VMC Provides Flexibility for Job Shop Environments
Kitamura’s Mycenter-4XD high-capacity vertical machining center is designed for flexible job shop operations. The machine is equipped with a 50" × 25.2" table and X-, Y- and Z-axis travels measuring 43" × 24" × 24", respectively, making it suitable for large single workpieces, multi-fixtured components and additional axis implementation. Rapid feed rates are 1,417 ipm in the X and Y axes and 1,181 ipm in the Z axis. The 12,000-rpm, 35-hp dual-contact AC spindle system offers rigidity and stiffness for demanding cutting conditions and hard-to-machine materials, the company says, and a 30-tool capacity reduces downtime.
A heavily ribbed high-grade Meehanite casting provides increased rigidity and stability. The X, Y and Z axes feature solid box guideways and incorporate a four-slideway-base construction design to increase vibration absorption, improve surface finishes and increase tool life. All contact surfaces are hand scraped for precise alignment. A standard base wash system, internal chip augers and a scraper-type chip conveyor keep the workspace free of chips and contaminants. The machine is equipped with a Kitamura-FANUC 0iMD control with 1,280 m of memory, a 256-MD data server and AI Contour Control.
Cryogenic machining achieves dramatic tool life gains not by flooding the cut, but by refrigerating the tool.
While aluminum molds are commonly used to create prototypes or to serve as stopgap bridge tooling, they are starting to receive greater attention for production work. This shop’s approach to creating aluminum molds in one day to three weeks is the same for each of these situations.
Though it won’t replace high speed machining, Boeing sees “low speed machining” as a viable supplement to higher-rpm machines. Using new tools and techniques, a shop’s lower-rpm machining centers can realize much more of their potential productivity in milling aluminum aircraft parts.