February 2014 â€˘ www.canadianmetalworking.com
Serving the Canadian Metalworking Industry Since 1905
New engines, new airframes, new opportunities for the aero sector
Cut, Bend, Weld
Laser cutting, press brake, MIG/TIG winners for fabricators
Skilled Trades Solution Can women close the gap? PM 40069240
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Machines shown with options. Information may change without notice.
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80% productivity* increase
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CoroCut ÂŽQD â€“ Twice as cool CoroCut QD takes your parting off to new heights. Optimized for bar-feed lathes, it brings unbeatable strength and security for deep grooves and long overhangs with a helping hand from unique new technology: over- and under-coolant for the most effective, trouble-free machining.
Unbeatable security: stronger blade design, advanced grade technology and the most stable insert clamping.
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Ultimate chip control and tool life: over- and under-coolant with two high pressure jets and dedicated insert geometries.
Easy handling: quick and easy coolant connection with plug-and-play adaptors for many machine types.
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The moment the inspection process drives the success of your production activities. This is the moment we work for.
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A LOOK INSIDE Vol. 109 | No. 1 | February 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
COVER STORY FULL THROTTLE Aerospace strong, military procurement uncertain........................ 30
FEATURES TRAINING PROFILE:........................................................... 27 Seneca College, Toronto, Ontario
NEW COLUMN: KEN HURWITZ ON FINANCE FOR METALWORKING......... 29 Leasing, Financing, and Your Business
GIMME FIVE ... AXIS MACHINING...................................... 36 Aerospace machining
SPIN DOCTORS................................................................. 40 Spindles for the future
THE HAAS WAY................................................................. 44 How Haas builds machine tools
THE HARDEST CUT OF ALL.............................................. 48
Tools for hard metals
SAVING SECONDS............................................................ 52 Quick change tooling means business
THE HUMAN TOUCH......................................................... 64
Hand welding evolves for speed, precision
FIBER OR CO2 ... DO WE HAVE A WINNER?...................... 68 The laser wars heat up
www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 7
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THE THREE FLAVOURS OF PRESS BRAKE....................... 74
Electrics and hybrids move in
BETTER MARKING.............................................................78 Direct part marking for tough surfaces
PROBING QUESTIONS.......................................................82 Dafydd Williams on in-machine probing
JOB SHOP SNAPSHOT......................................................86 Addley Precision, Midland, Ontario
BREATHE EASY..................................................................88 Keeping lungs safe from grinding dust
CAN WOMEN FILL THE GAP?............................................92 An Ontario Minister says “Yes”
DEPARTMENTS View From the Floor..........................................................10 News.................................................................................12 The Business of Welding...................................................25 The Business of Tooling....................................................54
Tool Talk.............................................................................56 Welding News....................................................................60 By The Numbers................................................................98
Cover design by Sandy MacIsaac
For extended coverage of what’s happening in Canada’s metalworking industry visit our blog section every Friday, where you’ll find “This Week in Metalworking”. There we’ll cover all the industry stories making news from around the web.
Also, on www.canadianmetalworking.com right now, visit our “Product News” section on the homepage to see some of our videos from the recent FABTECH show in Chicago. Our editor Jim Anderton discusses the newest in fabricating technology with industry experts and looks ahead to FABTECH Canada with the SME’s Janine Saperson.
And don’t forget to follow along and engage with us on social media – look for us on Twitter, Google+, and Facebook!
8 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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Amada_2-2014_CM_REVISED_Layout 1 1/20/14 9:42 AM Page 1
Reh Abdulla, General Manager (left) and Feroz Abdulla, Production/Lean Manager of Metalcraft Technology Inc.
“We’ve increased productivity by more than 30% while reducing lead times, setup, scrap and overall costs.” — Feroz Abdulla, Production/Lean Manager Metalcraft Technology Inc.
Amada Booth 1705
The Power of Integrated Technology and Automated Processing. With 220 punches and 440 dies, the PDC ensures that the right tool is always available.
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Amada Canada, Ltd. 885 Avenue Georges Cros, Granby, Quebec, Canada J2J 1E8
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Since 1997, Metalcraft Technology Inc. in Coquitlam, BC has been a leading provider of custom sheet metal products for a wide range of industries. Founded by Azim Abdulla, the company operations are now managed by second generation family members Reh Abdulla, General Manager and Feroz Abdulla, Production/Lean Manager. Committed to uncompromising quality and lean manufacturing, Metalcraft partnered with Amada. After an in-depth analysis of Metalcraft’s specific manufacturing challenges, Amada provided the optimal solution. Amada’s solution included the EML 3610 NT punch/laser combination machine equipped with an automated load/ unload system and a single-part picking machine. To maximize machine utilization, the EML is also equipped with a PDC automated tool changer. Reflecting on the purchase, Feroz Abdulla states, “ The EML is a model of efficiency and productivity allowing us to run 24/7 without operator intervention.” The EML provides fully automated production of complex parts (including nested sheets with a large variety of components) while eliminating manual tool changes.
Amada’s integrated, automated solution enabled Metalcraft to: • Reduce Operating Costs (The EML’s energy-efficient, servoelectric design eliminates the need for hydraulics and delivers up to 50% cost reduction over conventional turret punch presses. Time-consuming and costly manual tool changes have been eliminated by automated precision). • Expand Capabilities (Capable of handling 5' x 10' fully-nested sheets without repositioning, the EML combines the punching, forming and tapping power of Amada’s innovative 33-ton Electric Motor (EM) turret punch press with the unlimited shapecutting capabilities of a laser). • Maximize Efficiency (Equipped with TK/ASR material handling options, enables the EML to cost-effectively produce smaller lot sizes in a variety of material types and thicknesses or operate lights-out for extended production runs).
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PUBLISHER Steve Devonport 416-442-5125 | SDevonport@canadianmetalworking.com ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER Rob Swan 416-510-5225, cell 416-725-0145 | RSwan@canadianmetalworking.com EDITOR Jim Anderton 416-510-5148 | email@example.com ASSOCIATE EDITOR Nicholas Healey 416-442-5600 x 3642 | firstname.lastname@example.org EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Lisa Wichmann 416-442-5600 x 5101 | LWichmann@canadianmanufacturing.com ART DIRECTOR Sheila Wilson 416-442-5600 x 3593 | email@example.com CIRCULATION MANAGER Selina Rahaman 416-442-5600 x 3528 | SRahaman@bizinfogroup.ca MARKET PRODUCTION MANAGER Barb Vowles 416-510-5103 | firstname.lastname@example.org PRINT PRODUCTION MANAGER Phyllis Wright 416-442-6786 | Pwright@bizinfogroup.ca BIG MAGAZINES LP............................................................................. PRESIDENT OF BUSINESS INFORMATION GROUP | Bruce Creighton VICE-PRESIDENT OF CANADIAN PUBLISHING | Alex Papanou EXECUTIVE PUBLISHER, MANUFACTURING | Tim Dimopoulos HOW TO REACH US............................................................................. Published by BIG Magazines LP, a division of Glacier BIG Holdings Company Ltd. 80 Valleybrook Drive, North York, ON M3B 2S9 Phone: 416-442-5600. Fax: 416-510-5140 CM, established: 1905 is published 8 times per year by BIG Magazines LP, a division of Glacier BIG Holdings Company Ltd. SUBSCRIPTION RATES Canada $55.00 per year, Outside Canada $90.00 US per year, Single Copy Canada $8.00. RETURN UNDELIVERABLE TO Circulation Department 80 Valleybrook Drive, Toronto, ON M3B 2S9 All rights reserved. Printed in Canada. The contents of the publication may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form, either in part or in full, including photocopying and recording, without the written consent of the copyright owner. Nor may any part of this publication be stored in a retrieval system of any nature without prior written consent. Content copyright ©2014 by BIG Magazines LP, a division of Glacier BIG Holdings Company Ltd., may not be reprinted without permission. CM receives unsolicited materials (including letters to the editor, press releases, promotional items and images) from time to time. CM, its affiliates and assignees may use, reproduce, publish, republish, distribute, store and archive such unsolicited submissions in whole or in part in any form or medium whatsoever, without compensation of any sort. CM accepts no responsibility or liability for claims made for any product or service reported or advertised in this issue. DISCLAIMER This publication is for informational purposes only. The content and “expert” advice presented are not intended as a substitute for informed professional engineering advice. You should not act on information contained in this publication without seeking specific advice from qualified engineering professionals. PRIVACY NOTICE From time to time we make our subscription list available to select companies and organizations whose product or service may interest you. If you do not wish your contact information to be made available, please contact us via one of the following methods: Phone: 1-800-668-2374 Fax: 416-442-2191 Email: email@example.com Mail to: Privacy Office, 80 Valleybrook Drive, Toronto, ON M3B 2S9
View From the Floor Spending Less, Spending More on Defence
hen it comes to sourcing new equipment for Canada’s armed forces this year, finding a coherent strategy from National Defence, the federal government or from industry is close to impossible. Over land, on the sea and in the air, the decision about what the country needs to defend itself has never been so muddled. Shipyards on both coasts are preparing to build much needed vessels for our Navy and Coast Guard, but with still inadequate resources for Northern sovereignty patrol. The Army will not be receiving the “close combat” vehicles National Defence spent years developing and sourcing, because they’re already obsolete and we’re out of IED-infested Afghanistan. The Joint Strike Fighter or F-35 is so expensive, no one even knows how much the program will cost, sending the Feds “back to the drawing board” with no other aircraft to fill the requirement, mainly because the RFP was written around the F-35’s unique steath capability. Add to this deep budget cutting (cadets have been told to bring their own parkas for winter training) and it’s a wonder the military can afford boots, let alone function as a ready force. Why? There’s an election coming in 2015, and the Harper government is betting that a balanced Federal budget will take the wind out of Justin Trudeau’s sails at the polls. A balanced budget is good, but modern military procurement doesn’t spread program risk between the players… contractors have spent money, lots of it, to bring projects like the close combat vehicles this far and they’ll be well paid to close out those contracts. The F-35 is a different matter. Lockheed Martin has pull in Washington and the program is dogged by cost overruns. That’s not unusual in military aircraft development, but in cash-strapped economies like ours, it translates into fewer planes bought, which increases the cost-per-plane dramatically. All three US armed services want the F-35, but the number they’ll ultimately buy will depend heavily on that unit cost. The answer is foreign sales, and I’m betting that there’s lots of behind the scenes lobbying on Parliament Hill from Washington (and the Pentagon) to get Canada on board to buy enough airframes to keep the plane affordable south of the border. South Korea looked at their options and chose Boeing’s excellent F-15 Silent Eagle, and then mysteriously reversed that decision in favour of the F-35. South Korea is one of the few nations that have a dangerous, unpredictable threat on their doorstep. Their president sleeps every night within range of North Korean artillery tubes in the thousands and is openly threatened with attack regularly. Defence is serious in Korea and they chose a cheaper option…and then at the last minute declared a sudden need for advanced stealth. Politics? It’s hard to think otherwise and you can bet that the pressure from Washington and the threat of losing offset contracts with Canadian suppliers will decide the issue for the Harper government as well. In the end, I believe they’ll buy the F-35. The South Koreans are tough and they succumbed to the pressure…don’t expect anything more from Ottawa. The metalworking sector is going to have to be even tougher. It’s up to us in the industry to help defray the cost to the taxpayer by winning as much as we can of the subcontract work and keeping it in Canada. Let’s watch the subcontracting process like hawks to make sure we’re not cempeting against unfairly subsidized “insider” firms. Let’s also keep Ottawa’s feet to the fire and make sure that we’re getting the best deal possible for these supersonic Ferraris. Sadly, although we could design and build our own aircraft, we won’t. If we won’t build our own, then let’s build as much of it as we can. JIM ANDERTON, EDITOR
Canadian publications Mail Sales Product Agreement 40069240 ISSN: 0008-4379 We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage.
Do you agree? Let me know, and feel free to drop me a line at the e-mail address below, or buttonhole me at a show or event. I’d love to hear from you! firstname.lastname@example.org
10 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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Mini cutting at its Peak
Small, Strong, Streamlined. The updated Mini Tool System achieves outstanding results for internal machining. Standard grades are available for all materials. Bore diameters from 6 mm (.2360). Groove widths from 0,74 to 3 mm (.0290 – .1180), with radial depths of cut up to 8 mm (.3150) are standard. Sintered, chip breaking geometries ensure excellent chip control and increased productivity. Horn’s Mini system, the tool you need for internal applications. www.hornusa.com
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IN THE NEWS
Automakers enjoy a record sales year in Canada in 2013 Just over 1.74 million vehicles were sold this year
An employee installs components into a Dodge Challenger at Chrysler Group’s Brampton Assembly Plant. (Photo: Chrysler)
ORONTO—Canadian auto sales hit record numbers for 2013, with both foreign and North American brands seeing a surge in sales. The total of 1,743,112 units sold in 2013 eclipsed the old sales record set in 2002 by more than 40,000 units and December’s figures helped push the totals over the edge to ensure it would be a record year. A total of 113,036 units were sold in December, representing a 3.8 per cent increase over last December. Sales for the year were four per cent higher than 2012. The year 2013 may also go down as the “year of the truck,” due to the high volume of sales in that category. The leading seller in Canada was Ford, and it was largely due to the popularity of their F-150 that they reached the top spot. The company’s truck sales jumped 3.5 per cent to 215,247, up from 207,961 in 2012. As far as some of the major players were concerned sales of trucks and vehicles at Chrysler Canada and General Motors also rose last year. Chrysler Canada says it sold 260,015 vehicles last year, a seven per cent increase over 2012, with strong performances from several of its brands, including Ram pickup trucks. General Motors also saw its combined car and truck retail and fleet sales jump 3.6 per cent in 2013 to 234,944 vehicles from 225,825 in 2012. The increase was attributed to a 5.4 per cent hike in truck sales, offset by a 0.4 per cent drop in car sales.
The Japanese automakers also did well in 2013. Toyota saw a 1.7 per cent jump in total sales as it delivered 195,360 units last year, while Honda Canada also recorded its best annual sales in five years. The combined sales increase from the Honda and Acura divisions rose to 10 per cent last year. As a group, international brands also did quite well, particularly in December. According to Global Automakers of Canada (GAC), December’s sales were stronger than the five-year historical average for the month, representing a 4.5 per cent increase over the average sales for December of 108,151 vehicles. “Canadians continued to respond to very attractive vehicle finance and lease options in December,” said David Adams, president of Global Automakers of Canada. “Waning consumer confidence may have affected other consumer purchases but it does not seem to have impacted auto sales to any great degree.” For the member companies of the GAC — this does not include major North American brands — overall sales of 64,508 units represented growth of 2.7 per cent compared to last December. Annual sales for GAC members of 966,157 units were 3.8 per cent better than sales in 2012. The strong sales figures from 2013 are expected to have a positive effect on the domestic production industry as well. In September Ford announced they would invest $700 million in their Oakville assembly plant, while Chrysler is looking at potentially investing up to $1 billion in their minivan plant in Windsor. — with files from the Canadian Press
12 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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IN THE NEWS
Pratt & Whitney Canada invests $275 million in facility upgrade The jet engine facility gets a boost, with up to 90 new jobs expected to be added in the coming years LONGUEUIL, Que. — Pratt & Whitney Canada has announced at an October 28th event they will be investing $275 million in their manufacturing facility in Longueil, Quebec over the next five years. The event was attended by Quebec Premier Pauline Marois, Quebec government representatives, members of the aerospace industry and academic/research sectors and employees. John Saabas, President, Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC), was also on hand to mark the occasion. The goal of the funding is to create what P&WC referred to as a “World-Class Centre of Excellence for Intelligent Manufacturing”. The centre will see new technology implemented on three new intelligent production lines. The production lines will be dedicated to manufacturing highly complex components for the new-generation PurePower family of engines. “The announcement of this project is great news, as it will propel P&WC into the future,” said Mr. Saabas. “P&WC is a global company whose roots have been firmly planted in Canada for 85 years. These investments once again demonstrate our long-standing approach to innovation and pro-
ductivity, as well as our ongoing efforts to improve our technologies and modernize our infrastructure.” “The unique properties of the new materials used in key parts for our next generation of engines, as well as the extreme conditions to which these materials are subjected, inspired us to design new, fully integrated, ultra-efficient production lines,” explained 2014 Benoit Beaudoin, Vice President, Operations, P&WC. MANUAL LATHES “Equipped with automation, closed-loop process control and high-precision machining technologies, the World-Class Centre of Excellence for Intelligent Manufacturing will propel us into a new era in manufacturing.” The introduction of the three intelligent ARE STILL... production lines will require extensive upgrading of P&WC’s Longueuil plant, which is set to begin in the next few months, with the objective of being fully operational in 2015. In addition to the intelligent cells, the investments announced today will help support further development of manufacturing, assembly, tests and information technology, enabling the company to continue improving productivity, innovation and technological capability at its Quebec facilities. These investments will lead to the creation of 90 new permanent jobs and maintain 166 existing jobs in Quebec. The government of Quebec will contribute $19 million to support these future www.isotop.com investments. email@example.com www.pwc.ca 1.800.465.4650
SO ARE YOU!
WAS SKILLED ON A MANUAL LATHE
From left to right: John Saabas, President, Pratt & Whitney Canada, Quebec Premier Pauline Marois, Nicolas Marceau, Minister of Finance and Economy, Marie Malavoy, Minister of Education, Recreation and Sports, Martine Ouellet, Minister of Natural Resources and Benoit Beaudoin, Vice President, Operations, Pratt & Whitney Canada. (Photo: Pratt & Whitney Canada)
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14 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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IN THE NEWS
Feds launching $200M advanced manufacturing fund in Ontario Five-year fund will support large-scale manufacturing activities in bid to grow sector on home soil LONDON, Ont.—The federal government is launching a $200-million fund as it looks to boost growth in Ontario’s advanced manufacturing sector. Announced by Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) Gary Goodyear, the five-year Advanced Manufacturing Fund will support large-scale manufacturing activities in a bid to grow the sector on home soil. The fund will also look to advance the development of cutting-edge technologies, encourage projects that create spillover benefits for manufacturing clusters and supply chains and foster collaborations between the private sector, research institutions and post-secondary institutions. “By investing in innovative and productive manufacturing companies, we are helping them to achieve and maintain global leadership, while providing good quality jobs in Ontario now and
for the future,” said MP Joe Preston, who was on hand for the launch of the fund in London, Ont. Contributions provided by FedDev Ontario through the fund will normally be between $10- and $20-million per project for as much as 50 per cent of total eligible project costs, according to the agency, though projects seeking less than $10-million or more than $20-million may be considered. Applicants must provide evidence of industry support from non-government sources for at least 50 per cent of the remaining project costs and clearly demonstrate how their project responds to innovation, market relevance and spillover economic benefits. Open to for-profit business and non-profit organizations alike, eligible businesses must be manufacturing in Ontario or conducting research and development in Ontario but manufacturing outside the province, FedDev Ontario said. Not-for-profit organizations like centres of excellence, or research or post-secondary institutions located in Ontario are also eligible, but require collaboration with an anchor firm and must demonstrate a significant benefit to the local manufacturing sector. According to FedDev Ontario, eligible for-profit businesses will be awarded unconditionally repayable contributions, while not-for-profits will be considered for non-repayable contributions. The agency will open up two intake periods for funding applications, with the first running from Dec. 9, 2013, to Oct. 1, 2014, and the second running from Jan. 1, 2015, until Oct. 1, 2015. All project activities must be completed prior to Dec. 31, 2018. The Advanced Manufacturing Fund is in addition to $530-million in business initiatives for southern Ontario announced last week. To find out more, log on to the FedDev Ontario website or call 1-866-593-5505.
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COMING IN MARCH…. The March issue of Canadian Metalworking will feature a preview of FABTECH Canada, with a major analysis of the transportation sector in Canada, particularly in the oil and gas sector. Can rail be a safe, cost-effective way of bringing oil to market? Are pipelines the answer? Can environmental issues be resolved with technology? We’ll discuss the issues in March.
March 2014 • www.canadianm
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Also in March: Milling machines and tool holders, heat treating and toolroom quality, plus CAD/CAM options and positioning and fixturing for faster, better welding. 16 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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Our Latest Innovative Solutions Set New Standards For Manufacturing Introducing the SW-20 and SR-20RIV for maximum output & precision. Consistently on the leading-edge of innovation, Star CNC’s two new models are designed for complex component machining that can transform productivity into profitability. The evolutionary SW-20 offers a multitude of functions to minimize non-cutting time to a new low, improving production output and profitability. With an 8-spindle tool post and “Y” axis control function exclusively for back-end working, the SW-20 provides greater freedom for overlapping efficiency. The new SR-20RIV accommodates up to 41 tools on 27 tool positions. This machine offers ‘two-in-one’ machining options, equipped with both “Guide Bushing” and “Non Guide Bushing”. With full “B” axis with three (3) tools on the main side and 8-spindle tool block for back machining with “Y” axis for overlapping on a variety of operations. Two sophisticated machining solutions can play a big role in medical technology. Star CNC…continually raising our own bar.
