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ANCA MicroX ULTRA Grinding Machine and AIMS Connect Highlighted at IMTS 2024

Eight machines plus the newest ANCA Integrated Manufacturing System (AIMS) to be featured in Booth 237406, as the company celebrates its 50th anniversary and the opening of its LA Tech Center

At IMTS 2024, ANCA CNC Machines has much to offer the market and is also celebrating several highpoints in its storied history.  In addition to the introduction of an advanced, high-precision tool grinder, the MicroX ULTRA, as well as the next generation of integrated manufacturing technology, AIMS Connect, ANCA will further highlight its commitment to offering the best-in-class solutions for tool grinding production, start to finish, with the celebration of its 50th anniversary in business (1974-2024) and the recent opening of its newest Tech Center in Temecula, California to serve its fast-growing West Coast market base. 

ANCA, a global leader in CNC grinding machines and automated manufacturing technologies, celebrates its 50th anniversary, displaying its latest innovations at IMTS. As a mainstay in the precision tool industry, ANCA will showcase its commitment to excellence through new products, cutting-edge technologies and exciting business events, including its popular Tool of the Year and Female Machinist of the Year awards. The anniversary showcase addresses manufacturers’ needs for highest quality and lowest cost tools, plus freeing operators from repetitive and non-value-add tasks to make room for progress and creativity.  

Pat Boland, ANCA co-founder, remarks, “For 50 years, ANCA has been on a journey to change the shape of the cutting tool industry. To celebrate our 50th anniversary, we look forward to meeting with our customers and partners at IMTS. As innovation has motivated us throughout our history, new products and developments will be at the center of our celebrations. ANCA’s future is exciting, we are focused on continuing to invent and deliver groundbreaking technology to help take cutting tool production into areas not previously thought possible.”

Edmund Boland, ANCA CNC Machines General Manager, adds, “IMTS is the major global event in this milestone year for our company, so it’s thrilling to showcase our latest products and technologies for high performance cutting tools produced with optimized efficiency and cost. Building on ANCA’s heritage of producing industry-leading software, the latest release of our signature ToolRoom software, RN35, takes cycle time optimization even further, elevating productivity – it’s the future of tool production.”

“ToolRoom and AIMS really pave the way for highly productive, autonomous production. Our investment in AIMS for connected and automated processes is our commitment to solving key challenges such as labor shortages and consistent production processes with smart, future-ready solutions. Our ULTRA technology has made a splash in the market, and now enables micro tool production, regrinding and small batch production with the MicroX and FX7 ULTRA,” notes Edmund.

50 years of innovation and “thinking outside of the box”

ANCA started with a minicomputer and teletype installed at co-founder Pat Boland’s home, followed by a CNC and then the design and manufacture of machine tools with co-founder Pat McCluskey. Throughout the years, ANCA has brought significant advantages to the industry with pioneering innovations like the first touch probe, soft axes and 3D simulation.

Naturally, software and automation are key highlights of ANCA’s anniversary innovation portfolio. The latest version of ANCA’s ToolRoom software, RN35, offers:

  • Average performance increase of up to 20% with advanced features and functions, optimizing feedrate, improving cycle time and surface finish, while extending wheel life.
  • New developments including the integration of material removal rate calculations, allowing manufacturers to automatically set parameters for constant removal rates, plus air-time reduction.
  • Statistical Process Control (SPC) software for statistical analysis and evaluation of manufactured part characteristics streamlines manufacturing processes.
  • Profile fluting further enhancing the popular flute from solid feature of the proprietary ANCA software.

Experts will present these and other upgrades to IMTS visitors, plus further exciting news in CIM3D simulation software.

The Future of Automation in Tool Production IS here today…AIMS

The ANCA Automated Manufacturing System (AIMS) is a highly integrated, advanced automation system that brings together machining, metrology and materials handling plus data management in a leading-edge ecosystem for a lights-out production of tools used in myriad industries.

https://machines.anca.com/Products/Integrated-Manufacturing/AIMS (includes a video demo)

ANCA’s AIMS (ANCA Integrated Manufacturing System) is the smart manufacturing solution for cutting tool production, enabling manufacturers to connect, automate and create like never before. The modular system comprises hardware and software components for automated, closed loop manufacturing. AIMS Server controls production processes and AutoComp, the intelligent compensation module maintains part quality automatically, while the new AIMS Connect function covers job management.

With AIMS Connect, recently debuted at GrindingHub in Germany, visitors can experience firsthand the power of digital production control and modular automation, now available for existing installations. The system has proven in the field that it empowers manufacturers to explore new opportunities, products and features while maximizing productivity and quality.

AIMS is growing in popularity, as it enables shops of all sizes plus huge production departments the flexibility to integrate machining, metrology and materials handling into a unified ecosystem with full data capture and management capabilities. 

Machines and technology for highest quality and lowest cost tools

ANCA’s GCX machine and gear tool technology is set to redefine the production of skiving cutters with a turnkey solution package. To address the complexity of gear tool manufacturing, this offering includes features for the design of gear cutting tools, manufacturing and integrated tool measurement, as well as providing the skiving machine setup parameters.

IMTS visitors will witness live how this configuration enables short setup times, simulation and monitoring, plus quality enhancing features like the ANCA Motor Temperature Control (MTC) and integrated balancing (iBalance) for unparalleled longtime grinding profile accuracy within +/-0.0015mm. This turnkey package facilitates easy entry into the gear tools sector while ensuring top-quality results.

ULTRA Technology: the platform for highest precision and micro tool work

Revolutionary ULTRA technology combines nanometer control, servo-controlled algorithms and mechanical stiffness upgrades to achieve unprecedented accuracy. The FX7 ULTRA and MicroX ULTRA demonstrate ANCA’s commitment to precision, enabling continuous batch production down to 0.03mm and setting new standards in tool manufacturing.

The MicroX ULTRA premiered at EMO 2023 and was released to the market at GrindingHub, giving micro tool manufacturers all the advantages of the ULTRA technology and ANCA’s Machine Intelligence in a unit tailored to this application. As the only micro tool grinder with nanometer control, optimized mechanical layout and axes travel, integrated tool measurement and progressive automation, this six-axis grinder is the ideal solution for volume production of tools down to 0.03mm.

Customer-centric solutions enable enhancements

Laser measuring on the EPX-SF


The new EPX-SF stream finishing machine was released to the market at GrindingHub. ANCA’s advanced edge preparation and surface finishing solution addresses productivity targets, delivers superior IP cutting tool performance and succeeds in precision-critical industries – in a design that’s ready to be integrated in automated tool manufacturing systems. With 11-axis automation and smart recipe fine-tuning, the machine is engineered by tool experts to optimize media utilization while providing precise edge control. The machine has the capability to reduce edge roughness to under 100 nm and refine edge radii to mere microns with controllable K-factor, achieving nano-smooth surfaces and micron-honed edges in record time.

