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IMTS 2016 Show Daily

Hydromat Offers Robust Rotary Transfer Concept

September 16, 2016 / , Editor-in-Chief Production Machining


Hydromat (St. Louis, Missouri) is presenting its new Eclipse concept at its Booth S-8348, a 12-station rotary transfer machine featuring a ground-up redesign of the company’s traditional concept with all new components. It is so new, in fact, that while the new machine is still being assembled, its supersized spindle is being displayed on a test stand as an indication of the concept’s robust potential and design, the company says.

The Eclipse has been designed with a heavy casting mounted on a frame constructed of sturdy, welded steel. The casting is 2 meters in diameter, nearly twice as large as the traditional 12-station Hydromat machine. This new ductile iron casting is designed for the use of semi-permanent tool spindles, each having three-axis capability as standard, eliminating the need to change spindle sizes for different cutting processes or to add three-axis flanges for that capability. The machine features all-electric servo spindles and slides, so no hydraulics are needed for tool spindle motion. These new technologies, along with the beefier base, yield better accuracy and repeatability, the company says.

The Eclipse 12-100, a bar-fed collet version, can handle a maximum workpiece diameter of 65 mm and length of 180 mm, with 127 mm of material outside the collet. It also will be available in an indexing chuck version with vertical chucks capable of 360-degree rotation of the workpiece. This system is said to be ideal for mid- to high-volume, precision production of irregular-shaped castings or forgings, and is designed with the flexibility to easily accommodate families of parts.

A new cut-off saw design features bar and workpiece spacing prior to saw blade retraction after the cut, enabling the saw blade to move away from the workpiece and return to its home position. The tool spindles are larger than previous versions to accommodate the heavier cuts and larger parts to be machined with this platform. They offer a 55-mm front bearing size and 200-mm stroke at the Z axis. The stout, 536-kg units utilize HSK 50 toolholders, and they are direct-drive powered by a FANUC ailT6/12000HV motor with a KTR GS38 coupler. An optional 20,000-rpm tool spindle is also available, featuring a proportionally lower cutting force related to the higher speed. Both the 12,000- and 20,000-rpm units are through-spindle-coolant capable. 

The Eclipse 12-100 eliminates secondary operations by producing parts complete from barstock, castings, forgings or cold-formed blanks. Multi-station transfer technology also enables load and unload processes on station one and simultaneous machining on the other 11 stations, making the machine well-suited for medium to high production of complex workpieces that require multiple operations and complex cuts, and where tight tolerances are critical. 

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