Nov 25, 2011

Edgecam - More Machining in the Same Production Time

The recent evolution of the Edgecam CNC software means manufacturers can achieve more machining in the same production time.

Edgecam users from around the UK saw live machining demonstrations at Mazak’s European Technology Centre, showing how a revolutionary new Waveform Roughing Strategy in Edgecam 2012 R1 cuts cycle time from 63 minutes to just 18 minutes, and improves the metal removal rate from 30cm3 per minute to 135cm3 per minute.

The demonstrations were part of the “Innovation For Productivity” event, run in partnership between Mazak, Sandvik Coromant, CG Tech Vericut, 3Dconnexion and Edgecam.

Sandvik’s Paul Williams told the 75 delegates that Britain’s manufacturing sector is growing through its commitment to small batch runs of high added value products. “This needs highly sophisticated advanced machine tools, and because of the higher costs involved, manufacturers must increase productivity and throughput to achieve more machining in the same production time.”

He said that using machines with more tools, in conjunction with Edgecam, reduced cycle times and optimised metal removal rates.

Edgecam engineer Mike O’Neill said the Waveform Roughing Strategy was the software’s biggest innovation for several years and is now included in the standard license, giving better machining for all users. As well as the Waveform’s constant tool load path and smooth toolpath pattern improving the metal removal rate, it also gives greater stability, more precise machining and improved tool life. In addition, the improved surface finish potentially eliminates secondary cutting cycles.

He said Edgecam’s recent evolution has also led to multi-threading toolpaths and background processing, as well as the 5-axis cycle being upgraded to 64-bit. “It’s now like driving a car in 6th gear instead of 4th. In particular, background processing frees the operator to undertake other tasks and has dramatically reduced downtime.”

Rob Lightfoot, of CG Tech Vericut, which has a seamless interface with Edgecam to verify NC code before it is transferred to the machine, said the software ensured manufacturers got prototypes right first time every time, overcoming issues of proof parts costing too much in terms of setting up, scrap, broken cutters, wasted program time and machine downtime.

Edgecam’s UK Technical Sales Manager Phil Gill who organised the event, said it demonstrated the partnership between Mazak, Sandvik, Vericut, 3Dconnexion and Edgecam to make manufacturers more productive through the latest innovations in machines, machine tools and software.