Posted by: Derek Korn 9. September 2014

Can You Perform Under Pressure?

Doosan’s theme for this year’s show is “Performance Under Pressure,” and the machine tool builder has an interesting activity in its completely redesigned Booth S-8100 to support it. The company is hosting a pit crew challenge where attendees compete to change tires on a simulated NASCAR from Joe Gibbs Racing (Doosan has been a JGR technology sponsor for years).

David Barber, Doosan’s general manager of marketing, says this contest mirrors the company’s ongoing efforts to improve customer support. “Given NASCAR’s level playing field in terms of car performance, it really comes down to the support pit crews give their drivers by getting them in and out of the pits as fast as possible,” he says. “Similarly, Doosan continues to make strides to improve our customer support as evident by our recently launched 24 hour a day/5 day a week service program and increased spare parts inventory to enable quicker delivery of needed components to customers.”

Each pit crew challenge participant will receive a T-shirt or a 3D puzzle of the company’s new Puma SMX 3100 turn-mill, which makes its debut at the show. According to Mr. Barber, this turn-mill series distinguishes itself with a rigid, 90-degree vertical axis and forward-positioned automatic toolchanger for improved milling capabilities as well as enhanced operator ergonomics. In addition, contestants with the best daily time will receive a die-cast model of the new machine, and the person with the best overall time at the end of the show will receive two hot pass tickets to a NASCAR race of his/her choice.

Attendees will also notice a completely revamped booth design, featuring numerous elements playing off of the 18-degree “reliable edge” that Doosan calls the leading blue block in its company logo. Attendees will experience this throughout the booth with angled elements such as the 20-foot-high sign, interior aisles and hospitality structure. “This motif reinforces our efforts to be reliable partners with our customers and our willingness to perform under pressure to support their needs,” Mr. Barber says.

Posted by: Emily Probst 9. September 2014

Software, Cutting Tool Companies Partner to Speed Simulation

Offline machining simulation is becoming increasingly important as machine shops take on more complex, multi-axis work. That’s why CGTech (Vericut) is demonstrating the results of its new partnership with Kennametal in Booth E-3346. Through this partnership, Vericut software for simulating CNC machine tools has been integrated with Kennametal’s Novo application.

Through Novo, Kennametal makes CAD files of the 3D geometry of its tooling available, which according to Bryan Jacobs, Marcom manager at CGTech, is great for Vericut end users because they need it in order to have accurate simulation. The Novo app enables an operator to use real intelligence to easily build simulated tool assemblies. Through the partnership, Vericut users can now directly download a CAD file of a 3D Kennametal tool assembly and use it within the Vericut software without doing any other manipulations.

“Simulation speed is very important to our customers, but so is the amount of time spent preparing a simulation and its accurate representation of the physical process,” says Bill Hasenjaeger, CGTech product marketing manager. “We continually look for new ways to reduce the time to set up Vericut and ensure it correctly mimics the operations.”

CGTech’s booth features a workstation in which employees demonstrate this new capability using the latest version of Vericut, version 7.3.  

While you're at the show, be sure to check out the digital IMTS directory to help plan your booth visits.

Posted by: Emily Probst 9. September 2014

More Than Just Workholding

Schunk’s Synergy Machine display is designed to show all of the company’s products, including toolholding/workholding and automation, and how well they work together.

When you think of Schunk, you might think solely of workholding solutions. Or, you might even think of automation. However, many IMTS attendees don’t realize that Schunk offers both. This year’s “Synergy” theme in Booth W-2000 is designed to show visitors who might only know one side of product offerings the complete scope of what Schunk has to offer and how perfectly these different products can work together in harmony. The synergy theme carries throughout the booth with different pedestals that show the different product groups working together, as well as videos.

To further illustrate this theme, Schunk created what it calls the Synergy Machine. This display is essentially an assembly line that includes a lathe and machining center. It also demonstrates machine loading and ends with modular assembly. The idea behind the Synergy Machine display is to show all of the company’s products, including toolholding and workholding as well as automation products.

The booth features five interactive hands-on displays featuring all of Schunk’s products for its employees to demonstrate, and visitors can try them out for themselves. One of these products includes the Pronto jaw, which is making its North American debut at the show. This quick-change jaw enables 5-second change-overs.

Schunk is giving away soccer balls in its booth as part of a secondary theme revolving around soccer goalie Jens Lehmann, who played for Germany during the 2006 World Cup. As a goalie with an amazing grip, Lehmann was a clear choice when it came time to choose a brand ambassador for the German company’s gripping products. 

