Improve Your Tube Manufacturing Process with TubeShaper

by Andrew Scarella on March 11, 2016 From Technology

Looking for a new improved way of manufacturing bent tubes?

Well, 'Shaping Smart Change' is Hexagon's core purpose. It defines our role of empowering our customers with information technologies that put meaningful data and ideas to smart use. This is exactly what we have done with our new TubeShaper software. No longer does Tube bending have to be a manual, intensive trial-and-error adventure. The idea was to reduce the time it takes an operator to get a tube from the design phase and to a finished product.

Software-for-portable-armsHow Does TubeShaper Save Time?

It starts with how the data is entered into the tube bender itself. This used to be a manual operation, where the operator entered the length of each straight, along with the bend angle and the rotation of each bend. TubeShaper allows the operator to simply import a CAD model of the tube, including any brackets and fittings, and then with the click of a button extract the tube LRA’s from the CAD Model. But the benefits do not stop there.

Eliminate Scrap

As any tube shop knows, the first tube never comes out correctly because the tube springs back at each bend, and the tube itself gets stretched. The operator is faced with making adjustments in a trial-and-error approach on several tubes before the bender produces a good tube. This trial-and-error approach is very time consuming, not to mention the scrapped tubes produced as a result of this process. The TubeShaper solution allows the operator to either manually enter LRA data if no CAD data exists, or extract the LRA data directly or from a CAD model. The LRA data is then sent over a network connection directly to the CNC bender. Once the first tube is bent, the TubeShaper component combined with the ROMER Absolute portable arm CMM measures this first tube, and computes the errors between the nominal tube data and the actual first tube bent. The TubeShaper inspection system then computes all of the compensations required to make the second tube correctly.

Reverse Engineer Capable

Another function of TubeShaper is its power to reverse engineer a finished tube. Imagine, for a moment, that you are given a tube instead of a CAD model or LRA (or XYZ) data. TubeShaper can be used to measure the existing tube and will automatically create the LRA data required to produce a duplicate tube. This usually takes under a minute -- from start to finish -- for an average tube consisting of 4 or 5 bends.
Once a tube is fully assembled, the TubeShaper system can also be used to measure the final assembly, including brackets, hangers, and fittings.
As you can see, the TubeShaper inspection system is certainly Shaping Smart Change in the tubing industry. Using this revolutionary software, going from an Engineers CAD design to a final good tube can be accomplished in minutes.
Romer-Absolute-Arm-External-Scanner-MHP-L-20.8 Laser Scanner – Has Your Scanner Gone Color Blind?

The HP-L-20.8 Laser Scanner is a high end, high accuracy scanner, that dares to go where no other scanner has gone before. Scanning a bare sheet metal or plastic part of a single color is easy, as the exposure settings for line laser scanners can be adjusted either manually or automatically for the color or material being scanned; however, most laser scanners have difficulty scanning parts effectively if they are multicolored. In other words, if asked to scan a part that has a painted design on it, like, for example, a race car covered in logos, or a part that has both chrome and black sections, most scanners will typically struggle to maintain the correct exposure to such parts.

Our Solution

It is a simple matter of maintaining how much intensity, or exposure, the scanning signal needs to have in these circumstances. Our HP-L-20.8 scanner has solved this problem via its unique flying dot technology. Instead of using a line laser scanner where the entire line is of a single exposure, our HP-L-20.8 scanner uses an oscillating flying dot which looks like a line to the human eye when it is really a dot oscillating back and forth at a very high rate of speed. Since we are able to adjust the exposure on the fly of this oscillating laser dot, we are capable of scanning even the most challenging of parts.

From The Bridge Line

MMS-Pulse-MActionable Information for Your Quality Environment 

Designed to ensure data integrity while also improving safety and security in modern shop-floor inspection conditions, the MMS PULSE solution uses a network of sensors to record variations in temperature, vibration and humidity in the vicinity of your CMM. Also offering equipment status alerts and crash notifications, it creates a central dashboard of information for operators to access at any time.

Through an entirely new, yet immediately familiar design, you’ll easily understand the information presented from the moment you open the dashboard. Visually reminiscent of what you’re used to seeing in modern consumer technology, the MMS PULSE interface is designed around simple iconography and touch gestures that are natural to every user. Navigation is fluid and responsive, and the arrangement is simple and orderly. All of this means that you’ll know your way around MMS PULSE in virtually no time at all.

With customizable sensor packages, the MMS PULSE device is built to know your environment better. The CMM is your metrology hub for collecting data about your manufacturing and inspection processes, and MMS PULSE is designed to support these quality control processes throughout the day. It provides a comprehensive picture of your inspection activities, suggests optimal measurement efficiencies and provides actionable information for your quality environment.

MMS PULSE is currently available on the SF 4.5.4 and SF 7.10.7 CMM models.

Andrew Scarella

Andrew Scarella is the Digital Marketing Manager for Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence North America. He contributes to this blog as well as updates the North American website and provides content for the company social media channels including Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.