What Does 2021 Hold for Swiss Precision CNC Manufacturing?

2020 was a strange and difficult year for individuals and business.  In precision manufacturing, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought on new challenges and resulted in advances in manufacturing. Workforce reductions and restriction have placed greater emphasis on computer-aided manufacturing and automation.  While some aspects of precision manufacturing such as planning, engineering and programming can carry on remotely, Swiss screw machine manufacturing must occur at the facilities like Sheldon Precision where the battery of Swiss screw machines (single spindle Swiss screw machines as well CNC Swiss screw machines like Escomatic) are located.

Skilled CNC machine operators  and CNC programmers are still in demand and as the economy in North American and around the world starts on the path to recovery. manufacturing will rise. Manufactures like Sheldon Precision are leveraging automation, machines, computer software and skilled operators and engineers to maintain quality and output.

What advances and trends are expected in 2021? Here are four CNC trends to watch for next year.

  1. Manufacturing as a service will continue to gain popularity 

Manufacturing as a service (MaaS) has found its way into the CNC industry over the last few years and its popularity will only increase moving forward.  MaaS uses networked resources to accomplish manufacturing tasks.  CNC machines are located in a central location and the cost of maintenance and operation is spread across subscribers.  MaaS gives companies added agility, productivity and cost savings through reduced labor expenses.  Since there has been a large fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, companies will start to embrace a new network of supply chains by using MaaS.  

2.   The IIOT will dominate emerging technology 

The industrial internet of things (IIoT) allows networked CNC machines to communicate with one another without needing a human operator behind the scenes.  IoT has recently become  part of the CNC machining industry.  By using IIoT, companies can make manufacturing quicker, safer and produce higher quality products.  The level of process automation in 2021 will rise greatly due to the manufacturing industry trying to find new ways to increase efficiency and reduce waste.  

3.   The Use of 6-axis Machining will expand rapidly 

The 6-axis CNC milling machine first came on to the scene in 2019.  For many years before this machine was released, the 3-axis machine was the machine everyone chose to use.  Recently, the 5-axis machine has become popular due to the seamless rotations around the X and Y axes.  Now, the 6-axis allows an additional rotation around the Z axis leading to faster cut times.  

4.  An increased focus on waste product reduction 

Raw materials have been a precious resources for manufacturing and in 2021 there will be increased attention to wise materials usage.  One new strategy is to create scale models of components using 3D printing methods rather than trial and error design on CNC equipment.  

Sheldon Precision continues to focus on quality and continuous improvement in our manufacturing resources and process. As new machines and technology in precision Swiss manufacturing emerge, Sheldon Precision will leverage these resources for customers in all industries including medical device component manufacturing, defense systems component manufacturing and many others.  Contact us today for your custom quote https://sheldonprecision.com/request-a-quote/

Article includes information adapted from: https://www.sciencetimes.com/articles/27410/20200922/predicting-2021-trends-in-the-cnc-machining-industry.htm

What is Swiss Type Machining?

 Manufacturers in many industries are recognizing the benefits of Swiss style tools such as cutting costs and being more efficient. 

A number of industries are starting to now use Swiss type machining.  The durable goods industry has discovered that Swiss-lathes are highly beneficial and help improve output.   The electronics and medical industries are becoming more reliant on Swiss lathes and other Swiss machining tools. 

There are a lot of Swiss machining tools on the market, all which have major benefits.  The Swiss style lathe has a turning center that allows the part to move in the Z-axis, while the tool is stationary.  Conventional CNC lathes have the part stationary while the tool moves.  One of the major differences is the holding mechanism is not exposed to the bed or the tooling. 

Here are some of the other benefits of using a Swiss type machine:

1. Better Support for all Stock Material

This is the greatest benefit of Swiss style lathes.  It provides much better support than a traditional lathe. There should be fewer defective parts due to the reduced risk of the support material moving.  If the material is not adequately supported, an uneven cut will result.  This is especially a problem if you are trying to create a thread for any cylindrical object.  The threads will be useless if the depth of the cut is not uniform across the entire length of the threaded area.

2. Superior Tolerance

Swiss style lathes use the process called guide brushing which enhances rigidity and leads to a higher tolerance level. 

3. Ability to Work with Smaller Parts

Standard lathes are not ideal when working with small parts.  You would need to use more expensive machining processes such as making laser cuts.  Swiss style lathes are able to handle very small parts and are often the most affordable option to make cuts. 

