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Category Archives: Suhner

JAC Products Uses Flex Shaft Drills for Increased Roof Rail Production

Franklin, Georgia Tier One automotive supplier realizes up to 70% greater output from its internally designed production equipment, utilizing Suhner advanced drilling technology

See the video here!

JAC Products (Franklin, Georgia) puts 30-40 million holes into approximately 6 million pieces of extruded and formed aluminum each year. The products made at this facility are used as roof rack rails on nearly every major automobile, mini-van and truck brand. This fact translates into a majority share of the North American vehicle market for JAC.

As Mike Traylor, the JAC tool room & die shop manager notes, “We build and maintain nearly all our own machinery here in our factory. That means the whole team must keep striving to find greater efficiencies and new ideas.” As a vertically integrated manufacturer, JAC operates hundreds of drilling stations in its Franklin factory, located on the banks of the Chattahoochee River in southeastern Georgia. In the company’s extrusion department, millions of pounds of aluminum are extruded annually from 6061, 6063 and 6463 alloys. The extruded shapes then move to the fabrication department, where they are formed and drilled on highly automated equipment to produce the finished products. Following a decorative and wear-resistant finishing operation, JAC performs the final assembly of the products and ships directly to the customer’s assembly line.

A tour of this facility strikes the visitor in several ways. First, there is a steady flow of material between departments and very little wasted motion, as every station at JAC is a dedicated operation producing an average of 100,000-200,000 left- and right-side rail sets per year for each specific automobile model.

JAC-Suhner_24A1691_small

Suhner motor/drill combination allows precise repeat holes

Another point of note is the openness of the machinery. That condition results, according to Traylor, from one very important supplier to JAC, one that has been a partner to this Tier One for nearly 20 years. Suhner Automation Division, based in nearby Rome, Georgia, supplies an assortment of flex shaft and direct motor-driven drilling units to JAC, where Traylor’s team of mechanical specialists incorporates them into the company’s internally-designed production equipment. Owing to the flex shaft design on many drills, the drive motors are removed from the cutting area, making accessibility much better not only for operators and maintenance personnel. This configuration also improves access to other equipment such as laser trackers and position sensors. “The bottom line, as they say, is that we get upwards of 60-70% more output from our equipment since we began using the Suhner solutions for our drilling,” notes Traylor. The previous drills used here were also prone to breakdowns and service problems, which caused unacceptable delays in production, especially as the industry transitioned to the just-in-time philosophy. As Mike comments, “If JAC was going to keep up with JIT, we needed a more reliable supplier and better ergonomics on our equipment to improve the output.” He contacted an associate from a previous company relationship, Charles Stitcher, the regional marketing manager from Suhner, who presented his company’s solutions in flex shaft and related drilling devices. “It was a light bulb moment for our company,” says Traylor, “because we knew we’d found an answer to a lot of our challenges.”

By taking the motors out of the drilling area, the JAC operators could have much freer access to the work product, while the maintenance personnel could access a single manifold in many cases to do repairs, routine maintenance or replace components. Most of the machines designed here are dedicated pieces of equipment, used to produce a single rail set for a particular model, then retrofitted or rebuilt for the next generation, next model year design, or a completely different vehicle by Traylor’s team. The flex shaft design gave the machine building and maintenance group at JAC a significant advantage and it has continued to benefit the company in many ways, according to Traylor. “We can now use a more compact work area concept, which saves operator steps. Seems like a little thing, but when you do the math and the motion study, it represents a huge annual savings for our company, without sacrificing any safety considerations for our workforce.”

As one might guess, JAC understands the fabrication process for putting holes into aluminum, whether for roof mounting, rivet placement, or trim assembly. Often, the angle of the drill must be oriented to the surface of the workpiece, rather than in a typical x-y planar arrangement. Here again, the flex shaft design of the Suhner drills pays big dividends for the machine designers at JAC, as it allows them to position the drilling mechanisms in various configurations and tighter proximities. This allows the required accuracies, secondary counterbore operations or other processing steps to occur. After working on nearly 500 machine builds at JAC, Mike Traylor says he’s been very impressed with the flex shaft drill and its adaptability on a wide variety of applications.

“On one rail set for a Ford vehicle and another for a Toyota vehicle, the old way would have involved one operator performing all the drilling, one step at a time. Today, we have up to 11 drills and a cutoff operation, all performed at once. The savings in setup time alone are off the chart.” He cites another job where the output was previously 1200 sets per day and is currently 1200 per hour.

Not all of the drilling here is done with flex shaft models, however. On several dedicated machining operations, various Suhner motor-mounted drills are utilized, including a specially designed system for sawing.

