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Australian Manufacturer, the Edge Equine, Finds Its Niche in Equine Dental Products Using ANCA’s FX Machines

Growth in the animal health industry saw the company invest in a FX5E to keep up with demand

Based in Bendigo, Victoria, The Edge Equine is an Australian manufacturer of equine dental products, primarily rasps for manual horse dentistry. The company also provides commercial industrial sharpening services for the central Victorian region – specializing in high precision sharpening such as broach drills, annular cutters, saw blades, and router bits for local commercial cabinet makers, sawmills, and food processors.

The company’s focus on manufacturing equine dental products stemmed from a local horse dentist’s request to sharpen his equine dental blades. Today, it is a point of differentiation as The Edge Equine has concentrated on a more traditional product while other manufacturers have moved to the electronics industry.

The Edge Equine pride themselves on providing prompt service, made possible with on-site manufacturing capabilities that enable them to ship products within 48 hours. The company sells directly to over 40 countries, with distributors in the US, UK, New Zealand, and South Africa.

Tim McMahon, Managing Director of The Edge Equine said, “Our relationship with ANCA started in 2005 when we purchased a second-hand TG4. Over the years we grew to have three TG4s on the floor. ANCA were fantastic, they helped us write our programs, get the machines up and going and then when we swapped to our first FX3, ANCA developed the programs to make our products which was absolutely fantastic.”

“We invested in the FX5E in 2020. We were after another machine, as our demand for product had grown to the point where the FX3 and the remaining TG4 couldn’t cope. Jake [Farragher], ANCA Asia-Pacific General Manager recommended the new FX5E as having some features that would certainly help us grow, part of that being its future ability to be automated as our growth continued. It’s been a pretty seamless transition with having the FX3 and FX5E on the floor.”

The Edge Equine mainly produce dental rasps and floats, devices that are used for maintenance of horses’ teeth. “The average cycle time is approximately 14 to 16 minutes depending on the rasp profile that we’re grinding which is two blades per cycle so it’s roughly eight minutes, seven to eight minutes per blade,” Tim said. “Most of our clients around the world order on an as needs basis so a prompt manufacture and supply is important to us and our customers.”

The future is bright with ANCA FX5E

Tim said, “With the implementation of the FX5E, it has given us new scope to look at more high precision grinding in the industrial regrinding market. We do a lot of granular cutters, annular cutters or broach cutters. We’re also looking at new products once again in the veterinary space. These are sectioning burrs for basically cutting out teeth that’s inside the horse’s head. As you can see, they’re quite a long burr. So there’s a lot of growth in using the capabilities of the FX5E.”

“The FX5E has the capacity to have robotics fitted and it will be something to look at in the future as our market grows and with the help of ANCA, we’ll develop a process to automate the process of blades. At the moment, we manually feed the machines, which still works well for us, but we have the opportunity to grow further on the automation stage.”

“The other major benefit of the FX5E is its flexibility. It gives us the capacity to change from manufacturing our rasps through to grinding tools within a matter of minutes. As with the FX3, we do jig setups, change things over, change wheels. It becomes time-consuming. But the flexibility we have now is outstanding, we can go from one job to the next without losing any time.”

“The FX5E is probably the first opportunity where we’ve had the capacity and the wherefore to branch out into different products and it’s also given us a lot more flexibility of sharpening our own mills within our own processing.”

Tim recognizes that the company’s two-hour location from the ANCA headquarters is a major advantage. “Whenever we’ve had issues, there’s always someone on the phone to talk to and usually they’ll have a technician up here within 5 hours or the next morning. As our customers expect customer service from us, our expectation from ANCA is to have a high level of customer service – and they certainly provide.”

Tim is confident that the company will see continual growth in the animal health industry, enabling The Edge Equine to be a leader in the manufacture of manual tools for equine dentistry. He envisions using the FX5E along with ANCA’s technology to manufacture other products within the veterinary space in the next 10 to 15 years.

“Prior to COVID, we would do three or four conferences a year within the USA, at least one in the UK, and Germany. We are and we’ll always be looking at what the world needs and what the industry needs as far as these types of tools,” Tim concluded.


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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Ohio State House

Exact Metrology Uses CT scanning for Ohio State House

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company and a comprehensive 3D metrology service provider and hardware sales company, recently used CT (Computed Tomography) to assist a former Ohio State University student with a special project.

Caroline Karbowski a Biology major as well as an undergraduate student researcher in Molecular Biology, started her own company called See3D. A nonprofit organization, See3D helps the blind and visually impaired to see through touch using 3D printing to create models. They then distribute them to those in need.

Ohio State House

Since 2017, See3D has distributed over 1,400 models to people in 23 states, 9 countries and 23

organizations. Ms. Karbowski taught herself Braille in 6th grade because she wanted to “read books in the car without getting dizzy.” From there, her interest grew and she discovered that she could add Braille labels to 3D printed models. Blind students could make their own scientific observations instead of only relying on someone else’s observations.

