Edgecam’s Waveform “The Only Way To Successfully Cut For Certain Complex Aerospace Applications”
Kyocera SGS - U.K.
Kyocera SGS Precision Tools advises customers, not only on the correct cutting tool for specific applications, but also the best machining strategies to optimise their CNC machine tools.
And for some applications, such as PH stainless steel hydraulic cylinders and a number of aerospace components, Kyocera UK Sales Manager Tony Theaker says the only way to cut them successfully is to use a long end mill and Edgecam’s game-changing Waveform roughing strategy.
“Edgecam is a vital part of optimising the process for our customers’ machining issues. Its flexibility means we can employ our cutting tools in the most efficient manner to get the best possible results.”
He says the way Edgecam, from Vero Software, controls the radial engagement of the tool is particularly important. “We can push the tools with high feed and metal removalrates, knowing we’ll get a constant cutting condition. Most CAM software will load up in the corners, causing the tool to possibly fail, so the cutting parameters have to be slowed down. But Edgecam’s Waveform roughing keeps a constant radial with the cut, so you can push it to the maximum.
“A number of our customers are already using Edgecam, but we still advise those who aren’t, that the combination of Edgecam cutting strategies with our cutting tools will optimise their CNC machine tools.”
Technical Manager Barry Ward says: “We take customers’ machining challenges off their hands, and provide solutions by applying all our cutting tool, machine, and software knowledge. This is done through in-house trials, process optimisation, time studies, machining strategy studies, and tool and part design.
“The component may come in from the customer as a model, and our first step typically is to do a time study where we try to optimise what they’re already producing, and give recommendations on tooling. The next stage is where we actually cut the component and try different Edgecam strategies to come up with the best result. Further trials may be required at the customer, so we’ll take our engineers on-site and support the customer through the whole process.”
He says they also design and implement specialised tooling for specific customers and applications when required, which are tested on the GROB G350 horizontal machining centre at their Tech-Hub in Wokingham.
“Using Edgecam means we can provide solutions for even the most challenging aerospace components.” He cites the example of a particularly thin component which was fully unsupported. “We worked closely with Edgecam to produce a bespoke program and developed custom tooling specially for this particular component.”
Aerospace Technologies Manager Ray Gibbs works mainly with large aerospace Tier-1 and Tier-2 companies. “I give them a sequence of tools that we’d recommend to optimise their processes, then we simulate the toolpaths with Edgecam and show them the cycle times and material removal rates.”
He has created test blocks for producing sample pockets to show customers. “I either carry out a demonstration on-site, or on our own GROB and video the test part being cut and the tools used. Either way, the customers see that the combination of the right cutting tool and Edgecam strategy optimises their CNC machine tools.
“Edgecam’s Waveform roughing strategy also improves tool life, particularly when machining Titanium.”
Describing how they operate as the “New Value Frontier,” Kyocera EU Marketing Manager Jose Ucar sums up by saying Waveform increases a manufacturer’s productivity and tool life. “Edgecam’s high efficiency machining techniques engage the full cutting length of the tool, achieving a more efficient cut, which has a direct effect on tool life. And the ability to ramp up feeds and speeds gives improved material removal rates and quicker cycle times.”
He says customers are usually delighted with the results, as they have a cost-effective strategy in terms of faster cycle times and a secure process through controlled cutting conditions. “Consumable costs are also reduced as the Waveform strategy means the end mill has worn down evenly, rather than being damaged because of any overloading in the corners.”
And another solution from Vero Software ensures Kyocera’s engineers are always able to open their customers’ files on site, whatever the format. WorkXplore is a powerful, high speed 3D viewer which directly displays and evaluates 3D CAD files without the need for the original CAD application. Tony Theaker says: “When we visit a customer it’s important for us to understand the features on their components. We simply load their 3D model into PartXplore on our laptop, manipulate drawings into different views, and work with easy to use dimensioning features. This means we can select the appropriate tooling for use in the machining trials.”
Edgecam Strategic Partnership Manager, Wesley Tonks, says: “This technical partnership with Kyocera SGS demonstrates the needs of an engineering business and the capability of Vero Software to provide an effective solution. In this case we’ve identified the need of people requiring information from solid models – we provide that with WorkXplore – and their requirement to lay toolpaths on a part – which is done through Edgecam.”