The EPX-SF’s cyclic mode with pulse rotation serves as a potent defense against surface burrs and edge imperfections. With adjustable positive and negative angles, the EPX-SF spindle traverses the optimal cutting path, optimizing potential chip flow and reducing the surface roughness of the cutting workpiece. Within ANCA’s automation ecosystem, the EPX-SF seamlessly integrates into production lines, operating autonomously with robotic assistance round the clock for tool loading/unloading.

The CPX blank preparation machine is a prime example of how to include the voice of the customer in product development. Tool manufacturers around the world were asked and given their ideal solution for blanks with high material removal rates, application flexibility and integrated quality control. With features like statistical process control and top surface finishes below 0.2Ra, manufacturers can achieve high productivity at minimal cost with the CPX Linear. Some further application capability will be introduced at IMTS. 

ANCA invites visitors to join us at IMTS Booth 237406 to experience firsthand the future of tool manufacturing.


For further information, please contact:

Amanda Bakun
Marketing & Communications Manager – Americas
ANCA MACHINE TOOLS
248-497-1168
amanda.bakun@anca.com

ANCA is a market leading manufacturer of CNC grinding machines. It was founded in 1974 in Melbourne, Australia where the company still has its global headquarters. ANCA has offices in the UK, Germany, China, Thailand, India, Japan, Brazil, Korea, Mexico and the USA as well as a comprehensive network of representatives and agents worldwide.

ANCA CNC grinders are used for manufacturing precision cutting tools and components across a diverse range of competitive industries including cutting tool manufacture, automotive, aerospace, electronics and medical.

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ANCA’s AIMS selected as finalist for 2024 Manufacturing Leadership Council Awards

The Manufacturing Leadership Council (MLC) is the digital transformation division of the National Association of Manufacturers and, as part of its mission, annually seeks world-class manufacturing companies and key individuals who contribute to the technology. 2024 marks the 20th anniversary of this premier awards program. 

On June 5, 2024, various companies and individuals who have made significant contributions to the digital manufacturing transformation in America will be recognized and winners named throughout 9 categories.  Among the finalists for the prestigious Engineering and Production Technology award is the ANCA Integrated Manufacturing System (AIMS), a recently developed, fully automated grinding, gauging and materials handling system with workflow monitoring, full tracking and data management capability.  It allows shops and production departments to achieve a lights-out manufacturing ecosystem in coordination with company control protocols.  ANCA is an acknowledged global leader in this technology. 

The ANCA Integrated Manufacturing System (AIMS) offers an open ecosystem that aims to connectautomate and create all steps in the production of cutting tools for a broad spectrum of industrial applications, including automotive, medical, aerospace, electronics and woodworking. 

Manufacturing processes controlled by AIMS achieve higher machine utilization while maintaining consistently high tool quality. Thanks to sophisticated tool measurement and compensation strategies, scrap is reduced and costs per tool are significantly lowered. Comprehensive reporting and intelligent insights supported by machine learning provide complete visibility into all aspects of operations.

AIMS is designed as an open system and allows the integration of third-party machines and workstations, plus AGV’s for material transport. 

AIMS Connect
Connects all operations that are carried out to manufacture cutting tools. The central AIMS server controls compliance with the processes that a tool passes through during its manufacture. It checks whether the various process steps are being carried out and takes action if the process is not being executed to preset standards. An information system guides employees to carry out manual process steps.

AIMS Automate
Automation of connected operations through the use of robots such as AMR for transfer or cobots for palletizing tools. A self-optimizing job scheduler ensures an ideal supply of pallets to the machines or provides individual tools for measurement.

AIMS Create
Create individual and customized workflow for the tool, based on linked operations. Workflows and processes can be described and stored with ISA-95 compliant recipes. Job orders are transferred to production via the link to recipes and the creation of work requests. Work cells, work units and assets are managed just as easily as grinding programs and grinding wheels. AIMS Create provides the cockpit for creating processes. Thanks to the state-of-the-art web application, this can be done on almost all smart devices and computers.

ANCA president for North America, Russell Riddiford, comments, “ANCA is very proud to be in the running for this award from the MLC.  We support the digital transformation effort in both our machine building and motion control operations, as we seek to provide our customers the machines and software needed to move their companies in this exciting new direction, within industries of all kinds.” 

The 2024 MLC Awards feature nine categories to recognize company achievements in AI and Machine Learning; Collaborative Ecosystems; Digital Network Connectivity; Digital Supply Chains; Engineering and Production Technology (the category in which AIMS is a finalist); Enterprise Integration and Technology; Operational Excellence; Sustainability and Circular Economy; plus Transformational Business Cultures.  Additionally, individuals are entered into the Transformation Leadership and Next-Generation Leadership categories.  The finalists represent a cross-section of industries, comprising global multi-nationals and start-up companies.  The awards are judged by distinguished individuals from across many industrial sectors. 

ANCA is based in Melbourne, Australia with its North American headquarters in Detroit, Michigan, where it operates a full tech center, including machines and training for its customers. 


For further information, please contact:

Amanda Bakun
Marketing & Communications Manager – Americas
248-497-1168
amanda.bakun@anca.com

ANCA is a market leading manufacturer of CNC grinding machines. It was founded in 1974 in Melbourne, Australia where the company still has its global headquarters. ANCA has offices in the UK, Germany, China, Thailand, India, Japan, Brazil, Korea and the USA as well as a comprehensive network of representatives and agents worldwide.

ANCA CNC grinders are used for manufacturing precision cutting tools and components across a diverse range of competitive industries including cutting tool manufacture, automotive, aerospace, electronics and medical.

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ANCA Expands Its Global Footprint Opening a New Technology Center in Korea

ANCA, a leading innovator in precision grinding solutions, is thrilled to announce the grand opening of its new state-of-the-art Technology Center in Korea. ANCA has offered local sales and service to customers across diverse industries for more than 30 years in the Korean market and opening the new facility is a significant milestone for the company as it expands its presence in the Asian market.

Jake Farragher, General Manager of ANCA Asia, says, “ANCA’s newest technology center is a commitment to our customers in Korea. This investment in our global infrastructure enables our team to deliver premium sales and service support to this important and growing market. We understand the importance of offering customers local support and at our new facility we can showcase the capability of our flexible grinding machines, world-leading software, and market-first automation solutions.”

“Thanks to our long-standing partnership with SH International in Korea, we have a legacy of innovation with our customers in the market, and our local team at our new ANCA office is poised to facilitate our customers’ success into the future.”

“We are excited for our new center to serve as a hub for grinding excellence, innovation and collaboration, confirming our position as a global leader in the tool and cutter grinding industry and medical tools industry.”

For 50 years ANCA has committed to providing cutting-edge grinding solutions worldwide, and ANCA Korea, located near Seoul, is equipped with the latest technologies, such as ANCA’s ULTRA technology with nanometer resolution control.