See3D contacted Exact Metrology wanting to take a particular physical part and convert it into a digital model, a service the company can provide rapidly with multiple methods of data capture and full-time staff for modeling and reverse engineering. The nonprofit had access to a scale model of the Ohio State House. The model is presumably a one-off model made by an artist. The challenge consisted in modeling the minute details and features of the state house into a printable format. An accurate point cloud was required. The geometry of the part and small features made industrial CT scanning the ideal choice for data capture.

The scan was completed by an Exact Metrology applications engineer, with a ZEISS METROTOM 6 scout (GOM CT). Using an x-ray generating source and a digital detector, an image showing the difference in density was created. Thousands of images were taken automatically. When a sufficient number of images were captured, they were stitched together to create a 3D x-ray image or volume. The volume can then be surfaced into a model by the gray value difference between materials in the volume. In this case, an outer shell featuring a core and a base. The applications engineer noted that when a point cloud was generated of the Ohio State House, it had too many points to be feasibly processed into a printable format. Exact Metrology’s in-house reverse engineering team removed the unnecessary data points while maintaining accuracy to provide a printable digital model of the state house. The engineer commented on his experience by saying, “I enjoyed this job because it was an interesting, unique part with the added bonus of helping See3D provide a valuable service.”

Last year, Caroline was selected as the Next Generation Innovator of the Year by her university. To hear her talk more about See3D and the inspiration behind it, view below:


In-Place Machining Company: On-Site Machining Solutions In-Place, Any Place in the World.

In-Place Machining Company, with facilities in Wisconsin, Washington, Virginia, Ohio, and Ontario, Canada, is the premier provider of high-precision engineered on-site machining, metrology, and large scale cutting & drilling services for a wide range of renewable energy, aerospace, industrial, and military customers throughout the world.

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company, is ISO9001, AS9100 Certified as well as ITAR Registered.

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company, with facilities in Cincinnati, Ohio, Moline, Illinois and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, plus affiliated offices throughout the country, is a comprehensive metrology services provider, offering customers 3D and CT scanning, reverse engineering, quality inspection, product development and 2D drawings. The company also provides turnkey metrology solutions, including equipment sales and lease/rental arrangements.

For more information, please contact:

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company
Steve Young
11575 Goldcoast Drive  
Cincinnati, OH 45249 
Local: 513-831-6620
Toll Free: 866-722-2600
www.exactmetrology.com
stevey@exactmetrology.com

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World leading chair manufacturer FAMEG invests in ANCA machines to produce cutting tools in-house and achieves major production improvements

See ANCA’s specialized grinding solution for greater flexibility and capability for unattended production of wood tools at IWF – Booth B8285 

FAMEG is one of the biggest chair manufacturers in the world. Established in 1881, FAMEG has dominated the market with a wide variety of product and commitment to quality. The company now has customers in 50 countries worldwide, an 800 strong production team and is headquartered in Radomsko, Poland. 

Andre Bronowski, Sales Director at FAMEG said: “The chair design is similar to a fashion business. The product needs to be attractive, but it also needs to be strong enough for use. We work with many designers, from Poland and abroad from Germany, Sweden, Spain and Switzerland.” 

“The process to manufacture a chair is not so simple. First, you have to source round wood, cut and bend the wood or make as plywood. For these processes we need cutting tools, a lot of cutting tools. After cutting, we assemble the complete chair – staining and lacquering to produce a final product.”  

“Two to three years ago, we decided that we would make all our own woodworking tools in house and that’s why we contacted ANCA. Nowadays, production requires a lot of flexibility and short lead times. We calculated that it would be best to control this process ourselves.”  

“Furthermore, to ensure our quality standards we try to control all steps during production.  Having the ANCA FX7 in-house means that we can now supply all the tooling for ourselves, save money and are even looking at manufacturing cutting tools for other companies,” Andrea stated.  

Ireneusz Idzikowski, FAMEG Product Manager said, “We decided to purchase an ANCA machine because of how long it was taking to source cutting tools. We need our cutting tools fast. Our manufacturing deadlines are very short, so if we couldn’t get the tools we needed quickly, it was a big problem.”  

“A second reason was diversity of cutting tools. Our production requires using specialized tools that have unusual dimensions. Obviously, we also use standard cutting tools, but the majority were specials. Tools made for special request and of special construction are not always perfect. Often you have to make a correction, which doesn’t have to be related to the tool itself but the production process of the used machine, which we can now do in real time – rather than shipping it back to a supplier.” 

“We use the ANCA FX7 for both production and resharpening. For production we have equipped the machine with a robot to produce tools in an automatic cycle, replacing the operator’s work.”  

“The machine has solved a lot of production problems. Now we can access cutting tools when we need them. It means we have stock or can manufacture the required cutting tool pretty much immediately, which wasn’t possible until now. It completely changed our work quality production wise.”  

“We are also very happy about the service, ANCA service technicians help us in solving various technical questions and we know who to call and that they won’t leave us alone with our problem,” Ireneusz concluded.  

Duncan Thompson, ANCA Special Projects Manager said: “FAMEG approached ANCA to see if we could find a custom solution for our FX grinding machine to have greater flexibility and capability for unattended production of wood tools. In partnering with FAMEG, we now have developed a machine package ideally suited to companies operating in the wood cutting tool industry.” 