JAC-Suhner_24A1919_small

Jeff Cavalier, Mike Traylor and Alberto Blanco of JAC Products in Franklin, GA

Senior Launch Manager at JAC, Alberto Blanco, comments, “We need to hold +/- 0.1-0.2mm tolerances on the drilling and +/- 0.5mm on our cutoff lengths for our customers, so the Suhner equipment capability has been very favorable in helping us deliver our value proposition to customers.” Traylor adds that the drills are used virtually non-stop, so wear is inevitable, further noting the availability of Suhner rebuild kits, including o-rings and seals, makes maintenance much easier for his team.

Finally, Jeff Cavalier, the JAC engineering & facilities manager notes, “With the support we get from Suhner, we know Mike and his team can make it happen, every day, creating and maintaining the machines that get the job done for our customers. That’s a nice feeling.”

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SUHNER INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTS, CORP.
Hwy 411 S./Suhner Drive
P.O. Box 1234
Rome, GA 30162
Phone: 706-235-8046
Fax: 706-235-8045
Attention: Lee Coleman, Automation Division
www.suhner.com
automation.usa@suhner.com

Text and pictures files can be found and down loaded at:
www.suhner-press.com

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Suhner and WAGNER Partner to Optimize Threading Operations

Operations for the prep on tubings and pipes generally require multiple manufacturing steps such as cutting, chamfering, face-off, turning and tapping including thread milling or thread forming.

Higher part quantities usually combined with the need for different manufacturing steps demand efficient and time saving production methods to help reduce time and cost. Special purpose machines such as rotary & linear transfer machines, offer the best solutions to help obtain shorter overall part cycle times.

Suhner and WAGNER Partner to Optimize Threading Operations | Suhner Industrial Products

The machining of tubings begins from bar stock length
The transfer machine performs OD and ID turning incl. chamfering oerations followed by thread rolling.

An extensive background of experience with operations on transfer machines allows SUHNER to optimize a manufacturing process with standard or custom solutions for each machining application. One specific application is for large & long OD threads. These operations are extremely difficult and challenging for manufacturers, when trying to obtain shorter cycle times, simply because an OD threading operation by itself will dictate the overall machine cycle time.

SUHNER, in cooperation with WAGNER, a German manufacturer for OD thread rolling heads, has developed a special process, which allows threading operations in very short cycle times. A pneumatic cylinder-activated system is used to open and close the thread rolling head, which is equipped with multiple thread cutting or forming inserts.

Special unit BEX35 ISO40 equipped with WAGNER Z27-2 thread rolling head | Suhner Industrial Products

Special unit BEX35 ISO40 equipped with WAGNER Z27-2 thread rolling head allows optimized OD thread rolling operations and shortened machine cyle times

The work piece is fed from bar stock material. After a cut to length operation, it is machined by (3) Suhner BEX15 machining units with special Weldon tool holders. Operations include OD & ID and face turning. All units are equipped with a 1.5kW motor and high precision angular contact spindle bearings.

The most interesting station on this machine is the one for an OD threading operation, which is accomplished with a BEX35-ISO40 machining unit equipped with a WAGNER Z27-2 thread rolling head. In this operation, the thread rolling head is rotating and the work piece is stationary. The feed motion for this station is done with a CNC slide unit. In order to synchronize the thread pitch, both the BEX35 spindle and CNC slide are servo motor driven.
As soon as the threading operation is finished, the WAGNER thread rolling head with integrated inserts opens quickly to allow a fast return to the home position.

Opening and closing action of the head is accomplished by an internal BEX35 drawbar, controlled by a 3-position pneumatic cylinder.

This pneumatic cylinder is designed to make an additional stroke of 10mm. This allows for head and insert adjustments or replacements, depending on thread size.

Depending on length, a typical OD thread rolling cycle time ranges between 6 -10 seconds. Illustrated work pieces are steel tubings as used in the HVAC product industry. There are 7 part variations, each with a different thread size, pitch and length requirement. Thanks to the application of CNC servo driven spindle and slide components, customers can achieve very short changeover time, as well.

suhnerlogo

SUHNER INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTS, CORP.
Hwy 411 S./Suhner Drive
P.O. Box 1234
Rome, GA 30162
Phone: 706-235-8046
Fax: 706-235-8045
Attention: Lee Coleman, Automation Division
www.suhner.com
automation.usa@suhner.com

Text and pictures files can be found and down loaded at:
www.suhner-press.com

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WESTEC 15 – Suhner BEA 16 Universal Machining Unit

BEA16

See it at WESTEC 2015 – Booth 551!

