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5-axis can be a trial


The benefits of 5-Axis machining can also be a challenge when choosing the right workholding system. All 5-Axis clamps and vices have to be secure and accurate, yet flexible enough to align with the positioning of the component on the table and allow for standard tool lengths.

Because Roemheld understands the importance of such decisions, it operates a ’Try before you buy’ policy on all its 5-Axis vices and clamps. This has resulted in many end users taking up this opportunity to evaluate the products while using them in their own production environments.

One such end user was Insight, based in Malvern, who took advantage of the Roemheld scheme to trial a 5-Axis vice. Chris Poole, Managing Director of Insight said: “Using the free demo definitely sold the vice to us as it performed perfectly for our needs. In fact we refused to give it back until the new 5-Axis vice we then purchased from Roemheld was actually installed”.

The free trial also enables end users to get to grips with one of the key benefits of using the Roemheld 5-Axis vice system: the ability to grip on just 3mm. This feature allows for substantial raw material savings as customer practice usually allows for up to 20mm for gripping on, to then be machined off as waste material at a later date. In some instances, this cost saving has been up to 30%.

Another advantage of gripping on 3mm is that with a little billet prepping the capacity of the vice system can be extended. The Roemheld MC125Z used in this way can accommodate components of up to 500mm in length by 450mm wide by 280mm high. This has proved to be a huge benefit to sub-contractors using 5-Axis machines.

Further added value when using the 5-Axis vice systems from Roemheld is the elimination of distortion when machining, as Ireland-based Smithstown Light Engineering found. Brian King, the Managing Director, said ‘’ Before, when we held a big block of tungsten we would have to machine off 15mm to 20mm and this would cause distortion. Now, using the Roemehld vices, we only need to take 2-3mm off so the distortion problems have gone. We have also made significant savings on raw material costs.”

As Step files and CAD files are available for every single vice and jaw set within the Roemheld 5-Axis range, programmers are also able to simulate the machining process for collisions. As well as making life much easier for the production team, this helps reduce costs even further as potential collision paths are programmed out prior to machining taking place.

Roemheld is also currently offering customers who purchase products from its 5-Axis vices range, cutting tool vouchers worth up to the value of £500. The value of the vouchers is dependent on the total order value. More details of this promotion are available at www.roemheld.co.uk/vouchers

To find out more about Roemheld’s range of workholding solutions, telephone 01462 459052.