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FABTECH 2014: Welding

Here are some reviews of the welding equipment and other systems being exhibited at this year’s show.

Booth C-3163: Using Robotmaster V6.2 from Jabez Technologies, welding parameters can easily be controlled with customizable screens for basic arc welding, multi-passes, seam tracking, weaving and touch sensing. Comprehensive arc welding support is available for ABB (ArcWare and CutWare), OTC/Daihen, Fanuc, Motoman and Kawasaki robots with ongoing development for KUKA and Panasonic brands.
Booth C-259: All three cut-off wheels from KLINGSPOR Abrasives are available in 4-1/2 in and 5 in diameters that are packaged in yellow containers to extend the life of the discs.
Booth C-1704: The Jackson Safety* WH40 Insight* Welding Lens from Kimberly-Clark Professional (Roswell, GA) offers an ADF with digital and multi-function controls for any welding job.
Booths C-2022, C-2044: The Weld Sequencer from Lincoln Electric allows users to pictorially explain where to add the welds step-by-step.
Booths C-2744, C-2944: The LiveArc™ reality-based training system from Miller Electric is designed to recruit, screen, train and manage welding trainee performance, all via a live welding arc. The LiveArc system features advanced motion-tracking technology that provides critical feedback to improve welding skills and provide faster, more cost-effective results than traditional training methods.
Booths C-2744, C-2944: SubArc Digital Series equipment and accessories from Miller Electric include the SubArc DC 1000/1250 Digital and SubArc AC/DC 1000/1250 Digital power sources for Submerged Arc (SAW) and Electroslag (ESW) welding applications, as well as accessories such as analog and digital interface controls, and a range of drive motors and torches. The series is designed to provide greater arc stability, offer highly reliable power regulation and simplify the integration of the equipment in more advanced heavy industrial applications.
Booth C-1606: Gemini RightCut wheels from Norton | Saint-Gobain are a cost-effective cut-off solution for portable, guarded right angle grinders and are ideal for numerous metal slotting and cut-off applications including on bolts and studs, angle iron, tubing and sheet metal in a variety of materials ranging from carbon to stainless steel. Type 01 (4 in to 7 in) and Type 27 (4 in to 9 in) wheels are available.
Booth C-2722: 7-axis robots from OTC Daihen can contort to reach the most difficult to access welds.
Booth C-3631: Thorium-free TIG electrodes from Plansee have good ignition and reignition properties, high current-carrying capacity, a long service life, are environmentally and health friendly and reduce the costs for packaging, transport and disposal.
Booth C-1623: The Guardian Defender from Rite-Hite Machine Guarding is a high-speed, high-cycle automated door that separates machine operators and manufacturing processes. It is an ideal safe-guarding device for robotic welding cells, material handling, automated assembly, palletizing/packaging machinery and other applications that require electronic safe guarding devices.

In Booth C-3163, Jabez Technologies Inc. (Saint-Laurent, QC) will unveil a new suite of specialized software tools for cutting and welding inside Robotmaster V6.2 that provide robot programmers an easy way to optimize their cutting and welding processes to radically save time and money.

An overview and demonstration of Robotmaster V6 from Jabez Technologies.

Users can quickly creating optimized paths for plasma, water-jet and laser cutting with ultimate control of their robot for error-free programs.  All cutting parameters can effectively be controlled with new process screens which are customizable and fully integrated inside Robotmaster. Simple to complex welds can easily be programmed using “one-click” automatic seam programming. Automated strategies for entry/exit, corner settings, push/pull angle and stitching in addition to full manual control provide an ideal combination of quick programming and ultimate flexibility. Users can quickly program successful welding paths through instant visualization of the impact of any changes in the path, torch angle, reach or collisions.