The latest Swiss lathes are fully CNC operated and often have additional capacities such as milling and laser cutting.  Not only can both tuning and milling be performed on a Swiss machine but they can be performed simultaneously.  A Swiss lathe allows for the machining of intricate designs utilizing drilling, knurling and other unique processes on a single machine. 

Manufacturers with Swiss machines can produce long runs of small, complex parts faster and cheaper than traditional lathes.  This is an ideal addition to boost efficiency, productivity and capabilities in your business.  Swiss lathes are great for high production work, often with cycle times under a minute.  An Escomatic machine is an ideal Swiss type screw machine for turning accurate parts produced in high volume with diameters up to 5mm.  Parts machined on a Swiss lathe are often found in the electronics, medical device and defense industry.

Sheldon Precision prides themselves on producing highly engineered parts.  Contact us today to request a custom quote: https://sheldonprecision.com/request-a-quote/

Article adapted from: https://roboticsandautomationnews.com/2020/02/03/understanding-swiss-type-machining/29461/

Understanding CNC Swiss Screw Machines and Their Functions

CNC Swiss type automatic lathes are now more powerful than ever.  They have fast cycle times and flexibility that have made them the standard and number one machine used in precision, high production applications.  Swiss machines were always preferred for long, slender turned parts, now they are widely used for small, complex parts – even pieces that have no turned surfaces. 

In a conventional lathe that has a fixed headstock, the workpiece is held in a collet and extends into the machine enclosure as a cantilever or can be supported on the end by the tailstock.  A distinguishing feature of the Swiss machine is that the headstock moves.  Bar stock passes through a chucking collet in the headstock, which clamps onto it.  The bar emerges into the tooling area through a guide bushing, which locates the bar radially during machining.  The headstock moves precisely back and forth in the z-direction, taking the bar with it. 

The turning tools, carried on gang slides contact the bar very close to the guide bushing, usually within 1 mm to 3 mm.  The motion of the bar provides the feed for the cutting action.  Gang slides carry holders for fixed single-point or other tools and may support live tooling.  Many machines have a secondary spindle, back working tool stations and one or more turrets that carry more tools. 

The guide bushing supports the workpiece to maintain precision throughout the machining of the workpiece.  A physical object subjected to a force will deflect.  On a conventional lathe, if the cutting forces cause too great of a deflection, the accuracy of the cut will suffer.  When you turn parts on a conventional lathe with a length-to-diameter ratio of greater than 3:1 you should use a tailstock to prevent excessive deflection.  For any ratio greater than 6:1, you would use a steady rest or follow rest to support the middle of the part.  If you hold a workpiece securely at one end and push sideways on the unsupported end, the workpiece bends a little bit.  If you are pushing with the same force on a longer workpiece it will bend more.  The deflection for a given force increases as the cube of distance from the support to the force is twice as long with eight times the deflection.  In a Swiss machine, the guide bushing supports the workpiece so close to the tools that the deflection due to cutting forces are close to zero.  You are able to make heavy cuts and still maintain precise dimensions on the part.

Some advantages of CNC Swiss Machines come from both the guide bushing and the geometry and mechanics in the tool zone

  • – Depending on the machine, there may be room for 20 tools or more in the tool zone
  • – Chip-to-chip time from one tool to the next cab be one second or less
  • – A single heavy cut often removes all the necessary material
  • – Surface finish can be excellent, often eliminates the need for grinding
  • – Machines with sub-spindles allows working on the back side of the part
  • – A Swiss machine can make complex parts using simultaneous operations, three or four tools can cut at the same time
  • – Most secondary operations are eliminated, since a Swiss machine can mill, drill, ream, saw and do other operations within the machine
  • – The Swiss machine can run for hours unattended after the machine is set up and the bar stock is placed in the bar loader

Medical devices are often manufactured on Swiss machines.  The United States is the world’s largest medical device market and these devices help improve surgical outcomes with advanced technologies to help make a difference in people’s lives.  Medical components are highly complex pieces that are critical to the safe operation of the device.  Medical devices include parts such as surgical needles, screws and lock plates.  Medical component specialist are experts in these high precision machine parts and can identify when tighter that necessary tolerances have been specified for these parts.

