By combining processes to improve throughput via the completion of parts in simple single steps, the VC-500A/5X AM HWD multi-tasking machine from Mazak Corporation (Florence, KY) offers manufacturers part processing capabilities beyond those of conventional multi-tasking to reduce lead times and part costs, increase machining accuracy and part quality, and achieve even higher levels of productivity, flexibility and profitability. This machine incorporates new and innovative Hot Wire additive manufacturing technology that Mazak developed in collaboration with Lincoln Electric (Cleveland, OH), a company known for designing and manufacturing arc welding products, robotic arc welding systems, plasma and oxyfuel cutting equipment. With Hot Wire laser deposition technology, the VC-500A/5X AM HWD not only offers a high-speed additive system and programmable welding automation, but also full 5-axis machining center capabilities.
As with conventional welding, an arc torch melts metal wire directly on to a base material and/or part, and the two materials (wire and workpiece) can be dissimilar. This allows shops to generate exceptionally precise sealing coatings along with near-net shape part features or use the machine to repair costly complex components, such as impellers and turbine blades, along with tool and die parts. The machine’s Hot Wire head has the same 5-axis capability as its milling spindle, which provides the maneuverability to build new part features or weldments on all of a workpiece’s surfaces. It is well suited for high-volume additive manufacturing and helps minimize equipment and material costs. The Hot Wire laser cladding head incorporates an automatic wire feeder system that feeds welding wire to an argon gas nozzle. The head delivers a deposition rate of three to four pounds per hour with a 98 percent material utilization rate.
The VC-500A/5X AM HWD has a trunnion-style rotary/tilt table for the accurate, cost effective processing of small complex parts via full 5-axis machining. The machine also features the Mazatrol SmoothX CNC and MTConnect capability that allow for easier programming and faster part cycle times, in either EIA or Mazatrol conversational language, along with digital connectivity. On its milling side, the machine comes standard equipped with a robust, high performance CAT-40, 12,000 rpm spindle that delivers exceptional metal removal capabilities in all common materials, including steel, aluminum and cast iron. Optional speeds of 15,000 rpm and 20,000 rpm are available to address a variety of part production requirements. An ample 30 tool storage magazine ensures continuous uninterrupted part machining, as does the machine’s compact chip conveyor and mist collector with smoke filter.
Mazak Corporation, 8025 Production Drive, Florence, KY 41042, 859-342-1700, Fax: 859-342-1865, www.mazakusa.com.
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