Robotmaster seamlessly integrates robot programming, simulation and program generation inside Mastercam’s industry proven CAD/CAM platform. Common robot programming challenges typically require intricate user intervention or costly manual editing for producing error free programs. Robotmaster V6 provides innovative new tools to effortlessly optimize robot programs producing error-free robot paths avoiding singularity zones and collisions, working around joint and reach limitations and optimizing tool orientations along the entire trajectory. Robotmaster is ideally suited to program robots for such tasks as trimming, 3D machining, de-burring, polishing, welding, dispensing, grinding and painting, and supports most industrial robot models.

Jabez Technologies has specialized in dedicated software solutions for industrial automation, manufacturing and robotics since 1996.

In Booth C-1704, get the high-level elements of a high-performance welding lens without the high price. The new Jackson Safety* WH40 Insight* Welding Lens from Kimberly-Clark Professional (Roswell, GA) offers an ADF with digital and multi-function controls for any welding job. This quality lens gives your shop:

  • Variable shade 9-13
  • Viewing area = 3.93 in x 2.36 in
  • Sensitivity and delay adjustments
  • Four independent sensors
  • Easy-to-use digital controls
  • Grind and weld modes
  • Compatibility with HLX100 and HSL 100 shells
  • The compliance a shop looks for; meets ANSI Z87.1-2010 standards and CSA compliant

In Booth C-259, the newly formulated thin cut-off wheels (0.8 mm to 1mm) from KLINGSPOR Abrasives Inc. (Hickory, NC) are market leading in performance and safety. KLINGSPOR and oSa (Organization for the Safety of Abrasives) has ensured that each operator has the highest of confidence and peace of mind while using the company’s cutting and grinding products.

The A 960 TZ Special (1 mm) is unmatched in the high performance world of cut-off wheels. New formulas provide a smooth, vibration-free cut while yielding the longest service life in the industry. The Z 960 TZ Special (1 mm) is formulated with alumina zirconia grain to provide an aggressive cut on extremely hard metals such as stainless steels and other high alloys. The A 980 TZ Special (0.8mm) has proven to be the market leader in cutting stainless steel sheets or other thin gauge metals. At 0.8 mm thickness, the A 980 TZ Special leaves a precise, burr free cut.

A welding fabrication blueprint on large, complicated parts can be difficult to follow because it’s two dimensional showing many welds throughout. In Booths C-2022 and C-2044, the new Weld Sequencer from The Lincoln Electric Company (Cleveland, OH) allows users to pictorially explain where to add the welds step-by-step.

“With costs to manufacture so high, there is no room for waste in the process stream,” said Matt Albright, a product manager for Lincoln Electric welding equipment. “We are providing welding operators with a simplified view to gain productivity and improve quality.” The benefits of the Weld Sequencer include the following:

  • The welding power source parameters, such as voltage, wire feed speed and others, are automatically set for each discrete weld, helping to ensure that the operator performs optimal welds on the part.
  • The software includes the ability to monitor additional control issues, including badge scanning confirmation, correct consumable confirmation and other functions.
  • There’s a reduction in setup time due to automatic settings for each weld.

Lincoln Electric is a world leader in the design, development and manufacture of arc welding products, robotic arc welding systems, plasma and oxyfuel cutting equipment and has a leading global position in the brazing and soldering alloys market. The company has 45 manufacturing locations, including operations and joint ventures in 19 countries and a worldwide network of distributors and sales offices covering more than 160 countries.

Booths C-2744 and C-2944, Miller Electric Mfg. Co. (Appleton, WI) will introduce the latest welding, cutting and safety equipment and accessories, featuring technology solutions designed to address common productivity and quality challenges in the manufacturing, fabrication, and construction environments. Visitors to the booths can experience new equipment firsthand through multiple live welding demonstrations, and meet with company representatives to discuss product and technology questions. Four educational seminars will be held in the booths on Tuesday, November 11, and Wednesday, November 12.