If you are running small, complex parts on your CNC lathes you might be better off using a Swiss Machine so that the lathe can be saved for larger parts.  Many new Swiss machines already run Muti-function fixed head lathes that mill and drill in addition to turning.  The controls on Swiss machines are familiar to most users and offline programming software helps users generate programs tailored to Swiss machines.  By using a Swiss machine in your operations, you can help reduce cycle times and eliminate secondaries for parts on the smaller end.  If you are looking into using Swiss machines to manufacture one of your products contact us today at https://sheldonprecision.com/request-a-quote/

Article adapted from: https://todaysmachiningworld.com/magazine/how-it-works-why-swiss/

What is an Escomatic Machine?

In the 1940’s, Willy Rosetti, a Swiss parts maker, had a problem with a burr on a watch part he was trying to produce.  Conventional radial-fed cut-off tools that he was using generated the burr that needed to be filed off.  Willy came up with a new turning concept that we now know as Esco, that turned into the Escomatic machine tool line. 

An escomatic machine is a Swiss screw machine with a tool head that rotates around the material.  Unlike conventional lathes, the material (coil stock or bar) in escomatic lathes does not rotate.  The Esco concept turns turning 180 degrees.  The cutting tools are mounted onto the tool head which rotates around the material to produce components and remove the metal.  As the head spins, two – four cutters feed into the stationary material creating the designed part. 

The machine’s cutters are operated by cams or CNC servomotors.  Maximum head rotational speeds run from 8,000 rpm to 12,000 rpm depending on the machine model.  The toolholders pivot into the stock through an arc rather than a straight radical feed motion to help overcome the centrifugal force generated at these high speeds.  The cutters are set very close to the stock and also reduces non-cutting time. 

A rotating straightener is usually found on an Esco machine.  For material up to 6 millimeters in diameter, it is necessary to straighten the incoming coil before it is fed into the rollers and guide bushing.  It revolves around the stock, cambering and straightening the wire by a using a combination of three movements applied to the stock.  After machining is complete, a counter collet supports the machined parts to be cut off.  Supporting the machined part during this step produces a flat clean end, eliminating the pip (unwanted material created by conventional cut-off processes). 

Features and benefits of escomatic production:

  • – Machines simple to moderately complex parts and parts with very high production
  • – The machine has fast cycles and short machining times with high precision
  • – Machines handle material from .012” up to .250” diameter to save material cost
  • – There are fewer machine stops, by using material from coil and reduces labor costs
  • – 24 hour production
  • – Low maintenance costs

At Sheldon Precision, we utilize a combination of of CNC and cam driven Swiss Screw machines including Escomatic Machines.  Click here to request a custom quote https://sheldonprecision.com/request-a-quote/

Article adapted from: https://www.productionmachining.com/articles/a-different-way-to-turn

What Green Manufacturing Can Expect From CNC Machining in the Future

Green businesses are looking for more sustainable manufacturing solutions.  There are a number of ways that manufacturing can be changed to produce a lower carbon footprint including the switch to CNC machining.  One of the biggest reason that CNC machining is greener is because it can be done electronically.  Customers can send electronic files to the factories so there will be no travel to the site therefore, reducing carbon emissions from driving. 

CNC Machining Is the Key to Sustainability in 2020

Modern manufacturing and production is changing rapidly.  The growth of industries using the CNC machine is aiding this change.  The CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machine was first introduced in the 1940s and changed the manufacturing game to what we see today.  CNC Machines make it possible to scale any given manufacturing process without losing any quality or accuracy during production.  As computers have become more mainstream, CNC machining has become essential in the manufacturing industry. 

One of the benefits of using a CNC machine is improved efficiency.  One of the biggest reasons CNC machining lowers emissions is by reducing transportation, while reducing material waste and machining time. 

CNC machines rely on Computer-Aided Design (CAD) files to create prototype parts.  Every part of the process is controlled by a computer and are technical and highly automated products. Old industrial equipment such as routers, drills and lathes are driven by computer programs and achieve a precise level of control.  This simplifies the whole manufacturing process and is widely used in many different industries. 

Over the past few years there have been a number of changes with CNC products.  CNC machining is becoming more affordable.  The barrier of entry into the CNC machining industry is lower than ever.  Manufacturing companies now offer a diverse range of services including prototype manufacturing and prototype machining. 

