Horizontal machining centers provide distinct advantages with regard to chip flow, allowing chips to fall away from the machining area for clean cutting conditions and long tool life. Not all shops, however, want or need the pallet-changing capabilities of a production-oriented HMC. For these users, the company has developed the ES-5-T HMC, which is characterized as compact and affordable, with 40" x 18" x 22" x-, y- and z-axis travels, and a VMC-style enclosure that provides good visibility and access. The machine features a 52" x 18" T-slot table. It is equipped with an 8,000-rpm, 40-taper spindle that features an in-line, direct-drive system that couples the motor directly to the spindle. The arrangement provides better surface finishes, extreme thermal stability and quiet operation, the company says. A 20-hp vector dual-drive system with on-the-fly, wye-delta switching is designed for low-end torque and a wide constant-power band. The machine’s T-slot table has a weight capacity of 3,500 lbs (evenly distributed), and can accommodate workpieces as large as 52" x 18" x 23". Mounting a fourth and/or fifth-axis rotary table further increases the machine’s capability and flexibility. The work envelope and enclosure provide 40" of swing to rotate large parts and fixtures. High-lead ballscrews and high-torque servomotors on all axes provide rapid traverse rates as fast as 1,000 ipm. The 24-pocket side-mount tool changer is designed to keep non-machining time to a minimum. An optional 12,000-rpm spindle powered by a 30-hp vector dual-drive system is available. This spindle provides more power than the standard spindle, as well as additional speed for highspeed machining operations. For increased tool capacity, a 40-pocket, side-mount tool changer is available. In addition to the ES-5-T, additional configurations of the ES-5 platform are available. These are: the ES-5-4T, which features a 40" x 15" rotating T-slot table; the ES-5-4AX, which features a 52" x 20" T-slot table with an integrated fourth-axis platter; and the ES-5-TR, which has an integrated Haas TR-210 dual-axis trunnion table in place of the standard T-slot table.
Editor PickWhy the Surge in HMCs?
Spending on horizontal machining centers is forecast to reach its highest level in more than a decade. Small shops in particular are buying these machines. A shop I recently visited illustrates the reason.