“The solution has a special tooling system that can be used on our highly affordable and versatile FX7 machine. With its inbuilt robot and dedicated tooling, the FX7 can easily change automated production between woodworking profile blades, used to form skirting boards and architraves, and solid round shank tools such as routers and drills used in production of furniture and nested flat panel applications.”  

FX7 includes an inbuilt robot for tool and wheel pack changing, making it the ideal foundation for FAMEG’s application.  Two systems of work holding are offered: one for flat profile blades and another for round shank routers. Changeover between the two is designed to take less than 15 minutes. To support unattended production, a new robot head changes not only wheel packs (up to six for ultimate grinding flexibility), but also loads profile blades, or round shank routers without the need to make any changes to the robot tooling.  Changeover of the machine from profile blade grinding setup to routers takes less than 30 minutes.    

Production of different tool types is supported by dedicated tool software packages for programming profile blades, compression routers, standard and profile routers and drills.   All these grinding programs can be verified offline on the ANCA CIM3D package, ensuring the first tool produced is exactly as expected.  

ANCA’S SOLUTIONS TO INCREASE YOUR WOODWORKING TOOL PRODUCTIVTY AT IWF 

ANCA offers a variety of CNC grinding application solutions to suit the woodworking tool industry. Through collaboration with different companies, such as FAMEG, ANCA offers a range of CNC Tool and Cutter Grinders, along with dedicated woodworking software and automation solutions, to suit a range of tool types. 

With ANCA, manufacturers can diversify wood tool applications on FX machines. ANCA’s woodworking solution for the FX7 offers outstanding flexibility for unattended production. At IWF, visitors can see ANCA’s FX7 grinding compression routers.  

Diversify your wood tool applications on ANCA FX machines: 

  • Workholding solutions with quick changeover times 
  • Option for up to six wheel packs with automatic changing 
  • Dedicated application software 
  • LaserUltra can be applied to guarantee router diameter is accurate and consistent in unattended production 

Visit ANCA at IWF at Booth B8285. 


For further information, please contact: 

Johanna Boland 
Group PR and Communications Manager, ANCA 
M: +61 407799779 
Johanna.Boland@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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Marlor Tooling Invests in ANCA MX7

Located in Peterborough, England, Marlor Tooling has been designing and manufacturing cutting tools for more than 20 years. The cutting tool manufacturer specializes in delivering innovative solutions for the aerospace, automotive, energy, woodworking and general subcontract markets.

Discussing the business and the relationship with ANCA, Kevin Taylor from Marlor Tooling says: “Our business has grown with the technology. We aspire to have the best technology at all times and it has been an absolute pleasure working with the latest ANCA machine, the MX7 Linear. The quality of grind has always been there with the ANCA products, but this particular machine with the RFID technology has taken the loading of the machine to a different level. It’s an absolutely fabulous idea, chaotic loading is what it’s called and we have maximized the use of that. Things that we would consider being unable to load prior to the arrival of this machine, we now load. Whether it is a 1-off, 2-off, 3-off or a mixture of tools, it doesn’t mean anything to us now — everything can be automated. We are now trying to count our lead times in days and not weeks.”

The ANCA MX7 Linear is a powerful, versatile CNC tool grinder designed for production grinding. It is built to meet the demands of high output, high precision manufacturing. The powerful 38 kW (51 HP) permanent magnet spindle provides high torque at lower RPM which is ideal for carbide grinding and a wide range of other applications. The MX7 Linear is a hard-working, high productivity system with unique features that enable it to handle varied batch sizes with minimum set-up time. The new cylindrical linear motor design increases reliability further and ensures a superior surface finish.

Commenting on the latest installation of the MX7 Linear with RoboMate loader which includes a FANUC LR Mate 200iD robot, Adrian Wright from ANCA says: “Marlor Tooling came to us after the FX7 machine was installed. They wanted a good all-around solution for chaotic regrinding, this means they can load tools from 3mm up to 16mm diameter and it doesn’t matter what the tool type is. We can also do small-batch manufacturing as well, once again it does not matter what the size of the diameter of the tool is for the loading sequence, as long as it is within the 3-16mm diameter range. The robot is programmed, and the program is done prior to the tools being loaded into the pallet. Then the machine does the rest — it changes the collets and it can measure in process with the LaserPlus System.”

The LaserPlus system provides accurate and repeatable measurement of tools inside the machine. The LaserPlus can automatically measure OD, run-out, EOT, ball nose and corner radius profile tools. Typically, the LaserPlus can achieve +/- 3 microns accuracy or better. An air blast unit ensures that coolant or contaminants are cleaned from the tool to ensure nothing hinders the measurement process.

The MX Linear range uses ANCA LinX Linear Motors for axis motion (X & Y axes). In conjunction with linear scales, a high level of machine precision and performance can be achieved, resulting in superior tool accuracy and surface finish. With LinX Linear Motors there is no loss of machine accuracy over time due to wear and it is not affected by temperature variations. The LinX Linear Motor has higher axis speed and acceleration leading to reduced cycle times. It achieves this while maintaining a smoother axis motion.