Many companies have started to adapt to use The Internet of Things, a system of interrelated computing devices, mechanical and digital machines that has the ability to transfer data over a network without requiring human to human or human to computer interaction.  This encourages collaboration which leads to the development of a higher quality product.  Machines are also now connected to computers or mobile devices.  CAD files can be transmitted electronically and you can now send designs for injection molding services and rapid machining.  Automation can help create new jobs in this industry for technicians and programmers.   

As technology has evolved, the manufacturing process of these machines have too.  CNC machines have become smaller and more compact and now companies have decided tp use smaller portable devices rather than big, immobile machines.  As the demand for CNC machinery made products increases, so does the need for CNC machines to operate at optimum levels.  Coders and developers will need to simplify the user interface of the machinery to make them more user friendly. 

Companies that offer CNC services are continuously working on tightening their tolerances and quality control systems.  Orders are being produced of any quantity, by using a wide range of materials at affordable prices while still remain the highest quality possible. 

At Sheldon Precision we have learned to adapt and follow current trends, as technology is constantly changing and evolving.  Contact us today for a custom quote https://sheldonprecision.com/request-a-quote/

Article Adapted from: https://blueandgreentomorrow.com/features/what-green-businesses-can-expect-from-cnc-machining-in-future/

How Precision Machining Has Become Beneficial in Manufacturing Medical Devices

Precision machining is used in many industries including electronics, aerospace and medical.  Many medical parts and devices are manufactured by using CNC machines.  The medical device industry is made up of different medical parts including implants for reconstructing spines and for hip and knee replacements.  

You count on your medical parts to be manufactured with accuracy and precision and ultimately safe for use in your body.  Precision machining helps create the exact dimensions and sizes for the surgical tools that will be used to administer these medical parts.   Machining is also used to create the complex parts for lasers and robotics now used in surgeries.  Using these machines will create more innovations that will lead to future medical advances.  These tools require extremely small and precise parts that only CNC machining tools can make.  

These tools are used for the finest surgeries including on your heart or brain so they should be accurate, reliable and safe while they are being produced.  The materials for use in the medical world need to meet strict standards for durability, safety and non-reactiveness with the human body and the ability to be sterilized.  Precision machining allows these materials to be skillfully transformed into the detailed shapes and sizes needed for specific medical applications and devices.  Many of these pieces are permanently implanted into people and need to be smooth and tight to eliminate any reactions in your body such as being rigid and scratching.   CNC precision machines are ideal for making these parts ensuring that every part is identical and fits together for optimum function.  

Insulin pumps, heart monitors and defibrillators are medical implants that save lives every day.  As medical parts have evolved and machines have advanced, over time medical designs have been become smaller and more precise.  This includes the casing and cables for these parts.  The implants can now be placed inside the body, allowing those people who need these implants to be able to live a normal life.   

Precision machining allows certain medical devices to be custom designed for a more personalized fit.  This is extremely important for prosthetics such as artificial limbs, knees and implants like defibrillators which needs to fit each person’s needs.  Precision machining is used to create and design custom parts along with being cost effective.  Designs are inputted to the computer controls and parts can be quickly and accurately made for small or larger runs.  

Precision machining has contributed so much to advance in the medical industry and will continue to evolve and be an important part of this industry moving forward.  The medical industry counts on Sheldon Precision for our expertise, quality and attention to detail. Contact us today for a custom quote at https://sheldonprecision.com/request-a-quote/

Industries Using Precision CNC Machinery

Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Machining creates numerous detailed parts required in dozens of industries.  Many industries require custom-created parts for specific uses rather than mass production.  The ability to accurately design and create pieces with a computer is the key factor many companies are looking for.  Industries including the medical field, transportation, the military and more rely on machining parts.  Since the technology that makes up computers and machines advances daily, this allows for more intricate and customized designs to be achieved.  

Precision is what is needed in the medical, aerospace, electronics and other industries.  If any of these parts are not manufactured with a high degree of precision and held to tight tolerances, serious product defects could result 

Machining uses many different devices such as milling, Swiss screw machining and machine turning.  The machine operators choose the best method to use based on the required precision of the product and content used. 

  • Machine turning – like a lathe, CNC milling machines turn the material but a computer controls the entire process.  This makes mass production of parts possible 
  • Swiss Screw machining – requires an expert for set up and needs extra time but produces the most precise parts within 0.005 inches 
  • Machine milling – turns the tools around the piece and the mills can use numerous tools for highly detailed parts.  

