ChipChat: The Journey of a Part Through Manufacturing Excellence
Every machined and manufactured part goes on a journey from design to production. It is in that journey that we strive for manufacturing excellence. Excellence in the parts we create, excellence in our productivity, excellence in our profitability, and excellence in our process. With the present state of domestic reshoring trends, global cost competitiveness, and the advent of Industry 4.0, there is a higher demand for machine shops, manufacturers, engineers, and machinists to achieve excellence. We have partnered with Autodesk, Harvey Performance Company, and 5th Axis for a special ChipChat webinar showing you how to gear up your shop for manufacturing excellence through technology, programming, tooling, and workholding. Read along and view the recorded webinar to discover how you can MAKE MORE for your shop through Manufacturing Excellence.
Excellence Through Programming
When you start machining a part, the first step is programming. Rob Guiao, Manager of Strategic Partnerships at Autodesk walks you through optimizing your CAD/CAM systems utilizing programming techniques and features to improve your accuracy, cycle times, and productivity. By optimizing your programming, you can achieve excellence by creating more efficient tool paths for high speed machining, in-process deburring, and reduced tool changes. Taking advantage of built-in CAM system features such as a Digital Twin, Shares Libraries, and Intent Capturing, machinists can store, share, and integrate their machining knowledge into the program. Additionally, the Digital Twin feature allows programmers to create, run, and test their program before live machining to minimize risks of crashes, shortened tool life, and inaccuracies.
Excellence Through Tooling
The next step in the journey is selecting the right tooling to achieve excellence. There are thousands of tooling options available on the market with excellence being achieved by knowing which tools to use for each application. Tool types, shapes, materials, and sizes can be utilized to optimize a wide range of tool paths to reach better material removal rates, longer tool life, faster machining speeds, and more efficient tool changes. If you’re unsure of where to start or which tool to use, Don Grandt, National Application Engineer at Harvey Performance Company, shows you how to use new cutter technology to enhance tool life and repeatability, and best practices to reduce cycles times.
Excellence Through Workholding
Lastly, Mat Evans, Sales & Marketing from 5th Axis, demonstrates the ways manufacturing excellence can be achieved through workholding. Workholding offers many features to improve your productivity through vice rigidity, modular workholding, quick changes, and multi-part fixtures. Improved vice rigidity offers reduced wear on tools and the vice itself, reduced costs by minimizing replacement requirements, and decreased cycle times by achieving faster cutting speeds. Modular workholding offers machinists the ability to reduce setup times by up to 80-95% by combining fixturing, positioning, and clamping into a single operation. Multi-part fixtures combined with modular and standardizes fixturing and programming drastically increases repeatability for series production.
Beginning Your Part’s Journey
Every shop, part, and machine is different, but the steps you take to reach manufacturing excellence begins with planning. Implementing a Plan, Do, Act, Study (PDSA) approach will help you understand your Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE), the type of parts you’re making, your performance, your quality, and your goals. As discussed in our previous ChipChat webinar, “Industry 4.0 – A Digital Transformation to World Class Manufacturing,” having measurable data from machine and tool life monitoring offers manufacturers the ability to see what areas can be improved and optimized. With that knowledge, integrating and applying the programming, tooling, and workholding techniques and optimizations featured above will launch your shop into World Class Manufacturing Excellence.
5-axis Product Manager
Manager, Strategic Partnerships
National Application Engineer
Harvey Performance Company, LLC
Sales & Marketing
President – Advanced Technologies