The demonstration facility provides the ULTRA experience with ANCA’s MX and FX ULTRA machines, as well as automation solutions with ANCA’s Integrated Manufacturing System (AIMS). The facility additionally includes support and training services.

The grand opening event was attended by key stakeholders and customers, industry partners, and local dignitaries.

Celebrating 50 Years and Innovating the Future with ULTRA Technology

Pat Boland, ANCA Co-founder said: “50 years ago, Pat McCluskey and I did not anticipate ANCA to be what it is today. We embarked on a business journey that felt in hindsight like stepping onto a treadmill, with our customers driving the speed. Yet we have not only kept pace with the market, we’ve surged ahead, introducing cutting-edge innovations. I am proud of the technology we are still releasing, such as the ULTRA and GCX packages and the many innovations that underpin these product releases.”

Edmund Boland, General Manager of ANCA CNC Machines and son of Pat Boland, highlighted ANCA’s agility as a privately owned company, enabling swift decisions to support ANCA’s people and customers.

“ANCA has always endeavored to stay ahead of the curve, anticipating market trends, and delivering cutting-edge solutions that enable our customers to thrive,” Edmund said. “With 50 years of innovation behind us, our product and technology portfolios are perfectly positioned to meet the challenges of the future.”

ANCA’s 50th anniversary marks a half century of the company’s relentless pursuit of excellence and commitment to pushing the boundaries of precision grinding technology. The ULTRA machine range, with its nanometer technology, allows customers to produce the best tools in the market through superior accuracy, quality and surface finish.

The ANCA Integrated Manufacturing System (AIMS) is a groundbreaking advancement in grinding technology. AIMS connects, automates and creates all processes required to manufacture a cutting tool, ensuring maximum accuracy and consistency while minimizing downtime – enabling end-to-end digitally connected and automated production systems for cutting tools.


For media inquiries or more information, please contact:

Sepideh Zandieh

Acting Group Communications Manager
sepideh.zandieh@anca.com
Phone: 0439 316 131

About ANCA:

ANCA is a market leading manufacturer of CNC grinding machines. It was founded in 1974 in Melbourne, Australia where the company still has its global headquarters. ANCA has offices in the UK, Germany, China, Thailand, India, Japan, Brazil, Korea and the USA as well as a comprehensive network of representatives and agents worldwide.

ANCA CNC grinders are used for manufacturing precision cutting tools and components across a diverse range of competitive industries including cutting tool manufacture, automotive, aerospace, electronics and medical.

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ARCH Cutting Tools produces a unique 3-flute carbide helical cutter that delivers unequaled part finish, higher throughput, and longer tool life in machining a polyethylene tibial insert

Creating High Performance Tools for Machining Medical Components

Truly optimizing medical machining often requires specialized cutters, and there’s no better model for designing and grinding them than ARCH Cutting Tools, headquartered in Warren, Michigan, USA.

Take the task of machining a polyethylene tibial insert. As ARCH Cutting Tools’s northeastern regional director of operations, Jim Gray, spelled out, this has almost always been done with a single, flat blade mounted in a holder so as to maximize the shear angle. But, said Gray, this design often produces lines on the surface, or an “orange peel” effect, due to burning, as it doesn’t cut the polyethylene as cleanly as desired. A straight flute design also impacts the part with a lot of force on each rotation.

Gray’s team instead used their knowledge and ANCA’s programming software to create a unique 1½” (38.1 mm) diameter 3-flute carbide helical cutter with high shear and multiple radii along the profile. They grind it on an ANCA MX7 machine, using a dozen wheels to create a mirror finish and a cutting edge “sharper than a razor blade,” as Gray described it. “You need a very sharp edge to cut the plastic perfectly cleanly. Even a diamond grain that goes through cutting edge, leaving a tiny chip, will show up in the insert. We inspect these tools under a microscope to confirm the edge is crisp and clean.” Gray added that their helical design also distributes the cutting forces, in contrast to a straight flute. In sum, the ARCH Cutting Tools solution delivers an outstanding part finish, higher throughput, and longer tool life.

These ball nose end mills (for machining hip stems) feature a perfect transition from the ball radius to the OD, and an end face gash that meets exactly at the center
ARCH Cutting Tools produces a unique 3-flute carbide helical cutter that delivers unequaled part finish, higher throughput, and longer tool life in machining a polyethylene tibial insert
This complex trepan cutter was created to meet an urgent need for cutting non-ferrous material used in respiratory equipment. The tool features a very fine finish and leaves no marks on the part. Gray reported that “the customer was ecstatic”

Replicating perfection

Gray also pointed out that in addition to the tool design assistance derived from ANCA’s programming software, which includes full 3D simulation, the ToolDraft feature enables detailed documentation for process control. “Instead of relying on 2D drawings on the shop floor,” Gray expounded, “ToolDraft gives us the ability lay out every aspect of the tool and the required grinding wheels. One page covers the gullet shape, with the roughing wheel, the finishing wheels, and any information related to fluting. The next page covers profiling, again with all the wheel shapes and data, and the required clearance angles, land width, and other tool geometries. And so forth for the end face. We also add notes to each drawing to provide detail on what’s pertinent to this tool…what really makes it work.

“We love what ToolDraft does for us. Because if all you put out on the floor is a 2D drawing with an outside diameter or shape of the tool, the operator can say ‘This tool is good. It’s to print,’ when in reality, the body’s thin and the rake is not right. There are so many things that go into why we designed a tool a certain way, that if we don’t get complete information to the operator, everyone can have a different opinion about what constitutes a correct copy. We’ve promised our customers that no matter what person and what machine grinds their tool, they’ll get the same tool every time. And the only way we can keep that promise is with the documentation we’ve created with ToolDraft.”

Gray added that although it’s possible to grind such tools with a ball screw driven machine, it’s much easier to produce them with ANCA’s newer linear motor technology. “Linear motors have definitely changed our world when it comes to finishes and transitioning for profile cutters,” he explained. “They make it easier to grind the profile, especially with a tool like a condyle cutter, because multiple radiuses go up and over the edge. If you’re grinding in just one direction, a ball screw machine is fine. But if you go up and over and you need to produce multiple radiuses in the front and multiple radiuses in the back, that little backlash or wear in the ball screws will force you to fight until you get it all settled and tweaked in. Whereas with a linear motor machine, it’s just true from the start.”

Not all ball nose end mills are equal

Moving on to hip stems, Gray said machining up and over these parts requires ball nose end mills in which the radius and its transition to the OD must be perfect. The end face gashing must also meet exactly at the center. “Any mismatch in the center of the ball nose will put a line in the hip stem, and that’s not acceptable.” Any error in the radius will create geometrical distortion in the part profile, he added. “We scan that whole radius to ensure it’s correct.”