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IN THE NEWS
CAPC offers roadmap to competitiveness for Canadian automotive sector Industry group touts the importance of investments in plants, and research and innovation OTTAWA – In late November the Canadian Automotive Partnership Council (CAPC) met in Ottawa to discuss factors affecting the competitiveness of the Canadian auto industry. The discussion was based on a study the CAPC released on November 27, titled: “A Call for Action: II.” The report is a collaborative effort from Canadian automakers, parts manufacturers and labour, and it provides a selfdescribed “blueprint” for sustaining a competitive automotive industry in Canada. It is a follow-up to the original “Call for Action” released by CAPC in 2004. “The membership of CAPC is committed to ensuring the auto industry continues to provide high-quality jobs for Canadians and serve as a catalyst for future economic growth,” stated CAPC Chair and Magna International CEO Don Walker.
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“We believe that the combination of private and public sector actions we have put forward represents a clear and achievable path forward.” The 2013 report describes encouraging trends in the Canadian auto industry, as well as the challenges the industry confronts. One notable point is that even though automotive manufacturing in Canada has rebounded to near pre-recession levels, capital spending has dropped to levels not experienced since the 1980s. The report also stresses the importance of securing investments in plants, people, and research and innovation. It also highlights the need for industry and government to work together to develop a clear message about why Canada is a good location for manufacturing investment. A series of recommendations are offered for both the private and public sectors. “Canada’s world-class automotive sector is a leader in employment, exports and quality products, which are key drivers of the Canadian economy,” said James Moore, the federal Minister of Industry. “Our government is committed to the growth and innovation of Canada’s automotive industry. From renewing the Automotive Innovation Fund to signing the Canada-EU trade agreement, which will see tariffs removed on products such as cars and trucks, our government is creating conditions to increase sales and directly benefit Canadian automotive manufacturers and businesses.” Since the original “Call for Action” was released in 2004, the Canadian automotive manufacturing industry has experienced significant upheaval. The dollar has soared, major industry players have been restructured, and transformational labour agreements in the U.S. have impacted the relative competitiveness of Canada within NAFTA. “This is an industry that does not stand still,” stated Eric Hoskins, Ontario Minister of Economic Development, Trade and Employment. “Our government’s actions over the past number of years demonstrate that we are prepared to partner with the industry to create investment and jobs. Today’s competitiveness discussion is yet another demonstration of CAPC’s value as a forum for government, industry and labour to chart a course for future growth of this critical manufacturing sector.” A full copy of the report can be downloaded at: capcinfo.ca/ en/home-en.html
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POWERFUL, PRECISE, RELIABLE. The new generation of mills from Walter BlaxxTM stands for a reliable system which captivates the user with its absolute precision and stands out through its extremely high productivity. The Blaxx™ F5041 and F5141 shoulder mills are therefore based on a newly developed, incredibly robust tool body, which is fitted with the most efficient of Walter Valenite indexable inserts, powered by Tiger·tec® Silver. Find out more about the unbeatable combination of Blaxx™ and Tiger·tec® Silver now: www.walter-tools.com/us
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IN THE NEWS
Air Canada chooses Boeing 737 MAX to renew their narrowbody fleet Agreement includes 61 firm orders plus 18 options and rights to purchase an additional 30 MONTREAL — Air Canada has announced that it purchased 61 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft to renew its mainline narrowbody fleet. The deal also includes a number of options that could put the total order up to 109 aircraft. The new aircraft will replace Air Canada’s existing mainline fleet of Airbus narrowbody aircraft, creating one of the world’s youngest, most fuel efficient and simplified airline fleets. Deliveries are scheduled to begin in 2017 with 2
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aircraft, then 16 aircraft in 2018, 18 aircraft in 2019, 16 aircraft in 2020, and 9 aircraft in 2021. “We are pleased to announce our agreement with Boeing for the purchase of 737 MAX aircraft as part of the ongoing modernization of Air Canada’s fleet,” said Calin Rovinescu, President and CEO of Air Canada. “Renewal of our North American narrowbody fleet with more fuel efficient aircraft is a key element of our ongoing cost transformation program,” he stated. “Our narrowbody fleet renewal program is expected to yield significant cost savings. We have estimated that the projected fuel burn and maintenance cost savings on a per seat basis of greater than 20 per cent will generate an estimated CASM reduction of approximately 10 per cent as compared to our existing narrowbody fleet.” Air Canada is also considering a potential replacement of its Embraer E190 fleet with more, larger, cost-efficient, narrowbody aircraft better suited to their network strategy. The agreement also allows Boeing to purchase up to 20 of the 45 Embraer E190 aircraft currently in Air Canada’s fleet. The company will be reviewing various options over the next six months for the remaining 25 Embraer E190 aircraft including continuing to operate them or replacing them with a yet to be determined number of aircraft in the 100 to 150 seat range.
20 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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IN THE NEWS
Feds confirm decision to ditch $2.1B armoured vehicle program Department of National Defence statement said LAV IIIs will suffice; current vehicles do a better job than predicted OTTAWA—The Department of National Defence has confirmed plans to bail on a $2.1-billion armoured vehicle procurement program it launched in 2009 at the behest of top military officials. The DND released a statement early Dec. 20 confirming the decision to scrap the Close Combat Vehicle (CCV) procurement project that was in the market for 108 36-tonne vehicles. “After a careful review of priority military requirements and given improved capabilities across the Canadian Armed Forces due to significant government investment, the Canadian Armed Forces recommended that the government not proceed with this acquisition,” Defence Minister Rob Nicholson said in the statement.
“We accepted the military’s recommendation.” According to the DND, the decision was made in part due to the capabilities of the upgraded Light Armoured Vehicle III program, which are “far superior” to what the department initially estimated. “Based on this assessment, and the fundamental principle that the Canadian Armed Forces do not procure capabilities unless they are absolutely essential to the attainment of our mandate — the mandate outlined in the Canada First Defence Strategy — we recommended that the government … not proceed with the procurement process for the Close Combat Vehicle,” read a statement issued on behalf of Gen. Tom Lawson.
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22 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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IN THE NEWS
Heroux-Devtek to lay off 55 Quebec workers due to drop in demand Cuts blamed on a reduced demand for military products in U.S. LONGUEUIL, Que.—Aerospace products manufacturer HérouxDevtek Inc. said it will make permanent layoffs at one of its Quebec plants due to “substantial demand reduction” in the United States. The company says it will cut 55 staff from the roster at a plant in the Montreal suburb of Longueuil, Que., leaving the facility with 15 employees. The layoffs are being blamed on a decline in demand for military products in the U.S. “The transformations affecting our industry require great flexibility and rapid adaptability, and Héroux-Devtek must be proactive to remain competitive,” president and chief executive Gilles Labbé said in a statement. “We regret the impact for the affected employees and their families, but the steep decline in U.S.-based customer demand
for military aftermarket products called for adjustments in our manufacturing base.” Héroux-Devtek expects to take a charge of roughly $5-million, which will be on the books in the fourth quarter of the 2014 fiscal year and first half of 2015. The layoffs will begin in April and run over a 12-month period. The company blamed the U.S. government shutdown for about 40 temporary layoffs at the plant in November. Héroux-Devtek said it will shift its focus to its main plant, also located in Longueuil, which will have a combined workforce of approximately 350 employees. With $40-million in investments made there since 2007, the plant This facility specializes in repair and overhaul, surface treatment and assembly of medium- to large-size landing gear systems. — with files from Canadian Manufacturing
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THE BUSINESS OF WELDING
More power to you ... By Ian Campbell, Director of Marketing and New Product Development, CWB .........................................................
elcome to 2014. With holidays firmly behind us, this time of year is the ideal opportunity to reevaluate your business, or yourself if you are looking for work, and look for opportunities for improvement. That said, it’s human nature to put off tasks that can wait for another day. If things are running well there might not be a big, compelling reason to go poking around. After all, who knows what you might find — right? And there lies the underlying problem: There’s a good chance you will end up uncovering something critical that had remained in the shadows. The bad news is that any business, regardless of size or experience, likely has a few of these issues lingering around, and the same goes for people. The good news is that any company, or individual, has the power to fix most of them given a bit of effort. Keep in mind that many problems are simply opportunities in waiting. So, let me take a few minutes of your time to point you into some dark corners where problems sometimes grow, offering up some free advice along the way: Productivity — This is one of those dusty and very dark corners, the ones you know you should look at, but you have avoided because you know you should have been poking away at it years ago. The good news is that we are doing some work at the CWB around welding productivity and it has become very clear that with a bit of math, the justification for automation, or new equipment, new staff or skills upgrades may not be too far out of your grasp. As any math teacher, accountant or banker will tell you — the math never lies… Staffing — This one is for both companies looking for staff, as well as people who want to become staff. The dark corner here is skills assessment, and how to uniformly and accurately gauge the quality of a welder, supervisor or inspector. Clearly, being able to meet established welding standards, CSA W47 or otherwise, is one way to get at the problem. But there are still a lot more factors that come into play. The thing to consider here is the costs associated with making a poor hire — things like rework, scrap, lower overall productivity and the impact on your reputation come immediately to mind. Understanding the costs associated with these means you also gain some insight into what you might pay to make sure you make the right staffing choices. Simply
Ian Campbell, Director of Marketing and New Product Development, CWB
put: Spending a bit upfront likely means saving a bunch later. As Canada’s national welding body, the CWB has a vested interest in helping you get the right staff and or training; your strength is our strength. Watch this column to find out how the CWB and CWA will be helping you out with this, as well as on the productivity front, in 2014. Branding — You can never be too small to benefit from a good brand. From my perspective a good brand has two parts — your “identity” and your “reputation”. Don’t mistake a good brand identity for a good logo. Logos are just graphics, while your brand should tell a story about who you are (your skills, business history, etc.), how you validate your skills to your customers (welding tickets and other certification/ accreditation), and your commitment to delivering good work (ISO, CWB certification, recognition from regulatory bodies.) If you don’t cover the above off in your sales pitch you are likely selling yourself short. While “identity building” is a great exercise, in the end brand reputation is where you need to hang your hat. Simply put this is the measure of your success in the eyes of your current and future customers. Also worth noting is that reputation is an output of identity — it’s the result of you living up to (or not) your identity “sales pitch”. A bit of time shining some light on things in this corner of your business will pay off big time in the long run. As a plus, most of the things you need to build a good brand are free to use once you get them, so you are looking at investing some time, but not a lot of dollars to get there. I hope that my quick overview of the above points gives you the motivation to start poking around your business. The great thing about doing this kind of work now is that you have the rest of 2014 to benefit from any returns such work may bring. Keep in mind that the CWB Group is here to help, please feel free to reach out if you think we can be of service. Input, comments and concerns are always welcomed. www.cwbgroup.org
Canadian Welding Bureau/Canadian Welding Association www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 25
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Seneca College Toronto, Ontario
eneca College is spread across a number of locations in the Greater Toronto area, with 10 campuses in total. The college has a thriving metalworking program, which is based at their Centre for Advanced Technologies at the school’s Jane campus, in the North York region of Toronto. Additionally, Seneca’s King campus, located north of Toronto in King City, acts as a test centre for the Canadian Welding Bureau, and their Faculty for Continuing education and Training (FCET) teaches the CWB program at the same location. The Centre for Advanced Technologies has four programs on offer (see below). Two are 1-year programs, the next is a 2-year program, and then a 3-year program as well. The college offers a ‘laddered’ system with their courses where the 1-year program serves as the first year of the 2-year program, and then the 2-year program becomes the foundation of the 3-year program. This allows students to take the first year or two of the 3-year program then, continue on, or try their hand in the industry. If they choose to return, they can pick up where they left off and move smoothly through the program. The cumulative 3-year program is an industrial design course, which seeks to give students a broad range of training they they’ll need for real world situations. Romel Cipriani is professor and program coordinator at the college and spoke to Canadian Metalworking about the program. “(In) this program we focus on higher end technology. We’re introducing learners to white light scanning technology, reverse engineering, quality assurance, report generating, and we’re also introducing the concepts of business management. So, project management, looking after a budget, working in groups, copyright laws,” he said. “We’re keen on making sure our students are able to be moved within different roles — because that’s what we’re
Professor Malcolm Archer educates students about the use of milling machines and white light scanners at the college’s Jane campus.
finding is happening. We’re trying to give them the tools that will allow them to be successful within those parameters.” The school also works closely with area high schools to encourage participation for students looking to get involved with the trades. Cipriani’s colleague Malcolm Archer, a professor at the college, elaborated on those efforts. “For the last 11-12 years now, we’ve had an arrangement with the York Catholic District School Board, where their grade 10’s, 11’s, and 12’s come to our campus and use our CNC equipment and lab,” Archer says. “This relationship means they can come in and take advantage of all of our beautiful equipment, we can give them resources in the form of the equipment and the expertise, and some of those students who take that particular course, do end up coming to Seneca College.” Seneca has new technology and equipment at their disposal, such as a Sodick wire EDM, a Haas milling machine, and white light scanners. The college also works closely with The Ontario Association of Certified Engineering Technicians and Technologists (OACETT) to ensure that students can gain their C.E.T. designations after their studies. “We’re seeing that these designations are now creeping into job description requirements,” says Cipriani. “We try our very best to try and integrate what’s happening in the future.” For more information on Seneca’s program, visit: www.senecac.on.ca/school/centreadvtech.html For expanded coverage of Canadian Metalworking’s college profile visit our website: www.canadianmetalworking.com and search “Seneca College”.
SENECA’S METALWORKING PROGRAM AT A GLANCE
LOCATION: Jane Campus, North York, Ontario RELEVANT COURSES OFFERED: Mechanical Techniques: CNC Programming – 1 year; Mechanic Techniques (Tool and Die/Mould Making), – 1 years, Mechanical Engineering Tehnician (tool
Design) – 2 years, Mechanical Engineering Technology – Industrial Design – 3 years TUITION: First year $3,156. Additional cost of supplies varies depending on the program, but range between $1,500 and $1,900
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Leasing, financing and your business Answers to some of the most common questions from manufacturers By Ken Hurwitz .......................................................................................................................................
’ve been reading Canadian Metalworking (and Machinery) monthly for as long as I can remember. I’m the fourth generation in my family to work in the machine tool industry (Gross Machinery Group was founded by grandfather Harold Gross in 1931 and operated until 2009). Although we sold product from all over the world, we were best known as the first North American importer and distributor for some of largest and most successful machine tool builders in Japan. When I was presented with the opportunity to write for Canadian Metalworking, it was a significant achievement on two levels — professionally and personally. On a professional level, it’s been four years since I transitioned my career from machinery sales to machinery leasing. I hope with my extensive machinery knowledge and manufacturing background, I can continue to help Canadian manufacturers make good business decisions, which will keep them profitable for many years to come. On a personal level, I’m sure my late grandfather is proud of my continued career in the machine tool industry. Every time I walk through a plant and see equipment sold by Gross Machinery Group running productively, it validates my belief that with good equipment and a sound business strategy, manufacturing in Canada can, and will, remain strong for the long term. My transition from machinery sales to machinery leasing has enabled me to continue a rewarding career in the machinery and manufacturing sector and allowed me to stay in touch with former clients as well as meet new ones. I thought as an opening article I would answer the most frequently asked questions that are posed by both existing and potential clients when they look to finance their equipment purchases:
Ken, why should I lease? The textbook answer is “pay cash for assets that appreciate, and lease or finance assets which depreciate” but as we all know, real life rarely works on textbook answers so here are a few real-world replies to that question: 1. Comfortable monthly payments — With leasing, you have the ability to match monthly lease expenses directly to revenue, instead of dealing with a big cash outlay for
a machinery purchase. The lease payment is usually (or ought to be) a small percentage of the monthly revenue generated by the equipment. For example, a $100,000 vertical machining centre would work out to be apKen Hurwitz proximately $1,900 per month over five years but should generate a minimum of $12,000-$14,000 per month in revenue. 2. Working capital is king — All businesses struggle with cash flow. Customers string you out on receivables, or you took a big order and need to purchase additional material, tooling, or hire another operator. There’s no need to tie up valuable cash in expenditures that can be financed. Your cash is better used in places that can’t be financed, such as business development costs related to hiring an additional sales or applications manager, product development, or as a deposit to buy your current unit or manufacturing facility. People assume financing is for the guy who can’t write a cheque but my biggest clients are successful manufacturers who can write a cheque but choose to spend their money elsewhere. 3. Increase borrowing capacity — The typical leasing company isn’t looking to be your bank. In a perfect world, leasing companies complement the financing you already have in place. Most manufacturers use their bank for an operating line to cover short term needs, and use lease financing for long term debt. As a business owner you should never use short-term financing like an operating line to pay for a long term asset such as manufacturing equipment. 4. Simple and convenient — Most of the inquiries I get are from manufacturers who have either just secured a contract and won some new business, or got more work from a good customer. In either case, time is of the essence and getting machinery or capital in place quickly is paramount. A well-organized leasing company has the ability to react within hours and at worst in a matter of a few days. This type of response isn’t what most ... continues on page 96 www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 29
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Aerospace and Defence 2014
Blue skies ahead for civilian aerospace; stormy weather for defence By Jim Anderton, Editor ............................................................................................................................................................................
ith 2014 shaping up to be a year of modest, but unmistakably forward progress in the recovery, Canadian shops serving the aerospace and defence industries face mixed signals from the sector. Civilian aerospace is strong, and is expected to stay that way for years, with massive order backlogs driven by an aging fleet and the need to reduce seat mile costs as competition from majors and upstart discount carriers drive ticket prices lower. On the defence procurement side however, the F-35 saga continues with costs still unclear and the federal government threatening to reset the CF-18 replacement project to the beginning; on land, the close combat vehicle program is out, Sea King replacement rescue helicopters are delayed, but on the sea, the naval vessel replacement program is underway. For defence procurement, the needs are urgent, but progress is slow. CIVILIAN AERO LOOKING UP Civilian aerospace is perhaps the most metalworking friendly of industrial sectors. While composites are making headway in fuselage and wing sections, new light alloys are pushing back with excellent strength and light weight, ensuring an excellent future for our sector. The recession deferred many aircraft replacements, and
with travel increasing and with oil prices hovering at approximately USD100 per barrel) airlines need new equipment. Fuel accounts for over half of airlinesâ€™ operating expenses, and growth in margins and market share requires ever lower seat-mile costs. Lowering those costs can be achieved in two ways: bigger airplanes, more fuel-efficient airplanes, or ideally both. 2014 will be the first year for widespread use of both the super jumbo Airbus A380 and the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and while both are significant technological achievements, they also represent a multibillion-dollar gamble on the future of global air transportation. The A380 is designed to work with the current huband-spoke system of smaller aircraft feeding passenger volume into large airports where large, heavy aircraft handle long-distance transoceanic and transcontinental routes. The 787 and smaller jets from Boeing, Bombardier, Embraer, and others are ideal for a model of multiple point-to-point routes at both short and long ranges. While Boeing appears to be hedging its bets with larger versions of the Dreamliner, other factors such as international aviation regulation and air traffic control capacity might decide the issue in favour of the status quo short-term.
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(left) The Bombardier C-Series airliner is 46 per cent composites, including the wings, rear fuselage and empennage and 24 per cent aluminum lithium alloys for major weight savings. Modern airliner development is a risky business, and one technique to mitigate that risk is to spread it over multiple suppliers. While the aircraft will be assembled in Mirabel, Quebec, major assemblies are sourced globally, including suppliers in China, Italy, Germany, Northern Ireland (a Bombardier unit) and the US. Keeping costs under control will be vital for the C-Series project.
For Canadian shops, it’s an important issue. Brazil’s Embraer and our own Bombardier are perfectly positioned to feed a spike in demand for small, efficient airliners with speed and altitude performance similar to the big jets. The key is the 70 to 140 passenger aircraft segment which is predicted to be the economic “sweet spot” for operators serving growing middle-sized cities in North America as well as Europe and Asia. Both currently serve the hub-and-spoke model well, but with smaller aircraft and low-margin regional carriers operating them, reducing seat-mile costs with big Boeing or Airbus $200 million aircraft isn’t an option. If the point-to-point model takes over however, those same regionals may serve lucrative North American routes driving demand for more, smaller, fuel-efficient jets. Embraer predicts that 40 per cent of global economic growth through 2031 will be located in small and midsize cities globally. Overall, the firm foresees a 5 per cent year-over-year growth in revenue passenger-kilometers over the next 20 years requiring just under 33,000 new aircraft with a total market value of USD3.6 trillion. It’s
a big planet and we’ll need thousands of Tier 1, 2 and 3 suppliers to meet the demand. But will composites take over the airframe industry? While Boeing’s 787 has pioneered carbon composites for large airframe construction, the jury is still out on the long term viability of the technology. The primary Airbus competitor to the 787, the A350 series, uses aluminumlithium alloys for major structures; fuel efficiency is claimed to match or exceed Dreamliner performance with lower technical risk. Alcoa recently signed a USD110 million agreement to supply the alloy as well as large titanium forgings from a large press designed to serve major aero component needs such as wing box forgings. Reparability is key for airframes expected to serve for 40 or more years in passenger and freight service. Aluminum structures are relatively easy to repair and while major composite structures have been cycled to at least double their advertised fatigue life, fixing the inevitable loading ramp or hangar mishap will test Boeing’s plastic airframe philosophy. BOMBARDIER, EMBRAER AGAINST THE HEAVYWEIGHTS For the home team, Bombardier is winning a significant share of the global market. At the recent 2013 Dubai airshow the firm announced orders and commitments for
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4 Brands F35
up to 38 aircraft with a value of just over USD2 billion. Twenty Q400 turboprops was signed as were a letter of intent from Iraqi Airways for 16 CS300 jets. The CSeries is crucial to Bombardier and after a slow start, orders and commitments currently stand at 419 units. Bombardier remains strong in the regional jet market signing an agreement with options for up to 70 CRJ900 NextGen Regional Jets for American Airlines and recently secured letters of intent for 30 more Q400s for a Chinese customer. Bombardier’s direct competitor, Embraer, isn’t standing still. At press time they announced a firm order for 60 E175 jets from American Airlines with options for another 90 aircraft. The stated value is USD2.5 billion, although the actual price paid by American wasn’t disclosed; for large order pricing usually carries a significant discount on the list price. Both the Bombardier and Embraer aircraft represent more than just another small jet for small markets. Bombardier estimates the market for the 100- to 149-seat category to be over 19,000 aircraft, which will generate over USD250 billion in revenue over the next 20 years. Bombardier expects to be able to capture up to half of this market with the C-Series. It’s an ambitious target, as the category includes both heavyweights Boeing and Airbus, with major airlines heavily invested in their equipment. A big factor in the airline, but especially for the fast growing discount airline
segment, is cockpit commonality. Single-type fleets like Southwest and WestJet (both of whom operate advanced versions of the Boeing 737) realize significant savings in training and maintenance costs and Airbus offers similar savings with customers like Air Canada, who operate A3XX series jets. Bombardier expects to crack those markets with a promised 15 to 20 per cent lower seat mile costs than competitors, although all the players are increasing efficiency concurrently. POWER PLANTS GET LEAN The vast majority of new airframes will carry two engines and on the powerplant side, it’s also about efficiency. The Boeing Dreamliner for example, is 20 per cent more fuel efficient than the 767 it replaces with approximately 40 per cent of the improvement coming from its Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 or General Electric GEnx engines. To achieve this efficiency more of the inlet airflow is conducted around the engine core using a very large fan. This very high “bypass ratio” design results in quieter engines and fan blades with complex contours to manage the much higher airflow and higher fan tip speeds. Additional fuel is saved by eliminating the traditional engine-supplied bleed air for deicing and cabin pressurization, as these functions are handled electrically in the 787. Pressure for greater efficiency is no less intense for smaller engines.