Following its successful launch, SUHNER is presenting the BEA 16 spindle machining unit with an all new drive and control concept.

The objective of this new development was the integration of the latest servo drive and control technology from Bosch Rexroth. Software developed additionally allows the user to program six different basic cycles without prior knowledge of CNC.

By visualizing these six cycles – drilling – combined drilling (drilling and thread cutting with the one tool) – thread cutting – drilling with chip removal – drilling with jump function – undercutting, the unit has become extremely easy to program.

Example of a drilling cycle with jump function | Suhner Automation BEA16

Example of a drilling cycle with jump function | Suhner Automation BEA16

Plus, should the required machining cycle not be found among the standard selections or prove more complex, the unit can be switched to sentence programming.

The BEA 16 machining unit itself is a precision device from the SUHNER spindle machining unit series that has been designed for gruelling continuous use in multiple shift operations.  The BEA 16 has a drilling capacity of 16 mm Æ in 450 N/mm2 steel. The max feed path is 140 mm, and the max speed is 500 rpm.

Today, rising production piece numbers and greater workpiece complexity with all-round machining are leading to a renaissance of the so-called special machine. However, today’s special machines are being used no longer as purely single-purpose solutions, but rather for whole part families.

Example of a sentence programming | Suhner Automation BEA16

Example of a sentence programming | Suhner Automation BEA16

These require different machining cycles, feed speeds, feed paths and rotating speeds, and, of course, must allow fast retooling. And it is these requirements exactly that the BEA 16 will meet to the full.

 

 

 

 

 

suhnerlogo

SUHNER INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTS, CORP.
Hwy 411 S./Suhner Drive
P.O. Box 1234
Rome, GA 30162
Phone:  706-235-8046
Fax:  706-235-8045
Attention:  Lee Coleman, Automation Division
www.suhner.com
automation.usa@suhner.com

Text and pictures files can be found and down loaded at:
www.suhner-press.com

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L-MAX – A New and Unique Way To Machine Multiple Layer & Composite Materials

For best results in the machining of multiple material layers, cutting parameters must be applied for each different material. The new L-MAX, a portable drilling unit from SOMEX (a member of the SUHNER group of companies)  can perform all of these functions in automatic mode.

Portable L-MAX drilling unit

Multiple material layers, also referred as Stacks, can be composed of completely different materials, stacked up in layers of, for ex ample: Titanium, Carbon or Aluminum. In order to achieve optimal machining results, each material layer must be programmed with its own cutting parameters- ideally for each layer automatically. The spindle speed and feed rate must be adapted for each material transition to the next.

In the past, aluminum was the primary choice of materials used in the aircraft industry and portable, handheld pneumatic-driven drilling units were used as a common tool in this industry.

The application of these conventional pneumatic drilling units in today’s modern and innovative aircraft industry necessitates extreme compromises. In addition to large air consumption combined with high noise emissions, pneumatic-driven drilling units cannot perform feed and speed variations as required for different stack materials.

Mobile control system IDM

Mobile control system IDM

Consequently, only a portable, handheld NC-programmable drill unit is capable to deliver optimal results and high efficiency, since the aircraft industry imposes rigid quality standards including:

– Concentricity / position between holes ≤ 40 μm

– Surface quality between Ra 1.6 und Ra 3.2

– Circularity / Hole quality for rivets ≤ H8

– Other requirements such as avoidance of delamination.

Working principle for a portable, handheld
NC-programmable L-MAX drilling unit

An L-MAX concept integrates 2 servo motors: The larger motor drives the spindle and the smaller servo regulates the feed. The feed rate is determined by the speed difference between ball screw and ball screw nut or, in other words:

– If the speed (rpm) of the feed servo motor is higher than the spindle motor speed (rpm), then the L-MAX spindle will advance.

– If the speed (rpm) of the feed servo motor is lower than the spindle motor speed (rpm), then the L-MAX spindle will retract.

Both servo motors are controlled by the control system IDM. It allows the user to regulate spindle speed and feed at any position of the total travel.

Furthermore, an adaptive drilling mode can be selected to help improve and optimize a drilling cycle. In this mode, the drill unit  recognizes the transition from one layer to the next, automatically. Irregular material thickness of layers at any position are detected and matched with the correct cutting parameters. This way, cycle times can be minimized and machining quality and results optimized.

The control system includes a Minimum Quantity Lubrication (MQL) system, which is directly mounted to the mobile platform.