Hip stems have generally been made of titanium and cobalt chromium, Gray explained. These materials are challenging enough, but Gray said the new 3D printed titanium alloys from leading medical suppliers are even more difficult to machine. They’re porous, to facilitate integration with the patient’s bone, which essentially guarantees an interrupted cut. The material is also highly abrasive. Thus, minimizing tool changes and increasing manufacturing speed to achieve an acceptable level of efficiency requires an engineered solution from the likes of ARCH Cutting Tools.

Fast turn-around for custom tools and regrinds

In another example of ARCH Cutting Tools coming to the rescue, a customer suddenly ran out of an imported, replaceable head, keyseat cutter during production. ARCH Cutting Tools delivered a custom engineered, solid carbide version, with coating, in under 48 hours. In another case, ARCH Cutting Tools created a multi-step counterbore that combined 6 different operations in one tool for machining titanium and superalloys. Both examples again point to the power of combining experienced grinding professionals with ANCA’s software and machines to produce high quality medical devices that improve a person’s life.

Regrinding is yet another such area. Not only does ARCH Cutting Tools reliably return used tools to new condition, Gray said there are numerous cases in which they’ve actually improved upon the original tool. “One of our bigger medical customers was buying a faceted drill from one of the world leaders in cutting tools,” recalled Gray. “The drill was being used on titanium, and we put a roll point on it and made some other changes to the geometry that made the reground drill run better than the new tools.”

In this context, Gray praised ANCA’s integrated laser to automatically check for and correct errors in tool runout, and ANCA’s probing capability. In addition to probing coolant holes to ensure proper tool orientation for a regrind, Gray said ANCA makes it easy to probe the entire point profile to enable K-land grinding, a notoriously fiendish task. “You adjust how many points you want along that edge,” Gray expounded. “And if you’re manufacturing the tool, you can probe the profile once and store that data. From then on you don’t have to re-probe to produce a good K-land, until wheel wear becomes a factor.”

Wheel wear would cause the K-land to vary, Gray added, but he again pointed to the ease of re-probing the profile to make adjustments, plus the existence of wheel probes on their ANCA machines. “The wheel probe is absolutely awesome, because it takes human error out and it’s really accurate,” said Gray. The older method uses a measuring bar, and Gray recounted that operators all too often forgot which orientation they should use and destroyed an expensive wheel.

ARCH Cutting Tools created this multi-step counterbore to combine 6 different operations in one tool for machining titanium and superalloys
ARCH Cutting Tools delivered this custom engineered, solid carbide keyseat cutter, with coating, in under 48 hours

The science of productivity

As Gray put it, ARCH Cutting Tools has to be fast to be competitive, and that requires a process that’s “down to a science.” Things like matching different wheel specifications to the diverse tool materials they have to grind, proper coolant placement, and adaptable tool support. In the latter category, Gary praised ANCA’s P-axis traveling steadyrest and said that for some challenging applications they use an Arobotech, which grips the tool at 3 points and adjusts to changes in diameter as the P-axis moves below the grinding wheel, providing support. “These are all things that give us an edge to be able to do these instruments,” Gray concluded. “They virtually eliminate runout and allow us to run faster.”

But Gray reserves his highest praise for ANCA’s simulation software, calling it “the greatest tool…We used to go to the machine blind. We’d end up scrapping blanks to figure out these complex tools right at the machine. With ANCA’s software, you create complex tools before going to the machine and you’re close to perfect when you run your first part.”

From creative tool design, to efficient machine setup and operation, to tight quality control, ARCH Cutting Tools consistently exemplifies what it takes to meet the challenges of machining medical components.

Images

Condyle Cutter.jpg

ARCH Cutting Tools produces a unique 3-flute carbide helical cutter that delivers unequaled part finish, higher throughput, and longer tool life in machining a polyethylene tibial insert

Ball Nose End Mills.jpg

These ball nose end mills (for machining hip stems) feature a perfect transition from the ball radius to the OD, and an end face gash that meets exactly at the center

Key Cutter.jpg

ARCH Cutting Tools delivered this custom engineered, solid carbide keyseat cutter, with coating, in under 48 hours

Multi-Step Counterbore.jpg

ARCH Cutting Tools created this multi-step counterbore to combine 6 different operations in one tool for machining titanium and superalloys

Carbide Trepan Cutter.jpg

This complex trepan cutter was created to meet an urgent need for cutting non-ferrous material used in respiratory equipment. The tool features a very fine finish and leaves no marks on the part. Gray reported that “the customer was ecstatic”


For further information, please contact:

Amanda Bakun
Marketing & Communications Manager – Americas
248-497-1168
amanda.bakun@anca.com

ANCA is a market leading manufacturer of CNC grinding machines. It was founded in 1974 in Melbourne, Australia where the company still has its global headquarters. ANCA has offices in the UK, Germany, China, Thailand, India, Japan, Brazil, Korea and the USA as well as a comprehensive network of representatives and agents worldwide.

ANCA CNC grinders are used for manufacturing precision cutting tools and components across a diverse range of competitive industries including cutting tool manufacture, automotive, aerospace, electronics and medical.

Continue reading

Tool grinding’s talented new ambassador

How Lena Risse went from apprentice to ANCA Female Machinist of the Year

Like many people, Lena Risse didn’t know what career to pursue when she entered young adulthood in 2017. Now she’s won ANCA’s inaugural Female Machinist of the Year contest.

Lena studied media technology at a university for a time, and began a related apprenticeship in supporting trade fairs and concerts, but it didn’t suit her. Then, at 19, she decided to give tool grinding a try, an option that seemed simultaneously obvious and crazy. Obvious, because her father Horst Risse was running a one-man tool grinding company with such love and dedication that he routinely says he’ll be standing at a machine when he’s 85. And crazy, because to this day, Lena finds so few females in the field, though she’ll convincingly explain why that should not be the case.

Lena had helped out at Risse Werkzeugtechnik GmbH (Risse Tool Technology GmbH) in Erkrath, Germany, as a teenager, doing things like packaging and laser marking. But she’d never touched the tool grinders. That changed as she started her apprenticeship in 2018. She took immediately to her father’s four ANCA machines and found that the more she did, the more she liked it.

Her curriculum called for cycles of six weeks of practical work in the company combined with two weeks of classroom theory. By the beginning of 2022, Lena passed her exams to become a fully qualified machinist. By then she was also responsible for all the company’s regrinding, which is roughly half their business, plus many additional duties. On top of that, she’s pursuing a master craftsman qualification—the only woman in the region to do so—and is on track to finish this summer. That would certify her to manage and train production teams.

It’s not the diplomas that motivate her though. It’s the satisfaction of things like starting a week with hundreds of diverse, damaged or worn-out tools, wondering how you’re going to sharpen them all, and then measuring, programming, grinding, and delivering them all to happy customers by week’s end. Or the satisfaction of inventing a dead stop for their automatic chuck, so they could hold a tight tolerance on length when regrinding a series of unequal end mills.