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4 Brands F35 w tap8.5x11_Layout 1 9/6/13 1:55 PM Page 1
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This Alcoa press makes large forgings for major aircraft structures like wing box assemblies. Titanium is becoming widespread in high strength structures, while aluminum-lithium alloys are challenging composites for weight, strength and reparability in large airframe sections.
General Electric’s current NG34 turbofan and CPX turboprop technology development programs are targeting a 15 per cent lower fuel burn through improved engine aerodynamics, higher pressure ratio compressors and advanced materials. In July the firm opened a new global robotics automation and instrumentation R&D centre in Bromont, Québec. Pratt and Whitney, the Hartford, Connecticut-based competitor to GE in this market, is the sole supplier of its new PurePower 1500G geared turbofan for the Bombardier C-Series and will assemble the engine in Quebec. Overall, more expensive refractory metals forged and profiled into more complex shapes will shape the engine supplier market in 2014 and beyond, while composites will gain in nacelle and pylon applications. Key enabling technologies for machining operations will be multi-axis machining of superalloys and laser/EDM processing of complex cooling channels in “hot section” turbine blades. There’s no major shift to composites in high-value internal engine components compared to airframes. For civilian and defence projects however, the high financial and technical risk of new aircraft development means considerable investment from government and suppliers, with the obvious motive to anchor jobs in domestic markets. In the case of China’s Shenyang, who are
developing their own small airliner, technology transfer may be an additional motive. The result for Bombardier is a major portion of the work occurring outside Canada. For Quebec, investment keeps the Montreal aerospace hub vibrant, but at the federal level, recent trade liberalization negotiations by Prime Minister Harper and the political need to secure enough F-35 work to offset the huge program cost mean little chance of a “buy Canadian” requirement for any major aircraft program for the foreseeable future. This leaves Canadian companies chasing jobs with major contractors on their own to find work on programs that, like the F-35 and C-Series, can play suppliers on different continents against each other to keep downward pressure on pricing. On the C-Series, for example, Aviation Week and Space Technology reported last year that the Shenyang fuselage component deal was designed in part at least, to keep western supplier prices under control at a time when Bombardier’s cash burn is substantial until major deliveries of the C-Series kick in in 2015. Bombardier denies the AW&ST analysis, but overall the message is clear: compete with low-wage suppliers in Asia and elsewhere to win the business. The upside for Canadian companies is that the demand from Embraer, Boeing, and Airbus gives the sector enough of a potential customer base to justify investment in state-of-the-art domestic engineering and production capacity. COMBAT VEHICLES AND HELICOPTERS: OFF AND ON AGAIN With the Ottawa’s commitment to a balanced budget, cuts in Federal spending are a certainty and despite the Conservative’s long standing accusation of neglect of our military by the Liberals, the DND will bear significant cost cutting. An example is the Close Combat Vehicle program, a $2 billion dollar scheme to create a generation of land vehicles that bridge the gap between main battle tanks and the LAV light wheeled vehicle. On December 20th, the government axed the program. Accord-
New Sikorsky helcopters are finally scheduled for delivery.
... continues on page 94
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Aerospace: Gimme Five – Axis Machining I
By Nate Hendley ......................................................................................................................................................................................
n the spring of 2013, Makino hosted two aerospace events at their North American headquarters in Mason, Ohio. “Jet Engine Manufacturing Day” took place April 16–17, while “Aerospace Structural Component Day” was held April 30. “Each event was designed to focus on the unique needs of aircraft engine and structural component manufacturers. Attendees were provided with a diverse mix of technical presentations and technology demonstrations, providing new insights on market trends, processing techniques and technology advancements,” says Mark Rentschler, marketing manager at Makino. These events underscore the central importance of aerospace to the machine tool sector, and highlight the distinction between engine, and structural component machining. “When it comes to structural components, manufacturers are typically dealing with large, complex monolithic parts that contain a variety of unique features in a single assembly. Materials for these components are typically aluminum, but there is also a rising demand for titanium components as well. The manufacturing processes for these two types of materials alone require entirely unique processing techniques and purpose-built machinery designed specifically to handle the cutting conditions of each material. Aircraft engine component manufacturing deals with much smaller parts, featuring complex curvatures and unique features to help manage the extreme thermal conditions experienced within jet engines,” says Rentschler. Among those in the industry, there is a consensus that five-axis is the way to go when it comes to aerospace machining. The popularity of five-axis machining can be traced to “the need to reduce part set-up, improve quality and the requirement to produce more complex features and shapes,” explains Vince D’Alessio, executive vicepresident, Elliott Matsuura Canada in Oakville, Ontario. “Modern aircraft components, both engine and structural, feature a high level of complexity with sweeping contours and difficult-to-reach features, which is why five-axis has become so prevalent within the aerospace industry,” adds Rentschler. A drawback though, is that titanium is hugely popular
in aerospace manufacturing, but can make for difficult machining. “The material properties of titanium, including toughness, strength, corrosion resistance, thermal stability and light weight, make it a highly desirable material for aerospace design engineers. Conversely, these same attributes pose significant challenges in the machining of titanium components, resulting in high temperatures, deflection and vibration that can cause rapid tool wear and limited metal-removal rates. To overcome these challenges, manufacturers must invest in machine tool technologies that are designed specifically for titanium,” says Rentschler. At the same time, composites are also becoming common in aerospace. “The use of composites is growing; however they require light duty, big envelope machines. The proper cutting tools are perhaps even more important than the machine. The cutting edge is vitally important because composites are highly abrasive and have a tendency to tear. Most of the operations are drilling and trimming so the tool has to be able to cut freely,” says Scott Walker, president of Mitsui Seiki USA, headquartered in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey. “Newer aircraft design incorporates a higher quantity of composite materials. There are also now planes designed with a higher content of both titanium and stainless steels. There are a number of different reasons for it. One of them being corrosion resistance ... aluminum, in contact with composite material, can be corrosive, so titanium is being used at interface places ... as well these larger composite structures are connected together with large titanium connective pieces where historically those same pieces on previous aircraft designs were aluminum,” adds Randy Von Moll, director of technical sales at Fives Cincinnati, based in Erlanger, Kentucky. Asked to cite differences between machining aerospace parts and say, automotive or medical components, and pundits point to the obvious. “The major difference is that whatever goes into an aircraft must function at 100 per cent. You can’t pull over to the side of the road when there’s a problem,” says Walker. Here’s a look at what’s new and noteworthy in machine tools for aerospace applications:
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MAKINO In late 2012, Makino introduced the EDBV3 Fast Hole Drill EDM specifically for aerospace blade and vane machining. This EDM has X, Y, Z axis travels of 370 mm, 270 mm and 500 mm (14.5 inches, 10.6 and 19.6 inches), work table dimensions of 250 mm by 270 mm and can handle workpieces up to five kilograms. “Its advanced portfolio of technologies, including back-strike prevention, two-axis rotary table and single-assembly automatic tool and guide change, provide the highest level of hole drilling speed and efficiency with exceptional quality and reliability,” says Rentschler, of the EDBV3. Makino’s G7 i Grinder five-axis horizontal machining centre, mean while, has X, Y, Z, axis travels of 690 mm, by 650 mm by 730 mm and can take a workpiece with a maximum diameter of 535 mm. “The G7 five-axis horizontal machining centre is a multipurpose machine capable of grinding, milling, drilling and tapping in a single platform. This capability enables aerospace manufacturers to eliminate non-value-added time from their blade and vane manufacturing processes through reduced set-up operations and eliminates the need for additional capital equipment investments,” says Rentschler.
The EDBV3 Fast Hole Drill EDM specifically for aerospace blade and vane machining
In summer 2013, Makino launched the a61nx-5E, a “rightsized” five-axis horizontal machining centre for complex aluminum aerospace parts. The a61nx-5E has three-point bed casting and tiered column structure, and X, Y and Z axis travels of 730 mm (28.7 inches), 730 mm and 680 mm (26.8 inches) respectively. www.makino.com
MITSUI SEIKI Mitsui Seiki’s five-axis CNC vertical machining centre called the Vertex 550-5XB was built with aerospace in mind. Introduced in 2013, the Vertex 550-5XB specializes in the production of turbine blades from forgings, castings, bar stock or solid billets of titanium and stainless steel. The machine has a footprint of 65 square feet, an X, Y, Z working envelope of 550 mm x 600 mm x 500 mm and rapid traverse rates in all linear axes of 48 m/min. Mitsui Seiki also has the HU100A-5XL — a heavy-duty horizontal machining centre — which can be used for aerospace purposes. Mitsui Seiki unveiled a HU100A-5XL at IMTS 2012 that boasted a X, Y, Z workzone capacity of 2000 mm x 1750 mm x 1400 mm. The HU100A-5XL can accommodate a weight up to 11,000 pounds (5,000 kilograms) and also features maximum spindle torque of 2,000 feet/pounds, a dual pallet changer, non-contact laser tool setting device and 3D tool compensation. www.mitsuiseiki.com
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MATSUURA Matsuura Machinery Corporation of Japan has added a high torque feature to the MAM72-100H five-axis horizontal machining centre (HMC) which excels at machining hard-to-cut metals such as stainless, Inconel and titanium. “The high-torque feature from Matsuura has three elements to the machine design. A rigid, stable, and precise machine construction: Matsuura opted to use the traditional horizontal machine construction format with a trunnion five axes table. High axial thrust characteristics: Generously sized ball-screws and powerful drive motors make this possible. A high-torque motor: The machine rigidity and the spindle torque characteristics need to complement each other. It doesn’t make sense to offer spindle torque beyond the capability of the machine structure,” says D’Alessio. “The MAM72-100H has very high dynamics for its size, 60 m/min in traverse and approximately 1G in acceleration. These characteristics are needed for certain applications (large impeller manufacturing, 3D surfacing or high volume aluminum machining),” continues D’Alessio. The MAM72-100H’s name reflects the fact it can run 72 hours in unattended fashion. This lights-out ability allows users to “better manage high mix/low volume production, typically associated with the aerospace sector,” says D’Alessio. www.matsuura.co.jp/english
SUNNEN Sunnen Products recently launched the SV-2000, SV-2400 and SV-2500 series of vertical honing machines. The machines can process bores ID’s from 3 mm to 300 mm in parts such as fuel injectors, hydraulic valves, piston pumps, engine/compressor cylinders, diesel cylinder liners, landing gears, etc. “With aerospace parts, often there are features where cracks could form from stress caused by the machining itself or by the surface finish left. If this feature is a bore, honing can be used to remove the stressed material left from machining and leave a smooth surface finish that is less likely to crack or fail. Turbine engine fan blades, turbine engine disks, and accumulators are examples of aerospace parts where honing is required to remove material stressed from machining and to provide a smoother surface finish than generated by the primary machining operation,” says Rich Moellenberg, manager of system sales at Sunnen. “The Sunnen SV-2000 series machines, SV-2400 series machines, and SV-2500 are controlled with an industrial PC. This high level of computing power allows these honing machines to precisely control the honing process [and provide] the conditions for aerospace parts to function properly. Aerospace materials and part designs are a challenge to machine and hone,” says Moellenberg. www.sunnen.com
Fives Cincinnati’s modular Precision Mill/Trim (PMT) system is a five-axis gantry machine tool for doing high-speed multi-processing of large, non-ferrous components, including composite structures, aluminum skins and fabrications, moulds, patterns, etc. The machine can be used for milling, drilling and trimming applications, and can be fitted with special heads for waterjet applications. “It’s primarily targeted for aerospace,” says Von Moll. The PMT system boasts an unlimited X-axis, a configurable Y-axis of 2 – 6 metres, Z-axis of 1, 1.5 or 2 metres, feed rates up to 60 m/min, five-sided part access and optional precision scale feedback. “It’s definitely a large work envelope machine,” notes Von Moll. www.fivesgroup.com/EN/ 38 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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Spin Doctors Pundits ponder spindles, past, present and future By Nate Hendley ......................................................................................................................................................................................
anadian Metalworking recently interviewed Gary Quirion, president of GMN USA, about the state of spindles and the future of spindle technology. Additional machine tool pundits were also questioned for their views. With its headquarters in Farmington, Connecticut, GMN USA repairs, designs and manufacturers spindles. The company’s parent firm, based in Nuremberg, Germany, boasts a century-old lineage. According to Quirion, aerospace is the most common machining application GMN is asked to design spindles for. He noted that the spindle market appears to have recovered from the recession of a few years ago (“our business is doing quite well,” he said) and commented on the relationship between grease-lubricated spindles and composites in machining circles. “The more composites, the more grease-lubricated
spindles you’ll see. They go hand-in-hand. Today, there are even composite car bodies,” he stated. The greasy spindle/composite relationship stems from the fact that composites and spindle coolant don’t mix (composites “don’t like contamination” is how Quirion put it). Hence, the need for grease-lubricated spindles as composite use grows. Quirion also touched on ‘non-conventional’ spindle use. “We’ve developed some testing applications. GMN just supplied a 400 kW spindle for testing an aircraft generator. The generator would normally be run by a small turbine engine. By replacing it, the company that makes this high-speed generator for aircraft use does not have to run a turbine engine—they can just use an electric spindle. Same power. It’s non-conventional spindle use, but GMN is known for that,” he stated.
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Quirion and his fellow industry experts proved particularly loquacious when it came to forecasting future spindle development. “Spindle design is usually evolutionary in nature, not revolutionary. Two leaps in spindle development were the introduction of high-frequency spindles in the 1950’s and the growth of automatic tool change spindle designs in the 1980’s. Future spindle designs will include more synchronous motor types and increased sensor capabilities. Synchronous, permanent magnet motor spindles develop more power and torque compared to similar sized asynchronous motor spindles. This is a critical advantage when a machine design requires a smaller, lighter spindle, i.e. multiple axis machines. The disadvantages are higher cost and complexity compared to more conventional asynchronous motor designs,” said Quirion. “In the near future, more and more spindles will incorporate a wide range of sensors for monitoring both the spindle condition and the machining processes. It is now common for spindles to have a number of thermistors to monitor motor and bearing temperatures. Becoming more prevalent in the future will be the use of internally mounted accelerometers to monitor spindle/process vibration levels and bearing condition, and sensors to measure shaft growth changes due to temperature variations generated during machining operations. Several companies now supply systems that will record the feedback from the various spindle mounted sensors. This information can be recalled to identify crash events, over-temperature conditions and high load machining operations,” he continued. For his part, Vince D’Alessio, executive vice-president of Elliott Matsuura Canada in Oakville, Ontario, offered a vision of speedy spindles. “Of course we will continue to see higher spindle speeds in the future. However, from my perspective it’s very important that users choose the best spindle configuration for their application. Today a good balanced spindle is in the 20,000 rpm range, providing good high-speed machining capabilities, and with some good bottom end, high-performance cutting. As spindle motor technology advances, we will probably see this balanced spindle arrangement creep up to the 25,000 to 30,000 rpm range,” said D’Alessio. The updated MAM72-100H five-axis horizontal machining centre from Matsuura cited in a recent Metalworking story on aerospace machining, boasts a high-torque spindle (451 Nm standard with 700 Nm optional) and a direct drive interface. “The spindle motor and the spindle cartridge are directly coupled with a ground high precision and balanced coupling. Matsuura has been using this spindle technology for more than 20 years,” said D’Alessio.
The MAM72-100H also comes equipped with sensors that “monitor and record temperature, lubrication and load. Vibration sensors are available as an option,” he added. Pundits were asked to respond to the following statement, made by Mark Rentschler, marketing manager, at Makino’s North American operations, headquartered in Mason, Ohio: “Spindle design is key for all machining processes, but particularly five-axis operations. When dealing with difficult to reach features that require tight tolerances, a rigid compact spindle design is essential to accomplishing the necessary specifications.” It’s an observation D’Alessio seconded. “I agree with this statement. Matsuura five axes machines are designed to allow the spindle to reach the center of the pallet with minimal interference. Also the spindle needs to be thermally stable to minimize axial growth. Matsuura uses the temperature sensor and software to compensate for any thermal expansion,” said D’Alessio. Scott Walker, president of Mitsui Seiki USA, headquar-
Big machines, like this Makino 5-axis machine, can be specified with different spindles depending on the application. This machine can be ordered with Cat #40 or Cat #50 spindles with speeds ranging from 12-18,000 RPM. What taper do you need? It depends on many factors, including depth of cut, feed rates and the need for commonality with existing tooling. www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 41
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“Keep in mind that it really depends on the application the end user is trying to accomplish. The spindle is like the engine in your car. The car won’t run without it. Same for the machine so the design objective is to provide a reliable spindle for the specified application.” tered in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey, also agreed, albeit with an important qualification. “Keep in mind that it really depends on the application the end user is trying to accomplish. The spindle is like the engine in your car. The car won’t run without it. Same for the machine so the design objective is to provide a reliable spindle for the specified application,” he said. The HU100A-5XL heavy duty horizontal machining center from Mitsui Seiki, cited in the aerospace machining story, offers a variety of spindle choices. These include fixed spindles from 6,000 rpm (50 hp, 2,000 ft/ pounds torque) for heavy milling up to 20,000 rpm for high speed applications. Tilt or swivel spindle choices are available from 6,000 rpm for heavy milling up to 12,000 rpm for high speed machining. Mitsui Seiki also offers quill type spindles for precision boring with shorter tools.
“Mitsui Seiki produces over 80 different spindle configurations. Future spindle designs are typically driven by our OEM customers. We will build spindle capabilities based on specific end user requirements. In 2014 we are planning on three new spindle configurations. These are for Boeing, G.E. and the U.S. Navy,” noted Walker. “Mitsui Seiki does provide spindle sensor options depending on the application. Some may be for controlling spindle growth in the Z axes, some for monitoring specific cutting conditions, some for evaluation of the spindle condition/wear, some for real time cutting adjustments. Again, as a custom application machine tool builder we will engineer to a specific requirement if requested by the OEM,” he continued. The aerospace machining article also referenced Mitsui Seiki’s Vertex 550-5XB vertical machining center.
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“Mitsui Seiki has incorporated its proven spindle plication adjustments from machine to machine. This configuration in the new Vertex 550-5XB,” states Mitsui is what needs to be developed in the future,” continued Seiki literature. Walker. “The model VX550-5X has been produced for over “In terms of predominate spindles in the market, eight years now and the new VX550-5XB (Single Blade most of the general purpose machines that go into job cutting configuration) is using the same spindles as shops will have a balance between high speed and torque our current production machine models. Typically we because the job shops do not always know what the next consider a ‘proven spindle configuration’ when we have job will be so the need a good range of capability. In our 50 spindles in operation with more than 20,000 hours case the direct drive 12,000 rpm, 30 kW spindle is most of spindle run time without failure. If there is a spindle popular for this type of end user,” he added. CM design problem you will typically see it over this many spindle and this amount of time,” said Walker. He had plenty to say on the future of spindle technology. “It is my opinion that the next step that needs to be considered is consistent dynamic spindle stiffness. Machine tool operators know that even the same machine models sitting next to each other on the shop floor do not always produce the same results and most of the time it is a function of spindle • Always in stock • Made from 4140 steel stiffness. Spindle builders typically grind spacers to preload the spindle • Made in the USA • Competitively Priced bearings and the higher the preload the stiffer the spindle stiffness. The typical way this is measured is to test run the spindle and see how much the spindle heats up. So it’s a thermal test to determine spindle stiffness,” said Walker. “What needs to be done is the spindle needs to be rotating and a load applied to the spindle to mirror a cutting condition and then measure the bending of the spindle with high precision gap sensors. This is very difficult to do and I have only seen one test stand that tried to do this at Boeing a few years ago. The other way is to ‘tap test’ the spindle to measure ISO 9000 Certied QMS its resonant frequency but typically you pick up other frequencies in the spindle structure too that makes isolating the appropriate spacer grinding needed to ‘match’ spindles in same model machines difficult. You need to DillonManufacturing, Inc. keep in mind that a few “tenths” on a spacer can be the difference between a good surface finish on a thin part Peter Seessle | Expertech Dist. & Tech. Inc. 44 Goodfellow Crest | Bolton, Ontario | (like a jet engine blade) when moving Phone: 647-960-4478 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | the same process on same model machines without having to make ap-
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‘The Haas Way’
The sprawling Haas compound; Oxnard, California.