To highlight the benefits of comprehensive welding solutions, the company will feature Hobart® filler metals, along with Bernard® semi-automatic MIG guns and Tregaskiss® robotic guns on its welding demonstrations. These include the FILTAIR® Capture 5 weld fume extraction system that features exclusive ZoneFlow™ technology, which creates a fume capture area more than three times larger than conventional systems — up to 3 ft wide and 5 ft deep. By increasing the fume capture area, the system improves safety and enhances productivity by decreasing downtime for welders to adjust the fume extraction arm, especially when welding long, continuous welds.

An overview and demonstration of the LiveArc Reality-Based Welding Training System from Miller Electric.

The Big Blue® 400 Pro diesel-engine welder/generator is a reliable low-speed diesel welder/generator now offers 400 amp output in a 300 amp package. It features multi-process flexibility and offers the versatility to work on multiple jobs, handling applications including gouging with up to ¼ in carbons. The easy-to-use machine has been designed with fuel economy in mind, and provides excellent weld control to increases arc quality.

The Big Blue 800 Duo Pro diesel-engine welder/generator has been designed to provide more power, flexibility, improved weld control and dual operator capabilities. Users will get estimated fuel savings of 34 percent with the dual-operator machine, when compared to two single-operator units, and additional welders can be plugged into the machine to create a multi-operator work platform.

Miller Electric is a leading worldwide manufacturer of Miller brand arc welding products and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Illinois Tool Works Inc. (Glenview, IL).

In Booth C-1606, Norton | Saint-Gobain (Worcester, MA), a leading manufacturer and supplier of performance-engineered abrasives, introduces a major upgrade to their Gemini RightCut Wheels, providing the best aluminum oxide (A/O) option in the market for cutting steel and ferrous metals. RightCut products offer the longest life and fastest cut with more stability and a narrower pass.

An overview and demonstration of the Gemini RightCut Wheels from Norton | Saint-Gobain.

The latest generation Gemini RightCut wheels are 100 percent A/O abrasive, infused with a new bond technology and process, for a thinner wheel design and low kerf loss. Strong, extra-thin .045 in wheels result in less material waste and quick cutting action. Providing a clean, precise, straight, burr-free quality cut, RightCut wheels offer up to 20 percent faster cutting than a standard wheel. The wheels are longer lasting, extending wheel usage up to 70 percent more than conventional wheels.

The new Gemini RightCut wheels also require less pressure while cutting, giving operators a more comfortable, easier-to-use cut-off solution.

Norton is a brand of Saint-Gobain, a world leader in abrasives and in building materials, and is the only international manufacturer to offer a full complement of abrasives products to customers worldwide. Saint-Gobain Abrasives has more than 16,000 employees and approximately 100 manufacturing facilities in 26 countries. In the United States and Canada, Saint-Gobain’s Abrasives business has 2,243 employees and 11 manufacturing sites.

Founded in 1665 and headquartered in Paris, Saint-Gobain had worldwide sales of $55.8 billion in 2013 and employs approximately 187,000 people in 64 countries. The company has more than 265 locations in North America and approximately 19,000 employees. In the United States and Canada, Saint-Gobain reported sales of approximately $7.9 billion in 2013.

In Booth C-2632, E.H. Wachs® (Lincolnshire, IL) presents the Orbitalum ORBmax, a 100 percent digital oxygen analyzer that measures and monitors oxygen particle count faster and with greater accuracy than ever thought possible. It eliminates uncontrolled, unmonitored purging and the assumption of acceptable oxygen levels. With its maintenance free optical sensor the ORBmax measures oxygen ppm down to .0001 percent (1 ppm) to ensure highly repeatable, oxidation free welds.

Requiring no warm up time, the ORBmax displays a large numerical oxygen particle count in ppm. The display doubles as an input device, and changes color from red to green to indicate when the preset oxygen value has been reached. The unit also features an alarm mode if the oxygen content rises above the preset ppm level. The ORBmax is a “must have tool” for highly controlled, high purity welding commonly found in the semiconductor, pharmaceutical and aerospace industries, or any application where oxygen levels need monitoring.

