large in-house EDM facilities.

The TrodeMaster uses economical 30-taper tooling and offers exceptional 3-D contouring capabilities at a fraction of the cost of competing machines. With feedrates to 2125 ipm, accelerations to 1.5 G or more, a 24,000 rpm Big PlusTM spindle, and 0.9-second tool changes, it dramatically shortens the machining time of even the most complex electrodes.

Once the TrodeMaster finishes making the electrodes, a robot picks them up and moves them to an Exeron® GmbH Die Sinker EDM for mold production.  Methods is the exclusive distributor for the FANUC RoboDrill, RoboCut & EDM Products and Exeron Die Sinkers in North America.  See related article on page 44.