The American machine tool giant prefers to manufacture on their own terms By Nicholas Healey ..................................................................................................................................................................................
alifornia is well known for its scenic coastline, and its traffic-choked highways. Once you start to get away from all that though, you quickly find yourself immersed in desert — the kind of place where you could watch your dog run away for days. It’s that sprawling landscape that makes Oxnard, California the perfect spot for the headquarters of Haas Automation. Part of the city lies on the coast, but most of it is expansive plains, providing much-needed space for the ever-growing machine tool manufacturer. The company was founded in 1983 by Gene Haas, in an area of Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley, but they got fully moved into their current location in 1997. The complex takes up the majority of the block it’s on in the city’s industrial park. The dark, gleaming windows and the bold red lettering across the façade give visitors the impression of gravitas as they pull up to the facility.
Inside, the lobby is lined with trophies dedicated to the efforts of the Haas-Stewart racing team, and includes a show room which houses the original VF1 — the company’s first ever machine (It was bought back from the original owner, restored, then given to Gene Haas as a birthday present). Upstairs, Scott Rathburn, the Marketing Product Manager with Haas, begins to show me around. Rathburn started with Haas in 1996, right on the cusp of the move to Oxnard, so he seems the perfect person to explain the history of the company’s expansion efforts. It’s quite something to see where the company is today, and consider how they’ve progressed over the years. In essence, it started as a job shop, run by Mr. Haas. As Rathburn tells it, Haas saw two employees using a drill press and with a laborious manual indexer, and figured there had to be a better way. One thing led to another and eventually Haas had a machine tool torn apart on the shop floor and decided that he and his colleague Kurt Zierhut — now Vice President of Electrical Engineering at the company — could build the machines themselves. Now, the company is one of the largest machine tool manufacturers in the world, employs around 1,000 people at their factory, and has its name on a NASCAR team. Quite the expansion, indeed. Up on second level of Building 1, we walk out to a balcony overlooking the yard between the various buildings. Workers move about and fork trucks zip around amongst the pallets filled with castings, or shipments ready to head out. The dry Californian climate affords
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them the luxury of planting some of their stock (such as castings) outdoors. In a colder, wetter climate, the need for more building space would be dramatic. “We moved out here, got started in 1996. There’s 420,000 square feet in this building (Building 1) and it’s split down the middle between machine shop and assembly,” Rathburn says. “We thought we’d never outgrow it and we outgrew it in a year. Added another 200,000 square feet (in new buildings). We outgrew that in about another two years, so added another 200,000 feet. We were at 820,000 for a number of years, and in ’06 we completed and moved into Building 4, which took us over a million square feet.” While we’re overlooking the yard, Rathburn points out the miles of land off in the distance, behind the company’s group of buildings. While he concedes the recent slowdown in the industry delayed the need for expansion, the company still has designs on future growth. “We already have Building 5 and Building 6 planned, permitted — and had them ready to go, then ran into some snags with the state of California. Right now we’re essentially in negotiations. “We own 86 acres out here, and right now we’ve got about 25 acres under roof — so we have plenty of room here to expand.”
Rathburn leads us back down onto the floor of Building 1. As he shows off the various assembly lines with half-built machines, he makes the point of noting how many Haas machines are being put to work in the shop. “About 70 per cent of the The first Haas machine. metal cutting machines in the factory are Haas machines,” Rathburn says, noting they supply machines for small to medium job shops, and simply don’t manufacture some of the larger machines they need. “We make all of our own shafts and spindles. We make all of our own gears. That’s kind of the ‘Haas-way’. We do as much in-house as possible.” The company has also made a big push to automate much of the process over the last decade. The move to automation was born out of necessity as they struggled to keep pace producing their spindle shafts. “You see a number of robotic cells here. All the FMS (functional movement systems), all the stuff like that, they all run basically lights out — pretty much 6, 7 days a week.” When the robots were first introduced the company found they were so successful that they just
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kept adding to the original ones. Today, the company boasts close to 30 robotic cells doing various tasks to keep production humming along. Everywhere we walk, it seems Rathburn finds an example of Haas’ industrious, “do-it-yourself” mentality. At one point he mentions the company’s efforts to recycle leftover swarf, and coolant (they boil off impurities in the coolant to make it reusable). Haas even go as far making their own energy on occasion — but like the gear-making taking that project on was also done out of necessity. When the land was first bought the company negotiated a heavily discounted price on their electricity for agreeing to be put on an interruptible power supply. For a time, they rarely encountered power issues — then the infamous Enron fiasco happened, and Haas suddenly found themselves in the midst of an energy crisis. True to their spirit, they purchased a 6,000 horsepower diesel turbine generator to keep pace with the incoming orders. “Every day around two o’clock we’d lose power — and most of the time we didn’t have a warning,” Rathburn said, shaking his head. “That destroys parts, so we had this generator installed, and it was almost every single day we’d switch over to the generator.” Those days are long in the past, but the company is fortunate to still have a backup plan in place to keep power outages from ever hurting the business. As we walk through the yard towards Building 4, Rathburn points out the lack of bay doors on Building 3, and notes how they needed to build an improved inventory building for the sake of getting orders to market faster. But the move into the new storage building (Building 4) came a time when the company was filling 1,000 orders a month. Rathburn laughs at the concept of moving their stock from one building to another while maintaining business as usual, calling it a “crazy time”. But despite the craziness of it, the company also capitalized on an opportunity to improve the situation. Standing on the balcony at Building 1 Rathburn pointed out that the new inventory building was 10 feet higher than its counterparts’. It’s scarcely noticeable from ground level, but seeing it from above, it’s a dramatic addition to the storage space. The additional storage from the height is also com-
pounded by a unique racking system that Haas employs. Some of the racks are a standard 12 feet apart, but others are a mere 6 feet apart, giving the company twice as much space on the floor in addition to the bit of extra height. The fork trucks that run between the narrow aisles are specially guided on a wire, and run back and forth on the line to keep them dead straight, lest they risk a catastrophic crash. On our way back through the yard, Rathburn points out a number of shipments ready to head out. He notes the increased — and normalized — volume of orders today compared to when the market for machine tools crashed hard in 2009. “We literally went from 1200 machines a month to about 350. Then at the end of 2011, it started coming back. By the end of 2012 we had got back to 1200-1250 machines. We’d gotten back to pre-recession levels.” Today, Haas is shipping machines to almost every imaginable locale. Of the ready-to-ship orders, the country names scrawled on the packaging read like the index of an atlas. The locations range from British Columbia, to India, to Russia. The shipments to Russia seem a bit surprising, but evidently the cold war is long dead, because Rathburn says, the American company has a heavy presence there, and in eastern Europe. “We sell a ton of machines going to Russia — it’s a huge market for us. The former Eastern Bloc countries were so starving for machine tools… they’re really hungry for education and manufacturing, so we’re seriously involved on the education front.” Same goes for North America, as Rathburn estimates there are probably 5,000 Haas machines in over 2,000 schools on the continent. The educational commitment is a clear sign that the manufacturer is not willing to rest on its laurels as it attempts to grow their footprint. All the while the company has managed to do things at their own pace, and to their own standard — the ‘Haas way’. And with so many more acres of land to grow, and nothing holding them back but their own ambition, one figures Haas can plan for many more buildings on the plains of Oxnard in the future. CM
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The Hardest Cut of All
Cutting Tools for Hard Metals
By Nate Hendley ...................................................................................................................................................................................... t’s tough to cut hard metal — that is, metal on the highperts have plenty of advice for cutting hard metals. end of the Rockwell hardness scale, metal that’s difficult “The best thing I can say about hard-milling or hardto machine, and metal that falls into both categories. turning is pre-planning. A lot of times when we’re called to a “Hard materials, such as titanium, are also difficult customer and they’re having issues, they haven’t planned,” to machine, pose a range of challenges to machinists. says Brian MacNeil, product manager for milling, at SandMany [machinists] focus on roughing and absolute metal vik Coromant Canada, in Mississauga, Ontario. removal rates (MRR). However, finishing in difficult to Cutting path, type of tools, and part quantity are all machine materials raises its own set of issues. One of things that should be pre-planned, he says. the biggest challenges in finishing is balancing productiv“To minimize wear rates, you need to optimize the ity and MRR, with the need for superior surface finishes machining parameters first. Due to the wear rate response and minimizing post process hand work,” notes Cliff from changes to parameters, it is best to maximize depth Flynn, director of research and development at Data of cut first, then feed rate, and finally cutting speed. Since Flute, Pittsfield, Massachusetts. increasing cutting speed creates the most heat, you want “Manufacturers are increasingly turning to High to maximize metal removal rate with the other parameters Temperature Alloys (HTAs) — sometimes called super first,” states Kurt Ludeking, product manager of turning alloys — for parts that will encounter harsh operating at Walter USA, in Waukesha, Wisconsin. environments. These high-temperature alloys generally Other tips: “Always use coolant. Even with close exhibit two key characteristics; the ability to withstand attention paid to minimizing the cutting forces and heat very high temperatures as well as a high level of corrogenerated in machining, there is still plenty of heat cresion resistance. The alloying elements that provide the ated. Using coolant minimizes the heat and wear rates. temperature and corrosion resistance give rise to a new Optimize the chipbreaker form to address the particular set of machining challenges, particularly with regard to forms of wear that are operating. For example, if chip tool life and tool effectiveness,” Flynn continues. hammering is an issue use a more open geometry ... and “There are four basic groups of high-temperature reduce feed rate. For notching, use an insert designed alloys; iron based, iron-nickel based, nickel based and for heat-resistant superalloys (HRSAs) ... to minimize cobalt based. They are grouped around the primary work hardening, use a tougher grade, and reduce cutting alloying element. It is also the primary alloying elements speed,” adds Ludeking. that give rise to the machining challenges,” he adds. Here’s a look at what’s new and noteworthy in cutting Given how difficult the task can be, cutting tool extools for hard metals:
SECO TOOLS At AeroDef 2014 in booth 119, Seco Tools LLC. will showcase one of the industry’s most comprehensive selections of advanced cutting tools for productively and profitably machining precision aircraft parts from extremely tough materials. The selection will include several new milling, turning and holemaking solutions the company has developed in response to specific aerospace and defense manufacturing needs. New solutions include: the CS100 ceramic grade that allows for higher cutting speeds when rough machining nickel-based superalloys; double-sided high-feed wiper inserts with an M6 chipbreaker for roughing and semi-finishing steel alloys; TH1000 and TH1500 grades that offer extreme wear resistance when turning superalloys and hardened steels; Turbo helical cutters for aggressive metal removal in shouldering operations; Jetstream Tooling® Duo technology that uses two highly precise coolant jets to cool the rake and clearance faces of the cutting
tool in turning operations; and Feedmax PCD drills that bring flexibility and performance to composite machining. Other aerospace and defense-related products Seco will have on display during the show include: High Feed 2 milling
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tools that provide high feed rates and small depths of cut in superalloys; Jabro JHP770 and JHP780 solid carbide end mills that offer high metal removal rates with chatter-free machining in roughing applications; the Jabro JC850 four-flute ball nose cutter for machining carbon fiber reinforced polymers; Jetstream Tooling that directs coolant directly to the insert when turning materials that are poor conductors of heat; the Secomax CBN170 grade for finish turning nickel-based superalloys; the CBN010 grade for turning hardened steels; and ME geometries that allows Seco’s Double Octomill face
milling cutter to cut freer in tough materials such as titanium, superalloys and Inconel. Seco applications experts will also be available at AeroDef to speak with manufacturers and share strategies for controlling chip flow and maximizing turning productivity, maintaining tight tolerances using complex machining strategies, increasing process security and hole quality, implementing complex machining strategies for high material removal rates and more. www.secotools.com/us
OSG offers a line of solid carbide drills and five-flute end mills for cutting hard metals. “Exopro WHO-Ni through coolant solid carbide drills have been specifically designed for drilling high nickel alloys as well as hardened steels up to 60 RC. WHO-Ni drills feature a sharp cutting edge geometry for excellent chip control and lower heat generation during the drilling process. WHO-Ni drills utilize a low helix geometry which improves drill rigidity and also provides superior hole precision,” says Craig Ramsey, Ontario regional sales manager at OSG Canada in Burlington, Ontario. Exopro WHO-Ni drills are available in both 3 x D and 5 x D lengths with sizes ranging from 1/8 – ½ inches (3.0 mm – 12.00 mm). The Exopro UVX-Ni line, meanwhile, “is an all new premium five-flute end mill series engineered for machining nickel based alloys (such as Inconel). UVX-Ni features include variable helix and index to reduce vibration along with a unique flute geometry for excellent chip formation as well as chip evacuation. UVX-Ni also has a proprietary cutting edge to reduce heat generated while in the cut thus reducing cutting forces for stable performance in difficult to machine high nickel alloys such as Inconel 718,” says Ramsey. www.osgcanada.com www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 49
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Walter USA has introduced two new Valenite ISO indexable inserts that are “specifically designed for heat resistant superalloy materials like Inconel, Waspaloy, Stellite and similar hard metals. “The coatings on these inserts are Walter’s Tiger-tec PVD aluminum oxide coating. The aluminum oxide provides excellent heat and wear resistance and since the coating is applied using PVD, it maintains the sharp cutting edge that is quite important when machining nickel, cobalt-, and iron-based heat-resistant alloys,” he adds. “Part of the challenge in cutting HRSA materials is that they demand competing features in the cutting tool. For example the work hardening tendency demands a very sharp cutting edge to minimize the cutting forces that work harden the material. But the high strength of these alloys also demands a very strong edge. The design of the NMS and NRS geometries deals with these competing demands through a unique cutting edge and chipbreaker design that is both strong and sharp,” says Ludeking. www.walter-tools.com/us
Sandvik Coromant recently released the GC4325, a newgeneration, coated cemented-carbide grade for steel turning that features a proprietary coating called Inveio. “Basically, what they’ve done is found a way to align all the crystals in the coating process in the same direction. They found a way to get the coating to align, which has produced a much stronger cutting edge [that’s also] more secure,” says MacNeil, of Inveio. Sandvik eventually plans to coat all new inserts with Inveio, says MacNeil. He rounds out a list of other Sandvik grades for hard metals: “When it comes to cemented carbides, 1010 grade in milling is our first choice. It’s an indexable grade capable of 60 RC ... 1115 grade for turning is our first choice. It’s an indexable grade capable of 60 RC.” www.sandvik.coromant.com
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DATA FLUTE Data Flute’s HTA series of end mills were developed specifically for “difficult to machine, high temperature alloys in the nickelbased and cobalt-based families,” according to Flynn. These alloys include Waspaloy, Hastelloy, Inconel 718 and Inconel 625 (nickel-based) and Stellite, Haynes 188 and Haynes 25 (cobalt-based). “The heat and corrosion resistance of both the nickel-based and cobalt-based alloys give rise to corresponding machining challenges. These materials generate a substantial amount of heat when machined. They are also highly abrasive to machine. These issues require a stronger edge than many other ferrous alloys and also a particular attention to coatings. An edge that is too thin or lacks sufficient strength will become brittle and break when subjected to high temperatures. Additionally, the high cobalt content alloys have a tendency to work-harden at high machining/
ISCAR Iscar has released the new P290 line of tools and inserts for machining titanium and Inconel. “P290 is transforming the long edge cutters on [titanium and Inconel]. The new rectangular inserts have two positive 18 mm long indexing options. They look like a high-speed roughing cutter,” says Tom Hagan, milling product manager, Iscar Canada in Oakville, ON. “P290 is an insert where we can reduce chip size (shred chips) which lets us reduce cutting pressure so we can maintain high productivity by increasing our cutting parameters,” says Hagan. “The serrations on the P290 insert’s cutting edges are designed to provide an overlapping effect between all adjacent tool pockets, providing a fully effective cutter configuration ... the inserts are symmetrical designs so that each insert can be mounted on any tool in the pocket,” he adds. The tool comes in five types: end mill, face mill, extended flute, shell mill and flex fit type (Iscar’s modular system). www.iscar.ca
cutting temperatures. All of these factors call for changes to the typical geometries used in cutting titanium and various grades of stainless. Our new HTA series addresses these challenges. We have incorporated a tapered core, specially designed flute geometries, edge geometries and indexed flutes. The combination ensures long tool life, material appropriate cutting action and harmonic dampening.” www.dataflute.com
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Saving Seconds Adding speed with quick-change tool systems
uick-change tool systems can save valuable pro duction time, are safe, and can lower machining tool investments. One of the critical measurements of machine shop productivity has always been equipment uptime, and in recent years that factor has been dependent on improvements that amount to a very few minutes or even seconds. In large production shops making long runs of metal and composite parts, the difference of making tool changes alone can add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars annually. One of the milestones in improving machining uptime was achieved in the 1990s with the advent of the Coro mant Capto quick-change tooling system by Sandvik Coromant, which resulted in up to a 25 per cent increase in productivity. More modern tooling is now taking those gains and reducing change time even further, taking tooling changes from minutes down to seconds. “One of the major factors behind our decision to incorporate the quick-change system is our goal of improving setup time,” explains Jimmy Lytle, President of Daystar Machining Technologies, Inc., an outfit based in Fletcher, North Carolina. The shop focuses on precision machining and fabrication with quick turnaround for short-run, prototype, and specialty-part production. “Now our set-up time has been reduced from minutes to seconds,” Lytle says. MAKING QUICK-CHANGE FASTER: Today, making quick tool changes and improving tooling life continues to be a priority with shops everywhere. Not only is the saving of set-up and changeover time increasingly valuable, but so is the flexibility and stability of the quick-change system, as well as the potential for reduced capital investments in tooling. A noteworthy development is the introduction of Solidfix, a versatile, modular quick-change collet system that enables machine operators to perform set-ups and changeovers in speeds of 15 seconds or less. Daystar recently installed the Solidfix system on two new lathes, live tooling Y-axis machines. “We have quick-change adapters on all the live tooling for those lathes,” Lytle says. “We can set the adapters out on the work bench and get everything ready for a setup. Then we are in and out of the machine very quickly.”
