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The Big Picture in a Big Picture

One thing about a tabloid-sized publication—it can depict a manufacturing concept in a poster-sized presentation.

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One thing about a tabloid-sized publication—it can depict a manufacturing concept in a poster-sized presentation. The latest edition of “EMAG News,” the customer magazine from the EMAG Group, uses this capability in a striking way to show a sample VLC production line for machining wheel-shaped workpieces with a gear profile. The publication’s large format makes the complete process chain easy to visualize because six workpieces that represent the blank to the finished part in each successive stage of production are shown at the top of the spread. The five machines that perform the six successive operations in a continuous flow are shown lined up side-by-side at the bottom of the page. View this issue online.

EMAG is noted for its “inverted” machining technology. On many of its turning machines and grinders, workpieces are clamped facing downward or in a vertical orientation. For production efficiency, this machine configuration enables chips and swarf to fall downward and out of the way. Likewise, for integrated automation, this configuration enables the machine to use its pick-up spindle as its own material handling/transport mechanism. The automated InLineSystem illustrated in the News takes advantage of this capability to reduce the number of automation components needed for workpiece flow.