With two pallets in the machine, the ANCA MX 7 Linear can accommodate up to 200 tools. Referring to this, Adrian says: “it really doesn’t matter if the customer comes to Marlor today and requires five tools to be reground and turned around by tomorrow, the operator can change the five tools at the front of the pallet, or move them to the back of the pallet, if necessary, to ensure a fast turnaround of tools and the machine just carries on.”

“To go from a three-week lead time down to a 24-hour lead time is music to any business owner’s ears. We have the ultimate in flexibility here. When you combine this system with the LaserPlus or LaserUlta that can measure the tools in-process, you can intermingle the tools. So, it doesn’t matter if it is a re-grind tool or a newly manufactured tool, we can slot in any tooling and it is the solution for everything.”

Commenting upon the reliability of the ANCA automation system, Kevin Taylor continues: “It has been great, the system is very solid. We also do our programming offline, and that has its advantages too. We don’t have to stop the machine to do our programming, as the machine is automatically loading the next tool constantly. It’s not a machine you would have traditionally been running manually through the day and loading for automation overnight – it makes no sense. It is loaded all day and all night. The machine does not stop at all, where are some of our other machines are restricted in size, diameter and tool types – this machine does not have those restrictions.”


For further information, please contact:

Johanna Boland
Group PR and Communications Manager, ANCA
M: +61 407799779
Johanna.Boland@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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Cutting Tool manufacturer F.O. Select competes successfully in Switzerland by investing in ANCA technology to achieve ‘lights out manufacturing’

New technology has enabled F.O. Select to easily achieve greater quality, efficiency and durability of their cutting tools

Loïc Jacot, 5th Generation family member of F.O. Select

Loïc Jacot, 5th Generation family member of F.O. Select said, “Our business was founded in 1886 by my Great Great Grandfather when he started manufacturing razor blades. At the beginning of the 20th century, the multinational company “Gillette” entered the European market and Arnold Schumacher decided to diversify the production with different cutting tools.”

“Our customers like the fact that we are still a family business. We have 130 years of experience in the production of tools. In general, we can say that we work with all main key cutting machine producers on the market. Since all people in the world use keys you need to cut millions and millions of keys every day. The market is niche but worldwide.”

F.O. Select has the utmost respect for legendary Swiss quality. They specialize in the manufacture of key cutters, cutter wheels and fine tooth cutters. Their dynamism and expertise has led the business to strive constantly for innovative performance and quality assurance. Production wise, the company has leading-edge technology that combines traditional craftsmanship with today’s modern manufacturing methods.

Loïc continues “We produce all our products in-house so we have a control over the whole production process. We produce about 100,000 pieces a year and export our products in 75 different countries with a very short lead time of 48 hours. Keys are becoming more complex because people want more security. Since the market is shifting towards precision we needed more precise machines to manufacture the keys.”

“In Switzerland, if we want to be competitive, we have to be automated, because in Switzerland everything is very expensive. We looked for the best solution for our production needs, understanding that cost reductions could be achieved with better efficiency and productivity. Investing in capital equipment is expensive and we needed to calculate if we should buy a new machinery. We looked at how the ANCA FX5 grinding machine would help us in the production process in terms of productivity through automated solutions. Quality is also very important to our business.”

“We have achieved these savings by investing in equipment that can run without human intervention, or ‘lights out’. This means they can run, producing tools, after office hours – during the night and weekends unattended.”

“In fact, since we installed our FX5 ANCA grinding machine we have been working 24 hours seven days a week.”

“New technology is very important because they bring efficiency, reliability, and precision. Our new ANCA machine is very precise, automated; and thanks to the laser we can measure the pieces on the machine and the machine will, by itself, change the software to make the measurement correct. This is crucial when working unmanned during the night or weekend.”

“The ANCA machine is easy to set up because the software is user friendly. We had no experience how to set up grinding machine producing endmills before our first ANCA machine. And now we have two and in the future maybe more.”

“We received training from ANCA to help set up the machine correctly. The robot is very easy to set up, so in a few minutes, you can change the diameter or you can change the table and the machine will be ready for production. And the good thing also is, I mean, the machine is more compact. I mean in comparison — if we compare our old ANCA machine and the new one, the new one is maybe 30% smaller.”  

“We have a bright future because we have modern machines, precise ones, automated. And since we control the whole production process we developed our know-how and we produce more precise and more durable tools,”  Loïc Jacot, F.O. Select.


For further information, please contact:

Johanna Boland
Group PR and Communications Manager, ANCA
M: +61 407799779
Johanna.Boland@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

Marketing for Manufacturers: Let Your Customers be your Marketers

By Johanna Boland, Group Strategy and Communications Manager at ANCA CNC Machines

Johanna Boland
Johanna Boland

When I moved into the Communications role at ANCA, an Australian manufacturing company, I anticipated our marketing activity would be straightforward, and, if anything, a little bit dull. 

I knew I would be working in the technology sector, and that was interesting, but I wasn’t sure how much creativity would be encouraged or needed in a B2B organization. 

And to be honest that is what I found. We are a fully privately-owned Australian manufacturer running for over 45 years from Melbourne and export 99 per cent of our product overseas. ANCA is thriving with around 1,000 employees and is a world leading manufacturer of CNC grinding machines, motion controls, sheet metal solutions and components. 