The adapters Lytle is referring to are a central advantage of the Solidfix quick-change system. Adapters are attached to individual tools and are quickly and easily inserted into a head via a bayonet-type mount that is then secured by simply turning a single nut using an Allen wrench. Various popular soft tools, such as live turrets, angle heads and static tools, can be interchanged with different size adapters. The system works with both older machining equipment and newer models. Developed and manufactured by Benz, Inc., this modular quick-change system saves shops several minutes of time for each set-up, and also reduces their investment in tooling. With conventional tooling, when shops finish a run they have to take out their driven tools, remove and clean the collet — a sometimes cumbersome operation — then install the new tooling and take offset measurements. Tasks like that can easily take two or three minutes. Using the Solidfix system, operators don’t have to remove the main tooling unit itself; they simply change the adapter, which holds the pre-measured tool. This also means that the machine shop doesn’t have to buy as many live tools — all they have to do is buy quick-change adapters. “We are able to switch from a collet chuck to a shell mill adapter to a solid end-mill holder without having to change to a different live tool holder for every application,” Lytle explains. “Using this quick-change system, we
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have one somewhat expensive tool holder and everything else is fairly inexpensive, which gives us a great deal of versatility without a major capital investment.” Large and small shops are able to use the Solidfix system to reduce the number of live tools or angle heads as the spindles can be changed from ER collet to mill arbor adapter, Wheldon or whistle notch adapter, shrink fit, and various special tooling. MORE PLUG AND PLAYABLE In developing its new modular system, Benz took the original quick-change technology and simplified it. Instead of requiring operators to spin on and tighten tooling in the holder using a wrench, the new system requires only a simple turn of an Allen wrench. Also, in a traditional quick-change system the operator has to remove the tool, install a new tool, then they have to touch-off their tool to ensure the offset is correct. With the Solidfix, they can preset tools on a granite surface plate. When their tool starts wearing or another type is required, they simply insert and secure the new tool. “Essentially, they’re putting the whole tool aggregate back in, and the repeatability is so accurate they can program in what they just measured off their height gauge so they don’t have to go through that scenario of touchingoff the tool, and then programming the offset,” explains Mike Starnes, Benz Sales Application Engineer. “So, Solidfix is really a plug-and-play system. Operators just switch out the soft tooling, and they’re all set.” AN ADDED MEASURE OF SAFETY When operators try to work quickly on a traditional set-up, they can be exposed to injury,” Starnes explains. “Normally, the cutting tool they are removing is very sharp. Even if it’s too dull to accurately machine a part, it’s still very sharp to the human skin. If the operator gets cut while handling one of those tools, the wound could be deep enough to require stitches. So, even highly experienced operators have to be very careful when handling cutting tools. When these mishaps occur, they have to go the nursing
station and at least get the wound cleaned up. In more serious cases, they may have to go offsite to a doctor or even the hospital. Of course when such injuries occur, even more production time may be lost.” Starnes adds that with the Solidfix system, operators are performing a much simpler task, which in most cases can be performed using one hand. Because of the ease of mounting and securing the adapter and tooling, exposure to potential injuries — and loss of operator time — is minimized. www.benz-inc.com
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THE BUSINESS OF TOOLING
Drilling: Get the (replaceable) point By John Mitchell, General Manager of Tungaloy Canada ..................................................................................................
eplaceable point drills are quickly replacing solid carbide drills in production hole-making applications. Solid carbide drills quickly took over the majority of the market, replacing high speed steel (HSS) drills as the norm for hole-making applications. The reasons were obvious: Speed, quality and cost per hole. Today replaceable point drills are quickly taking over solid carbide drills for the same reasons. However, the determination of these attributes may not be as obvious as they were for solid carbide compared to HSS drills. Take the typical production drilling application. Assume five CNC machines running a 12mm diameter drill. If the tool life is four hours, each machine would use two drills per shift. Assuming two shifts, this shop
John Mitchell, General Manager of Tungaloy Canada
would be implementing 20 drills per day. Of course any production facility would need back-up drills in case of catastrophic failure. Â Therefore another 20 drills should be readily available to deal with any breakage and avoid downtime. Solid carbide drills are expensive and in order to make them economical, one would need to implement a regrind program. A good regrind company could likely turn these drills around in 2 weeks. That means in order to maintain an uninterrupted flow of regrinds the production drilling company would need to have 20 drills/day x 10 working days in the system or 200 drills at any given time plus of course at least 20 drills as back up for a total of 220 drills. The market price for a 12mm solid carbide drill is around $200. 220 drills times $200 per
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drill is a $44,000 investment. That’s a lot of money to tie up. Another major factor with a regrind program is the logistics. In order to keep a constant flow of drills into the shop, the shop could not wait one week and send out all of the required drills for the week and expect to not run out. In order to have a constant flow of reground drills the shop would need to send out 20 drills per day. Of course the shop would also need to receive 20 drills per day. This is a lot of hidden costs, tracking and inventory management. Another issue with reground carbide drills is the performance of the reground drill. Typically a reground drill should perform at about 80% of the original drill. When a drill wears, chips or breaks the regrind house needs to remove the wear land, chip or cut off the drill to where the drill broke and repoint the drill. Of course this affects the length of the drill. Drills require clearance in the hole to prevent rubbing. For this reason drills have a back taper to provide clearance inside the hole. When a drill is shortened the diameter of the drill is reduced. The reduced drill diameter may create quality issues in the hole and may produce undersized holes. When a drill comes back from regrind the length of the drill is unknown. The grinder may have had to remove ERI America_CMW_02-14.pdf
very little material do to wear or the grinder may have had to remove a lot to remove chips in the drills point. In some cases the drill must be cut off and re-pointed. Since the drill length is unknown the machine operator or set up person running the drill would need to stop the machine, remove the adapter, remove the old drill and replace it with a reground drill of unknown length. The drill would need to be set up using a height gage and put back into the machine. The replaceable point is cost effective as just the point is made of carbide and the body is made of steel. The disposable (recyclable) nature of the replaceable point requires no regrinds. Therefore there is no need for excessive inventory to feed a regrind cycle. There is no excessive cash out lay to fill the regrind cycle. There is no drop in the performance of the drill when the point is changed as there is with a reground point. The diameter will not change from one exchangeable drill point to the other as it may with reground solid carbide. The set up time for an exchangeable point drill is minimal compared to solid carbide drills since the length of the drill does not change as it does with a reground solid carbide drill. Indexing the replaceable point may be done right on the machine. The cost savings, cycle time reductions and quality improvements are very real with replaceable point drills.
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Mitutoyo Canada celebrates four decades in Canada
n October 16th, Mitutoyo Canada opened the doors to the firm’s Mississauga, Ontario headquarters for a grand re-opening of the newly renovated office interior and updated Metrology Centre. Events began in mid-afternoon with a ribbon-cutting ceremony with over 100 invited guests and staff in attendance. Participating was Mayor Hazel McCallion; Pat Saito-Ward 9 Councillor; Toru Nakagawa, President of Mitutoyo Corporation, Shigeyuki Sasaki, President of Mitutoyo Canada Inc.; Toshihide Numata, Special Advisor to Mitutoyo Corporation; and Jay Summers, Executive VP Mitutoyo Canada Inc. Mr. Numata, Advisor (formerly Chairman of Mitutoyo Corporation and son of the Founder Yehan Numata) recalled the early development of Mitutoyo in a North American market dominated by British and U.S. instrument makers, including a dramatic meeting between his father and Henry Sharpe, president of Brown & Sharpe at that firm’s Rhode Island headquarters. Mr. Numata reminisced that when the facility was originally built on Meadowvale Blvd. it was surrounded by fields as far as the eye could see, and was thrilled that the area had grown into a thriving industrial park. Mayor Hazel McCallion and Ward 9 Councillor Pat Saito congratulated the company on its 40 years of success, with continued best wishes for the next forty years and hoped for further growth in the city. After ribbon-cutting ceremonies, guests were invited to participate in building tours to view the newly renovated office interiors with special stops on the tour at the Mitutoyo Calibration Laboratory, (CLAS accredited to ISO 17025), as well as the Repair Department which repairs all Mitutoyo small tools in-house. Afterward, the M3 Metrology Centre was a hub of activity for all to observe the latest in metrology that Mitutoyo has to offer, watch product demonstrations and confer with our Sales and Application specialists. Some of the main highlights were the high-speed, high-throughput MACH-3A CMM for in-line production, with robot supplied by ABB Inc.; Mach Ko-ga-me CMM for small volume flexible inspection that can be used for in-line and side-line production inspection; Mitutoyo’s unique Surface Finish Probe for CMM allowing seamless dimensional part measurement and surface finish measurement. The evening wrapped up with dinner and speeches from Mr. Nakagawa who thanked the guests in attendance, including past employees for their service and dedication which helped pave the way for our success, and our product distributors and business partners for their support and collaboration over the years. October 17th was a full day Open House with over 120 registered guests, many of whom attended free seminars presented on GD&T, Surface Finish, and Form Measurement. “Ask the Expert” personnel were on hand to answer any technical questions, and customers were encouraged to bring along their parts or prints to discuss with a measurement application specialist. “We want our customers to see for themselves first hand that Mitutoyo Canada has the finest product, expertise and facilities to support all their needs – before, during and after an inspection system purchase,” says Peter Detmers, VP of Sales. “We were proud to open our doors in thanks for the support of our partners in precision.”
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EMO schedule confirmed until 2027 After Milan hosts in 2015, the next two shows will head back to Hannover BRUSSELS, Belgium — The European Association of the Machine Tool Industry (CECIMO), owner of the brand EMO, signed an agreement to secure the organization of the next six editions of the EMO trade show. The deal was reached with the German machine tool builders’ association (VDW) and Fondazione UCIMU, the operating structure of UCIMU-Sistemi per produrre, the association of Italian manufacturers of machine tools, robots, and automation systems. The upcoming EMO shows will use the following schedule: 2017: Hannover, Germany 2019: Hannover, Germany 2021: Milan, Italy 2023: Hannover, Germany 2025: Hannover, Germany 2027: Milan, Italy Italy will host the 2015 edition of EMO at the Fiera Milano exhibition centre from October 5-10. EMO covers the entire bandwidth of the global machine tool market. At its last edition, EMO Hannover 2013, taking place from 16 to 21 September, over 2,100 exhibitors from 43 different countries were present to showcase their
innovations to industrial users from around the world under the event’s slogan of ‘Intelligence in Production’. Over the six days of EMO, the event attracted a total of just under 145,000 trade visitors from over 100 different nations. Visitors from outside Germany numbered more than 50,000, or one in three. Since its creation in 1950, CECIMO has committed itself to the promotion of the machine tool industry worldwide and a machine tool exhibition was created for this reason in 1951. It was organized for the first time under the name of EMO (Exposition de la Machine-Outil) in 1975 in Paris. For more information visit: www.cecimo.eu
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Countdown to FABTECH Canada Bigger and better in 2014
By Janine Saperson, Event Manager, FABTECH Canada ............................................................................................................................
s I walked the floors of Chicago’s McCormick Place at the US edition of FABTECH in November, I was struck by the sheer volume of foot traffic around me. Booths were packed, the floor was noisy with both machinery and conversation. Most of the time it seemed that I couldn’t turn around without bumping into someone, or stand and chat to exhibitors without feeling like I was in the way of a customer, and claustrophobia aside, that’s fantastic news. If Chicago was any indication, then there’s no question – manufacturing is back, and people are ready to embrace that with a trip to see live machinery and do comparative shopping on the trade show floor. Canada is eagerly looking forward to our own edition of FABTECH on March 18-20, 2014. After the success of the inaugural FABTECH Canada show in 2012, we are going to be back at the Toronto Congress Centre with an expanded show. I’m very excited about the potential for this show. This year, we’ve added two new partners to the event, in the Precision Metalforming Association (PMA), and The Chemical Coaters Association International (CCAI). And of course, our other partners, the American Welding Society (AWS), and the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association (FMA) will be involved again this year as well.
As a result of these added partnerships, we’ll have an expanded show floor with more exhibitors than last year, giving attendees more to see under one roof. And so far our preregistration numbers are very healthy, and all signs are pointing to a great show. This year we’ll also have a jam-packed conference schedule for those of you who are interested in learning more about a specific area of your industry. There will be conferences on practically everything forming, fabricating, welding, coating and finishing has to offer, and there will be something for everyone, whether you’re management or you work on the shop floor. Some topics that might pique your interest are: advancements in fiber/solid state laser technology, the skills gap and its impact on manufacturers, fundamentals of pipeline welding, the essentials of finishing, and the use of robotics in metalforming. A detailed version of the schedule can be found online at: fabtechcanada.com/education-program. Pricing for individual sessions, or the full conference is also available online. For more information on the event we encourage you to visit our website: www.fabtechcanada.com. Follow the links online to get yourself registered, and we’ll see you at the show!
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FABRICATING & WELDING NEWS
Canadian Welding Association CanWeld Conference 4th annual, held in Niagara Falls
John Goldak explaining welding inside a nuclear reactor.
iagara Falls served as the picturesque background for the 4th Annual Canadian Welding Association CanWeld Conference, where several hundred delegates gathered from all corners of the country. They came to this city to attend a wide range of seminars on the business of welding. The conference opened on October 28, 2013 with a seminar delivered by Dr. Peter Warrian, Senior Researcher at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto. His presentation titled “The Future of the Canadian Steel Industry” noted that the steel and welding industries are fused together at the hip, and how by 2015, the Canadian steel industry will see greater steel capacity than in 2007.
Amongst the other highlights of the conference was John Goldak’s presentation on “Web Based Simulation of Welding and Welded Structures,” where he explained in detail how his firm and others collaborated on the project to weld inside the nuclear reactor core of the Chalk River nuclear plant and bring that facility back online. York Chan had a related seminar on the topic of maintenance welding in Ontario Power Generation’s Nuclear Facilities. Although very specific subject matters, both speakers showed how complex problems can be solved using technology and skills that are Canadian based.
60 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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FABRICATING & WELDING NEWS
Ottawa set to launch bidding for public-private St. Lawrence bridge partnership MONTREAL — Transport Canada said it’s ready to open bidding for a new public-private bridge spanning the St. Lawrence River in Quebec. After completing a business case examining the technical and financial components of such a project — estimates put the cost for a six-lane bridge at between $3-billion and $5-billion — the federal ministry said it will proceed with a procurement process this spring as it targets an in-service date of 2018. “We will deliver a safe, reliable, long-lasting bridge, constructed in a timely, cost effective, responsible manner that meets the expectations of Montrealers,” said infrastructure Minister Denis Lebel, who was in Montreal to make the announcement. According to Transport Canada, the business case found a public-private partnership (PPP) to be the most cost-effective way to build the new bridge that will replace the aging Champlain Bridge. According to numbers released by the ministry, the business case found an estimated cost saving of between five and 18 per cent compared to a public-only bridge. An estimated $20-billion worth in goods crosses the St. Lawrence each year.
The automobile and truck lanes on the new bridge — three heading in either direction — will make up just one part of the massive infrastructure, dubbed the new bridge for the St. Lawrence (NBSL) project. The feds are looking to also include a dedicated corridor for light rail traffic, and a multi-use path for walking, running and bicycling. A two-phase procurement process will begin this spring with a request for qualifications (RFQ), followed by a request for proposals (RFP) set to launch in the summer of 2014. A winning bid will be chosen by the following spring, with Ottawa looking for construction to start in 2015. Consultancy firm Arup Canada Inc. evaluated 13 design options for the bridge project as part of the business case, though Transport Canada was careful to note that “the final design for the new bridge will only be determined once the procurement process is finished.” The feds first announced plans to replace the Champlain Bridge in October 2011.The new bridge will be open to motor vehicle traffic by 2018, with the rest of the project to be completed by 2020. With files from Canadian Manufacturing Online
62 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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FABRICATING & WELDING NEWS
New Automatic Carbide Circular Cold Saw for Ferrous Materials
andsaw, circular cold saw and structural fabricating equipment manufacturer Behringer, has introduced the HCS-180 high-performance automatic carbide circular cold saw for cutting of ferrous material at 90 degrees. The new saw is ideal for cutting high-alloyed heat resistant steels along with other ferrous materials. With a blade diameter ranging from 16.5” (419mm) to 20.5” (520mm), the new HCS-180 saw provides fast, precision cutting of round stock up to 7” (180mm) in diameter. A fully automatic high-performance circular cold saw, the HCS-180 is designed for maximum yield applications. The saw is equipped with a PLC-controller which permits programming the number of pieces to be cut, length, discharge handling and other parameters. Also included are two non-contact light barriers which detect the leading and tail edge of the material being cut and then send start and end data to the PLC. The Behringer machine uses long lasting carbide-tipped disposable saw blades. A 34.8 HP frequency controlled blade drive enables blade speeds of 20 to 250 RPM which accommodates most wet or dry sawing applications.
Behringer’s robust machine design helps assure long blade life. Vibration absorbers mounted between the machine base and the sawing unit further enhance long blade life by eliminating vibrations which also produces exceptional cut quality. Blade life is further extended by sensor-driven cutting pressure monitoring with a worn saw blade interrupt feature. www.behringersaws.com
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www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 63
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The Human Touch Hand-held welding is evolving to meet a faster, more precise world By Nestor Gula .........................................................................................................................................................................................
elding automation is the hot ticket item these days with more and more robotic units being introduced by manufacturers and integrators. The benefits of automation and robotics is trumpeted loud and far. The truth of the matter is that traditional hand-held welding is still the primary method of welding metals together. “The lion’s share of every welding manufacturer’s sales is in TIG, engine-driven welder/generators and semi-automatic MIG welding equipment,” said Bruce Clark, Director, Marketing and Export Sales for Lincoln Electric Canada. “In terms of unit sales, the vast majority of the company’s equipment sales are intended for hand-held welding applications.” Tom Wermert, Senior Brand Manager at Victor Technologies said their sales of hand-held welders was “95 percent versus 5 percent for automated. Hand-held welding is used in all industries because there are instances that you just cannot automate the product because of the size or location.” Even though, in terms of volume, hand held welding absolutely dwarfs automated welding, “the amount of production from automated welding is much larger,” said Neil Armstrong, General Manager and VP of Operations for ESAB Canada. “When you think of robotic welding in a Magna plant, they are spitting out a couple of million parts a year. Whereas manual welding tends to be more custom made production.” Part of the reason that manual welding is still a huge factor in industry is that they carry much less capital costs and are simpler to implement and use. “You can buy a simple welder for about 400 dollars and an industrial welder for about 10,000 dollars. Where a robotic system would be at least 100,000 dollars,” he said. “The capital costs are magnitudes greater. With the robotic welder you have to understand how to program it and it is a totally different realm. However, automated welding will continue to grow because of the shortage of skilled workers.” The convenience and the speed of hand-held welding means that it will never be eliminated from the industrial realm. “Welding is still a tactile process. There is really no industry that has eliminated the need for hand-held welding,’ said Clark. “Production welding still has fit up, tack welding or repair. Every industry has maintenance departments.” In any welding process there are a lot of
variables that must be factored into the process. “Part size and variation from part to part play a huge role in determining if automation can be applied,” he said. “Think about a wind tower support structure. The size of the parts and the custom nature of the weldment drive the solution to semi-automatic welding. An aircraft carrier, with a seven year build cycle and hundreds of workers all over the site is only practical for hand-held welding. Infrastructure projects, like bridges, building erection, pipelines — all have a place for hand-held welding processes because of the sites, the part size and the customized nature of the parts.” While majority of all the work is still on manual the is going in the direction of automated welding according to Blain Parkinson, Director of Sales and Marketing at Fronius. “If you don’t have a lot of parts or similar pieces over and over again — manual welding is still needed,” he said. “We developed the TPSI — around some core improvement of the welding process. The user interacts with an industrial touch screen. There are simple instructions — even short instructional videos can be viewed on the welder.” As the skill set of new workers diminishes new welding systems must be implemented to catch and correct any errors. “In terms of welding what our customers have told us that beyond rugged quality machine which presents a value, they want a machine that is simple to operate,” said Armstrong. “They want a machine that is very intuitive and easy to set up. When you have that brain inside a welding machine you can build in algo-
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rithms to make it simpler. We have this technology called Qset whereby you basically set up plate thickness, the gas and it will select the best parameters to weld with. One of the most important developments in welding over the past two decades has been the rise of the inverter-based welding power source. “All of the benefits of the inverter platform welders, like our Power Wave power sources, provide to robotic welding are trickling down to hand-held welding,” said Clark. “Due the fast switching speeds of the of the advanced power electronics in inverter-based welders, the machines respond much faster to variation at the arc. In hand-held welding, much of that variation comes from the human operator — variations in stickout, travel speed, work angle — all affect the final results. When using an inverter-based power source, there is the potential to provide greater control over heat input, weld bead appearance, deposition and travel speed. Enhanced waveform control, optimized for
every application, can help when tackling out-of-position welding applications or welding on complex alloys.” Weld gun technology has also kept pace with the developments in power sources. “One of the things we hear when we go and talk to the end users, they want the guns and torches to be versatile enough to handle the various operational environments,” said Indy Datta, Senior Brand Manager at Victor. “On the lower end when a person has a 200-watt machine and might be crawling into small tight joins and doing other production so the guns have to be designed to be ergonomic so that when a person is holding it for six or seven hours a day there is no discomfort. The main costs in a production welding environment is down time. When anything goes down, either hand-held or robotic, it costs the shop. Anything we can design in the gun to reduce the downtime, whether it is the discomfort of the operator, or changing the consumables less then you are reducing down time.”