1Performance data drilling unit L-MAX:

– Programmable spindle speed and spindle feed

– Work cycles such as chip brake cycle and peck feed cycle Spindle speed range from 3,000 rpm up to 5,000 rpm

– Drilling capacity from 4.76 mm (3/16”) up to 11.11 mm (7/16”)

– Integrated Minimum Quantity Lubrication (MQL)

– Light weight, depending on drilling capacity, from 5.5 kg (12lbs)

– Quiet operation up to 65 dBA

– Option: Adaptive drilling mode

suhnerlogo

SUHNER INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTS, CORP.
Hwy 411 S./Suhner Drive
P.O. Box 1234
Rome, GA 30162
Phone:  706-235-8046
Fax:  706-235-8045
Attention:  Lee Coleman, Automation Division
www.suhner.com
automation.usa@suhner.com

Text and pictures files can be found and down loaded at:
www.suhner-press.com

Continue reading

The Second Generation – BEA 16 Universal Machining Unit

BEA16Following its successful launch, SUHNER is presenting the BEA 16 spindle machining unit with an all new drive and control concept.

The objective of this new development was the integration of the latest servo drive and control technology from Bosch Rexroth. Software developed additionally allows the user to program six different basic cycles without prior knowledge of CNC.

By visualizing these six cycles – drillingcombined drilling (drilling and thread cutting with the one tool) – thread cuttingdrilling with chip removaldrilling with jump functionundercutting, the unit has become extremely easy to program.

Example of a drilling cycle with jump function | Suhner Automation BEA16

Example of a drilling cycle with jump function | Suhner Automation BEA16

Plus, should the required machining cycle not be found among the standard selections or prove more complex, the unit can be switched to sentence programming.

The BEA 16 machining unit itself is a precision device from the SUHNER spindle machining unit series that has been designed for gruelling continuous use in multiple shift operations.  The BEA 16 has a drilling capacity of 16 mm Æ in 450 N/mm2 steel. The max feed path is 140 mm, and the max speed is 500 rpm.

Today, rising production piece numbers and greater workpiece complexity with all-round machining are leading to a renaissance of the so-called special machine. However, today’s special machines are being used no longer as purely single-purpose solutions, but rather for whole part families.

Example of a sentence programming | Suhner Automation BEA16

Example of a sentence programming | Suhner Automation BEA16

These require different machining cycles, feed speeds, feed paths and rotating speeds, and, of course, must allow fast retooling. And it is these requirements exactly that the BEA 16 will meet to the full.

 

 

 

 

 

suhnerlogo

SUHNER INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTS, CORP.
Hwy 411 S./Suhner Drive
P.O. Box 1234
Rome, GA 30162
Phone:  706-235-8046
Fax:  706-235-8045
Attention:  Lee Coleman, Automation Division
www.suhner.com
automation.usa@suhner.com

Text and pictures files can be found and down loaded at:
www.suhner-press.com

Continue reading

25% More Speed – High Speed Machining Unit Type BEX15 Takes Off To Even Higher Speed Levels

SUHNER introduces a new and re-designed version of its BEX15 machining unit, capable of a spindle speed increase from 18,000 rpm to 23,000 rpm
BEX15_mounted2 Chip producing machining operations with modern tools today demand progressively higher cutting speeds, specifically for metals with high cutting speed rates or small diameter hole drilling applications. The SUHNER machining unit type BEX15, proven in thousands of installations, now provides new speed options, reliably up to the maximum speed limit. With an increase of 25% up to a permissible maximum spindle speed of 23,000rpm,  operations requiring higher spindle speeds can be accomplished more easily.

This improvement is the result of a complete redesign of drive and spindle bearing components. A new style timing belt drive multiplies the motor speed up to 13,050rpm spindle speed. An AC-inverter drive is used to increase the spindle speed up to 23,000rpm at 87Hz.BEX15

The machining unit BEX15 can be applied in axial and radial orientation, directly mounted to a SUHNER slide assembly type UA15-PH or UA15-CNC. In this combination, numerous machining operations such as milling or demanding drilling cycles, including jump or peck feed, can be accomplished very easily.

Four optional tool holder systems (Collet ER25, ISO30, HSK50 and Weldon) , standard air purge connections for spindle and belt housing including a number of additional options (for example: coolant through the spindle or automated tool change features), make this machining unit type BEX15 highly adaptable and an optimal choice for demanding and specific machining requirements.

BEX15_mounted

 

suhnerlogo

SUHNER INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTS, CORP.
Hwy 411 S./Suhner Drive
P.O. Box 1234
Rome, GA 30162
Phone:  706-235-8046
Fax:  706-235-8045
Attention:  Lee Coleman, Automation Division
www.suhner.com
automation.usa@suhner.com

Text and pictures files can be found and down loaded at:
www.suhner-press.com

Continue reading

Bernard & Company Announces Recent Acquisitions

Bernard & Company is proud to announce recent client acquisitions including Suhner Automation, Gehring Technologies GmbH, Chemcoaters, Gray Machinery and S & G Press & Machinery Sales, for which they will be providing full advertising, PR, social media, trade-show and online promotional activity.