By using the right machine and material for the job, CNC machinists can serve in a wide range of industries.  Each of these industries have their own needs which means that all of the different options that can be used in CNC machining will be not necessary for every business.  

Medical Industry 

The medical industry relies on customized products to fit the many needs of their patients.  Many devices used in the medical field are disposable to protect patients from infectious disease.  Businesses in this field require precision and high volume parts to fulfill the needs of their facilities.  Sometimes the companies may request prototypes of the product before requesting a full run especially if they are testing out new ideas.  CNC machines adapt well in the medical field due to the variety of materials and devices available.  Here are some of the parts that can be created by CNC machining: 

  • Implants 
  • Orthotic devices and screws
  • Electronic enclosures for monitoring devices 
  • Research equipment 
  • Shielded enclosures 
  • MRI Machines 
  • Electrical parts 
  • Customized packaging to maintain sterility 
  • FDA approved production 
  • Pieces made from high temperature plastics 
  • Medical instruments 

These machines include the rapid creation of customized parts and manufacturing done in an environment approved by the FDA.  When making individual designs, the computer allows the engineers to see the piece in 3D before machining it.  This ensures every part has the exact dimensions required.  These parts must have the smallest possible margin of error to avoid medical misdiagnoses and part malfunctioning.  Our ability to manufacture to tight tolerance with consistency coupled with superior quality control has set Sheldon Precision apart from competition within the medical industry.  

Aerospace Industry

High speeds, fast air currents and extreme pressure are three conditions devices in the aerospace industry encounter on a daily basis.  To avoid damage to the aircraft, engineers muse precisely construct every component.  CNC machining for the aerospace and aviation industries must meet high precision requirements which often reach as tight as 0.0004 inches.  Machinists must create these tolerances with extra durable materials such as titanium, aluminum, nickel, alloys and plastics.  The materials used will depend on the parts created and properties desired from that component.  Parts made for the aerospace and aviation industry include many different components of aircraft and the devices that service them including: 

  • Manifolds 
  • Bushings
  • Airfoils 
  • Landing gear parts 
  • Electrical connectors 
  • Antennae 
  • Radio frequency suppression materials 

Without the ability to design and create multiple precisely made parts, the air and space industry may not have reached the technological level that it is at today.  CNC machining is ideal for manufacturing prototype parts.  By seeing the 3D image on a computer, the engineer can make quick changes to the design based on testing.  Once the design has been finalized, the CNC machining process for one or multiple parts can begin.  Similar to the military and defense industry, the aerospace industry has demanding standards.  Sheldon Precision utilizes modern CNC machining to produce accurate and reliable components use in many aerospace applications.  State of the art machinery and skilled operators turn our precise components in a variety of materials including aluminum and titanium. 

Military and Defense Industry

The military industry is similar to the petrochemical industry where they use parts that need to be rugged and durable for every environment and climate.  The military has strict regulations set forth by the government and the products produced need to adhere to these regulations.  The parts created for the military can be similar to those produced in the aviation, transportation, electronic, marine and medical industries.  Though the parts may be similar, they don’t have the needs of the defense sector to keep up with the latest technology and having parts that reliable in the most out of reach locations.  These parts can include: 

  • Communications components 
  • Electronics 
  • Transportation components 
  • Plane parts 

Due to the strict regulations and security measures, the exact products and procedures used for creating military equipment require secrecy.  CNC machining can create quick upgrades, long lasting parts, creation of parts from robust materials and mass output of approved parts that require tight tolerances.  If CNC machines are being used, regular testing and upgrades of the devices must be done to allow the technology to be the most up to date to help ensure the best protection for our country.  Accuracy, precision quality and dependability are indications of the components Sheldon Precision manufactures for the military and defense industry. 

Electronics Industry

CNC machining can be used to create both large and small parts such as the sizes needed in the electronics industry.  Some of these elements will require laser precision to produce the parts with fine accuracy up to 10 micrometers that may be required.  In addition to electronics and insulators commonly found in electrical devices, the electronics industry may also need communications components.  These parts can protect communications devices from electronic interference or create electrical connections between elements such as: 

  • Heat sinks
  • Amplifier housings 
  • Radio frequency interference shielding 
  • Electrical insulation 

The smaller the parts needed, the tighter the tolerances.  There is little room for error in the micro machining process.  By using a CNC machine, it increases the accuracy levels humans would not be able to achieve.  The electronics industry greatly benefits from this precise accuracy for components, housings and other parts.  Electronic, telecommunications and wireless products require precise components and smaller sizes.  Sheldon Precision has the experience and capability to manufacture a wide variety of components to any size and tolerance.