INVERTER-BASED WELDING MACHINES The Heliarc family of inverter-based welding machines deliver increased energy efficiency and functionality in a package that light and small. Introduced at Fabtech 2013, the new Heliarc family of inverterbased welding machines are lighter and smaller than old SCR technology machines. The optimized arc settings enable the operator to weld aluminium using a pointed tungsten tip. The tungsten remains pointed improving arc starts, heat input and arc stability, thus assuring high quality welds. In AC GTAW mode, the power source uses high frequency (HF) only to initiate the arc, compared to older power source technology which requires HF to be continuous. Heliarc’s control panel has five clear, logical work zones that allow the operator to choose the options and settings needed for fast set up and excellent arc control. There are three Heliarc models: the Heliarc 281i, 280 Amp unit for single-phase 230 connections; Heliarc 283i, 280 Amp unit for
3-phase 460 connections; the Heliarc 353i, a 350 Amp 3-phase 460 unit for increased power when welding thicker materials. www.esabna.com
LIGHTWEIGHT EQUIPMENT FOR HEAVYWEIGHT ACTION The Dynasty 280 and Maxstar 280 TIG welders, deliver more power and provide the ability to weld metal up to 3/8-inch thick and are significantly lighter, more portable and use less energy than machines of similar output capabilities. Miller’s new Dynasty 280 and Maxstar 280 TIG welders weigh in at just 52 and 47 pounds and are able to weld metal up to 3/8-inch thick. The AC/DC TIG/Stick-capable Dynasty 280 is intended for industrial manufacturing applications and heavy fabrication, while the DC TIG/Stick-capable Maxstar 280 is intended for industrial applications, construction and heavy
fabrication. Both units deliver up to 280 amps of output power along with a smooth, stable arc to handle any job. Advanced technologies are incorporated to improve weld results, such as www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 65
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a pulse feature, which can reduce heat input, increase travel speeds and improve arc directional control. Auto-Line technology provides added convenience in any job setting by allowing the machine to be hooked up to any input voltage within the specified range. Both base models provide an operator-friendly
interface for intuitive operation, while DX models include quick access to advanced features for expert users. On all models, exclusive Pro-Set technology eliminates guesswork by providing pre-set welding parameters. www.MillerWelds.com
DIESEL ENGINE DRIVE WELDER DELIVERS RUGGED POWER Suitable for pipeline, construction and maintenance welding applications, the new Classic 300 HE and SAE-300 HE diesel engine drive welders from Lincoln Electric combine the performance of the traditional, pure DC generator with a rugged, robust design. The pure DC generator welding output produces the welding arc preferred by pipeline operators and contractors, providing precise arc control for stick, TIG, MIG, flux-cored and gouging processes in demanding code applications. Both deliver 3,000 total watts of AC power from a 120V or 240V duplex receptacle for power tools and lights. The Classic 300 HE offers the Kubota D1503 engine, while the SAE-300 HE offers a choice between the Kubota D1503 and soon the Perkins 403F-15T. The Kubota engine delivers 15 percent fuel savings at 300A at low idle vs. the previous Classic 300 D model. The Perkins engine will deliver 13 percent savings at 300A and 20 percent at low idle vs. the previous SAE-300 model. All-day welding is possible thanks to a 16-gallon (60.6 liter) plastic fuel tank. www.lincolnelectric.com
MIG, STICK AND LIFT TIG OUTPUTS USING COMMON 115V HOUSEHOLD POWER The Tweco Fabricator 141i is the first welding power source from Victor Technologies to carry the Tweco brand name with the black and yellow Tweco colours. This multi-process welder is built to meet professional standards and runs off 115V household power. Featuring MIG, Stick and TIG it has push button controls, LED displays and a Quick Start Guide to enable welders to set up the unit and start welding in a very short time. An easy to use set-up chart inside the side panel guides users with helpful diagrams and welding parameter recommendations. Weighing just 32.2 lbs it offers 10 to 140 amps of power for MIG & Lift TIG welding and 90 amps for Stick welding. victortechnologies.com/tweco/
BUILT-IN INTELLIGENCE AND END-TO-END MODULARITY The TPS/iâ€™s built-in intelligence and end-to-end modularity provide a firm foundation for future innovations, ensuring high security of investment The new TPS/i (Trans Process Solution) welding platform from Fronius USA boosts welding technology with the industryâ€™s first-ever touch screen. This 7-inch touch-sensitive display and user interface allows welders and maintenance technicians to easily organize the system settings. The system empowers welding technicians to focus on the weld rather than the machine by providing an accurate and stable arc, better penetration, higher efficiency, and noticeably less spatter. The SpeedNet high-speed bus that links system components to the power source transmits data much faster than its predecessors, ensuring short reaction times and superior control. The controllability of the wire feeder helps to achieve even better results at the end of the welding operation as the wire electrode is retracted at the same time the welding current is limited, effectively preventing both droplet formation (otherwise unavoidable) and spattering. The TPS/i is available in 300A, 400A and 500A models, with a 600A model to launch in 2014. www.fronius-usa.com 66 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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Want to grow your market share? Gain exposure and get face-to-face with decision makers from Quebecâ€™s manufacturing industry by exhibiting at MMTS 2014.
Montreal Manufacturing Technology Show | May 12â€“14 2014 | Place Bonaventure | Montreal QC
To book your exhibit space, visit mmts.ca or call Julie Pike 1-888-322-7333 ext. 4471.
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Fiber or CO2 ... do we have a winner? Fiber lasers are encroaching on the territory once held by CO2 lasers By Nestor Gula ................................................................................
hile not new, fiber lasers are really coming into their own as prices fall and their capability increases. Once only able to cut thin material, fiber lasers are now competing with CO2 lasers since they can now cut thicker material and are more flexible for different manufacturing environments. “Any industry that uses a CO2 laser or turret punch to manufacture part or blanks should look into a fiber laser,” says Nicholas McCauley, Fiber Laser Specialist at Salvagnini. “I am not saying that it will be a perfect fit for all who look. We think that fiber lasers especially fit for subcontracts, furniture manufacturing, food equipment
manufacturing, HVAC, electrical enclosure manufacturing, and elevators.” Fiber laser’s prime advantage is that they can cut thin metals very fast, up to 2-3 times that of the same wattage CO2 laser. “This is due to the wavelength of the laser and smaller kerf which result in less material needed to be removed from the cut,” says Matt Garbarino, Marketing Manager for Cincinnati Incorporated. “Companies that process mostly thinner metals, either mild or stainless steels will see the largest productivity gains using this technology.” If a manufacturer cuts many different types of metal,
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a fiber laser can accommodate this need. “If you need to cut highly reflective materials such as brass and copper, CO2 lasers are usually not an option whereas fiber lasers can easily cut these materials,” said Sanjay Garg, Senior Engineer on the laser team at Hypertherm. Highly reflective materials will almost completely reflect the 10.6 micrometer wavelength of the CO2 laser. Major speed increases can be had when cutting stainless steel and even aluminium. “One interesting area is in cutting galvanized steel — fiber seems to cut better in galvanized steel than CO2 — so any industry using galvanized can benefit — agricultural manufacturers of grain bins, for instance, said Jeff Hahn, national laser product manager, MC Machinery Systems Inc./Mitsubishi Laser. “Just like in other materials, you’re cutting faster in galvanized steel, meaning automation could be coming into play for those who hadn’t previously considered it. The idea is to ensure manpower isn’t the bottleneck, as a standalone machine will process material faster than you can load and unload it.” Fiber lasers have a shorter wavelength (1 micrometer) and higher beam quality than industrial CO2 lasers. “Taken together, this means that the beams from fiber lasers can be focused to smaller spot sizes than can the beams of CO2 lasers,” said Terry VanderWert, President of Prima Power Laserdyne. “Therefore, fiber lasers are more effective for applications that benefit from narrow cut width, small hole diameter, and narrow welds.” COST ADVANTAGE Fiber lasers are very efficient cutting systems and can lead to great savings, meaning greater profit, in terms of increased productivity with the added advantage of savings in energy costs. “Operating costs are 50% lower with fiber technology mostly due to the higher electrical efficiency of the fiber source. Fiber lasers do not use resonator optics or beam path delivery optics,” said Frank Arteaga, Head of Product Marketing at Bystronics. “Fiber laser uses fiber optic technology to both create the laser beam and also deliver the beam to the cutting head, eliminating the need to replace optics on a periodic basis.” There is no laser gas, no internal mirrors and no moving parts in a fiber laser. “This lowers cost of maintenance and downtime for maintenance,” said Jason Hillenbrand, Laser Product Manager at Amada America Inc. “Additionally, fiber will use anywhere from 1/3 to 1/4 the amount of electricity as a CO2. In many states, energy credits have been provided to our customers for installing our fiber laser. Significant credits.” “If you really want to take advantage of the fiber laser capabilities than you should opt for a high dynamic fiber
laser machine that permits high speed processing. Those machines incorporate most of the time linear motor technology which is not inexpensive and can explain a higher machine cost of 25% or more versus an average CO2 laser system,” Stefan Colle, Laser Product Sales Manager at LVD Strippit. “However the running cost with a fiber is significant lower versus CO2. Because of their design, fiber lasers require virtually no maintenance. Due to a higher efficiency (30%) versus 10% with the CO2 laser the fiber lasers are saving a lot of energy cost versus the CO2 laser.” Capital costs can frighten some manufacturers away from fiber lasers. “While solid-state lasers typically require a greater initial investment, they can be substantially cheaper machines from both a cost of ownership perspective, as well as from a cost-per-part perspective,” said Brett Thompson, Sales Engineer, TruLaser Product Group at Trumpf Inc. “There is less variability in the process. Because of the consistent nature of the solidstate laser cutting process, there’s less cost associated with things that are typically more difficult to quantify, such as downtime due to focal checks, nozzle centering requirements, et al.” WEIGHING THE OPTIONS While a fiber lasers forte is on thinner material recent advances have made the systems much more flexible. It really depends on your definition of thin. “The fiber laser can cut a similar range of material types and thickness as the CO2 laser,” said Marc Lobit, Marketing Manager for Mazak Optonics Corporation. “However when material thickness are greater than 12mm, particularly in mild steel, the CO2 laser can provide a slightly better edge quality and in some cases faster processing speeds in thicker steel applications.” The 1 micron wavelength of the fiber laser produces a smaller spot size and resulting kerf. “This needs to be addressed when cutting thicker materials which require a wider kerf to expel molten material, said Bob Kloczkowski, Regional Sales Manager for Rofin-Sinar, Inc. “Advanced cutting techniques and parameters can overcome this issue. Depending on the OEM or integrator of the fiber laser cutting system, the cutting techniques are an important factor to consider. “With the introduction of BrightLine fiber, there are fewer limitations in the material type and thickness solid-state lasers can process with speed and reliability,” said Thompson. “A sheet metal part cut from 2-inch stainless steel, for example, is only possible with a CO2 laser, while copper can be processed only on a machine with a solid-state laser. This shows a grey area still exists, but BrightLine fiber has made the gap much smaller.” www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 69
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L3 MINIMIZES CONSUMPTION Featuring mechanical control solutions, original programming and nesting software, the L3 assures ease of use and maximum flexibility and productivity. The system has a focusing head with a single optic for high quality cutting across the entire range of thicknesses, assuring fast production changeovers and slashing retooling times. The characteristics of the fiber source and the optical chain developed by Salvagnini, comprising the fiber that transports the beam and the focusing head, generate a laser beam with a high power density for high-speed cutting (more than 60 m/min) on medium and thin material and high-quality cutting on thicker sheets. www.salvagnini.com
5KW OF POWER The TruLaser 5030 fiber has increased cutting capability in material thickness and speed due to the added power of the 5kW disk laser. This system can cut mild steel up to 1” and depending upon material type and thickness, achieve cutting speeds up to five times faster than is possible on a comparable CO2 machine. The machine uses the advantages found in the solid-state laser to achieve very high cutting speeds in thin sheet without losing the capability to cut thicker material. It not only cuts mild steel, stainless steel and aluminum cost-effectively, but also non-ferrous metals such as copper and brass, up to 0.4” thick. www.us.trumpf.com
FLEXIBLE PROCESSING OF PARTS The Electra FL fiber laser cutting system is available in three power ranges — 2k, 3k and 4k. It offers high speed thin sheet processing, low operating cost and the ability to cut a wide range of ferrous and non-ferrous materials. The Touch-L, a 19” touch screen and graphic user interface efficiently guides the user through all necessary manmachine interactions. It also incorporates a part programming and nesting feature to import parts directly to the control, apply cutting technology and nest sheets at the machine. www.strippit.com
V F M B
FIBER LASER PROCESSES A WIDE RANGE OF METALS Designed for cutting, welding and drilling the new Prima Power Laserdyne 430 series of fiber systems offers great flexibility and options and multiple configurations for maximum manufacturing flexibility, rapid prototyping and quick changeovers. Suitable for medical devices, surgical instruments, metal forming, and drawn, thermoformed, punched and stamped parts to pressure valves, fluid power and firearm components, this new laser system provides C (rotary) axis motion of 900 degrees, and D (tilt) axis motion of 300 degrees. www.primapower.com
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4kW PERFORMANCE FROM 2kW Providing up to 4 kilowatts of output power, the ENSIS-3015AJ from Amada provides the flexibility to cut both thick and thin metals simply by changing the beam configuration electronically. Previously a condenser lens had to be manually changed in order to adjust the beam configuration to cut different types of metals. This new system will save time, costs and increasing productivity for metal manufacturers. The new fiber lasers now have the ability to cut metals that used to require 4kW of power to now use only 2kW of power to achieve the same cutting performance with high beam quality. www.amada.com
HIGH-POWER FIBER LASER The electrical consumption of the Bystronic BySprint Fiber is up 70% less than conventional CO2 lasers. The result is lower operating and maintenance costs, in addition to significant energy savings as a result of using the Fiber 4000 laser source. Featuring up to 2.5 times faster cutting speeds in the material range under 1/8” thick due to the high energy of the Fiber laser beam, the cutting head has been optimized enabling it to cut both thin and thick material with optimum performance, providing job shops with the optimum in machine flexibility. In addition to the 5’ x 10’ cutting area of the 3015 model, a larger BySprint 4020 model provides a cutting area of 6’ x 13’. www.bystronicusa.com
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THICKER AND FASTER CUTTING Designed to process reflective materials with greater thicknesses and at greater speeds than its CO2 counterpart, the Optiplex Fiber cuts up to 0.750” in CRS. With a rapid traverse rate of up to 4,724 ipm, the rugged construction of this system provides heightened productivity, reliability, and greater part throughput. The machine uses the Mazak PreView 2 CNC control which features a user-friendly 15” touch-screen control and automatically determines the required processing conditions for the material prior to cutting. www.mazakoptonics.com
FIBER LASER FUSION The Mitsubishi Laser NX-F 3015 2 comes standard with a fiber laser resonator and a z-axis linear drive, a preset auto focus processing head and a safety cover. The machine also features a multi-chamber dust-collection mechanism, and a camera for material alignment. This head position camera allows the operator to make head adjustments even if the work piece is far away. The Eco Mode reduces cost during standby by up to 70 per cent. The system includes a timing calculator that allows the machine to deliver fast rise time when the laser needs the power. www.mitsubishi-laser.com
BOOST CUTTING SPEED WHILE REDUCING OPERATING COSTS The CL-940 fiber laser system from E-CI features fast, reliable linear drive motors, easy-to-use touch screen control, comes in either 5’x10’ or 6’x12’ table sizes, dual pallet configurations, flexible glass fiber beam delivery and a magnetically-coupled break-away laser head protection. It has low operating cost and excells at fast cutting on thin materials. With a 2 years parts warranty this unit can interface with modular material handling systems. www.e-ci.com
FULLY OPTIMIZED CUTTING SYSTEM The Hypertherm HyIntensity Fiber Laser system consists of a 1.0 kW fiber laser (HFL010), 1.5 kW (HFL015), 2.0 kW (HFL020), 3.0 kW (HFL030). All systems have the ability to cut and mark with the same consumables for easy process changeover and efficient operation and feature easy plug and play integration. www.hypertherm.com
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The three flavours of press brakes Hydraulic press brakes are losing out to the new electric and hybrid systems By Nestor Gula .........................................................................................................................................................................................
he traditional press brake is a big hydraulic machine that uses technology that was initially created in ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt and refined by the ancient Greeks. This technology is great and virtually bulletproof, but we humans can never let things alone so tried and true hydraulic press brakes have been upgraded by the use of electric servo motors and the use of pulleys and belts (another ancient adaptation). The main reason for the rise of the electric press brake is speed. From a productivity standpoint, the main advantage of an electrical press brake is revealed when you step on the pedal to do a stroke on a part to make the bend. “In a hydraulic system there will be an acceleration. It takes a little bit of time to get up to speed where in an electrical system it is almost instantaneous,” said Scott Ottens, bending product manager for Amada America Inc. “The acceleration curve is very steep. The electric brake would complete its cycle about 20 per cent faster than a hydraulic brake would, given the same power.” The advantage of electrical press brakes is most evident on the production of small parts. “The biggest advantage of so called electrical press brakes are the rapid acceleration and deceleration of the bending ram compounded with elimination of hydraulic valve shift time between speed changes. These features alone can half the machine cycle time,” said Paul LeTang, Product Manager, Press Brakes, Bystronic Inc. “Why strictly small parts? Once the bend part gets above 4 feet or so the material handling consumes up to 90% of the throughput and setup time consumes about another 5%, so the total productivity gain is minimal on large parts.” When perusing the specifications of press brakes some hydraulic systems will look quicker strictly on inches-per-minute on the down stroke. “Hydraulic numbers can be higher than electric,” said Paul Croft, Bending Product Manager from Prima Power. “Where we gain an advantage or draw equal is in the production speeds. Even though the stroke down will be 400 inches per minute verses 250 inches per minute, there are times that a hydraulic needs valves to open with the electric it is just an on and off switch. The electric will be faster in a production environment.” While the time differences
do seem small, in a production environment where the machine is set to run almost continuosly, this will add up to a large savings. CONSUMPTION The electric press brakes available now use less power to generate comparable tonnages than their hydraulic counterparts. “Electric give you an advantage in power consumption although how much you get really depends on what you electric costs are,” said Tom Bailey, product manager for Trumpf Inc. “In North America in general electrical costs are not very high relatively speaking. When you are looking at other developed countries, especially western Europe they tend to have very high power consumption costs so that a machine that saves a few kilowatts of power when it is in operation makes a big difference.” In a conventional hydraulic system there is a motor and a pump that are running the whole time whether the press brake is making parts or not. On the other hand, an electric press brake is not consuming much or any electricity until you step on the pedal to make the part. The electric press brake does not have hydraulic fluids in them. “You have cut the cut the cost of hydraulic fluid and the variance of a hydraulic fluid system,” said Ottens. “You change the fluid because after so many hours of being under pressure, heating up and cooling down, the fluid actually starts to break down and it has to be changed out. Typically in a press brake you need to do this after about 2,000 hours.”
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Not having fluid will make the press brake more efficient and accurate. A hydraulic system can have variances in power and accuracy depending on temperature and the state of the fluid. “The speed and positioning will be generally better on an electric drive machine than on a hydraulic machine, said Bailey. “An electric drive system can handle a higher resolution for positioning than a hydraulic system. This means you can start to position the axis of the press brake in millionths of an inch instead of thousands or ten thousands of an inch which is typical of a hydraulic system. You have a much finer control for positioning when you use an electric press brake as opposed to a hydraulic system.” ELECTRIC OR HYBRID There are two basic types of electric press brakes – screw type and belt-and-pulley. In the former, an electric motor screws the brake down much like a traditional hydraulic press. In the latter system a motor drives a belt that is connected to a series of pulleys which forces the brake down. “The belt and pulley system basically distributes the force across the entire bed of the machine,” said Croft. “That then eliminates the need for crowning on the press brakes as you would have on a conventional press brake to compensate for the angle deflection on the bed of most conventional hydraulic
press brakes.” Everywhere were you have the pulley with the belt winding across the machine, at that point you have the weight evenly distributed. “So on a 100-ton machine, if there are 10 pulleys across that machine, that tonnage is divided evenly across those pulleys so we do not have the deflection in the machine,” he said. We are distributing the force evenly across the bed. So if you are bending in the middle or on the left or on the right you don’t have to worry about any deflection.” With hybrid systems, the press brake uses both hydraulic cylinder technology and also a servo motor drive that functions like a screw drive. “When the motor turns in one direction the ram comes down, when the motor turns in the other direction the ram goes up,” said LeTang. “So instead of controlling the oil flow with servo-valves, to the top and bottom of the cylinders, as in conventional hydraulic, the hybrid system directly servo-drives pump rotation.” AUTOMATION There is no inherit difference in automating a hydraulic, electric of hybrid system. “One potential difference with an automated electric system is because an electric system can move faster than a hydraulic system, if you have a very fast robot integrated to it you can actually work the machine faster than you can with a human
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operator there,” said Bailey. “There are a lot of integrators out there that can take an off the shelf industrial robot from any number of manufacturers and integrate them into pretty much any press brake. The problem with these types of setups is that integration usually is not perfect. Because the robot and the press brake is not really designed to work together so
you just kind of do the best you can and patch the things together and make them work in conjunction. A better automated solution is where the system is designed from the start to be fully integrated so the brake and the robot are designed to work together. There is more seamless integration there. You get much easier operation of the system.”