 


 

gehring_logo_schatten

 

Since 1926, Gehring L.P has been a globally operating machine tool company specializing in high performance honing technology.

WebsiteThomasNet Profile  | gplus | fb | twit | 24800 Drake Rd. Farmington Hills, MI 48335 | (248) 427-3901


chemcoaters

Founded in 2001, Chemcoaters‘ continuous, coil processing line is designed specifically for the most economical application of environmentally friendly waterborne coating sys-tems.

Website | gplus | fb | litwitter | yt | 700 Chase St. Gary, Indiana 46404 | (219) 977-1929


 

logo

 

Established in 1966, Gray Machinery Company has over 40 years of experience buying and selling pre-owned machinery.

Website | gplus | 77 E Palatine Rd. Prospect Heights, IL 60070-1811 | (800) 292-1493


 

sandg_logo

Founded in 2000, S & G Press & Machinery Sales operates worldwide, buying and selling used stamping and manufacturing equipment; specializing in metal stamping presses, feed lines and various types of automation, fabricating and tool room equipment.

Website | gplus | yt | 16660 East 13 Mile Rd. Roseville, MI 48066 | (586) 563-5000


 

logo_top_left

Since 1914, SUHNER Automation has been providing economical, low-cost manufacturing solutions and machining units for drilling, milling and tapping operations.

Website | ThomasNet Profile | gplus | 43 Anderson Rd. Rome, GA 30161 | (706) 235-8046

 


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Bulky Part Machining

See Suhner at IMTS 2014 Booth W-1464! Add them to your show schedule HERE.

Large, long or odd shaped parts present various challenges; self-contained Suhner Multi-Master flex shaft machining units provide solutions

Bulky part machining can often become very difficult to integrate into a manufacturing process, when attempting to perform multiple operations on conventional CNC machines. Limited space or axis travel, one-sided spindle or tool accessibility are common restrictions when trying to design and fit multiple tool requirements onto a rigid machine concept. In addition, cycle time demands and accessibility issues from all sides and angles can make a single tool, 3-axis CNC machine option a losing proposition.

Profilbearbeitung

Fig. 1

One new solution involves compact and self-contained single tool Multi-Master flex shaft machining units from SUHNER. These units are modular in design, which means they can be positioned in any direction around a workpiece. In most cases, all operations can be performed in one cycle, thereby reducing the overall machining cycle time to a minimum. Since all tooling modules work simultaneously, the cycle time is basically determined by the longest single machining operation and not the addition of all the tools working together. There are virtually no limitations to part size and the number of tools that are engaged at the same time, with this arrangement.gid machine concept. In addition, cycle time demands and accessibility issues from all sides and angles can make a single tool, 3-axis CNC machine option a losing proposition.

SUHNER offers a complete spindle program with optional feed systems…pneumatic, hydraulic and CNC…available in a quill feed or slide and spindle design. In combination with modern tooling technology, SUHNER  Multi-Master machining units can achieve a high degree of performance and accuracy, when incorporated into a machine design.

Solid carbide tools permit cutting speeds up to 300 m/min in aluminum, at feed rates of 0.5 mm/rev. These rates result in very short cycle times and extended tool life.

image 3rt

Fig. 2

Pictured transfer machine (Fig.1) illustrates a drilling station for an aluminum profile with 11 drilling operations. The actual machine time is 8 seconds for a roof rack railing. The machine is used in 3 shifts and produces a finished part in less than 20 seconds.

Depending on tool diameter, some of the drilling station units operate at 12,000 rpm.

A special purpose machine is shown in Fig. 2. This machine provides 33 holes in an automotive fiberglass- reinforced plastic part in less than 2.5 seconds. Years of experience and research with special tools and materials result in exeptional hole quality.

For all chipmaking operations including drilling, tapping, milling, reaming,  flow drilling, boring, turning, inside and outside grooving etc. with internal or external coolant supply, SUHNER offers a comprehensive machining unit program for machine builders and end users alike.

 

suhnerlogo

SUHNER INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTS, CORP.
Hwy 411 S./Suhner Drive
P.O. Box 1234
Rome, GA 30162
Phone:  706-235-8046
Fax:  706-235-8045
Attention:  Lee Coleman, Automation Division
www.suhner.com
automation.usa@suhner.com

Continue reading