Lena’s training didn’t include the intricacies of ANCA’s iGrind software, but she’s explored it on her own, greatly boosting the company’s capabilities. (The elder Risse never had time to attend any of ANCA’s training courses.) For example, she introduced auto-loading tools of different lengths, expanding the kinds of “lights out” jobs they can do. And when a customer ordered 1,000 drills with through-hole coolant, she immediately recognized that her father’s approach of adjusting the rotational position of the blank by sight was not going to work. So she programmed a probing routine on their 15 year old ANCA RX7 to automate the task.

What’s next? Lena envisions continuing to stand alongside her dad for years to come, and they’re discussing the option of taking on an apprentice when Lena gets her master machinist certification. She’s also considering the possibility of adding the role of teaching other grinders at a nearby school or business.

Whatever she does, Lena is adamant that it’s a wonderful career for women and she decries the fact that virtually everyone she meets in the field, and all her instructors and company managers, have been male. As she sees it, “tool grinding is about patience, precision, logical thinking, and just finding solutions for problems. And I don’t think that men are better at this than women. I never have a day at work where I say ‘I don’t want to do this. This is a job for a man,’ or anything like that.” She adds that while she thinks women can do dirty or strenuous work, they should know that tool grinding is pretty much the opposite, “and I would like to see more women have the courage to just do it.”


For further information, please contact:

Amanda Bakun
Marketing & Communications Manager – Americas
248-497-1168
amanda.bakun@anca.com

ANCA is a market leading manufacturer of CNC grinding machines. It was founded in 1974 in Melbourne, Australia where the company still has its global headquarters. ANCA has offices in the UK, Germany, China, Thailand, India, Japan, Brazil, Korea and the USA as well as a comprehensive network of representatives and agents worldwide.

ANCA CNC grinders are used for manufacturing precision cutting tools and components across a diverse range of competitive industries including cutting tool manufacture, automotive, aerospace, electronics and medical.

Continue reading

ANCA celebrates a half-century contribution to industrial progress through precision cutting tools

1.1 billion cutting tools and counting have shaped the world around us for 50 years

Family, fulfillment, and a fascination with technology are all part of a formula that has seen ANCA lead the demanding niche of CNC tool and cutter grinders for a half-century.

In its time, the Australia-based global business has made an enormous yet largely hidden contribution to the world, selling over 10,000 5-axis CNC machines to over 2,500 customers. Around 1.1 billion tools have been created using ANCA’s grinders.

“You would be very unlikely to find any bit of advanced equipment, anywhere in the world, that hasn’t been touched by a cutting tool which has been manufactured on one of our machines,” explains co-founder Pat Boland, whose company’s customers include Boeing, Rolls-Royce, Iscar, Sandvik, Sutton Tools and many other household names.

Boland and Pat McCluskey – then an electrical engineer and an industrial electronics tradesman – met at a government-owned munitions factory in Melbourne in 1968. The two Pats started ANCA in 1974 in a spare room at Boland and wife Libby’s home.

“It wasn’t about money in the beginning, and for me it’s not about money now…I get my kicks out of designing new machines,” explains McCluskey. “Even before we started ANCA, Pat and I have always been driven by simply wanting to get machines to do things better. My enduring philosophy in business is if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always gotten. New ideas and new thinking are the basis of our business.”

ANCA’s highly sophisticated CNC grinding machines are exported around the world, with 98 percent of its revenue being generated by exports. The ANCA Group also makes associated equipment and software, including robot arms, software, and control systems, and offers automation services and technology to OEM machine builders.

Leading the incredibly demanding tool and cutter market – where nanometer-level details matter – means a reinvestment of roughly a tenth of revenues back into R&D.

A near-obsession with solving customer problems has seen ANCA contribute a collection of world firsts to its industry, including the first probe for digitizing tools, first modem for support and diagnostics in a machine, first full and true 3D simulation of the grinding process, and many more.

Martin U. Ripple, who has been at the helm of ANCA as CEO since November 2022, reflects on the company’s enduring legacy. “In all my interactions, I’ve observed a consistent thread – our customers invariably share fond recollections of their encounters with ANCA dating back to the ‘70s, ‘80s, and ‘90s. It’s evident that there’s a deep-seated loyalty and trust towards our brand,” he notes.

Ripple, always keen on uncovering the unique elements that set a business apart, asks, ‘What is the secret ingredient that differentiates us from our competitors? What makes ANCA exceptional?’ His answer is the involvement of family in the business, a fervent passion driving the company forward, and a steadfast commitment to providing customers with the most innovative products. This blend, according to Ripple, is the essence of ANCA’s success and longevity.” 

Edmund Boland, son of Pat and ANCA CNC Machines’ General Manager, values ANCA’s agility as a privately owned company which enables swift decisions to support ANCA’s people and customers.

“ANCA has always endeavored to stay ahead of the curve, anticipating market trends and delivering cutting-edge solutions which enable our customers to thrive. With 50 years of innovation behind us, our product and technology portfolios are perfectly placed to meet the challenges of the future.”

The delivery of technical and practical excellence has required a sharp focus on both vertical integration – creating everything from the machines’ motors to their polymer concrete bases to their sheetmetal canopies – and both trade and university-taught skillsets.

ANCA has trained more than 60 apprentices and established its formal apprenticeship program in 2011. McCluskey enthusiastically wrote the course material for this.

While being very particular with skill and technology development is one way to look at ANCA’s story, Pat Boland also likes to zoom out to a very general view.

The ANCA era runs 50 years and counting, touching countless lives, operating in the background.

It’s shorter than, but has similarities to the overall story of toolmaking: critical to industrial progress, even if it needs pointing out every now and then.

“For the vast sweep of history, the only evidence of homosapiens and our predecessors are cutting tools,” says Boland.

“And a number of the broad eras of human life are really named after cutting tools. So the stone age, the bronze age, the iron age. What we’re talking about is the technology of cutting tools as much as anything.”

Celebrating a golden achievement across the globe

To mark the occasion of ANCA’s 50th anniversary, the company is hosting a series of open houses, seminars, events, and attending tradeshows worldwide. As innovation has motivated ANCA throughout the company’s history, new products and developments will be at the center of the 50th year celebrations.

At global tradeshows and ANCA Open House events, precision manufacturers can experience new hard- and software for micro tool and gear tool manufacturing, edge preparation, closed loop manufacturing and automation.

Russell Riddiford says: “Our large and experienced group of engineers and developers is continuously presenting new solutions to meet customers’ needs. Highest quality tools and lowest cost per part are the guiding principles leading to groundbreaking, real-world innovations. Examples are our new MicroX CNC grinding machine, using nanometer control technology and ANCA Machine Intelligence to produce micro tools of unseen quality, or our AIMS system, the world’s first and only autonomous system for tool manufacturing.”

