SBS-Feintechnik operates in a world between good old cuckoo clocks and sporty motorbikes. The company from Schonach, southern Germany successfully stands with a foot firmly placed on each pole – with drive components and complete drive units, which serve the needs of legendary cuckoo chimes just as competently as they contribute to the excitement of the motorbike racing circuit. Precision is a point of honour for the meticulous craftsmen from the Black Forest. SBS-Feintechnik is advancing the quality of gears with a DEA GLOBAL coordinate measuring machine and QUINDOS measurement software from Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence. SBS-Feintechnik is part of BURGERGRUPPE and produces drives and drive components for a wide range of sectors, with customers in the automobile, building services, household appliances, mechanical engineering, plant technology and medical engineering industries.
BURGERGRUPPE cultivates innovation and tradition in equal measure: the group picks up frequent innovation awards for its drive solutions, while at the same time it is the world‘s leading manufacturer of mechanical cuckoo clock mechanisms and is proud of its deep roots in that regional tradition. In addition to SBS-Feintechnik, the Burger family includes SBS-Mechatronics and KBS-Spritztechnik. They contribute their skills and expertise in mechatronics and plastic injection moulding to the group. Also on board is Kukatec – a company that designs, manufactures and markets engineering rubber-plastic components. With these combined strengths, the company is able to come up with a suitable solution guaranteed to keep things moving in any situation, whether it requires metal, plastic-metal or rubber-plastic parts.
Driven by passion
An idea never remains just an idea when you have SBSFeintechnik as your partner. Customers may come to the company with actual drawings of drive components or simply describe how the drive they have in mind should finally look and work. In every case the customer ends up with drive components or units that reduce noise, have extended service lives, increase torque, or optimise installation space, materials use and storage. The time in between is filled by manufacturing activities such as turning, milling, broaching, gear cutting, rolling and grinding. And finally the company assembles the individual parts of metal and/or plastic into complete drive solutions to the customer‘s precise requirements.
BURGERGRUPPE is the home of high quality. To ensure that the right parts arrive at the right time at the customer‘s goods inwards department, SBS-Feintechnik uses a large range of manual inspection instruments, a CAQ (Computer Aided Quality) system, online data acquisition terminals on the production floor and several coordinate measuring machines. DEA GLOBAL Advantage coordinate measuring machines can capture features on gears with a module of 0.3 to 4.0 and above. The measuring instruments have a measuring range of 700 x 1000 x 700 mm. The volumetric maximum permissible error of indication (MPEE) for longitudinal measurements is 1.5 + 3.3 *L/1000 μm. The LSP X3 versatile probe system supplies all the measured points required for the flexible QUINDOS measurement software package.
Top notch quality gears and mould inserts
“Working alongside production in two-shift operation, we inspect several features that could influence the processing or use of the part, such as profile and flank lines, tooth widths, diametric ball dimensions and pitch characteristics,” says Stefan Bayer, Head of Quality Management at SBSFeintechnik. “We agree the measurement strategy in advance with the customer. We decide together the reference to which we measure, how we assess the results and the frequency of the tests. This is always done on a job-specific
basis.” In addition to prototyping and random sample testing during production, the DEA GLOBAL is an instrument in great demand for setting up and changing tools.
With the objective of reducing the amount of corrective grinding of an injection mould, the mould inserts are given an extra inspection during production with the DEA GLOBAL Advantage for comparison with the gear characteristics held in the CAD model. The LSP-X3 probe head offers single- point probing and has a convenient scanning option to allow inspections to be carried out with speed and precision. It provides enormous advantages for tool making in the in-house mould shop. Thanks to the countless options available for assessing an object, the metrology technicians are always able to capture and evaluate standard shapes and free-form geometries of mould inserts for comparison with their design parameters. Before the purchase of the DEA GLOBAL, an external testing firm was employed to inspect the free-form surfaces.
A further DEA GLOBAL Advantage with a measuring range of 500 x 700 x 500 mm supports production at the firm‘s sister company, KBS-Spritztechnik. The functional features defined in the initial sample inspection are integrated into the production inspection processes performed with the smaller DEA GLOBAL Advantage. Combined with a pallet loading system, the throughput times of measurements can be optimised and the series production of the plastic parts made even more reliable.
Networking the two DEA GLOBAL measuring machines at the BURGERGRUPPE companies ensures the smooth implementation of their measurement strategies.
All-rounder wanted and found
The Schonach-based drive expert came across 3D coordinate measurement technology from Hexagon in connection with a customer from the motorsports sector. He had also opted for Hexagon technology. Following an intensive information-gathering and selection process, BURGERGRUPPE invested in two GLOBAL coordinate measuring machines, one each for SBS-Feintechnik and KBS-Spritztechnik.
The acquisition has paid dividends: “In the past we used gear measuring instruments,” says Klaus-Dieter Schüssele, a metrology technician at SBS-Feintechnik. “The DEA GLOBAL is a universal machine, which means we can measure all the tooth features completely on one machine and achieve a considerably higher accuracy than with a traditional gear measuring machine.” SBS-Feintechnik also has the additional benefit of the pallet loading system and its associated higher throughput.
Software excels through flexibility
The software side of the Hexagon solution was also impressive. BURGERGRUPPE decided in favour of a universal measuring machine approach with a complete package of various software options. The measurement software options with QUINDOS 7 include CAD free-form surfaces, 2D operations, 2D/3D gauging, cylinder, sprocket and chain wheel gears, inspection of gears with unknown geometry, worm gears, cylindrical worms, straight and helical bevel gears, statistical analysis and comprehensive basic software. The metrology technicians found they had software to match the high quality demands of BURGERGRUPPE and its customers from any of their wide range of industries.
“The greatest advantage of QUINDOS is that it offers a sensible and practical solution for every measurement task, such as inspecting globoid worms, turbine blades, screw compressor rotors, camshafts, step gears, piston ovality, hobs, shapers and shavers, broaches, valve seats and guides and so much more. From the beginning, no other supplier was able to put forward a satisfactory overall solution for the choice of metrology technology. The same functionality could only be realised with much greater complexity and
effort. Hexagon was the only partner at the time who had an immediate solution for all our measurement requirements,” says Klaus-Dieter Schüssele. The numerous options are not the only standard offerings with QUINDOS. Service also carries special emphasis. SBS-Feintechnik greatly appreciates the easy access to the QUINDOS applications team and excellent customer support.
Our colleague on the nightshift
BURGERGRUPPE is expanding its metrology resources in the future to provide the customer with an enhanced range of measurement strategies. The DEA GLOBAL will also be working on the nightshift at SBS-Feintechnik. The pallets are loaded each evening at the end of the second shift and the measurements taken automatically through the night. You can be sure that the Black Forest team will also be successful with this initiative and generate even more drive for the company.