I-Cherng reduces programming time by 80%

Posted on 17 Feb 2019 and read 1111 times
I-Cherng reduces programming time by 80%Based in Taiwan, I-Cherng Refrigeration Industrial Co manufactures heat exchangers for refrigeration products.

The company was founded in 1974, and it purchased JetCAM Expert (www.jetcam.com) in 1995, when it installed a Finn-Power Shear Genius punch press.

Since the initial purchase of JetCAM, I-Cherng has bought additional CNC punch and laser machines — an SG6 and an LP6 from Finn-Power — each time adding the appropriate post-processor to its JetCAM licence; in 2015, the company added
two additional seats of JetCAM Expert.

In July 2018, the I-Cherng bought an Amada FLC 4020AJ fibre laser, which was supplied with alternative programming software.

The company’s senior engineer Ian Yo said: “We chose the Amada fibre to improve our quality and productivity, having had previous positive experience of their machines.

"However, the software supplied with the machine was not familiar to our operators; there also appeared to be many unnecessary codes in the NC programs, and our staff had to spend time deleting these.”

The following month, I-Cherng contacted JetTCAM to see if a post-processor was available for its new Amada. It was, and this was installed remotely; at the same time, the software was upgraded to v20 across the company’s three licences.

Moreover, further ‘tweaks’ were made remotely to the post-processor in order to accommodate I-Cherng’s specific requirements and machine configuration.

Test parts were cut using NC code from both JetCAM and the originally supplied software for comparison, and Mr Yo noted that the resulting code generated automatically from JetCAM was much shorter.

He also noticed other significant benefits. For example, programming time was reduced by 80%, as pre-defined technology tables automatically applied cutting conditions based on material, thickness and quality settings.

He explained: “Furthermore, tooling and profiling logic could be applied automatically to parts for both punching and laser technologies, ensuring that parts were available for nesting on either machine type.

"Features such as SCAP — Single Component Automatic Processing — and SCAN — Single Component Automatic Nesting — allowed for multiple components to be imported and tooled and for complete nests of each part to be created automatically in seconds.

“Additional material savings have been achieved by using common cutting to separate components with a single cut.

“With the previous software, we had to specify each common cut manually, but this function is automatic with
JetCAM. As a result, we have seen material utilisation improvements of 5-30%.”

New features

Expert v20 also includes two new features — JET-Cut and JET-Optimizer. JET-Cut provides automatic fly cutting (also referred to as grid cutting) based on pre-determined parameters.

It ‘intelligently’ locates grids of internal holes and then splits the cutting into separate short line segments that lie on the same line or circle.

The cutting head is kept down during movement, and the laser beam is switched ON/OFF on the fly, which dramatically reduces the cutting time. Rounded movement between cuts can be applied, as the laser head moves to the next row, minimising acceleration changes.

Once configured, the entire process is automatic and is applied with a couple of ‘mouse clicks’.

Meanwhile, JET-Optimizer optimises the sequence of cutting internal holes to minimise machine movements, while also avoiding travel over previously cut areas.

“This is a really worthwhile function that drastically reduces the risk of collision,” says Mr Yo. “Moreover, JET-Cut allows the full capabilities of the Amada fibre laser to be realised, ensuring that we can achieve high cutting speeds while maintaining quality.

“With regard to support, this has been fast and professional. Also, we would often receive videos instructing us how to perform certain functions. We also have access to JetCAM’s ‘University’ of online video tutorials, which allows us to view short videos on specific functionality.”

I-Cherng is considering future investment in either more fibre lasers or punch/laser combination machines, and it has already decided that JetCAM will be driving their selected technology.

New releases of core nesting software

Last month, JetCAM announced the launch of new versions of its core nesting software for CNC punching and profiling technologies — JetCAM Expert and JetCAM Orders Controller (JOC) automation software.

The latest release of JetCAM Expert benefits from several major enhancements. For example, JET-Cut and JET-Optimizer have both received numerous improvements based on user feedback.

JET-Cut applies fly cutting during the ‘tooling’ process, automatically identifying areas that can benefit, while JET-Optimizer creates the optimal cutting path while avoiding previously cut areas.

A new component simulator allows users to simulate the cutting of a single part, rather than having to create a nest with one component.

Furthermore, JetCAM Expert also benefits from a new ‘report designer’ that allows users to “quickly create complex custom reports using drag and drop, changes to multi-tool logic and numerous interface enhancements”.

The release also contains a number of other customer requests and fixes, as well as four new post-processors and updates that allow more machines to take advantage of JET-Cut.

With regard to JetCAM Orders Controller, a new tool graph displays the number of tool hits per nest when one or more nests are selected (this is useful when calculating the remaining life of a tool), while new filtering options include the ability to filter components based on whether they are tooled for a specific machine, or to filter assemblies that include one or more component names.

In JOC Premium Automation, the new Component Reprogramming option allows entire folders of components to be reprogrammed with a couple of ‘clicks’; and when a new machine is purchased, all components can be automatically re-tooled for the new machine, ready for nesting.

Both applications are available for immediate download (from www.jetcam.com) and are free to all customers with a current maintenance contract. Videos on the new features are included in JetCAM’s online University video learning library.

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