CNC machining can be used in a wide variety of industries and are able to create parts out of multiple types of materials.  If you are looking to use CNC machining for your products, contact us today for a custom quote at https://sheldonprecision.com/request-a-quote/ 

Swiss-Style Turning: The Prescription for Medical Parts Manufacturing

Medical component manufacturing requires a machine flexible in its design that it can create any geometric shape that can be conceived.  Swiss-style lathes represent a key process for manufacturing many medical parts.  Bone screws are one type of medical component that uses Swiss machines.  This is due to the productivifty of the machines and ultimately being more cost-efficient for the manufacturer.  It is estimated around 95% of all bone screws are made on Swiss turning machines today.  This includes facial screws, dental implant screws and screws used to hold orthopedic bone plates in place. 

A Swiss-style lathe is known for its guide bushing and a sliding headstock.  The strength of the Swiss machining process is the material supported by the guide bushing.  Stationary tools cut the bar stock as it passes through the bushing.  One of the main advantages of this machine is its ability to cut components with large length-to-diameter ratios.  No taper is introduced to the part and the rigidity of the process significantly reduces or in some cases eliminates chatter.  Medical component manufacturers can use these machines for a wide variety of parts. 

It is common for Swiss lathes to have both sub-spindles and live tools.  The sub-spindle allows operations to be performed on the back side of the part, which is inaccessible from the main spindle.  Cycle times can be drastically reduced by allowing work that might otherwise be performed on the main spindle to be done simultaneously on the sub. 

Live tooling along with the Y axis, part of the gang tooling arrangement on Swiss machines and the C axis, which is standard on most machines, allows milling to be performed.  Live tooling on a lathe combines turning and milling, on workpieces where there are both turned and milled features, the component can have all operations performed in the same chucking.  This significantly reduces handling and improves the geometric location of the milled features to the turned features. 

Deep depths of cut are common with Swiss-style aches since turning must often be done to finish depth in one pass.  The deep cuts must be made with slow feed rates in order to reduce the power requirement; this combination produces long ribbons of unbroken chips that can wrap around the part and prevent coolant from reaching the cutting zone.  Over the past 10 years, high-pressure coolant has become a mainstay on many Swiss machines.  This coolant is a must to help control stringy chips when drilling deep holes.  High temperature alloys and titanium, which are common in medical components, require high-pressure coolant because of the high temperatures produced in the cut and by directing chips away from the cutting zone.

Medical components can be difficult to produce for a few different reasons:  materials and geometry.  Materials such as titanium, one of the primary materials for bone screws, and plastic have unique characteristics such as being poor heat conductors and producing stringy, difficult to break chips.  Complex geometries are also common with medical components, including high length-to-diameter ratios.  Swiss machines have a distinct advantage, there are other challenges such as bone screw designs evolving and the use of multi-start threads.  In multi-start threads, two or more threads start simultaneously and allow far more travel in one turn than single-start threads.  A double-start thread will advance twice as far per revolution as a single-start, triple-start thread three times, etc. Two-start threads are the most common but more frequently bone screw designs include three-start threads and some engineering requests are being made for four-start bone screws. 

The process of cutting double-start threads on a Swiss machine begins with insert design.  The insert design is two or more thread forms are ground on each insert.  The thread whirling process involves cutting the thread in one pass in order to take advantage of the support provided by the guide bushing.  Inserts for multiple-start threads must have the form for each start on the insert.  This can be a challenge for tool manufacturers because they must make thicker inserts to accommodate the additional forms.  For every additional start, the insert must be made thicker.  Multiple-start threads are cut with inserts that have the multiple forms ground into the insert.  Tooling manufacturers are striving to keep up with the advancements. 

Medical parts are often delicate which can create problems when they are picked off with the subspindle for backwork.  It is very important but difficult to apply just the right amount of pressure to hold the part in the subspindle.  Once the optimum gripping force is determined, it is not easy to communicate to other machine operators how the adjustment was made.  Another challenge is making dental implants because of their small size. 