We have customers in over 45 countries and facilities in the UK, Germany, China, Thailand, India, Japan, Brazil and the USA as well as a network of representatives and agents worldwide. So as a business ANCA was doing well.

My first job was to benchmark against our competitors, and we were easily meeting the same standards. We had a strong brand, advanced product management process, advertised, participated in the right exhibitions, produced good, printed sales materials and had a passable website. All respectable, solid traditional marketing activities. 

But it wasn’t just traditional marketing that enabled us to take the top position in our market. We make a really great product with extraordinary technology backed up by a global sales and service infrastructure. It was a positive customer experience that saw us dominate our market.

We were successful and our customers loved us – so why break what wasn’t broken? Finding my feet, I realized the potential of this opportunity. 

With a more progressive marketing strategy we could offer greater customer value and stand out in our market. We wanted to be progressive in channels but also in our approach and content.

Firstly, we considered the customer experience and from reviewing social media, I got a very strong sense of the people behind the machines. These cutting tool manufacturers considered themselves as craftspeople who made objects just as beautiful and refined as a guitar. 

Tapping into this passion and profiling the person as well as the technology has differentiated us compared to our competitors. Telling our users’ stories has helped us better engage and inform customers.

We also looked at our channels and digital was the one to tackle first. Our website was old and clunky – but again, against our sector we were not doing badly. 

The business wasn’t shouting for a new website, but with dated architecture and visuals the site wasn’t the perfect match for our brand. We boasted technology that could grind to an accuracy of <0.002 millimeters, yet our website was over ten years old, and looked it. 

In our new website we have a careers section to highlight how cool ANCA was to work for, video integration for highlighting new products, a news and media section to add value for our customers and it is integrated to our customer relationship management system (CRM) for lead generation and visibility. 

Our next step will be to launch an e-commerce platform in a few months – something I am sure our competitors are not ready for and which will further help position us as a progressive business and grow revenue. 

Our content marketing not only adds value to the customer but it also profiles our experienced technical experts and reinforces ANCA’s brand as the leader in its field. Social media has also provided important access to the voice of customer and our Product managers regularly use the global Cutting Tool Facebook Forum to seek customer insights and understand what the market is thinking.

We were the first in our industry to really have a go at social media and are now streaks ahead of our competition in both followers and engagement. In fact, our competitors are copying our campaigns in their own social feeds. Thankfully it is much easier to start in front than to catch up.

Posting regular content and engaging with customers’ posts has built a thriving community. We see tons of fantastic user generated content with customers sharing photos of the tools they have produced on our machines every day. Using the hashtag #MadeonANCA, we now have hundreds of mini customer testimonials that give meaningful credibility to our brand.

Going back to the people behind the machine, we prioritized activity to improve the customer experience, rather than selling the product. Our #ToolTipTuesday series has been a hit. 

We post a short informative video with tips on how to use our software. These videos have attracted almost 85,000 views on YouTube since launch. A sales person recently had a call from Boeing asking about a machine after seeing a tool tip which piqued their interest. 

Given our machines can sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars, this was a cost-effective sales lead. Our #ANCAFlashBackFriday posts spark conversations about past achievements and memories to help reinforce our heritage and brand loyalty. We are also about to launch our own TV show — ANCA Academy — to host on our YouTube channel. What I am most proud of is our Tool of the Year competition, which is now in its fourth year. 

The team built a campaign that has attracted over 100 entries from Turkey, India, Italy, France, Thailand, USA, Germany, Poland, China, Russia, Japan, Korea and Malaysia. We livestream the results at the major trade fair of the year and gain significant media coverage to boost our customers’ brands. 

Last year there were almost 30 entries received from across the world, achieving 70 media appearances seen by over 80,000 fans and generating over 200,000 engagements on social media.

Awards are not a new concept, but this format was for our industry, especially using social media as part of the campaign. We use our Facebook channel for the community to like the entries and select the finalists, helping grow our own Facebook page and reach a broader audience. 

We found an influencer, Alfred Lyon, and asked him to be a judge. Alfred is a customer in the USA who has over 45 thousand followers on Instagram – and I don’t imagine that many people would bother to follow if they weren’t interested in content featuring cutting tools. 

At a trade show in Germany when we announced the winner on the stand a customer came up to me and thanked me for giving their industry a platform to be recognized.

Four years into working for ANCA I have seen the value of thinking creatively and bringing new and different ways of building your brand to a business. Traditional marketing remains fundamental, but building a personality around our product, telling a story and considering the person behind the machine has helped us gain a more vibrant and open reputation. 


Johanna Boland is Group Strategy and Communications Manager at ANCA CNC Machines.


For further information, please contact:
Johanna Boland
Group PR and Communications Manager, ANCA
M: +61 407799779
Johanna.Boland@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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Gorilla Mill Grows Up with ANCA

Carbide Grinding Company, Inc, was established in 1974, and developed a reputation as a small, specialist maker of tools, supplying Milwaukee-area manufacturers like Snap-on and Harley-Davidson.

After purchasing the company in 2003 and giving it a new image as Gorilla Mill two years after — its branding is simian-themed, aggressive, fun, and comes with the tagline “Weapons of Mass Production” — Kevin Cranker has set the company on a solid growth path.  

