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Category Archives: Schütte

Zimmermann Introducing New FZU 5-Axis Gantry Mill

 

The demands for prototype, tool and mold making are increasing. Only those who can supply high quality output, quickly and flexibly, can succeed against the powerful competition worldwide. Zimmermann is responding to this trend with the new FZU. This 5-axis gantry milling machine is not only extremely compact but, thanks to its thermo-symmetrical design and accuracy, it also provides the ideal entry point to the Zimmermann machine line with maximum productivity. Plastics, casting resins such as Ureol and aluminum are particularly suitable for machining. “This development will enable us to close the gap in the lower weight class,” states Frieder Gänzle, General Manager and Partner at Zimmermann in Germany.

gantry milling

Frieder Gänzle, General Manager and Partner at F. Zimmermann GmbH: “We don’t want to be chasing trends; instead we want to help shape the market.”

“The basic expectations, which prototype, tool and mold makers need to meet today, have not necessarily changed over the years, they have simply grown,” sums up Frieder Gänzle. Customers in the automobile industry, he notes, especially expect components with almost perfect surface finishes and ever higher accuracies. Manufacturers introduce new models or variants to the market at ever shorter intervals. Whereas prototype, tool and mold makers could previously plan in the longer term, they must respond today to inquiries considerably faster.

“We cultivate a very special relationship with prototype, tool and mold makers,” says Gänzle. “Together, we have evolved consistently in recent years. We are very appreciative of our strong business in this sector.” Zimmermann is continuously exchanging technology information with its user base. In discussions, it has become clear that this sector requires powerful, compact machines with maximum productivity and open time. And, importantly, Zimmermann must offer an attractive price/performance ratio, while meeting all these requirements. “We have evolved even further towards heavy-duty cutting, over the years,” reports Gänzle. “As a result, even the smallest machine in our portfolio, the FZ33 compact, has become more popular. We have continuously pushed it upwards from a technological point of view.” Its focus is on aluminum cutting, but steel can also be machined. This enables Zimmermann to offer customers a very efficient, flexible and space-saving machine, while the corresponding design improvements have also had an effect on the price. “The requirement we were presented was for an entry-level model which rounds off our program at the lower price point,” explains Gänzle. The result is the FZU, a 5-axis gantry milling machine which is optimized for weight and stability.

Pre-assembled machine concept

gantry milling

With the FZU, Zimmermann is developing an extremely compact universal machine for prototype, mold and tool making with an attractive price/performance ratio.

In contrast to the established FZ33 and other machines that Zimmermann offers today, the company is taking a different path with the FZU. “We can narrow down the special features of this gantry machine to three main characteristics,” describes Gänzle. The first point: “We are following the trend towards modern manufacturing machines and designing them as space-saving, pre-assembled units.” This means Zimmermann assembles the machines in-house and can then transport them to the customer by truck or ship without having to dismantle them. Onsite, they are ready for use in a very short commissioning time; erection and start-up require minimum effort. For the customer, this means quickly available machines which can be installed without constructing foundations. “In the design, we have kept to the usual transport sizes. At the same time, the new FZU achieves a remarkable working range for its size,” explains Gänzle.

Thermo-symmetrical design

It is important to match the machine to the required dynamics. Adverse environmental conditions and long machine running times necessarily give rise to thermal expansion effects. In spite of the customers’ increased accuracy requirements, the machine must always achieve outstanding surface finishes. The Zimmermann engineers have therefore designed the FZU gantry machine to be thermo-symmetrical. This means that the milling spindle, guides and other accuracy-determining components are arranged so that their heating is either compensated or they can expand in uncritical directions. “This is the second important characteristic,” emphasizes Gänzle. The base frame consists of a steel welded construction which forms a continuous U-shape. The machine gantry’s centrally guided Z-slide has an octagonal section – and not a rectangular one like comparable machines – which makes it particularly stable. Thanks to its design, it therefore has impressive rigidity for its size. “With a weight of approximately 35 tons, a length of 3,500mm, width of 7,500mm and a height of just under 5,000 mm, we have been able to build a light and compact machine,” says Gänzle.

In-house head implemented throughout

gantry milling

VH10 spindle head design from Zimmermann, with 34kW and 24,000 rpm standard performance in a rugged design.

The third characteristic relates to the new VH10 milling head, which achieves an extremely high power density. “This new development has enabled us to reassess our portfolio,” reports Gänzle. This is because the VH10 head will replace the VH12, which is not a Zimmermann product. Alongside the VH20, VH30 and VH60, the VH10 is now the smallest head in the range. Users will also benefit from the fact that Zimmermann has suitable spare heads in stock and can supply them on request in the event of stoppages, for example, due to a crash. “We strive to respond quickly and provide the customer with optimum support,” emphasizes Gänzle.

Thanks to its slender design, the VH10 spindle head has only minimal interference contours. Compared to the VH12, it achieves almost double the clamping force. This is due to the fact that Zimmermann fits two side cheeks instead of one onto the unit. The VH10 is therefore considerably more stable in operation. In order to minimize throughput times, a powerful 34 kW spindle with a maximum speed of 24,000 rpm is used in the milling head as standard. “The FZU is therefore ideally suitable for the materials typically found in this business sector, such as Ureol, clay and aluminum. In the future, we will also use the new milling head in larger machines on which processers can produce one-to-one models – for example, on our FZ37,” says Gänzle.

