Dalau installs sixth five-axis machining centre

Posted on 08 Aug 2018 and read 880 times
Dalau installs sixth five-axis machining centreEssex-based Dalau, a specialist supplier and machinist of plastics, has installed a sixth five-axis machining centre as part of a £1 million investment in new machinery at its Clacton-on-Sea factory.

The new Hermle C250 machining centre has been modified to accept vacuum work-holding fixtures; it was supplied by the German manufacturer's UK sales and service agent, Geo Kingsbury (www.geokingsbury.com), which also carried out the customisation.

Dalau has seen strong demand for its machined components in various sectors — including automotive, medical and semi-conductors — particularly in the USA and Germany. It has appointed two extra programmers and moved to double-shift

Production manager Ben Bonds said that there is no machining centre the size of the C250 specifically for milling and drilling plastics, as the market would not be large enough to make such a machine commercially viable.

As a result, Dalau has to rely on production centres designed for cutting metal, which for processing plastics tend to be unnecessarily large and far too powerful; in the five-axis shop at Clacton, the load drawn by the spindle motors never exceeds 5%.

The new C250 is currently devoted to finish-machining a family of PTFE pump bodies that have been roughed on another five-axis machine.

Four or five operations are required to complete the machining operations in a total cycle time of 3-4hr.

An air-conditioned environment held at 21°C ensures that tolerances down to ±0.05mm can be held easily, despite the tendency for plastics to distort during machining.

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