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New compact five-axis multi-tasking machining centre

Posted on 10 Sep 2023 and read 933 times
New compact five-axis multi-tasking machining centreAll-round speed of operation is the essence of the new Speedio M300Xd1 30-taper, five-axis mill-turn centre from Japanese manufacturer Brother, represented in the the UK and Ireland by Kenilworth-based Whitehouse Machine Tools.

The machine is proficient at milling and drilling within a 300 x 440 x 380mm working envelope (pictured right) and is equally well suited to turning components on the C-axis torque table, which is mounted on a -30/+120deg swivelling A-axis trunnion. Components up to 450mm in diameter and weighing 75kg may be machined.

Single set up multi-tasking avoids additional set ups, promotes high accuracy machining and minimises component handling. All machining takes place in a compact footprint of fractionally over 4m2.

Rivalling 40-taper prismatic machining equipment in terms of rigidity and high metal removal rate, the M300Xd1 is more agile and significantly more productive. It typically draws 80% less power, giving it industry-leading environmental performance and low running costs.

The generous 380mm Z-axis travel is nearly a quarter longer than that of sister Speedio model M300X3, providing the new machine with a larger volume for fixturing components and allowing longer tools up to 250mm to be used. New also is the ability to specify a 28-tool magazine, rather than one with 22 positions.

Research carried out by Brother indicates that electric and hybrid vehicles will account for more than half of global sales by 2030. With its prismatic machining and turning capability, the M300Xd1 is ideal for production of complex traction motor cases and other components used in such vehicles, so this is an important target market for the machine tool manufacturer. So also is the conventional car manufacturing sector, as well as the valve, roller bearing and medical industries.

Automatic detection

Tool spindle speed is 10,000rev/min, or 16,000rev/min with the BIG Plus dual-contact spindle option, with through-spindle coolant up to 70bar available on request. Automatic detection of the unwanted presence of chips within the spindle / tool interface after automatic cutter exchange prevents the production of defective parts. Tool change is also monitored, as is machining load for detection of cutter wear.

Non-productive time is minimised by repositioning the X, Y, Z, A and C axes simultaneously during tool change, which takes place in 1.6sec chip-to-chip. Fully simultaneous five-axis machining at up to 30m/min cutting feed rate maintains a high level of productivity, while 450Nm of C-axis clamping force, plus 1,080Nm securing the A-axis if both sides are clamped, ensure that accuracy is maintained.

The CNC D00v control has a modern graphical user interface, a host of apps and support functions as standard to assist the operator, and optionally 3GB of memory. Tool centre point control with up to 1,000-block look-ahead ensures excellent surface quality on the machined component.

Linear rapids are 50m/min, which accelerate at 2.2g, and the A and C axes move at up to 50 and 200rev/min respectively, indexing time for both rotary axes being 0.7sec per 90deg. A new function in the rotary axes is the inclusion of inertia estimation to ensure optimal acceleration to match the weight of the component. The spindle motor’s fast acc/dec and a highly responsive servo control enable a start-up and stop time of 0.2sec.

All Speedio machining centres are equipped to interface directly with a purpose-built Feedio vision-based robotic component handling system. Jointly developed by Brother and ABB, whose six-axis robot loads and unloads components from the side, the plug-and-play unit is able to serve one or two Speedios, which may be different models.

The M300Xd1 is also available as a three-axis CNC variant, as well as in a smaller size, the M200Xd1, with a 200 x 440 x 305mm working volume.