They are now up to 48 employees, with 300 distributors worldwide, and a diverse spread of customers.

These include automotive and defense suppliers, aerospace customers including Boeing, and space clients like SpaceX and Blue Origin.

But it’s the support of “mom and pop” shops that Cranker seems happiest about.

“They’re the guys who keep our work up,” he explains.

“When one of the big guys goes away it stings a bit. But then we have a number of small mom and pop job shops that we love doing business with because they’re always there and just always buying.”

Cranker says ANCA CNC Machines has played a large role in Gorilla’s Mills’ progress.

After investing in and being disappointed by a European-made tool and cutter grinding machine early in the millennium, he decided to try an RGX, suitable for re-grinding and low-volume production.

The machine is still part of GM’s collection of ANCA machines, and has been joined by 17 others.

“I’ve been buying a couple a year pretty steady here for the last five or six years. Probably going to need some more here before 2022.”

“We have several RX7s. Several MX7s. A couple of TX7s. We’ve got now a bunch of FX7s. It’s a mix of all different older ones and newer ones. I really, really like the new ones with the linear motors, which work really well.”

Cranker says linear motors made by ANCA Motion offer a “night and day” difference versus ballscrew motion, with greater precision and speeds, and much greater durability in a workshop where a lot of carbide sludge is generated.

ANCA’s pioneering simulation software was another enabler, and took the “heartache and headache” out of designing the geometries of Gorilla’s patented four-and five-flute mills, which Cranker designed with Mark Greenwood.

The firm adopted simulation with the purchase of its second ANCA machine, and it has proved invaluable ever since.

“The GM Team quickly identified the value in ANCA 3D CIMulation in its assistance to design and develop new tool geometries without actually grinding a physical tool,” says ANCA Inc General Manager, Russell Riddiford.

“Then they take that design to the ANCA machine and get the first tool off the machine perfectly as designed in the 3D CIMulation.”

Cranker adds of tool development that there would be “just no way we could do it” without the 3D CIMulation.

“We were able to mess around with geometries in a virtual space and not waste materials and machine time and everything else,” he says.

“But nowadays the simulator has just gotten so much better with all these new additions and the fact that now you can make blueprint drawings from it and you can just do a whole lot more.”

One software feature that gets regular use is tool balancing, introduced in ToolRoom RN34. This has proven “a huge help,” mainly for single-flute routers, enabling design of tools for high-speed machining that won’t produce noise and chatter and damage workpieces.  

Levels of user friendliness and automation options available on ANCA machines have also grown up with Gorilla Mill.  

“Cross training” required among the fast-growing workforce is minimal, and most of the workshop’s machines have the same ANCA software.

“Plus, we have all of our machines tapped into a network,” says Cranker.

“We can just manipulate toolpaths and tool programs right in our simulator and then shoot that over to whatever machine they’re needed at.”

Every machine is equipped with a robotic loader — either a pallet-style or a newer AR300 unit — helping make lights out work possible. Daytime is for custom and short-run production. The third shift is unmanned.

As the company grows its staff and revenues — which have risen nearly 900 per cent since the beginning of the Gorilla Mill era — Cranker estimates it will continue to invest in FX and MX machines, as well as robotic options to go with these.

“We currently have the ability to make 3,500 endmills a night if need be, and that’s huge for us, says Cranker, who recalls the company getting started with automation on the old RGX machine.

“It can be tricky if you don’t know how to set things up right, and ANCA’s done a pretty good job of trying to keep complications to a minimum. But we honed our skills, and every time we moved up we bought another loader, because I really want to be able to make tools lights out.”


For further information, please contact:

Johanna Boland
Group PR and Communications Manager, ANCA
M: +61 407799779
Johanna.Boland@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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Exact Metrology Scans Celebrity Soaps

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company and a comprehensive 3D metrology service provider and hardware sales company, recently used Blue Light Scanning technology to mass produce celebrity-themed soaps. These soaps will be sold by a non-profit for charity.

Blue Light Scanning, a form of structured light scanning technology, operates by using a combination of projector, camera and a lens system. By using a projector, a pattern of light is created and the shadowed, dark areas on the object get measured for data collection. The scanner utilizes optical non-contact technology to capture millions of accurate points in a single fast scan.

Noah Branscum, Exact Metrology Application Engineer for Short Range Scanning, working at the company’s Cincinnati office, completed the soap scan. Steps involved using reference points to help the scanner understand where the carved head is in space. Then, he took a “scan” using the scanner to display the lines of blue light onto the part and had two cameras reading how the lines refracted off the part, producing multiple lines of 3D points in space.”  After going around the part to take several scans, Branscum proceeded to use reference points to stitch each scan together. He then created a .stl file of the 3D scan data by way of a “mesh”, using ATOS Professional software. This software is used to operate the sensor head, process the 3D point cloud data and to edit and post-process the data. Besides polygon mesh generation and editing, additional features include sensor control, sectioning and primitive generation.

Discussing the challenges of scanning these famous faces, Branscum commented the scanner was limited in its “line of sight.” “Things like between the eyes and eyelids can be a bit though, or where there’s very sharp valleys like the lips.” Thankfully, ATOS Professional also helps fill in the holes with feature and character line detection.