Standardized and yet individual

In order to provide a high-quality machine at an attractive price, the designers at Zimmermann have turned their attention to remaining competitive with regard to price through increased component standardization, while at the same time addressing individual customer requirements. As with all machines produced, Zimmermann therefore also relies on a modular system with the FZU. Among other things, this approach enables different size variants and power levels to be produced. There are also numerous equipment options which offer the customer maximum flexibility.

Zimmermann is therefore able to provide a very efficient solution with the new FZU. It is often the little things that give rise to success and customer satisfaction. “We place great importance on details – an aspect which cannot always be measured in the numbers,” explains Gänzle, who cites two examples: “For instance, the machining area is fully clad with stainless steel sheets in order to guarantee maximum resistance to abrasion. The FZU is also the first gantry milling machine to be equipped with our innovative, new NXP 24-inch multitouch controller, which is already used on our FZH horizontal machining center.” Another increasingly important topic is ergonomics. The door is divided asymmetrically to enable components to be easily fed to the machine. A small, easy-to-open door leads into the machining area, while the large door is used for loading. Operators therefore have a relatively large field of view, rapid access to the machining area and ample space for loading – ergonomic advantages which are not to be underestimated. Another detail is that a cabinet has been installed directly in front of the FZU. “This was the idea of one of our designers,” says Gänzle. “The tables, which users in the various plants position in front of the machines to place their accessories and service tools, caught his attention. With our solution, everything which is part of day-to-day operations can be safely stowed close at hand within the machine.” Added to this, there are extraction equipment and special chip management systems. “It is often the simple ideas which make the machine operator’s everyday tasks much easier,” sums up Gänzle.

Comprehensive service

To provide the best possible support to businesses, Zimmermann concentrates on high-quality and reliable service in close proximity to the customer. After all, this is exactly what characterizes a good relationship between supplier and user.  “Customers expect high availability over the entire system lifecycle,” says Gänzle. “We provide comprehensive machine care.” This includes a customer hotline, by means of which users can reach a competent contact person, even outside of normal working hours, as well as a remote diagnosis system that allows a rapid response in an emergency. If mechanical components are defective or malfunction, the machine builder usually guarantees immediate shipment from its factory. In addition, the application engineers work together with the customer to optimize each individual combination of heads, spindles, tools and clamping equipment for the machines. Zimmermann therefore not only sells machines, but also complete solutions. Plans are in process for further upgrades to the stocking and service personnel staff in North America, as well.  Zimmermann recently opened a new facility in Wixom, Michigan, near Detroit.

Goal:  To be technologically out in front

“We don’t want to be chasing trends; instead, we want to help shape the market,” says Gänzle. “Basically, we therefore aspire not to do the same things as our competitors.” To be technologically out in front, the machine builder never stands still with regards to machine development. The FZU is therefore being continuously optimized – without at the same time losing sight of the price/performance ratio. There appears to be substantial market interest in these machines, according to company research. The initial discussions with users were highly promising. “We are confident of meeting our customers’ requirements with this new development, both in Germany and internationally,” says Gänzle. The statement that the concept of the FZU could be transferred to the other machines in the program underlines how convinced he is of this new solution. Zimmermann will be presenting the machine to a specialist audience at WESTEC 2017, CMTS 2018 AMB in September, 2018. As further indication of emerging market interest, three users have already decided to purchase this new gantry milling machine.

 

 

 


 About the company

  1. Zimmermann GmbH is headquartered in Neuhausen a.d.F., Germany, and is one of the world’s leading suppliers of high-tech milling solutions. The machines have huge working areas, tremendous dynamic performance and enormous cutting capacity. Founded in 1933 by Friedrich Zimmermann, the company now has over 200 employees, with subsidiaries in the USA and China. The innovative company has one primary goal for its range of products: being able to offer the right solution to its customers and so ensure high profitability: “Quality made in Germany”. Its specialized machines are in use throughout the world in the aerospace and automotive industries and find many special applications. Zimmermann Inc. is the North American headquarters, based in Wixom, Michigan (Detroit) and is a full-service operation with machines, application engineering, sales and service personnel on staff to serve the company’s growing markets in the U.S., Mexico and Canada.

For more information on this development, please contact the North American headquarters:

ZIMMERMANN INC.
30587 Century Drive
Wixom, MI 48393
Phone:  248-956-8511
www.zimmermann-inc.com
Ms. Lena Kiesel, Marketing Manager
lena@zimmermann-inc.com

 

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Schütte Names Jeffrey Reinert CEO for North American Operations

Major supplier of multi-spindle machine tools and grinders taps longtime industry pro to lead company to next levels 

Schütte (Jackson, Michigan) today announces the appointment of Mr. Jeffrey Reinert as CEO for the North American operations of the company, effective June 8, 2017.  Schütte supplies a range of multi-spindle machine tools and grinders for production work in various sectors of the metalworking market, including medical, orthopedic, tooling, contract machining and more.

