Compact 5-axis machining centre

Posted By : Jacqueline Regnier
Compact 5-axis machining centre

A new, 5-axis, vertical-spindle machining centre with a compact footprint, ideal for installation in factories where space is limited, has been added to the lower end of the C-series range manufactured by Hermle, Germany. Sole agent for the UK and Ireland is Geo Kingsbury, Gosport. 

Designated C 12 U dynamic, the machine is capable of fully interpolative 5-axis profiling as well as 5-sided machining of components within a 350 x 440 x 330 mm working volume. Maximum table load is 100 kg.

Adaptation to partial or full automation is provided by Hermle’s extensive range of pallet change and storage systems, flexible manufacturing cells including material and workpiece storage, and handling systems based on robotic configurations. Addition of an RS 05 robotic load / unload system, for example, increases the cell’s floor area by only two square metres.

High dimensional accuracy and surface finish of machined components are claimed, suiting the machine well to tool and mould making as well as medical, motorsport and impeller manufacture. However, its use would be justified for all top-end applications in the OEM and subcontracting sectors, especially those involving complex, close-tolerance work on difficult-to-machine materials.

Of gantry design, the C 12 U dynamic has all linear guideways above the working area. Production potential is high owing to 8 m/s2 acceleration to traverse rates of 50 m/min in the linear axes. The fourth and fifth axes are provided by an 80 rpm / 320 mm diameter C-axis rotary table driven by a torque motor mounted on a 55 rpm / ± 115° swivelling A-axis trunnion. Bearings for the A-axis are set directly into the mineral cast bed, promoting stable, vibration-free machining, particularly as the trunnion is driven from both sides by motors positioned on the axis centreline.

A space-saving, horizontally-mounted, circular tool magazine is integrated within the body of the machine and exchanges cutters in 4.5 seconds chip-to-chip. It has space for thirty-six 40 taper tools as standard, expandable to seventy-one positions.

Users have a choice of other options when ordering a C 12 U dynamic. Five spindle drives are offered with up to 37 kW of power, torque up to 98 Nm and a speed of 12,000, 15,000, 18,000, 30,000 or 42,000 rpm. The two-part design incorporates six displacement sleeves that collapse to prevent damage to the spindle in the event of a collision.

Control is provided by a Heidenhain TNC 640 with 19" screen. It offers a wealth of interface options, standard drilling, milling and probing cycles, free contour programming and special functions for fast 3D machining. Remote diagnostics is available to provide rapid help with programming or control issues


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