Also, to help you best plan your time at the show, be sure to check out the digital IMTS directory.

Posted by: Chris Koepfer 9. September 2014

Micro-Drilling for Medical: I Know a Guy

On display at Absolute Machine Tools’ Booth S-8536 is a new deep-hole drilling machine for the small holes found in medical applications. Two models of the Precihole machine demonstrate small and larger gundrilling.

“The guy” you want to ask for is industry veteran Jim McGaffin, who is managing this new product for Absolute. He know his stuff and can provide good information on this technology. (However, before you see Jim, ask the hostess—she’s in the skeleton outfit—where he is.)

Holes as small as 1 mm for cannulated medical parts and as long as 12 inches are drilled using a counter-rotation process to maintain concentricity within the bore. The spindle rotates at 500 rpm while the gundrill rotates at 25,000 rpm using high-pressure, light cutting oil at 2,300 psi.

Next to Jim’s machines is a new line of Swiss-type Nexturn machines that Absolute is debuting at IMTS. But be sure not to forget about Jim.

Industry veteran Jim McGaffin is managing the new Precihole line of deep-hole micromachining machines for Absolute Machine Tools, Booth S-8536.

Also, to help you better navigate the show, be sure to check out the digital IMTS directory.

Posted by: Tom Beard 9. September 2014

Gardner to Launch Modern Machine Shop Mexico

Jose Manuel Robles - Michelena, proMexico, spoke during the official launch
Modern Machine Shop Mexico.

Gardner Business Media formally launched the Mexican edition of Modern Machine Shop Monday in Booth W-10. Speakers at the ceremony included Gardner CEO Richard Kline, followed by Jose Manuel Robles - Michelena, proMexico, who spoke about the burgeoning opportunities in the Mexican market. The first edition of the magazine will be released in January 2015.

“Mexico is a natural area of interest to us,” Mr. Kline says. “It is our next-door neighbor, and a member of NAFTA. Mexico is a gateway to key markets to the south and a vital supplier to the north. Its strong manufacturing base is growing rapidly, and is a world top-10 consumer of machine tools.”

Mr. Kline emphasizes that, like Modern Machine ShopMMS Mexico will focus on the best examples of applied manufacturing technology, and particularly as applied within Mexico itself. “Our goal is to have about 50 percent of the content be on companies using advanced technology and products from all over the world. The other half will be Mexican content including best practices of leading Mexican companies as well as manufacturing-related news of interest to our readers.”

Mr. Kline then introduced the Modern Machine Shop Mexico editorial team. Editorial director is Eduardo Tovar, an 18-year veteran of the metalworking media, and formerly with Metalmecanica. He will be joined by regular contributors including Oscar Albin, president of the Mexican National Auto Parts Industry; Carlos Mortera, general manager of AMT—The Association For Manufacturing Technology, Mexico; and Ciro Redriques Gonzalez, director of the Technology Center at ITESM in Monterrey, Mexico.

Mr. Tovar says that Mexico has already reached a high level of manufacturing that creates a great need of further resources to support it. Among them is the need for appropriate technical information through publications and the web that help manufacturers improve their levels of production.

“Only recently six automotive manufacturers have opened, or announced plans to open, new facilities in Mexico," says Mr. Tovar. “Last year VW opened an engine plant in Silao and Nissan opened one in Aguascalientes.

Meanwhile, this year Mazda opened its first plant in Mexico, which will produce 230,000 vehicles per year. Korean car makers Hyundai and Kia Motors also announced that they will build plants to produce vehicles in Mexico, along with German car makers BMW and Audi. This last announcement means that Mexico will produce luxury cars that need more suppliers, and that will in turn elevate the standards of manufacturing to new levels.” With the additions, Mexico will be home to 11 auto OEMs overall.

Meanwhile, the aerospace industry has more than 400 plants in Mexico, including recognizable names such as Bombardier, Snecma, Cessna, Gulfstream, Curtiss Wright and Hawker Beechcraft, among others.

While the list of multinational companies is impressive, Mr. Tovar says there is a substantial base of indigenous suppliers growing up in their midst. “Now, 89 out of the world’s top 100 auto parts manufacturers are present in Mexico. And around them there are a significant number of satellite companies producing components or processes that Tier 1 suppliers do not perform in their own plants. The same thing is happening with companies in other sectors.”

Mr. Tovar emphasizes that MMS Mexico will not just be a magazine. “Before our first issue in January we will launch a website,, and will be introducing other electronic products in the first year. Manufacturing engineers in Mexico need access to technical information to help them improve production processes, and we want to provide that information in whatever media they prefer.”

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