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MACHINE CONTROLS


Simplifying machining tasks Previewed at FANUC’s open house in Japan and unveiled at EMO Milan in 2015, the lat- est look from FANUC America included its new HMI for its line of CNC controls. The new HMI has completely redesigned hardware and a user interface featuring a flatter design with ergonomically positioned keys. FANUC’s new look coordi-


nates across the entire line, with the same user view on its entry- level 0i-F CNC all the way to its high-end 30iB series controls. “The HMI itself is a new take,


with better graphics, better transitions—it’s better from the operator’s perspective,” said Paul Webster, CNC engineering manager, FANUC America Corp. “The consistency of Fanuc’s always been a strength.” The new HMI has a more-friendly look, with a Home screen, he added, and built-in cycles that are aimed at job shops. “The built-in cycles just


all jobs require the need for programming in NC with CAD/ CAM software. Just like ma- chinists need many different types of tools in their toolbox, they also like to have many different features and benefits in the machine controls that they program and operate. The right control ... will provide the versatility for the machinist to determine the best way to ap- proach the part.” Snazzy interfaces for CNCs


help you through the standard G-code cycles, telling you in a graphical way what to do,” Web- ster said. “It makes it easier to create programs in standard G code. The new HMI is also coming with a new look. The plastic’s a darker, deeper color, and the keyboards are more of a flush surface. It modernizes the whole look.” Maximum usability is the foundation of the Max5 CNC


The FANUC line of machine controls now feature touchscreens with a new HMI complete with a Home screen and built-in cycles aimed at job-shop applications.


are not an afterthought these days. Okuma’s open-archi- tecture Windows PC-based OSP-P300 machine control has had an easily operated touch-screen interface for several years, noted Okuma’s Kosmala. “Everyone is switch- ing to a new interface to con- trol a machine tool,” he said. “People are attracted to the smartphone type of interface. When people walk up to any machine tool, immediately they’re saying to themselves ‘Yes, I can run this’ or ‘No, I’m going to need training.’ The younger generation is saying


that was introduced in August 2015 by Hurco Cos Inc. Packed with features, the Max5 control includes a keypad that is ad- justable up to 90°, a 19" LCD screen with touch-screen navi- gation that includes a second folding auxiliary screen with die-cast stainless hinges, which is standard on most models in the company’s 65-model lineup. “Today’s machinists are looking for a control that is


easy to learn ... and that will offer them some flexibility in the way that they program their parts,” said Michael Cope, Hurco product technical specialist, CMTSE. “Not all jobs are suited for conversational programming, just like not


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‘Yes’ to machines with soft screens that look like some- thing familiar.” CNC controls are an ever-evolving platform for machin- ing, said Wayne Nelson, eastern region manager, Fagor Au- tomation Corp. “Among the features getting the most atten- tion are simplifying the HMI and operator interface,” he said. “Fagor Automation knows that the HMI and operator ex- perience can always be improved for specific applications. The control has to have the ability to be custom-tailored for and by the integrator or even the in-depth applications and service personnel.” This is a standard feature of Fagor’s line of CNCs, including the models 8055, 8060, 8065 and 8070. For many smaller shops, easy-to-use programming that is


reasonably priced is a key factor in CNC decision-making. “While much is always made of the things that help big shops and companies, the smaller shops are often left out


Summer 2016


Photo courtesy FANUC America Corp.


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