United Grinding North America (Miamisburg, OH) offers customers with older Walter Helitronic Power machines the option of automating the tool grinder as part of a rebuild. The retrofit replaces the machine’s obsolete gantry beam-type loaders with the same Fanuc LR Mate 200i robots available on new Walter Helitronic Power models.
In addition to being faster, the robots handle more workpieces/tools, are more compact and consume less energy. They also support the latest Walter Helitronic Tool Studio and Robot Manager software, which allows users to load multiple trays with various workpiece diameters for lights-out manufacturing.
To allow for retrofitting modern automation when rebuilding the machines, Walter re-engineered and reconfigured its controls because the original offering lacked the functionality to support today’s robots. Now, as part of a rebuild, United Grinding outfits machines with the new Fanuc CNC as well as new electrics (Fanuc drives and motors) and all necessary software.
The Fanuc CNC extends machine lifespan and expands features, functions and convenience. The control provides user-friendly conversational programming and advanced functions available on a machine that hit the market before these operator-oriented approaches debuted.
The primary benefit of rebuilding existing equipment through United Grinding North America Rebuild Department is cost. On average, a rebuilt grinding machine costs roughly 75% of new equipment. Once rebuilt, a machine looks, works and produces like new, with recommissioned geometry, renewed guideways and enhanced precision. Depending on how a company classifies expenses, a rebuilt machine may qualify as a maintenance cost rather than as capital outlay, further contributing to potential savings.
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