Online audio and web conferencing technology has played a crucial role in business discussions and decisions during the past 18 months or so. But Walter Ewag UK
and customer Dorset-based Allied Tooling Ltd
took the concept to a new level by staging a remote demonstration of a Walter Helitronic Power Diamond 400 two-in-one tool grinding and erosion machine for processing both carbide and PCD tools.
Wes Hacker, Allied Tooling managing director, said: “The demonstration finally convinced me that this was the perfect machine for our needs,” says tool operation, one of the largest privately-owned saw and cutter servicing and tooling suppliers in the UK.
“It is an incredible machine — a real game-changer. With a 26kW spindle producing 10,500 rev/min combined with axes traverse rates of 15,000mm/min in the X, Y and Z axes, Mr Hacker says the machine’s power and speed “is complemented by its ease-of-use, and the effective and efficient tool and grinding wheel loading.”
He added: “Importantly, too, programming is very straightforward and the machine can process a diverse range of tools. All these attributes – and its attractive price tag – meant that this was the machine we just had to have to enable us to continue to grow the business.”
While Mr Hacker reflects that the Helitronic Power Diamond 400 initially caught his eye at an exhibition “and was clearly way ahead of competitor models”, he knew that output levels would be further improved by enhancing the machine’s exceptional performance in single set-up tool grinding and erosion with the use of an automatic wheel changer as well as with Walter’s Robot Loader 25 tool handling magazine.
Mr Hacker continued: “The combined processing of carbide grinding and PCD erosion will enable us to meet all expectations in terms of customers’ tooling needs, especially PCD-tipped tools for the increasing composites machining market.”
“Now, with integrated wheel changing and a loader able to accommodate up to 80 tools, we are also in a position to automatically and cost-effectively process large batches of tools of varying designs, including operating the machine in a lights-out mode.”
Established over 40 years ago, Allied Tooling Ltd is renowned for its comprehensive range of products and services, supplying shank and block tooling for woodworking, metalworking, engineering and composite applications, including abrasives, TCT saw and bandsaw blades, HSS, carbide and PCD spindle block tooling, as well as routers, Euro knives, plus HSS and TCT serrated back knives.
Much of the tooling processed is in relation to its exclusive UK agency for AKE, a Germany-based saw and tooling manufacturer, though bespoke designs are also manufactured in-house for an extensive customer base that extends from kitchen manufacturers through to Formula One teams.
The company continually invests in the latest manufacturing technologies to constantly improve efficiency and quality levels, and the Helitronic Power Diamond 400 is the latest addition to a CNC-focused machine shop that also includes a Walter Helitronic Power tool grinder and a Walter Helicheck tool measurement machine.
Able to process tools of 3 to 380mm diameter and up to 520mm long, the Helitronic Power Diamond 400 includes Walter’s renowned Tool Studio software that has integrated wizard technology for fast tool production simulation, parameter changes and machine operation, for instance, as well as an erosion function option for the fast and easy programming of ‘what you see you can grind and erode’.
Combined with the machine’s physical attributes, Tool Studio’s ease-of-use is also particularly highlighted by Mr Hacker, who comments that “its genius is its simplicity”.