With the potential for a 30% productivity increase or even more, there's a strong incentive for automating CNC machining processes. But before you flip the switch on that robot, you’ll need to check out the surrounding tools and processes. If you address these areas prior to installing your automation solution, you'll create a very stable process, and your new automation system will give you at least a 30% improvement in throughput.
Here are five key automation considerations that will minimize your process pains and boost your productivity gains:
- Workholding: Is your workholding agile and adaptable for quick changing? Make sure the answer is yes, and don’t forget to consider its suitability to end-of-arm tooling as well.
- Tool Management: Set up and staging of assemblies is important, as is the collection of tool life data. You can also get a big assist by creating an adaptive system via a tool monitoring system.
- Gaging: Discover the importance of getting your CNC machining feedback back into the machine as quickly as possible. Having the ability to auto comp will also lead to increased efficiency.
- Chip Control: It may seem obvious, but it’s worth repeating - if you have messy chips in your chuck, it will stop. Ensure your chip control is always clear and workable.
- Material: To make automation work at its most efficient, make sure you have a solid infeed and outfeed system and plenty of material to work with.
Prior to implementing your automation solution, make sure you have these five considerations checked off your list. By making these process improvements with automated systems, your productivity and throughput is guaranteed to see a significant increase.
Need help checking these items off your list? Visit okuma.com to contact us, or discover our Partners in THINC, a network of more than 45 companies dedicated to solving problems and exploring productivity ideas in the manufacturing industry, who are ready to help.
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