Jeff Reinert brings over thirty years of related experience to the position, having been involved with all aspects of manufacturing, sales, marketing and management in the machine tool industry.  Jeff was most recently the president and CEO for North American Operations at Index, another leading machine tool builder.  Jeff held that position for nine years.  While at Index, he nearly doubled the sales of the company, reorganized the service, parts and training departments, plus opened a new office in the emerging Mexican market for the company.  He was also previously the president of Machine Tools of Indiana, a dealer company he founded in 2001 and ran successfully for seven years.

Jeff attended Vincennes University, Valparaiso University and Purdue, where he studied electrical & mechanical engineering.

In commenting on his new position, he observes, “Schütte has a solid reputation as a builder of top quality, multi-spindle machine tools and, based on that foundation, we plan to accelerate the company’s growth curve to take us into more markets with a decidedly aggressive posture, including greater visibility in the media, at shows and through industry association participation.  Complementing this sales growth strategy will be a buildup in our service, engineering and customer support programs.”  Jeff also noted the long-range plans for Shütte include upgrades to the current facility in Jackson, Michigan, with more machines on the floor for demonstration of the company’s capabilities, testing and production scenarios for enhancing the customer experience.

“My personal goal is to bring Schütte to the forefront of the industry, in both the multi-spindle and grinding technology arenas.  We can shine as a great team, with excellent machines backed by a high-quality group of dedicated individuals.  It’s an exciting time and I look forward to meeting the challenges.”

 

For further information, please contact:

SCHÜTTE L.L.C.
4055 Morrill Road
Jackson, MI  49201
Phone:  517-782-3600
www.schutteusa.com
Brittany Parks, Marketing
bparks@schutteusa.com

 

 

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Schütte Introduces 325linear CNC Grinder

5-axis cnc grinder with extended x-y axis paths plus two aux slides for workpiece clamping

Equipped with unique SIGSpro software system to allow full 3D simulation on the HMI or offline for more accurate quotes, complete cycle validation

New Schütte 325linear cylindrical grinding system features extended x-y paths plus two auxiliary slides

New Schütte 325linear cylindrical grinding system features extended x-y paths plus two auxiliary slides

Schütte (Jackson, Michigan) today announces the introduction of its new 325linear machine, a 5-axis CNC grinder with extended x- and y-axis movement plus two auxiliary slides for workpiece clamping and improved grinding wheel guidance over the entire machining envelope. Micro tools, gun drills, hob cutters and complex geometries can be accommodated on this new machine, which operates in the range of 2500-4000 rpm, typically. The additional second auxiliary slide enables the 325linear to utilize tool guidance, part support, tailstock or workpiece pallets in operation. This new Schütte machine further expands the user’s automation possibilities, as it also offers significant advancements in wheel change and robotic workpiece handling.

Specifically, on the a-axis, a user can install collet chucks, hydraulic expansion chucks or multi-range chucks. With the automated collet changer on the machine, workpieces with different diameters can be clamped with high concentricity in the unmanned loader station. The Schütte a-axis configuration on this machine also permits position-oriented clamping of non-rotationally symmetrical workpieces. In this way, sequential workpieces with various roughing and finishing requirements can be preset on the machine for continuous processing.

SIGSpro (Schütte Integrated Grinding Software) enables full 3D simulation of the entire cycle, either on the HMI or offline, for improved estimating and safety concerns

SIGSpro (Schütte Integrated Grinding Software) enables full 3D simulation of the entire cycle, either on the HMI or offline, for improved estimating and safety concerns

Likewise, this new Schütte grinding system offers scalable automation, with a 140-position tool changer, 5-24 grinding wheel magazine and a flexible robotic tool gripper for changing the smallest micro tools as available options. The same base machine can be utilized for continuous production of a single part in a work cell setup or used for sequential one-off work, as needed.

The 325linear features a universal rotation a-axis with a high level of concentricity (<0.0001º resolution) and pitch accuracy, while the xyz-axis resolution is maintained at

The machine is offered with the proprietary SIGSpro (Schütte Integrated Grinding Software) as the programming interface, allowing users to assign clamping options for each grinding operation being performed. When the support and tool guidance system are used, preset distances from the grinding wheel to the workpiece can be defined and held constant. In the 3D mode, all cycle steps can be simulated, controlled and optimized for exact estimating, collision avoidance and even external workstation integration with the other workpieces.

Optional robotic handling, wheel changing and tool magazines allow the same machine scalable automation in use

Optional robotic handling, wheel changing and tool magazines allow the same machine scalable automation in use

All motion control on this new grinder is maintained on a Siemens 840D sl CNC with compatible drive technology.

This new Schütte 325linear grinding machine is available for viewing at the company’s North American headquarters in Jackson, Michigan, as well as a number of the upcoming trade shows in 2015.

For further information, please contact:

SCHUTTE MSA, LLC
4055 Morrill Road
Jackson, MI 49201
Phone: 517-782-3600
www.schutteusa.com
rfq@schutteusa.com

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