Electric Press Brakes ELECTRIC/HYDRAULIC WITH 3D SIMULATION The Amada HDS 1703NT is an 187 ton, down acting, electric/ hydraulic press brake with a bed length of 10 feet The Amada HD series has an AMNC-PC control, which is used to control the ram, backgauge and other appropriate functions and is equipped with Bend Indicator (BI) sensors that utilize probe and laser technology. The included 3D simulation makes bending solutions easier to resolve and ensures error-free processing. The HD1703 NT has an accurate ram repeatability of ±0.00004”. www.amada.com
The Amada HDS 1703NT is an 187 ton, down acting, electric/ hydraulic press brake with a bed length of 10 feet
NEW PRESS BRAKE TOOLING Bystronic Inc. has introduced a new line of press brake tooling, with the Bystronic XPT and RF-A tooling series. The Bystronic XPT tooling is compatible with existing Wila® NSCL ll type hydraulic clamping and tooling systems, offering customers the flexibility to expand upon existing tooling systems. The Bystronic RF-A tooling is new and maintains high quality tooling features, with the added benefit of increased open height and 100% compatibility with the Bystronic bending database at the machine control. Features include selfseating and segmented front-loading tooling technology, precision ground and hardened surfaces for long tool life and the RF-A upper and lower hydraulic clamping systems. Bystronic will offer RF-A as an option on all new Bystronic press brakes sold in North America in 2014. www.bystronic.com
TURNKEY BENDING SYSTEM The TruBend Cell 7000 is comprised of several components: a TruBend 7036 Cell Edition press brake, the BendMaster bending robot, the LoadMaster Bend material handling unit, a pallet system and tracks, all within an enclosure that requires only 69 square feet of floor space. The TruBend 7036 Cell Edition features a press force of 36 metric tons and an electric high torque motor for high speed acceleration. Intelligent back gauges built from lightweight materials enable parts to be positioned quickly, to achieve a maximum pressing speed of 2 in/ sec. With precision and repeatability, the BendMaster’s grippers can position components with a sheet thickness up to 0.3 inch. Flexible loading arrangements allow for up to 24 different blanks or 4,800 parts to be accurately delivered to the machine. With an average cycle time This complete cell is a turnkey bending system that of four seconds per bend, it delivers parts twice as fast as conventional bending cells. will spit out parts in about 4 seconds www.trumpf.com 76 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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VERSATILITY AND ACCURACY Available in three models, Prima Power’s eP-0520(55 tons), eP1030 ( 105 tons) and eP-1336 (130 tons), offer press tonnage and bending length to meet any production requirement. The eP series of press brakes have servo-electric drive system for manufacturing efficiency and productivity, greater versatility, outstanding accuracy, lower power consumption, less maintenance and no oil to purchase and dispose of. The pulley-belt system actuated by Prima Electro servo-drives distributes the bending force over the whole bending length. The systems come with the Prima Electro Open Control that is a MS Windows based user interface with an operator friendly 17” touch screen. www.primapower.com
PERFORMANCE AND VALUE The PPEC from LVD Strippit is a mid-range bending solution offering a balanced mix of performance and value and comes in 4-axis, 5-axis, 6-axis and 7-axis models. Equipped with LVD’s new CADMAN Lite control it offers 2D graphic programming with automatic collision detection, direct angle or quick bend programming and connection with LVD’s CADMAN-B offline programming software. www.lvdstrippit.com www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 77
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MARK TO LAST Performance long after labels and ink wear away By Ted Janusz ..........................................................................................................................................................................................
irect Part Marking (DPM) is intended to deliver a ‘cast in stone’ permanence long after a label, ink mark, or sticker has worn away. This form of part tracking presents the challenge of serialization, identification and test data to be retrievable many years after manufacture. Sometimes that legibility is meant for camera-reading devices. Newly expanded capabilities of DPM technologies can replace previous common and complex methods. Can an automatically controlled stylus write as well as a manual engraving tool, chemical etching, or ink? Yes, with consistency and minus any toxic chemicals or fading. Automatic update of codes with relation to date and time, plus the ability to issue relevant data to ‘print’ test results on a part surface directly ‘certifies’ a product and can inhibit counterfeiting. What is going to happen to the part after it is marked? Do coatings and other surface altering processes come into play? Can a stylus etch a complex logo or diagram on a hardened steel (60RHC) part? Yes, and with a true type font if need be. Dual valve control or spring return pneumatic stylus and electromagnetic stylus developments have come a long way recently. Microdot and Scribe markers, using tungsten carbide tools, have stepped out of the box to provide new answers for your marking needs. These developments address the challenges of quality part marking over a wide variety of surface shapes and materials. The consumables of such systems are o-rings and springs, but the stylus tip can be economically re-sharpened to a degree before needing replacement. Legibility and consistency is not only key for human readable data but also for camera/readers. Recent designs in stylus and scribe marking can meet requirements on metals, plastics and even certain types of rubber surfaces, tasks once reserved for lasers. This improved technology can result in cost savings in equipment, system configuration, consumables, and maintenance over other marking methods.
Let’s have a look what advantages are gained when implementing the correct Microdot or Scribe marking methods.
Small characters for small spaces — the construction of a Microdot and Scribe stylus has the tungsten carbide tip traveling up and down at a controlled adjustable frequency within a bearing-like surface for precision movement. This higher resolution makes for quality marks that are very legible even at only 1mm character size. The height, width, and depth of the characters produced by the low stress impact stylus are programmable for print to fit.
Part geometry challenges — shafts, tubing, and varied shapes — some Microdot stylus models have an adjustable ‘throw’ of up to 14mm and maintain mark consistency. This allows for a ‘gray zone’ suited to pro-
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duce even depth marking on curved and varied and even beveled surfaces. The need to move the marker or the part may no longer be necessary for small variances when the stylus reaches out to do all the work.
Deep marking prior to coating and treatment — some Microdot stylus tips with beveled points can mark as much as 1mm deep into mild steel using a pneumatic Microdot marker. Parts can be painted, treated, even galvanized afterwards with legible results. Portability with versatility — small, low weight portable units can be adjusted to accommodate deep marking prior to paint pipes, weldments, and fabrications, yet
be versatile enough to mark a thin nameplate or metal tube. Bracket-column design quickly converts a portable to a bench top operator marking station. This spreads the utility of a Microdot marker to return investment.
Marking of diagrams, shapes, and logos — a Microdot or Scribe marker can act as a ‘drawing machine’ for diagrams, logos, shapes, and symbols to be permanently marked on the part or nameplate. Quality marking of fonts — there is almost no limit to have a desired font on the part or nameplate. The marker controller is smart enough to allow for downloads of true type fonts from the Internet and applied to the part surface.
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Marking for a camera — a Microdot stylus can address a part surface in four ways. Each programmable approach is meant to produce a camera legible DPM without the need to prepare the surface beforehand. ECC200 encryption codes in line and dot, dots only, line and circles, and even squares are possible. Dot size is controlled by strike force, repetition, and stylus tip shape. This method can allow some plastics to be ECC200 coded along with human readable text. Marking areas, obstacles, and projections on parts — command of the stylus is possible in three or more axes of motion. A program can contain instructions to move around a projection, mark into a channel, and instead of returning to a home position, go to a park position with relation to the part geometry for effective cycle time and motion. These units come in a variety of models and marking areas, even in the form of a SCARA robot arm to ‘reach’ into a subassembly to accurately mark it despite obstructions. One marking head comes with a 500 x 300mm marking zone to mark perhaps a tray of 64 parts all at one go. These sustainable and versatile tools act as miniature machine tools doing what they are engineered to do — write on metal and material. Attaching a Z and W-axis option converts the marker into a small machining system, able to rotate the part, synchronize for diagrams and logos, and adjust for variations in height. Marking heads can also be mounted on actuators and robot end effectors to take the marker to the part. Again, the stylus is made to do all the work. Engraving hollow metal with less noise — a Scribe stylus uses low air pressure to strike and drag on the hollow metal surface to ‘engrave’ characters and diagrams onto the part for a continuous line, high quality mark done quietly. The only sound you hear is a slight tapping noise of the stylus when it rises up and down between characters and shapes. Laser markers have come out of the laboratory — there are a number of enhanced capabilities that applications can benefit from:
Laser markers built for factory automation One might ask if laser marking is the optimum choice for a truly permanent mark on metals, plastics, and a wide variety of other materials. Altering the color of a material (or coating) with foaming, annealing, etching and engraving are the common techniques used in laser marking. Digital self-calibrating galvos allow for installation of lasers on multi axis applications. These high-speed galvos are used for on-the-fly marking via encoder feedback. Internal reflective filters mean that you can mark polished shiny surfaces without fear of damaging the laser. Theoretically a fiber laser is designed for a MTBF of 100,000 marking hours. Recently, laser markers have come down in price, up in reliability, and feature telediagnostics for real time support and remote analysis. Remote analysis is a key element in keeping uptime in the marking process. High contrast marking is now obtainable on materials like aluminum by expansion of the frequency range of the fiber laser diode control. A CO2 laser marker can be used for clearly marking of plastics, wood, glass, leather and other materials. Fiber lasers with modest wattages (12 to 40) can provide surface prep prior to marking to increase the level of contrast, especially on cast or rough metal surfaces.
How durable can part marking be? This is the serial number from one of the F1 rocket engines that propelled Apollo 11 to the moon 44 years ago. It was recently recovered from the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean by a Bezos Family Foundation expedition. Image courtesy space.com
DO YOUR DIRECT PART MARKING (DPM) DILIGENCE These improvements in direct part marking technologies can meet new challenges of part geometry, depth, quality, noise issues, camera legibility, integration, and even act as a drawing machine. It is essential to get your part samples test marked for feasibility, cycle time, and best marker package for the job and budget. Obtaining that ‘proof in hand’ helps assure your projects’ success. Ted Januz is sales manager for Robert I. Robotics Inc. the firm has been in the DPM business since 1993, providing a wide variety of marking solutions including installation assistance, spare parts, and support services. Robert I. Robotics offers a wide selection of Microdot, Scribe, Fiber Lasers and CO2 Lasers from RMU Marking. See www.robertirobotics.com. for additional information.
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Invented by Salvagnini, Perfected by Salvagnini The new, expanded and redesigned PERformER series of machines, which includes the brand new P1 and P2-25 panel benders, is the result of 35 years of continuous improvement from the company that invented the category. A highly competitive alternative to conventional press brakes More productive than a press brake, these semi-automatic machines are perfect for short run jobs that feature complex shapes and require quick or zero setup time â€“ all without the need for higher levels of automation.
With universal tooling, zero setup time, Automated Bending Technology (ABT â„˘ ), and reduced energy consumption, the family of PERformER panel benders from Salvagnini can serve as both a partforming workhorse for job shops or as the ideal, flexible component to eliminate bottlenecks in an OEM environment. Lean. Efficient. Accurate. With a payback measured in months, not years, Salvagnini PERformER panel benders are economical to own, simple to operate, flexible, efficient and highly accurate. Contact Salvagnini today. Salvagnini panel benders. The first. And the best.
New in 2013, the Salvagnini P1 panel bender is ideal for thinner materials (0.02" â€“ 0.05") and for smaller parts (62" x 40")
Now available in two sizes: the P2Xe-21 to accommodate 98" X 60" sheet dimensions, and the P2Xe-25 for 110" X 60" sheets.
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Probing Questions Dafydd Williams on in-machine probing By Jim Anderton, Editor ...................................................................
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ith multiple turning and milling axes plus in machine tool handling capability with dozens of tools available, it’s no surprise that the next frontier in high productivity milling and turning is full system automation. Pallet changers and pick-and-place robotics are becoming commonplace in automated manufacturing cells, but in many operations the process must be stopped for dimensional checks. Even here, the process is changing, as multi-axis capability and big tool cassettes allow advanced users to take critical quality functions into the working envelope. Can you simply add a probe to existing tooling? It’s not quite that simple, and Canadian Metalworking sat down with Renishaw Canada Limited Director and General Manager Dafydd Williams to find out more:
Canadian Metalworking: In any measuring process a safe assumption is that instruments and fixtures should be more precise than the attribute being measured, sometimes an order of magnitude more precise. Can a spindle mounted probe in a modern five-axis machine offer that kind of repeatability? Williams: “There’s not a single answer to that question, unfortunately. The key is repeatability; you absolutely need repeatability in any measurement system. When we look at any machine tool we focus on repeatability of that tool, because we know what the probe’s “overhead” is. We ball bar test machines to benchmark them and understand what their performance is. Then we calibrate using an artifact, in the environment in which it will be probing.”
If you probe a simple shape that’s similar in size and shape to the feature you’re cutting, with the unknown feature measured perhaps on a coordinate measuring machine, you can very quickly ascertain the performance of the machine tool in measuring that feature. It’s a generic artifact. At the Renishaw production process, the artifact lives inside the machine tool, which is geometrically representative of the part that you’re cutting and is made from the same material. If you’re cutting aluminum alloy, the artifact will be made from the same alloy. It lives in the same environment as the parts to be cut, at the same temperature, in the same coolant. Now when we probe we can expect a good result and if we don’t get that result, we know we have a problem with the machine tool. We can also probe during the cut to update temperature offsets. Now we’ve gone from an open ended process where we assume accuracy, cut the part, take it out of the machine and measure it, hoping that nothing in that long cutting chain went wrong, into what I call a deterministic process for that part. And that’s the key; we’re using the probe to understand what’s going on right now. So, from a tool path perspective, you can determine if a specific attribute or programmed toolpath is the problem part way through the cutting process. For example, let’s say the machine cuts a hole that’s undersized. Why? Temperature. We compared it with artifact, but the artifact is undersized as well. It’s actually a good hole..at the right temperature the part will be the right size.”
Canadian Metalworking: Historically fixture-based gaging began with a surface plate or ‘tombstone’ to provide a zero datum reference point for measuring. Can a machine tool provide a consistent reference plane or point from which to measure? Williams: “The way Renishaw uses probing in our own manufacturing system is fundamentally to use the probe for process control. It can be used for job set up, or inspection of the finished work cut job, but the real power of the probe is in controlling the process. That’s where the real value is. In order to do that on a machine where you’re cutting on the same structure on which you’re measuring, you have to verify that in process. If you get bogged down in the complexity, it sounds and feels like a difficult thing to do. In reality it’s not; it’s very simple.
For very small work on mini machining centres, this Hexagon IRP40.50 probe has a diameter of 25 millimeters and a length of 44.2 millimeters (without shank and stylus), allowing the mini-probe fits in any small machining center and even leaves enough room to measure on the Z axis without a danger of collision. The IRP40.50 uses a low probing force of 0.7 N (XY), and communicates with a high rate infrared transmission system. www.hexagonmetrology.us www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 83
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This Renishaw OSP60 probe has an analogue sensor with 0.1 μm resolution in three dimensions and provides a continuous deflection output that is combined with machine position to derive the true location of the part surface. Measuring 1000 true 3D data points per second, the system allows work piece measurement, inspection, adaptive machining and on-machine process control, whilst optimizing machine utilization and cycle time. www.renishaw.com
Canadian Metalworking: How often does the probe touch the work piece and the artifact? Williams: “That’s a very good question. That’s really down to understanding the variability, capturing the variability in your process. If you look at our process, which is well documented online, you’ll see that we control and probe the artifact during set up and also control and probe the artifact during machine warm-up, which is also a critical time, but once we cut the first part and the first part is on size, then we machine the rest. During the process however, we check the variables. We check the tool sizes and we check that the tools are there, and aren’t broken. Those things need to be there, so we use either a laser or touch probe to check tool length and diameter. Tool wear of course is a factor. Those are simple updates that can be made in process.” Canadian Metalworking: What about cycle time? When you’re probing the part in the machine, you are adding to machine cycle time. Is it a given that you’re saving time measuring the part in process versus the conventional way? Williams: My answer to that question would be, ‘define cycle time.’ Metal that comes in at one end of my factory and goes out the other end 24 hours later, is not my definition of cycle time. Cycle time is not how long it takes to make a part, it’s how long it takes to make
a good part. If you are busy machining scrap, what’s your cycle time? Once you can appreciate that, I think the argument changes quite quickly.
Canadian Metalworking: Of course the larger the volume of parts produced with fewer stoppages, shortens the effective cycle time. It looks like it’s between the additional machine time to probe, versus the time saved by fewer reject parts. Williams: “There are different approaches to know what you’re doing, depending on your process. It’s typically volume driven. For example, for a very high-volume automotive part, there won’t be a lot of in cycle process control going on. In that case you have a process that’s been heavily pre-engineered with all the process variables already captured and in control. That’s not a practical solution for a thousand-piece run however, especially if you’re making 1000 different pieces. Is in cycle probing the panacea? It’s a valuable tool for a lot of applications.” Canadian Metalworking: Is this sellable capability? Can shops use in machine probing as tool to win new business? Williams: “Absolutely. Ultimately reducing scrap, reducing cycle time and improving efficiency means profitability … and increased efficiency means increase competitiveness.” CM
84 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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Job Shop Snapshot
Addley Precision by Nate Hendley
e are a custom job shop, engaged in a broad spectrum of services,” says Gerry Addley, about the namesake company he owns and operates with wife and business partner, Connie Addley. A concept-to-design manufacturing facility, Addley Precision is located in Midland, Ontario near Georgian Bay. The company specializes in precision dies, moulds, gauges, end of arm tooling, automatic tooling, lift assists, handling aids, and precision welded and fabricated components. Addley makes its own line of end effector components (for end of arm tooling) and has provided engineering certified lift assist products for the automotive sector. “I started in my single car garage in 1998. Grew to 1,000 square feet in an industrial unit then to 2,300 square feet, then 4,300 but I wanted to own my own building, so
I purchased a 116 acre farm on the outskirts of town and built a small 3,200 square foot building. We now have five CNC mills, two CNC lathes and a full complement of manual equipment along with full service welding and fabrication equipment,” says Addley. The firm has CWB welding certification, he adds. The first machine the company acquired was a South Bend lathe. The Addley’s recently purchased a pair of Takumi CNC vertical machining centres and are looking to buy a CNC plasma cutter at some point in the near-future. In terms of personnel, Addley Precision currently boasts 10 employees. Addley says his biggest challenge is “the fluctuating economy and growing restrictions and fees on development.” Asked to comment on the state of Canada’s machine shop sector, Addley sounds a pessimistic note. “Not strong in Ontario. Good out west. Alberta will have to carry the domestic economy for Canada. Business is leaving Ontario and moving to less repressive areas of Canada or abroad,” he states. www.addleyprecision.com
ESSENTIAL NUMBERS FOUNDED: 1998 OWNERS: Connie & Gerry Addley SIZE: 3,200 sq. ft. NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES: 10 SPECIALTIES: Precision dies, moulds, gauges, end of arm tooling, automatic tool, lift assists, handling aids, and precision welded and fabricated components.
MARKETS SERVED: Automotive. FIRST MACHINE: South Bend lathe. MOST RECENT ADDITION: A pair of Takumi CNC vertical machinging centres. FUTURE PLANS: Acquisition of a CNC plasma cutter.
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Breathe Easy Keeping grinding particulates out of workers’ lungs is simple and a safety must for shops everywhere By Jim Anderton, Editor ............................................................................................................................................................................
W In enclosed spaces where air must be supplied, this 3M Versaflo unit filters oil mists, particulates, water and approximately 95% of the carbon monoxide in the air supply line, all hazards possible when using plant compressed air for breathing in an enclosed space.
hen it comes to workplace safety, there’s a spectrum of rules and regulations administered by federal, provincial and territorial governments, not to mention quasi-governmental organizations like Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board. Most regulations are designed to protect workers from the clear and present dangers of toxic chemicals, injury and exposure to dangerous levels of radiation, light, noise, fumes and dust. Dust, or more generically airborne particulates, is a natural consequence of both offhand and machine grinding operations. It’s easy to control in machine work through wet grinding or dust extraction systems, but many Canadian shops, especially fabricating shops, rely on hand grinding with angle grinders for weld cleanup, deburring, snagging castings and surface prep. All generate fine particles which can be inhaled by workers, a situation that’s exacerbated by new advanced abrasives that have dramatically increased material removal rates. Protection against sparks and flying particles with goggles, face shields and gloves is a given, but the effects of breathing airborne particulates aren’t immediately apparent. It’s both the employer’s and worker’s responsibility to provide and use personal protective equipment that includes protection against inhaled grinding dust.
THREE DIFFERENT TECHNIQUES FOR PREVENTING DUST INHALATION The first is simple filtration and is the most common. These masks are usually disposable and are widely used and low cost. The filtering ability of the simple masks varies widely, but the US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) uses a common rating system widely used in Canada. N95 rated masks are the most common approved type mask, filtering at least 95% of airborne particles. Surgical masks are commonly N95 rated, but not all N95 masks are approved for medical 88 | FEBRUARY 2014 | www.canadianmetalworking.com
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use. Surgical masks are not necessary for grinding operations, but if the environment contains liquid mists such as coolants and cutting oils, masks require R95, P95 or better certification for oil resistance. Conventional N95 masks are cheap and easy to use, but must be worn properly to be effective. Ideally the mask should have two straps and have a metal strip allowing the user to form the mask around the bridge of the nose. Depending on the metal and the grinding environment, it’s possible that grinding dust is accompanied by vapors or toxic gases created by chemical reactions due to the heat of grinding and the large surface area of metal particles exposed to oxygen in the air. Some like beryllium are toxic, while others, notably magnesium, are serious fire hazards. If the metal substrate produces toxic gases, the paper mask is inadequate. In that case the cartridge type respirator must be used with cartridges specifically rated for toxic chemical exposure. Similar to gas masks, they are available in full face or half mask models. Depending on the type of exposure, the replaceable cartridges may become ineffective before the resistance to airflow becomes noticeable by the user. It’s essential to swap out cartridges at the manufacturer’s recommended interval for the type of exposure, regardless of airflow through the mask.
NIOSH ratings for particulate filtering respirators N95 — Filters at least 95% of airborne particles. Not resistant to oil. Surgical N95 — A NIOSH-approved N95 respirator that has also been cleared by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a surgical mask. N99 — Filters at least 99% of airborne particles. Not resistant to oil. N100 — Filters at least 99.97% of airborne particles. Not resistant to oil. R95 — Filters at least 95% of airborne particles. Somewhat resistant to oil. P95 — Filters at least 95% of airborne particles. Strongly resistant to oil. P99 — Filters at least 99% of airborne particles. Strongly resistant to oil. P100 — Filters at least 99.97% of airborne particles. Strongly resistant to oil.
Both these types filter aerosols and suspended particulates out of ambient air, but both require atmospheres with normal, breathable amounts of oxygen. In the chemical, process and oil and gas industries however, working inside pipes, tanks and pressure vessels as well as other enclosed spaces can create local working environments with insufficient oxygen for worker safety. Oxidation of grinding particles is accelerated by
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Whether the employer supplied or employee owned, filter masks and respirators must be rated and approved for inhaled particulate filtration.
