The TOP PLUS 65 collet chuck on the Doosan turning centre at JWA has improved changeovers and flexibility
Leicester-based JWA Tooling
was formed in 1985 when founder John Wood set up the company in his loft, designing special-purpose machines and sub-contracting the work out. Mr Wood soon bought his first factory and manual machines — and subsequently CNC machine tools.
More recently, JWA added a new facility and invested heavily in new equipment that included three new Fanuc EDM machines, three new automation-ready Mazak machining centres (including a five-axis machine), a Doosan cobot, a Doosan Lynx turning centre and a Colchester Harrison Alpha 1400XC.
A common link with these machines is quick-changeover work-holding and clamping technology from Cannock-based Hainbuch UK Ltd
that can accommodate the wide variety of parts made by JWA; it has an annual product spread of more than 8,000 different part types with batches frequently less than five-off.
Mr Wood first contacted Hainbuch when JWA bought the Colchester Harrison Alpha 1400XC manual/semi-CNC turning centre. The decision to buy a Hainbuch Torok 65 manual chuck was influenced by its ability to achieve extremely fast and precise changeovers — including from ID clamping to OD jaw clamping. Furthermore, it can be used on turning centres without a clamping cylinder.
When JWA more recently installed a Doosan Lynx 2100LY turning centre, the company again opted for work-holding technology from Hainbuch — a TOPlus 65 Combi pull-back collet chuck. Mr Wood said: “We have been well established in the use of round collets over the years, but when you consider modern machines with live tooling and C-axis configurations, you need to index accurately and know where the component faces and locations are.
The Hainbuch system with its hexagonal fitting allows you to identify your mark on the chuck and the collet so you can put the collet back in the identical position.
“We undertake a significant amount of low-volume fast turnround work, and for this the Hainbuch system is perfect.; it also offers more than reduced set-up times and increased machine uptime. When machining plastics with a chuck, the process can create a vortex that pulls the swarf into the chuck and spindle.
“However, with the Hainbuch collet chuck system, it is a totally sealed unit that eliminates the vortex effect, so the chips drop straight into the base of the machine.”
Reinforcing the flexibility attributes of the Hainbuch system, Mr Wood said: “My section lead in the turning department was amazed when he put the Hainbuch chuck back on the machine after stripping down the conventional chuck and the concentricity and repeatability were better than 5µm. Regarding clamping force, a traditional CNC machine has a hydraulic clamping mechanism, which can be quite savage.
“With the Hainbuch system, there is a device that plugs into the collet and measures the clamping force. We also have the expanding mandrels for ID clamping and these can be changed over in less than a minute, just like all the other Hainbuch products. As we invest in more new turning centres, they will automatically have the Hainbuch collet chuck system installed.”