Asked about future projects like this, Branscum concluded, “We love challenges and this was a fun experience for us. We look forward to working on equally challenging projects in the future.”


Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company, is ISO9001, AS9100 Certified as well as ITAR Registered. 

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company, with facilities in Cincinnati, Ohio, Moline, Illinois and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, plus affiliated offices throughout the country, is a comprehensive metrology services provider, offering customers 3D and CT scanning, reverse engineering, quality inspection, product development and 2D drawings. The company also provides turnkey metrology solutions, including equipment sales and lease/rental arrangements.   

In-Place Machining Company: On-Site Machining Solutions In-Place, Any Place in the World.

In-Place Machining Company, with facilities in Wisconsin, Washington, Virginia, Ohio, California, and Ontario, Canada, is the premier provider of high-precision engineered on-site machining, metrology, and large scale cutting & drilling services for a wide range of renewable energy, aerospace, industrial, and military customers throughout the world.

For more information, please contact: 

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company

Dean Solberg
20515 Industry Avenue 
Brookfield, WI 53045 
Local: 262-533-0800
www.exactmetrology.com
deans@exactmetrology.com

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company
Steve Young
11575 Goldcoast Drive   
Cincinnati, OH 45249 
Local: 513-831-6620
Toll Free: 866-722-2600
www.exactmetrology.com
stevey@exactmetrology.com

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Exact Metrology Reverse Engineers an Impact Driver Body

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company and a comprehensive 3D metrology service provider and hardware sales company, recently reverse engineered an impact driver body.  

Impact Driver Body

Reverse engineering involves digitally deconstructing products to extract design information from them. Thus, users can determine how a part was designed so that it can be recreated. Although the process tends to imply that 3D scanning will be used solely for product design, it can be used to address many other engineering functions. These include product design and manufacturing, facilities maintenance and plant engineering, architectural and civil engineering and custom manufacturing.

While there are many ways to reverse engineer, CT scanning was used due to plastic nature of the impact driver body. CT excels in digitalizing small plastic parts. This impact driver body was scanned using the ZEISS METROTOM 6 scout. This CT scanner digitizes complex parts including the internal geometries at the finest level of detail. Users obtain a complete 3D image for GD&T analysis or nominal-actual comparisons.  The combination of a 3k detector and 225 kV X-ray enables ZEISS METROTOM 6 scout to provide high contrast, high-resolution measurement results and exceptional sharpness of detail. As a result, even the smallest defects in the part become visible and can be analyzed to the last detail. Furthermore, CT scanning quickly captures data and one scan can be used for void analysis, inspection, volume porosity, etc.  A 5-axis kinematics with integrated centering table helps clients optimally position the part in the measuring volume and the control of the device and the metrological evaluation of the data are combined in a single software package, making additional software or intermediate steps redundant.

Reverse engineering process

Greg Groth, the Division Manager at the company’s Brookfield, Wisconsin office explained that the impact driver body although relatively ubiquitous, presents many challenges in the digital modeling process. One of these challenges includes the complex geometry. The smooth outside ergonomics can be difficult to duplicate and interpret with traditional CAD functionality. According to Groth, “We used a combination of hybrid NURBS (Non-Uniform Rational B-Splines) modeling to duplicate the smooth, sculpted surfaces and combined them with traditional mechanical CAD features to create the part shape.”  Another challenge with plastics components is replicating complete parting lines from the original tooling to make the part. These can zig-zag around the part depending on the geometry and are sometimes omitted or cleaned up at the factory. The final challenge involves compensating for warp and shrink during manufacturing, as injection molding is used. Once the formed part starts to cool, it may change its shape. Predicting the movement and compensating it back to the intended design was time consuming.


Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company, is ISO9001, AS9100 Certified as well as ITAR Registered. 

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company, with facilities in Cincinnati, Ohio, Moline, Illinois and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, plus affiliated offices throughout the country, is a comprehensive metrology services provider, offering customers 3D and CT scanning, reverse engineering, quality inspection, product development and 2D drawings. The company also provides turnkey metrology solutions, including equipment sales and lease/rental arrangements.   

In-Place Machining Company: On-Site Machining Solutions In-Place, Any Place in the World.

In-Place Machining Company, with facilities in Wisconsin, Washington, Virginia, Ohio, California, and Ontario, Canada, is the premier provider of high-precision engineered on-site machining, metrology, and large scale cutting & drilling services for a wide range of renewable energy, aerospace, industrial, and military customers throughout the world.

For more information, please contact: 

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company
Dean Solberg
20515 Industry Avenue 
Brookfield, WI 53045 
Local: 262-533-0800
www.exactmetrology.com
deans@exactmetrology.com

Exact Metrology: A Division of In-Place Machining Company
Steve Young
11575 Goldcoast Drive   
Cincinnati, OH 45249 
Local: 513-831-6620
Toll Free: 866-722-2600
www.exactmetrology.com
stevey@exactmetrology.com

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Siemens and TRAK Machine Tools pave the way towards Digitalization for job shops

SINUMERIK ONE digital-native CNC selected as the control of choice for new line of milling and turning production machines

TRAK Machine Tools vertical machining center-series equipped with SINUMERIK ONE is now available

Siemens announced today that its SINUMERIK ONE CNC platform has been selected by TRAK Machine Tools (Southwestern Industries, Inc.) as the control of choice for their new VMC-series milling and TC-series turning machines.  These new machine tools are intended to work in the high-volume, price-sensitive job shop market.