In Booth C-2722, Welbee power source series from OTC Daihen Inc. (Tipp City, OH) offer the highest quality spatter-free GMA welds, and Smart Quality Control of welding conditions with troubleshooting traceability. Their new 7-axis robots will amaze visitors as they contort to reach the most difficult to access welds. Other new robotic welding advancements will include Synchro feed Ultra low spatter GMA welding; Cold tandem GMA welding with low distortion, their High efficiency plasma welding system, and their new wireless robot teach pendant.

A demonstration of 7-axis robots from OTC Daihen.

In Booth C-3631, the thorium-free TIG electrodes WL15 and WL20 from Plansee USA LLC (Franklin, MA) convince with the same quality as their thorium-containing predecessors WL15 and WL20: good ignition and reignition properties, high current-carrying capacity and a long service life. Thorium free electrodes offer two main advantages: they are environmentally and health friendly and reduce the costs for packaging, transport and disposal. Making the change to thorium-free electrodes did not require reinventing the wheel, because WL15 and WL 20 have been a core competency of the company for many years. Visitors to the booth can find out more by seeing a test report and trying the electrodes for themselves.

Besides the TIG electrodes, tungsten electrodes for resistance welding will also be on display. Heri Sontgerath, responsible for the welding segment at Plansee USA, summarizes the range of Plansee products, “We will not only present our tungsten-copper-discs, but also our classical back-cast electrodes made out of tungsten, molybdenum and TZM. The seamless joint between the electrode and the electrode holder guarantees constant thermal conductivity as well as constant electrical resistance of the electrode. This also favors a longer service life: welders state that our electrodes last up to ten times longer. They also benefit from reproducible welding results.”

The Plansee High Performance Materials division is part of the Plansee Group that is headquartered in Austria, was founded in 1921, and is an expert in the field of molybdenum, tungsten, tantalum, niobium and chromium components. Alloys and composite materials from the company come into their own in electronics, coating technology or high-temperature furnaces – wherever traditional materials are stretched beyond their limits. In the U.S., the company has production sites in Franklin and Vista, CA.

In Booth C-1623, Frommelt Safety Products / Rite-Hite Machine Guarding (Milwaukee, WI) introduces the industry’s most sophisticated automated barrier door, the Guardian Defender. Designed to guard machinery, contain processes and protect employees from robotic/machine movement zones, the new door boasts patent-pending upgrades to its non-contact safety switch configuration, control systems and interlocking capabilities.

An overview and demonstration of the Guardian Defender from Rite-Hite Machine Guarding.

The system features a new, more resilient curtain material that resists a wider array of application driven hazards and offers optional variable frequency drive to control curtain speed. In addition, it utilizes new quick-disconnect cables, which allow for easier installation and integration than comparable barrier doors. It also contains fumes, sparks, smoke, mist, flying debris, excess noise and other common manufacturing process by-products. Additionally, the Guardian Defender’s roll-up design leaves a minimal footprint into the typically crowded manufacturing cell.

The Guardian Defender automated barrier door features a host of innovations, including a PLe hold-down mechanism that locks the door in “down” position to allow for machine “de-energizing” time (necessitated by issues such as roll inertia in the paper industry). Its redesigned rotary cam limit switch, encoder positioning and variable frequency drive control the curtain’s operating speed and position, dramatically improving the adjustability of door position, speed and control. The non-contact interlock switches, manufactured by Jokab, Pilz, Schmersal and Allen Bradley, provide up to PLe specifications per EN ISO 13849-1 when integrated properly. The system is designed with new EN 10218-2 specifications in mind.

“Given the new OSHA (ISO 13849-1) and RIA (EN 10218-1) regulations, the Defender should appeal to a wider variety of industries and is a great alternative to light curtains and area scanners, going the extra step to contain the process,” said Rite-Hite Machine Guarding product manager Eric Esson.

Rite-Hite Machine Guarding manufactures a complete line of rolling and folding automated guards, perimeter fencing, fabric area protection and air filtration products serving the automotive, metal manufacturing, material handling, paper/packaging and alternative energy industries.


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