This 3M surgical type mask fits well and is N95 certified, making it ideal for many offhand grinding applications
the heat of grinding; even rusting removes oxygen from the atmosphere in an enclosed space. The solution is to make up the missing breathable air with air supplied by an outside line, a portable bottled supply, or both. Costs are significantly higher for these positive pressure masks, making it more cost-effective to use engineering solutions like dust extraction and ventilation equipment in most cases, but ad hoc solutions might not be legal in enclosed space work. For very aggressive processes like abrasive blasting, the all-enveloping suit and hood makes positive air supply essential. STAYING SAFE, STAYING LEGAL The key to keeping the worker safe and the operation legal is the understanding that the goal is to prevent exposure, not use a specific piece of approved equipment. In many instances, it’s cheap and effective to vacuum grinding dust away from the work piece and provide adequate makeup air with good ventilation. In still air however, even outdoor work may require a filter mask. In most shop environments, the grinding dusts are dry
Where toxic gases or mists are present, a respirator like this half mask, or a full face mask should be used with cartridges rated for the expected exposure. Cartridges must be swapped on a schedule, not when the user notices reduced airflow.
and non-toxic, which gives shop owners considerable latitude in choosing a safety strategy. While there are many certified dust extraction systems for example, for most ferrous grinding operations, any engineered system that keeps particulates away from the worker’s lungs meets the need. Personal protective equipment however, is different. Whether employer supplied or employee owned, filter masks and respirators must be rated and approved for inhaled particulate filtration. It’s also required by both parties that the PPE is actually used.. and used properly. Low-cost, off brand filter masks for example, frequently fit poorly around the nose and mouth, rendering them ineffective and if they promote fogging of face shields or goggles, encourage the user to do without. If the mask or respirator makes it too difficult or impossible to grind the part effectively, it’s a legal imperative to replace it with equipment that works. For most shops, a quality, N95 dual strap disposable paper mask under a certified polycarbonate face shield is adequate, low-cost protection for hand grinding operations. CM
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Women can help fill future manufacturing jobs: Ontario MPP Teresa Piruzza, the member for Windsor West, touts an over-looked labour pool for filling the skilled trades gap
Minister Piruzza announces funding for the Employment Training for Abused/At-Risk Women Program at George Brown College, one of the partners participating in the program.
TORONTO — As Canada braces itself for a potential shortage of skilled labour in everything from engineering to welding, employers are going to need to turn a variety of new labour pools to keep up with demand. On Wednesday November 27, 2013, Teresa Piruzza, Ontario Minister Responsible for Women’s Issues was on hand at George Brown College to tout one of those very sources. Piruzza spoke to the audience about the efforts of the Employment Training for Abused/At-Risk Women
program, which has had nearly 2,000 women complete job training since 2006. George Brown will receive $378,000 in funding for the program from the Ontario Government. The money for the college is part of a $4.2 million chunk of funding that will be spread out to nine other programs such as the YWCA of Greater Toronto, to name one. “Unfortunately some members of our community face significant barriers to accessing post-secondary education,” said Anne Sado, President of George Brown. “That
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Peg Everall, a mentor for the Employment Training for Abused/At-Risk Women Program, demonstrates some of the technical skills women learn in the Employment Training for Abused/At-Risk Women Program.
is why apprenticeship programs like ‘Women Transitioning to Trades and Employment’ are so critical.” “Since its launch in 2007, our graduates have gone on to successful careers in a number of fields including, Heating, Ventilation and Air-Conditioning (HVAC), building management and supervision, building renovation and construction… and I could go on. “Qualified participants receive tuition support, work placement and job-search assistance. This is a vital program that helps women take control of their lives, and ultimately achieve economic security and independence,” she continued. The program is a 14-week one in which a student will plan out their career path. In addition to college courses the program also offers counseling to students based on need. Students also receive help with a placement once they are enrolled. “It’s a program that really helps build that support system that really helps build the confidence of the individuals. I think that that’s the difference between just registering at a college and going into a program,” Piruzza said.
“We know how difficult it is to leave these situations. It may be at the beginning it’s more difficult for the individual to be part of the program, or may need a little more counseling, so it’s very flexible in that way.” Chamaikha Johnson was a graduate for the program, who came back to the school for the announcement, and shared her experience as an example of what kind of effect the program can have on those who get involved. “I studied at George Brown for two years, doing the architectural technician program,” Johnson said. “For me I’m more of a hands-on type of girl, I like to get involved, so I started working in construction doing renovations, my passion now is flooring.” Johnson acknowledged most people might find it funny she found a passion for such a specific – and maybe uninteresting – field, and said she even found it surprising herself, but she genuinely enjoys the work she does now. “You can come from where I was, end up where I am, and develop new skills … and a love for life that was never possible before.” For more information visit: www.women.gov.on.ca CM Anne Sado, President of George Brown College, Georgia Quartaro, Dean of the George Brown College Centre for Preparatory and Liberal Studies, and Minister Piruzza listen to Chamaikha Johnson’s story of how Ontario’s Employment Training for Abused/At-Risk Women has helped her achieve economic security
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... continued from page 34
Frigate modernization: new electronics, old hull The Halifax-class Modernization/Frigate Life Extension project will modernize combat systems of Canada’s 12 Halifax-class frigates, (commissioned between 1992 and 1995) and includes a mid-life ship refit program to ensure the frigates remain effective throughout their service life. This work includes upgrades of radar, communications and missile systems. Additional contracts will add new satellite communications systems and add the capability to operate the new CH-140 helicopters. Each modernization and refit period is expected to take approximately 18 months, with the testing and trials expected to take approximately an additional 18 months. The final ship upgrade is anticipated to be completed in 2017.
ing to a statement issued by Minister of National Defence Rob Nicholson, “after a careful review of priority military requirements and given improved capabilities across the Canadian Armed Forces due to significant Government investment, the Canadian Armed Forces recommended that the Government not proceed with this acquisition. We accepted the military’s recommendation.” Officially, the DND cite a reduction in risk to Army personnel due to improved surveillance and intelligence operations, plus improved capability resulting from an upgrade program to the LAV (light armoured vehicle) fleet, but the decision comes late in the process for system bidders Nexter, BAE Systems Inc. and General Dynamics Land Systems, who have secured the contract for the LAV upgrade program. Response to the decision was rapid. Mr. Patrick Lier, Senior Vice President of Nexter Systems stated on the day of Minister Nicholson’s announcement, “the army suggested today that its LAV III Upgrade vehicles provide the CCV capability. As a company with decades of experience in producing armoured vehicles, we at Nexter are astonished by this assertion. The LAV UP simply does not provide the same level of protection or mobility. This situation also begs the question as to why the Army proceeded with a second CCV Request for Proposals (RFP) six months after it awarded GDLS (General Dynamics Land Systems) the LAV UP contract in 2011.
It knew the capabilities of both vehicles at that time yet decided to proceed with another RFP and engaged industry in another costly competition. It would be our expectation that the Government would compensate industry bidders for the cost of their bids. No company can afford to make such considerable investments only to have the process produce no result.” While the CCV program has been scrapped, in the air the process of replacing the 50-year-old Sea King helicopter fleet has finally received the go-ahead. The program was initiated under the Liberals over a decade ago, with estimated program cost in the year 2000 of $2.8 billion for 28 helicopters. By 2003, the price had risen to $3.1 billion and in 2010, the total program cost stood at $6.2 billion, including training and support, plus the additional cost of keeping the Sea King fleet operational during program delays. The Maritime Helicopter Project has been an organizational disaster, with Public Works and Government Services Canada taking over the procurement program, which then contracted Hitachi as project consultants to review the process. On January 3rd, the revised program was announced by Minister of Public Works and Government Services Diane Finley: “Under the new terms established in the Principles of Agreement, Sikorsky has committed to deliver the needed helicopter capability at no additional cost to Canada,” she said, adding, “in addition, the Gov-
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ernment of Canada will only issue further payment to Sikorsky upon capability delivery. This is the right path forward for the Canadian Armed Forces and taxpayers.” Sikorsky has agreed to pay Canada $88.6 million in liquidated damages for non-delivery. “As the pre-eminent helicopter manufacturer in the world, we regret that we have not executed this program to the satisfaction of the Government of Canada and that no aircraft were delivered in 2013,” said Mick Maurer, President of Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation. “We recognize that we and our sub-contractors must do better. We have completely restructured our approach, and added considerable new resources and technical expertise. As a result of the third-party review commissioned by the Government of Canada, we believe we have the right plan in place to deliver the most capable maritime helicopter in the world.” How can a hardware procurement project take a decade to simply agree on performance and delivery? While the CH-148 helicopter saga has finally established the delivery dates, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program is nowhere near a definitive contract. THE BIG ONE: F-35 Without question, the CF-18 replacement program, the F-35 or “Joint Strike Fighter” is the most expensive program in Canadian defence history, with total cost estimates over the 42-year life of the fleet currently at an incredible $45 billion. The procurement process for the F-35 has been extremely complex and highly political, with third party overview from KPMG and Raymond Chabot Grant Thorton confirming the early 2013 figures with worst-case estimates for cost growth. Politically, the Federal government has requested alternative aircraft proposals from US and European manufacturers although the F-35 procurement is well advanced and Canadian supplier firms are already heavily involved. Canada has invested over $322 million as its share of the Joint Strike Fighter Program so far, and has committed over $77 million to Canadian aerospace companies through Industry Canada programs. As of spring 2013, Canadian companies had won USD 488 million in F-35 contracts. Overall benefit for Canadian suppliers over the life of the aircraft is estimated by the government at $9.9 billion, which suggests that that Prime Minister Harper’s F-35 procurement “reset button” is really a “pause button”, for several reasons besides the contracts at risk. The current requirement for radar absorbing stealth capability can’t be met by other ‘fourth generation” jets and the need to maintain interoperability with US aircraft in a NATO scenario like Afghanistan means software and data link capability that would have to be engineered into any replacement. And
the pressure to procure the F-35 isn’t just from Lockheed Martin and the RCAF. The South Korean government recently chose Boeing’s F-15SE, primarily for cost reasons but also citing the Silent Eagle’s improved stealth over current aircraft. The decision was suddenly reversed in November, as “the Air Force set more stringent requirements for the stealth capability and electronics like the radar cross-section,” according to a Korean government source. Like Canada, the South Koreans don’t know at this time what the F-35’s will cost or how many they can afford by the estimated 2018-2019 delivery time frame. Like Canada, technical requirements are the stated reason, but industry insiders are watching reduced US military buys as a risk to the aircraft’s unit cost; a shorter production run means higher per-plane costs, which if unchecked, can become a program-killing spiral where higher costs mean fewer orders which make the cost higher still. From the US perspective, pressure on allies to buy the F-35 makes the program affordable for the US military as well as driving domestic jobs. Would the Canadian government buy a different jet? Unlikely, as the alternatives lack stealth and more importantly, can’t replace the $9.9 billion in offset contracts. At the 2013 Paris Air Show, sources with Dassault’s Rafale fighter team told Canadian Metalworking that aircraft assembly would remain in France and technology transfer was out of the question, leaving little on the table for Canadian industry, despite the high performance and lower cost of the Rafale. Boeing’s Super Hornet could be different, as it is a development of the current aircraft which has Canadian work now, but the stealth issue precludes it as well as the Eurofighter Typhoon and Saab Gripen. It’s almost certain that the RCAF will fly F-35’s. A BROKEN SYSTEM? Is defence procurement in Canada broken? Tim Page, President of the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries thinks so. According to Page, “recent public discussions around failed, delayed or cancelled major procurements point to the urgent requirement for a publicly available medium-term capital acquisition plan, derived from a renewed and affordable Canada First Defence Strategy. This predictability is a necessary condition for better procurement outcomes for the Canadian Armed Forces, for the Government, and for industry. In Budget 2013, the Government committed to ‘..reform the current procurement process to improve outcomes. This will include thorough and rigorous option analyses, a challenge function for military requirements, early and frequent industry engagement, and strengthened oversight with the use of third-party expertise.’ This systemic reform can’t come soon enough.” CM www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 95
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NEW COLUMN: FINANCING ... continues from page 29 people experience with their banks or preferred lending institution. However simplicity and convenience extends far beyond quick responses, once a deal is signed and assuming the account remains in good standing (payments are made on time each month) you will never hear from us except during the holiday season when we send out gift baskets. Doing business with a bank will mean monthly reporting from either your accounting department or bookkeeper, as well as yearly reviews. These additional costs, which can be significant, are not reflected in the rate they charge. I tell my customers that bankers are usually my best salesmen. 5. Fixed rate — This one doesn’t come up as much as it should but once you sign a lease, the monthly payment and interest rate is fixed. A bank or lending institution will rarely, if ever, fix a rate, so over a five-year period the customer is subject to interest rate fluctuations. We’re currently in a time of historically-low interest rates but the Canadian economy is the strongest it’s been in the last two years and showing signs of a significant period of growth. This will no doubt lead to increases in lending rates at some point in the future. 6. T ax write-off – Although I’m not an accountant, I can tell you 99 per cent of my clients write off their lease payment 100 per cent as an expense no different than tooling, material, wages, etc. That said, I always tell my clients to have a conversation with their accountant or bookkeeper before they proceed if this is a factor in their decision-making process.
Ken, you’re a charming, witty, and handsome guy but I have a great relationship with my bank manager and to be honest, your rates are just too high. Okay, maybe that’s not exactly how the question is framed, but let me answer each one of these separately. BANK RELATIONSHIP The typical leasing company isn’t trying to replace a bank and I always ask my potential clients: “do you have only one customer?” Usually, the answer is “no.” So then why would you only have one lender? A bank will look at a business and put a number against it and unless something changes in either direction, that number won’t change. In other words, there will be very little opportunity to finance growth with a bank because everyone knows growth doesn’t show up on financial statements until it has already occurred. On a personal level, I can give you another example of why having one lender doesn’t make much sense. Our family business had a 40-year relationship with a chartered bank. At our height we had 45 employees and $40 million in sales. We had a $12 million letter of credit facility and a $1 million operating line, which we never used because when business
was good we able to cash flow our sales. All we needed a bank for was to issue letters of credit to a Japanese machine tool manufacturer (a letter of credit is the only way an overseas supplier will release equipment beyond receiving the entire purchase price prior to shipment). One day, our bank manager picked-up the phone to call my grandfather and the conversation went something like this: “We’re sorry Mr. Gross but we just don’t want to be in the manufacturing sector anymore. Thanks for the business.” The situation led to some tumultuous times for our business. HIGHER RATES / SECURED ASSETS A chartered bank gets its money from customers and the cost of funds is basically whatever they pay on deposits. If you have any money in the bank, you know isn’t much — less than 0.5 per cent. This allows them to put out cheap money but in order to secure their investments, they take far more than the equipment they’re funding as collateral. They’ll insist on the guarantee of the owners, and put a general security agreement in place (GSA), which basically means all the current and future assets of the company, including existing equipment and receivables are also secured to support the loan. In many instances, the owner’s personal residence and other property is also secured. A private non-bank leasing company gets its money from a number of different places, but it’s not a deposittaking institution and therefore has a higher cost of funds. However, the higher cost can be justified in a number of ways. First, leasing companies specialize in particular industries and have experts on staff with excellent knowledge of the assets they’re financing, and they will entertain deals banks won’t consider. Second, in a normal transaction the only security is the asset itself. Plus, by leasing there are additional savings by avoiding the necessary legal fees required to get a deal in place with a bank, as well as the ongoing monthly and yearly reporting requirements, which also have hard costs associated with them. When put in into real-world terms and to continue to use the $100,000 example, paying a three per cent premium in interest rate works out to be $150 per month. If the difference between bringing in a new piece of equipment which will generate an additional $12,000 to $14,000 per month in revenue or not proceeding at all because your bank manager rejects the loan is predicated on not wanting to pay an additional $150 per month, then you have to take a moment to wonder why you’re in business in the first place.
Ken, can I pay-off early? This is another question I get all the time. There’s no penalty to paying a lease off early but there isn’t a lot of
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benefit either. Mentally, I understand everyone wants to be debt free. Believe me, if I could pay off my mortgage tomorrow I would, but at the same time, if paying off my mortgage is going to cripple my ability to buy groceries or pay for gas, it probably doesn’t make a lot of sense. From a tax standpoint, the lease is normally a tax-friendly solution so paying it off early will impact that benefit. I’ve written hundreds of leases in the last four years and the amount of customers that actually pay off early is less than two per cent. Normally, the payment becomes part of the monthly overhead, and because the equipment is generating so much additional revenue, it’s easily justified. Usually, my customers tend to finish the lease and then start another one for a new piece because they’ve become accustomed to making the monthly payment.
Ken, what if I want to upgrade or raise some working capital? The answers to these questions are much more similar than they would seem. If my customer finds after a few years, the 40 x 20 VMC is too small or inefficient, and what they really need is a 60 x 30 or a horizontal, they just have to approach their selected vendor (dealer) and trade it in against the new piece. If the trade-in credit is less than what is owed, the difference is financed in the new lease. If the credit is more than what is owed, the savings reduce the amount financed and in turn reduces the monthly payment. If the client is in growth mode but running short of working capital, we can actually raise money against the equipment because we know there’s available equity. To continue with the $100,000 example, we know that a good piece of equipment will hold its value and after about three and a half years, the machine may still be worth close to $60,000 (assuming it’s been properly maintained) even though the amount owed against it might be closer to $40,000. This means we can easily get the client $20,000 in cash and re-write the lease. The main point here is, dealing with a private leasing company as opposed to the typical bank allows for more flexibility and many additional options. I know I’ve covered a lot of territory here, but if there is one thing I want you take away from my first article, it’s that investing in good equipment, either in cash or with lease financing, is always a smart move, because good equipment will always provide value to your business. Ken Hurwitz is the Senior Account Manager with Enable Capital Corp., an asset-based lending company in Toronto. Ken has years of experience in the machine tool industry and now works to help all types of manufacturers tap into their own capital to optimize their operations. Contact Ken at (416) 6145878 or via email, firstname.lastname@example.org. Learn more at www.enablecapitalcorp.com
ADVERTISERS INDEX ADVERTISER . . . . . . . . . PAGE
ADVERTISER . . . . . . . . . PAGE
Amada Canada, Ltd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
Lincoln Electric Co. of Canada . . . . . . 61
AMT Machine Tools Ltd. . . . . . . . 20, 17
LVD Strippit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71
Blaser Swisslube Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . 53
Machineries Isotop . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
Brubaker Tool . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33
Makino . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28
Carl Zeiss IMT Corporation . . . . . . . . . 6
Messer cutting Tools . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
Cosen Saws . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
Micro 100 Tool Corporation . . . . . . . . 16
CWB Group . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72
Multicyl . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
Data Flute . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 Dillon Manufacturing, Inc. . . . . . . . . . 43 DiPaolo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Elliott Matsuura . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 ERI America Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 Eriez . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 FastCut Tool . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 Fein Power Tool Company . . . . . . . . . 79 Ferric Machinery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75 Flexovit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 89 GMN USA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 Gravotech - Gravograph . . . . . . . . . . 35 Gravotech - Technifor . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Haas Automation Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 Heule Tool Corporation . . . . . . . . . . . 56 Hiwin Corporation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77
Natex Tools & Natex Machinery Group . . . 37 Okuma . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 PFERD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59 Renishaw (Canada) Limited . . . . . . . 87 Retention Knob Supply & Mfg. Co. Inc. . . . 97 Salvagnini . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 81 Sandvik . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4,5 Scientific Cutting Tools . . . . . . . . . . . 23 Scotchman Industries, Inc. . . . . . . . . 63 SGS Tool Company . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 Sirco Machinery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 SME FABTECH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 85 SME MMTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67 Star CNC Machine Tool Co. . . . . . . . . 17 Thomas Skinner . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26
Horn USA, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
TRUMPF Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . IBC
Hurco USA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . IFC
Tungaloy America Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Ingersoll . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
United Grinding . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39
Iscar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . OBC
US Shop Tools . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57
ITI Tooling Company Inc. . . . . . . . . . . 49
Victor Technologies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
Kinetic Cutting Systems Inc. . . . . . . . 62
Walter Surface Technologies . . . . . . . 91
Koma Precision, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45
Walter USA, LLC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
Kyocera Cutting Tool Division . . . . . . 51
Weldon Tool . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33
IN STOCK American Standards and specials. Japanese Standards inch or metric.
FOR FAST DELIVERY: Contact your local tooling dealer or order direct. TEL 937-686-6405 FAX 937-686-4125 www.retentionknobsupply.com Retention Knob Supply Company P.O. Box 61 Bellefontaine, OH 43311 www.canadianmetalworking.com | FEBRUARY 2014 | 97
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By The NUMBERS Major Equipment Buying Trends Show Long-Term Volatility MACHINING/FABRICATING TOOL SALES, CANADA
Source: CMTDA www.cmtda.com
he Canadian Machine Tool Dealer’s Association compiles extensive statistics on machining and fabricating equipment purchases in the Canadian market, showing some interesting trends. Twice in the past decade, in 2002 and in 2010, soft markets were followed by frenzied buying activity with a slow softening of demand post-peak, both in 2005 and in 2011. The graph illustrates the classic lag effect in manufacturing industries, where improving market conditions after a recession don’t trigger increased capital spending until well into the recovery. At that point, expanding orders required quick expansion and modernization, creating a sudden surge in units sold. It’s a workable strategy for general purpose fabricating equipment and machine tools, but higher value specialized equipment is less
likely to be in stock or available from manufacturers with short lead times. Metal forming equipment shipments are historically about half the dollar value of machining equipment, not due to volumes shipped, but the lower per unit cost of most fab equipment compared to machine tools. The loss of much stamping business over the last twenty years has taken big presses out of the equipment mix, further widening the dollar gap between “fab” and “chip”. As the “art to part” timeline shortens, it will be necessary to have machine capability on the floor, ready to make parts to win future business. With interest rates predicted to rise toward the end of 2014, this might be the year to upgrade and add capacity.
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