According to company president Steve Pinto, “TRAK wanted to partner with a large, well-established CNC leader with a global footprint for a new line of production machines, aiming
to reach a new level of digitalization — one that reflected that trend in every area of life today.” 

Throughout the process, Siemens employed a consulting approach, selling the value of SINUMERIK CNC and the entire Siemens portfolio of product, software, communications and cloud-based data analytics. The transition to Siemens CNC was made easier, as conventional programming and HMI with SINUMERIK ONE had the same look-and-feel as the TRAK captive control.  Wanting to offer automation in its portfolio, Siemens gave TRAK Machine Tools a wide range of possibilities, with the digital-native CNC.

Siemens is providing user support by ramping up its standard CNC offerings for the job shop market with SINUMERIK ONE, standard PLCs for mills and lathes, custom HMI screens and
it has worked closely TRAK Machine Tools for training.  TRAK staff including application engineers, sales, service and dealers were offered SINUMERIK online web-based training,
in-person training, and time on the machines for benchmarking and test cuts.  As always, Siemens is offering spare parts, 24-hour service and a quick repair turnaround to support its products and TRAK Machine Tools’ dealers.

Digital Twin of the TRAK VMC7si using Create MyVirtual Machine from Siemens

In the future, TRAK Machine Tools also plans to develop a 5-axis and horizontal CNC offering with SINUMERIK ONE.  The company is looking to brand-label a robot to automate their CNC machine with the SINUMERIK Run MyRobot application, integral to the SINUMERIK ONE CNC platform. 

Brian McMinn, head of the Siemens Machine Tool Systems business, observed, “This development marks the first US-based OEM that has accepted the digital-native CNC concept of SINUMERIK ONE.  At every stage of development — from concept to the Digital Twin of the machine known as Create MyVirtual Machine — to the prototype and runout, Siemens has collaborated with TRAK in a very unique way.  The result is an exciting line of CNC machines that will significantly impact the job shop market, almost immediately.  We are proud to partner with this forward-thinking machine tool builder.” 

Steve Pinto concluded, “Having found the right technology partner in Siemens, we can now offer machine technology solutions to help TRAK customers confidently take the next step into digitally-enabled production.” 

Machine tool builders benefit from the Digital Twin by speeding up development and commissioning times to new levels of quality and efficiency

For more information about SINUMERIK ONE, please visit usa.siemens.com/sinumerik-one.

For specific product information and inquiries, send an e-mail to: cnc.marketing.us@siemens.com   

Siemens Digital Industries (DI) is an innovation leader in automation and digitalization. Closely collaborating with partners and customers, DI drives the digital transformation in the process and discrete industries. With its Digital Enterprise portfolio, DI provides companies of all sizes with an end-to-end set of products, solutions and services to integrate and digitalize the entire value chain. Optimized for the specific needs of each industry, DI’s unique portfolio supports customers to achieve greater productivity and flexibility. DI is constantly adding innovations to its portfolio to integrate cutting-edge future technologies. Siemens Digital Industries has its global headquarters in Nuremberg, Germany, and has around 75,000 employees internationally.

Siemens Corporation is a U.S. subsidiary of Siemens AG, a global powerhouse focusing on the areas of power generation and distribution, intelligent infrastructure for buildings and distributed energy systems, and automation and digitalization in the process and manufacturing industries. Through the separately managed company Siemens Mobility, a leading supplier of smart mobility solutions for rail and road transport, Siemens is shaping the world market for passenger and freight services. Due to its majority stakes in the publicly listed companies Siemens Healthineers AG and Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, Siemens is also a world-leading supplier of medical technology and digital healthcare services as well as environmentally friendly solutions for onshore and offshore wind power generation. For more than 160 years, the company has innovated and invented technologies to support American industry spanning manufacturing, energy, healthcare and infrastructure. In fiscal 2018, Siemens USA reported revenue of $23.7 billion, including $5.0 billion in exports, and employs approximately 50,000 people throughout all 50 states and Puerto Rico.

About TRAK Machine Tools (Southwestern Industries, Inc.)

TRAK Machine Tools is well-known for its ProtoTRAK brand of CNCs and TRAK Machines.  Founded in 1952 as a job shop serving the aerospace industry, it has been manufacturing ProtoTRAK CNCs since 1984 and selling them throughout North American and Europe. TRAK Machine Tools fields direct-to-customer Sales and Service Organizations throughout the United States in many of the areas that have high concentrations of manufacturing.  Where it does not have its own field sales and service, TRAK Machine Tools serves customers via close relationships with independent distributors that share the core values of service to customers and community that has been the key to the enormous popularity of the ProtoTRAK and TRAK brands. The new initiative with SIEMENS will utilize the talents and reach of TRAK Machine Tools beyond the toolroom and into production and automation applications. For more information, please see www.trakmt.com.

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