HOW ‘STEPPING UP’ TO 5-AXIS MACHINING CAN BENEFIT YOUR SHOP

St. Paul, MN (July 17, 2020)— With the rapid advancements in technology and processes, many organizations may consider ‘stepping up’ to 5-Axis.

Some may assume their work does not include 5-axis. However, with 5-Axis, milling at an almost infinite number of angles in a single set-up is possible. Typically, complex parts are milled with multiple different machines, as a single 3-Axis machine does not provide the flexibility of a 5-Axis machine.

  • Complex Shapes: Mastering 5-Axis machining guarantees the ability to machine complex designs in a single setup which greatly increases productivity. Additionally, higher quality standards are resultant in improved surface finish and part quality which meet superior performance specifications.
  • Increase efficiency: A 5-Axis machine requires less manual repositioning, as it can move the part on its own. It also can move in more efficient ways and find better angles to increase the efficiency of the cutting process, resulting in swifter production.
  • Higher precision: The five axes of movement offer much more precision than a 3-Axis process. Any complex or intricate details are faster and more precise.
  • Superior Spindle Usage: A 5-Axis machine spends more time making parts since it is not idle waiting for another machine tool to complete an operation. Instead, 5-Axis machines produce the complete part in one operation.
  • Fewer Setups: 5-Axis machines can machine nearly every visible surface, excluding the bottom or clamping area. This breadth of ability significantly reduces the need for multiple setups or special fixtures.
  • Reduced Labor Cost-Per-Part: Each instance an operator touches a part there is additional cost. A 5-Axis machine eliminates this wasted time.
  • Improved Floor Space Usage: It is common for shops to eliminate 4 or more lathes, VMCs or HMCs with one 5-Axis machine.
  • New markets and opportunities: The versatility of a 5-Axis machine offers more opportunities and expanded markets.

According to CAMplete Solutions, a key force behind the slow acceptance of 5-Axis, is the complexity of the technology, and therefore the inherent risk that comes with that. When adding additional axes, especially for those without experience, the probability of errors increases greatly over those that come with traditional 3-axis programming. This makes both companies, and their employees, understandably nervous.

Luckily as hardware has advanced, so has the software driving it and the learning resources available to get the most out of 5-axis technology.

CAMplete, a perfected Post and Simulation Tool comes standard on all Matsuura 5-axis machines. CAMplete TruePath bridges the gap between your CAM Systems and your Matsuura Machine. TruePath provides flexibility to combine CAM Systems in a single project and transfer an entire project from one supported machine to another.

“TruePath’s customizable post-processor allows you to output your NC programs the way you need, with no on-machine editing required. 5-axis simulation, visualization and verification tools give you the confidence of knowing how your machine will behave before you run a single line of G-code,” said a CAMplete Spokesperson.

Matsuura Machinery has 30 years of 5-axis knowledge and experience combined with our more than 80-year heritage of innovative design, development and manufacture of high-quality machining centers.

Justifying new technology is a multi-step process that requires a thorough assessment of factors at work in your manufacturing operation. We can help you learn how to understand and evaluate the benefits and payback of Matsuura’s latest 5-axis technology. 

Matsuura Machinery USA, Inc., located in St. Paul, MN is the U.S. subsidiary of Matsuura Machinery Corporation in Japan. Since 1935, Matsuura has been the forerunner in designing innovative technology and manufacturing solutions to a variety of industries around the globe. Matsuura Machinery USA, Inc. delivers unmatched excellence in 5-axis, vertical, horizontal, linear motor, multi-tasking CNC machine tools and machines with a powder bed metal AM platform with machining capability. Matsuura Machinery USA, Inc. provides the service, applications and technical field support that have always been the Matsuura standard for business.