ANCA’s U.S. Open House will take place on May 7 & 8 from 9:00-6:00 at their Wixom, Michigan headquarters. Please RSVP to: amanda.bakun@anca.com


For further information, please contact:

Amanda Bakun
Marketing & Communications Manager – Americas
248-497-1168
amanda.bakun@anca.com

ANCA is a market leading manufacturer of CNC grinding machines. It was founded in 1974 in Melbourne, Australia where the company still has its global headquarters. ANCA has offices in the UK, Germany, China, Thailand, India, Japan, Brazil and the USA as well as a comprehensive network of representatives and agents worldwide.

ANCA CNC grinders are used for manufacturing precision cutting tools and components across a diverse range of competitive industries including cutting tool manufacture, automotive, aerospace, electronics and medical.

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Time-saving, easy and flexible: why the GDS µGrind ANCA workholding is a smart investment

The GDS µGrind ANCA collet adaptor is designed with the highest level of consistent accuracy and improved productivity in mind

The performance of any process relies on the performance of its individual components. This is particularly relevant in the grinding of precision tools. The increasing need for extreme accuracy and tolerances, as well as competitive and labor pressures, result in the demand for accessories that are more precise, easy to use and maintenance-free.

A selection of good quality, easy to use workholding that provides minimal and consistent runout is one of the prerequisites for successful grinding, resulting in quality tools and happy customers – once again reinforcing that the quality of the whole process relies on the quality of all its components.

ANCA has partnered with GDS, a renowned German manufacturer of high-quality precision accessories for grinding and machining processes. One of their flagship products is the µGrind workholding, which is now available from ANCA’s distribution network. The µGrind has been customized to suit the requirements of ANCA grinding machines and can be set up in a matter of minutes.

Benefits of the µGrind workholding:

  • Time saving – thanks to minimal and consistent 2um runout which provides consistency over large batches and collet changes.
  • Easy and fast setup – it only takes minutes to get the µGrind ready for grinding and readjustment between collet changes is not needed. Concentricity and wobble adjustments are easy to perform.
  • Flexible – a suite of compatible collets with form factors to suit almost all applications is available. µGrind comes in two form factors (standard and long nose) to suit almost all applications. 

µGrind performance has been tested in real-life applications and the results are very consistent. A test was performed over a large batch of 6mm tools where runout was measured before and after grinding at 2.5 x Ø and 10 x Ø. Even with thousands of clamping and diameter changes, the runout remained virtually unchanged.

The GDS µGrind ANCA workholding is a smart investment that will serve you for years to come. By saving time and improving tool quality, this translates into satisfied customers and better business outcomes.


For further information, please contact:

Amanda Bakun
Marketing & Communications Manager – Americas
248-497-1168
amanda.bakun@anca.com

ANCA is a market leading manufacturer of CNC grinding machines. It was founded in 1974 in Melbourne, Australia where the company still has its global headquarters. ANCA has offices in the UK, Germany, China, Thailand, India, Japan, Brazil and the USA as well as a comprehensive network of representatives and agents worldwide.

ANCA CNC grinders are used for manufacturing precision cutting tools and components across a diverse range of competitive industries including cutting tool manufacture, automotive, aerospace, electronics and medical.

Continue reading

ANCA TapX: A Customized Grinding Solution for Tap Manufacture

Projected global demand for products such as taps, dies, and thread forming tools is anticipated to rise from 2.75 billion to 3.42 billion over the next five years, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5%. The high-tech industries, particularly automotive and aerospace sectors, are expected to sustain a significant portion of this growth, accounting for 16% of the overall market demand. Additionally, there is an expected increase in demand from medical applications, which is projected to contribute another 7% to the total market share within the next five years.

Given the impetus from these high-tech markets, tap producers will need to enhance their designs to meet the escalating market share of specialized materials. Notably, composites (expected CAGR of 8.5%) and super alloys (expected CAGR of 7.5%) are anticipated to experience the most substantial growth, necessitating the development of tailored designs in response.

With the boom of automotive and aerospace applications, ANCA sees great potential for the future of the high-end tap market.  ANCA’s years of experience working with tap manufacturers has given the company valuable insights into the industry challenges, making it well-equipped to offer the right solution. The TapX is a machine specifically designed and integrated with automation to ensure high productivity in mass production. As a one-machine solution with single clamping, it guarantees substantial benefits for manufacturing standard and special taps by eliminating the traditional requirement of needing several grinding machines.

Flexible, precise and efficient one-stop tap grinding is simply unimaginable on ordinary grinding machines, as high-speed steel taps, carbide taps, micro taps and non-standard taps require different and detailed solutions. The difference lies in the performance of a single grinding process, a parallel grinding process or a combined grinding process. In addition, several grinding machines are usually required, each performing a specific tap grinding task. TapX integrates the various processes into one machine.

Flexibility is a key feature of the tap grinding process on the TapX. The specially designed machine and powerful ToolRoom software ensure a vast range of tap types and sizes can be designed and manufactured in one set-up. Combine this with the benefits of quick changeover time and it’s not hard to see how TapX can increase productivity and reduce lead times.

The production of taps in different materials is an example of how this highly flexible solution can contribute to productivity. Taps are mainly made of HSS and carbide materials, which require high precision, surface finish and reliability for grinding. TapX is suitable for the complete production of HSS or carbide taps. With a single set-up, it can grind various types of standard taps, micro taps and non-standard taps. Its excellent rigidity guarantees repeatable, high-quality results, while its CNC control plus programmable force of the center ensures reliability of high frequency movements.

The TapX uses ANCA’s own LinX motor technology for all linear axes and direct drive technology for all rotary axes. By eliminating all belts, pulleys, and gears, the TapX is not only a more precise machine, but a more reliable one as well.

Although HSS will remain the dominant material of choice, carbide tools are growing in popularity with the increase in thread milling applications and introduction of more exotic materials. Compared with HSS, carbide offers high rigidity, good machining quality and long service life. Consequently, the production of carbide taps presents challenges for machine productivity, accuracy and dressing of special thread grinding wheels.

TapX offers the perfect solution with its single clamping to optimize the grinding process. Combined with greater flexibility in wheel selection and process deployment, this revolutionary solution means more flexibility, reduced costs and increased tap production output. The total set-up time for multiple general machines is reduced from three to four hours to one hour for one TapX machine, which significantly reduces lead time for small to medium batch production, urgent order response and customer changes. In recent years, ANCA continues to innovate and has developed a unique solution for dome carbide taps with a wider application. Its superior performance is unmatched in the industry.

Recognizing the efficiency, accuracy and reusability of TapX, customers have begun to expand their product range to include spiral, straight flute and forming taps, and even micro parts. Micro taps are mostly used in smartphones, glasses, consumer electronics, aviation and military industries. Any miniaturized part may be machined with a small or micro tap.

In recent years, the growing demand for mobile devices and new materials has led to a sharp increase in the consumption of thread tapping tools, which in turn resulted in an unprecedented boom for machines grinding small or micro taps. This means that manufacturers such as ANCA, who have the capability to manufacture these tools, have great potential to meet the ever-growing market demand. To grind small batches of taps, conventional machines simply take too long to set up. With ANCA TapX, customers can integrate the entire process into just one machine, significantly increasing productivity through rapid tap design, set-up and changeover.

