Universal Robots and ARC Specialties launched the first MIG welding robot in the US for collaborative robots at FABTECH 2017. The new SnapWeld collaborative welding robot package features seamless hardware and software integration through the Universal Robots+platform. SnapWeld is a cobot-assisted, interactive welding system that can be deployed easily and flexibly in existing manual welding booths, eliminating the need for costly new robotic cells. No guarding is required for the system which can be readily moved around the shop.
Small job shops struggling with budget, programming, and space requirements of traditional welding robots now have an alternative solution, both companies believe. “We are getting a lot of requests for integrating Universal Robots in welding booths, so we saw this as a unique opportunity to develop an integrated low-cost system for gas metal arc welding (GMAW) applications that no one else in the market is currently offering,” said John Martin, vice president of ARC Specialties, which is a certified systems integrator of UR robots.
In interactive demonstrations at FABTECH, attendees simply grabbed the UR10 robot arm and performed stitch welding by “teaching” the welding robot the start and stop points, as well as the number and length of the stitch weld. The SnapWeld system will move along the start and stop path and weld only during specified areas, reducing robotic programming from hours to minutes.
The fast welding system integrated with the UR10 robot features a Profax wire feeder and water-cooled torch, enabling welds up to 600A. Torch bracket, all cables, and hose packages are included. Simplified programming is achieved by direct software integration into Universal Robots’ own programming environment that will allow users to program advanced settings directly on the teach pendant that comes with the UR robot. Settings include features such as wire feed speed and burn back time, gas flow time, and crater fill time with instant feedback on welding volts and amps.
This UR+ welding package is well-suited for low volume/high mix fabrication shops, allowing operators to manage robot programs and welding parameters on the fly.