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IMTS PAVILION: ABRASIVE GRINDING


value of chip recovery, and having a signifi cantly cleaner process has generated a shift to bandsaws.” Klipp also has seen a dramatic increase in the use of automation and material-handling options. “Customers,” he said, “are asking for more in-line operations, for example in the areas of weighing, marking, or sorting of materials right from the saw. This, of course, does require higher levels of software, programming, and upgraded controls to incorpo- rate this and to track the processes through the system.” In the abrasive industry new materials are also having an impact.


“The demand for value-added abrasive products continues


to increase,” said Will Lang, Technical Business Development manager, North America Saint-Gobain Abrasives (Worcester, MA). “This is being driven by new materials that challenge conventional machining applications, and abrasives provide a better solution in both productivity and quality.”


and productivity needs of the customer. We are putting a great deal of investment in both product and process related improvements to meet these demands.”


In addition to paying attention to what workpieces, abra- sives and media are made of, Lang said, “The abrasive indus- try has long been using the materials’ chips to understand the microscopic interactions that are developing within the grind zone. With improvements in machine monitoring software and our own systems, we can utilize a combination of informa- tion—chip type, thickness, Specifi c Grinding Energy, Threshold Power, and so forth—to make the necessary adjustments in both wheel specifi cations and process parameters.” Grinding wheels, of course, are important to grinding machines—in more ways than one.


“The most visible changes in the grinding industry in terms


of increasing effi ciency,” said Eric Schwarzenbach, president of Rollomatic Inc. (Mundelein, IL), “is the fact that grinding wheel manufacturers have developed wheel bonds that last longer, need less dressing and have better general performance in production grinding. We, as grinding machine builders, are taking maximum advantage of these developments. In par- ticular, these types of diamond wheels need less horsepower to achieve better performance. “The Rollomatic factory in Switzerland worked with two European diamond wheel manufacturers directly and intensely to develop these new bonds.”


The size and sophistication of this Behringer saw boasts advancements that were unimaginable not that many years ago.


More specifi cally, he said, “We anticipate the development and use of Gamma Titanium Alumina and CMCs to increase as customers strive for lightweight materials that still provide the durability and heat-resistance needed in their subse- quent applications. The newer materials challenge traditional carbide and even PCD/pCBN cutting tools and require improved abrasive technologies to meet the specifi cations


178 AdvancedManufacturing.org | August 2016


The emerging trend Schwarzenbach sees as having the greatest impact is quicker setup. “Rollomatic calls it ‘precision setup,’ which


reduces and in some cases eliminates any setup scrap,” he said. “This involves a CNC wheel dressing machine and a high- accuracy wheel presetter. Maintaining good machine calibration and machine accuracy is also part of this process.” Rollomatic is also in tune with the macro trend of Big Data. “We believe that Big Data should be part of any size organi- zation,” said Schwarzenbach. “Tracking performance, utilization


Photo courtesy Behringer Saws Inc.


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