The TapX grinding solution is an excellent option to meet the high demand for high-quality tap products or to fulfill the needs of emerging manufacturers in the market. The TapX one-machine grinding concept provides faster tap design, set-up, and changeover to reduce lead times and boost competitiveness. Gone are the high costs, inflexible production and low productivity due to lengthy machine set-ups. ANCA remains committed to offering comprehensive grinding solutions for its customers.


For further information, please contact:

Amanda Bakun
Marketing & Communications Manager – Americas
248-497-1168
amanda.bakun@anca.com

ANCA is a market leading manufacturer of CNC grinding machines. It was founded in 1974 in Melbourne, Australia where the company still has its global headquarters. ANCA has offices in the UK, Germany, China, Thailand, India, Japan, Brazil and the USA as well as a comprehensive network of representatives and agents worldwide.

ANCA CNC grinders are used for manufacturing precision cutting tools and components across a diverse range of competitive industries including cutting tool manufacture, automotive, aerospace, electronics and medical.

Continue reading

ANCA TX Linear leads the way in tackling long drill production challenges

Long drills present several difficulties and challenges in the production process. Their elongated physical size is not the only concern; ensuring accuracy throughout the entire length of the tool can be equally challenging. The extended nature of these drills introduces a host of potential issues that need to be carefully addressed.

One challenge is the need to control grinding forces consistently throughout the entire length of the tool. This is crucial because long drills are designed to create holes that are not only accurate but also maintain their straightness over extended distances. The reduction of deflection caused by grinding forces is important. When fluting the drill in the shortest possible time, high feed rates and forces are necessary. It becomes crucial to find ways to minimize deflection while maintaining the required machining efficiency.

Another concern is runout, which refers to the error that occurs when the tool deviates from the center axis at an angle. While a standard setup may allow for an acceptable 5 µm runout for a 100mm tool, the same setup could result in up to 40µm runout for a 400mm tool. Achieving acceptable runout becomes a priority when dealing with such lengthy tools, as it directly impacts the performance of the tool.

Additionally, long drills often feature coolant holes integrated within their bodies. To ensure proper functioning, these coolant holes must be correctly identified by the machine during the machining process, avoiding any damage that could impede their functionality. Managing grinding forces and preserving the integrity of coolant holes are critical considerations when working with long drills.

By addressing the challenges of tool deflection, runout, fluting, and coolant holes, ANCA’s integrated solutions and software capabilities provide a comprehensive approach to effectively produce long drills with accuracy and efficiency.

ANCA’s TX7 is the machine for long drill production

ANCA is the only CNC grinding machine manufacturer with complete vertical integration in its manufacturing process. This integration not only fosters innovation across all aspects of design and production but also enables ANCA to respond swiftly and effectively to demanding requirements with unique solutions.

The TX7 machine’s powerful 37kW (49hp) direct drive spindle, facilitates the efficient grinding of long drills without putting excessive strain on the machine. It boasts a spacious working envelope and a 6th axis with a traveling steady support that can be positioned strategically to provide support in the grinding zone, allowing for the accommodation of tool lengths of up to 480mm. This setup eliminates deflection and minimizes vibrations caused by grinding forces on the tool. It also addresses the issue of runout, as the steady supports enable compensation control to mitigate runout errors effectively.

One of the remarkable advantages of the TX platform is its ability to grind drills from start to finish in a single setup. This capability grants greater flexibility in production, enabling the manufacture of both high-volume tools and highly customized tools on the same machine with minimal hassle. Customers opting for the TX7 model with a robot cell can achieve fully automated manufacturing, unlocking new possibilities and efficiencies for their operations.

ANCA’s specialized software for long drills

ANCA offers several software solutions for long drill production. The first is ToolRoom, which provides a drill wizard as a standard feature. This wizard is a great starting point and includes convenient features like wheel pack auto-select. Users can easily add and define coolant holes in the blank editor for simulation. The software also integrates many tool features, including advanced ones like S Gash, K land, C land, and variable helix. The ToolRoom software also includes runout compensation capabilities, providing further adjustments to compensate for runout errors.

For formed flutes, ANCA offers iFlute software. Long drills often require specific flute forms, and iFlute simplifies the process. Users can simply import their DXF file, and iFlute will determine the wheel profile and grinding paths accordingly.

To simulate the tool grind and account for machine features, ANCA provides CIM3D. Users can add all the necessary machine features to the simulation, including a 6th axis, to determine the setup and control before proceeding to the actual grinding process. Not only can users set up the required operations, but they can also optimize the grind from their desk with accurate simulations of all features. CIM3D includes intuitive coolant hole collision detection within the simulation, ensuring that potential issues are identified and addressed beforehand.

ANCA’s comprehensive integration, combined with the advanced features and software of the TX platform, establishes the company as a flexible and agile provider of grinding solutions. With this powerful combination, ANCA effectively meets a wide range of challenging demands in long drill production.

Overview

  • ANCAcrete is a unique ANCA innovation that provides excellent dampening and thermal properties, delivering a robust polymer concrete base with high stability on which to grind
    • 2 position wheelpack changer as standard for quick and easy change of wheel packs in under 8 seconds
    • Bi symmetrical gantry design provides the large TX platform with the high stability required for exceptionally high precision grinding of large tools. This design has the grinding spindle center of rotation on the machine centerline, delivering high rigidity while mitigating the effects of thermal growth.
    • LinX linear motors drive all the linear axes, with a unique counterbalance design to counter gravity for the Z-axis.
    • The powerful 37kw direct-drive spindle are the “muscles” of the machine, with unparalleled strength and creativity to achieve superior surface finish and depth of cut
    • The addition of the 6th Axis (P-Axis) provides support when and where it is needed. Using workholding such as Arobotech offers an automated travelling support at the grind point during production.
    • Measurement options such as probing and LaserUltra, can be utilized throughout the tool production process, from digitizing tool features and compensation to quality control
    • Optional headstock and/or secondary dresser to automatically maintain wheel forms at specified intervals
    • More unique solutions are available through the TXcell automation – including unattended operation, and unique camera systems to detect coolant hole positions on the tool before being loading into the machine for grinding

For further information, please contact:

Amanda Bakun
Marketing & Communications Manager – Americas
248-497-1168
amanda.bakun@anca.com

ANCA is a market leading manufacturer of CNC grinding machines. It was founded in 1974 in Melbourne, Australia where the company still has its global headquarters. ANCA has offices in the UK, Germany, China, Thailand, India, Japan, Brazil and the USA as well as a comprehensive network of representatives and agents worldwide.

ANCA CNC grinders are used for manufacturing precision cutting tools and components across a diverse range of competitive industries including cutting tool manufacture, automotive, aerospace, electronics and medical.

Continue reading

EMUGE-FRANKEN Takes Home Top Honors in ANCA’s Prestigious Tool of the Year 2023 at EMO Hannover

Partnering with ANCA gave a boost of confidence to the Bengaluru-based company, which extensively uses ANCA machines to make precision cutting tools, prepare blanks, and regrind tools

ANCA CNC grinding machines have helped SST growFrom a conventional machine operator to the founder of a company that manufactures high-precision cutting tools that employs over 30 people. Sounds like an unbelievable success story? Well, this perfectly describes the journey of Kumar A., a passionate cutting toolmaker from Bengaluru, India. Kumar’s cutting tool manufacturing company, SST Cutting Tools, relies on high-end grinding machines from ANCA to manufacture customized tools for aerospace, defense, and automotive applications. Here’s how it all began…

 

Journey of growth with ANCA

Kumar started SST Cutting Tools in the middle of the global recession in 2008 with a single tool and cutter grinding machine. The company now has four ANCA machines and many delighted customers.

Efficiency and accuracy have been boosted thorugh ANCA technology“I started with one conventional machine and used to regrind tools. My work was received well in the industry and soon I added more conventional machines and operators, but we were not able to speed up the process and procure orders that needed high precision. That’s when I thought of investing in a CNC grinding machine,” says Kumar.

“I had absolutely no idea about CNC grinding machines, as I had never operated one before. All I knew was that I wanted the best one. I evaluated several global brands and found ANCA to be best suited for my application. More than anything, I needed a user-friendly machine, as none of the team members, including me, had any experience with CNC grinding machines,” adds Kumar.

Enhanced output, efficiency, accuracy 

SST Cutting Tools added an ANCA FX3 with linear scale technology, which can produce tools with an accuracy of three microns. “We were amazed by the machine’s output and speed. Our efficiency and accuracy went up. This provided a boost to our much-needed confidence and now we’re out in the market looking for precision cutting tools requirements,” says Kumar.

Efficiency and accuracy have been boosted thorugh ANCA technologyAs orders increased, the company grew. A plot of land was purchased and construction of its factory began in 2016. “We were small players, but I always maintained one thing – never compromise on technology. Moving to the new factory in 2017, we added a Zoller tool inspection machine, which could measure any kind of tool profiles with the accuracy of one micron,” he explains.

The company started taking precision cutting tool orders, with many happy customers. “We received several repeat orders and a lot of new inquiries. We needed to enhance our efficiency further by reducing the setup time. I discussed this challenge with the ANCA team, and they suggested the ANCA FX5 fully automatic linear machine. I saw the demo, observed all the features, and opted for it in March 2018. It was the perfect match for my requirements. The machine is equipped with a 2-wheel changer that helps us reduce the number of setups,” informs Kumar. SST added one more advanced version of the ANCA FX5 in 2019. It is fully automatic and provides high accuracy and an in-process measuring camera.

 

It’s all about meeting requirements

Producing the right blank can define the overall cutting toolOne of the most important and challenging activities for cutting tool manufacturers is to prepare precision blanks with close tolerances. The right blank can define the overall cutting tool. “With time, customers have also become very demanding. They want a cost-effective and accurate product on time. However, in 2021, the volume of orders we had in our current setup needed an upgrade, especially for the preparation of blanks. I wanted to reduce the blank preparation time with 100% accuracy and decided to opt for the ANCA 4 Axes CPX blank preparation machine,” says Kumar.

The CPX Linear is capable of achieving a surface finish better than 0.2Ra with a run out of less than two microns. “With the addition of a CPX Linear, we can make tools in a few hours, thereby meeting urgent requirements,” he adds.

 Focus on quality, accuracy for applications

Talking about his vision, Kumar says, “I want to be a world-class manufacturer of cutting tools and provide services to the customer’s speculated time with zero defects and a high degree of accuracy.”

The company specializes in customized cutting tools such as drills with sizes ranging from Ø1 to Ø25 with the L/D ratio of Ø X 12; endmills with sizes ranging from 0.8mm to 25mm and 2flutes to 12flutes; and reamers and holemills, with sizes ranging from 1mm to 25mm, within the tolerance of 0.002 mm. Additionally, the company works with threading tools, boring tools, ID and OD grooving tools, pico bars, and angle grooving tools.

SST can meet market needs for precision cutting toolsKumar comes from a very humble background. At the age when most children enjoy their school days, he worked part-time to make ends meet. At the age of 18, Kumar started working as a machine operator in one of the job shops in Bengaluru, the IT and manufacturing hub of India. Motivated to learn more, he took up a Diploma in Mechanical Engineering in the evenings.

“I wanted to learn the fundamentals of mechanical engineering, the functionality of the latest machines, and various advantages of grinding applications. I used to work for 10-12 hours during the day and attend classes in the evening,” he recalls.

SST Cutting Tools’ drive and versatility is also highlighted in their multiple #ANCATooloftheYear entries, showcasing their skill and creativity with ANCA software as well as an enthusiastic commitment to the community of cutting tool manufacturers.

SST produces customized tools for a range of industriesProudly highlighting one of his projects, Kumar says, “When COVID cases were at their peak, we did our small bit by helping the Indian government make ventilator parts quickly with the help of our ANCA machines. Since the project was related to medical equipment, the accuracy and surface finish needed were high and the turnaround time was short. We acted quickly, gathered all our technical staff and halted all our other projects. I am glad we were able to play a small role in the fight against Corona.”

 

 

 

More growth ahead at home and abroad

After close to 15 years of operations and many happy customers in India, the company is now eyeing exports, and expanding their infrastructure to accommodate more machines. “We are looking forward to adding more ANCA machines in the coming days,” says Kumar.

He adds, “We have big plans for the future. However, it is worth looking back at the journey and remembering all that has worked in our favor. Choosing ANCA was one of the best decisions in my career. ANCA has not only enhanced the efficiency and productivity of SST Cutting Tools, it has also given our confidence the much-needed boost.”

“The ANCA team is well-versed with the technical know-how and their service is nothing short of excellent. Whenever we faced any technical hurdles, the team would quickly respond. We never had to face any major delays in our projects thanks to their prompt support. In fact, there have been instances of executives from ANCA flying down to Bengaluru from Australia only to help us better understand the machine’s features. I am looking forward to working with ANCA; they are our growth partner and not just a vendor,” concludes Kumar.


For further information, please contact:

Amanda Bakun
Marketing & Communications Manager – Americas
248-497-1168
amanda.bakun@anca.com

ANCA is a market leading manufacturer of CNC grinding machines. It was founded in 1974 in Melbourne, Australia where the company still has its global headquarters. ANCA has offices in the UK, Germany, China, Thailand, India, Japan, Brazil and the USA as well as a comprehensive network of representatives and agents worldwide.

ANCA CNC grinders are used for manufacturing precision cutting tools and components across a diverse range of competitive industries including cutting tool manufacture, automotive, aerospace, electronics and medical.

Continue reading