Swiss-style machines have been combining turning and milling in one machine for a long time.  Now machine tool manufacturers have introduced laser options to be even more precise.  It will now be possible to make stents on Swiss machines due to the cutting of solid stock for the tubing.  This can be handy in prototyping because the inside diameter of the tubing can be bored out to that size to make small batches.  Swiss turning machines have evolved greatly from making small components in the watch industry to now being used in medical manufacturing. 

If you are looking to produce high quality parts for the medical industry contact us today and receive a custom quote at https://sheldonprecision.com/request-a-quote/

Article adapted from: https://www.sme.org/technologies/articles/2017/may/swiss-style-turning-rx-for-medical-parts-manufacturing/

How Swiss Screw Machines Work

Screw machines are automated lathes which can machine turned parts.  The machine components spin very quickly on a rotating lathe, which shaves down metal to the size desired.  There are two types of screw machines: Turret and Swiss machine.  The Turret, also known as. Brown & Sharpe after its first manufacturer, mounts the workpiece on a vertical ram which works into the lathe.  The Swiss type, named after its place of origin and used by watchmakers for precision components, mounts the workpiece on a rotary slide. 

There are two main types of Swiss Screw Machines: automatic and CNC.  The automatic screw machine functions with a disc cam, which helps rotate the tools to the work piece bay.  A collet holds the workpiece in place, the disc cams move the tools in a radial motion and alter headstock positioning in order to account for any longitudinal discrepancies with the workpiece.  The automatic Swiss Screw Machine features very close spindle collets, which prevent much deflected debris from getting into the way. 

CNC Swiss Screw Machines, otherwise known as CNC turning machines or lathes, operate largely on the same principle as an automatic Swiss Screw machine, except that the operation is controlled by a CNC unit.  These turning machines can feature more sets of tooling, allowing for the machine to perform several operations on the same piece in a shorter amount of time due to the increased direction provided by the CNC.  Automatic Swiss Screw Machines can also perform several operations at once but it lacks the precision and swiftness of a CNC Machine.  A CNC Swiss Screw Machine can rotate a part at up to 10,000 RPM at an accuracy level of 0.0002 to 0.0005 inches.

The CNC Swiss Screw Machine and the automatic screw machine are cost-efficient for longer projects because once they are properly tooled and program-oriented, many machines can run under the supervision of one operator.  Preparation time can be up to an hour so shorter projects’ fixed costs might balance out for another tooling process but Swiss Screw Machines are able to do more precision work due to the tight collet, work-piece and tooling. 

Turret-type screw machines produce very similar results to Swiss Style Machines but the CNC Swiss Screw Machine can have more tooling fixtures applied leading to the possibility of a double spindle machine.  This feature cuts down on time and an operator since the part is automatically transferred from the screw machine to another machine for secondary operations.  Turret-style machines come equipped with a transfer attachment that can also perform this function. 

Both types of Swiss Style Screw Machines are found in the automotive, IT and consumer electronics industries.  Swiss Screw Machines were originally developed for Swiss watch production due to their accuracy and delicacy.  Since these machines have quick production times and low variable costs, Swiss Screw Machines can produce a large number of small, precision parts relatively quickly at low cost.  These machines can handle both exotic and common metals of varying strengths and composition they are widely applicable in many different industries. 

If you are interested in using CNC Swiss Screw Machine technology for one of your products contact us today at https://sheldonprecision.com/request-a-quote/

Article adapted from: https://www.thomasnet.com/articles/custom-manufacturing-fabricating/cnc-turning-swiss-machines/

CNC Machining Projected To Be $100 Billion Industry by 2025

Recently, an increasing number of factories and production facilities have adopted CNC lathes as their tool of choice.  Experts expect the global CNC machine market to grow to $100.9 billion in value, an annual growth rate of 6.8%.

Lathe machines held a significant leading share of more than 27% in 2016.  Due to features such as reduced time requirements and multi functionality, industry analysts predict the milling machines segment to see a compound annual growth rate of an estimated 9.5%.  Through 2025, CNC Machining will likely continue to dominate this area of the market reaching and expected valuation of $25.17 billion. 

One of the most common prototype production methods, CNC machines operate automated tools using computer-programming inputs.  CNC machinery manufacturing is growing rapidly due to:

  • – Reducing operating costs
  • – Using manpower more efficiently
  • – Avoiding errors in manufacturing

CNC machining has many advantages in the manufacturing industry.  Computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) and computer-aided design (CAD) in product design and prototyping enhances manufacturers’ ability to create and deliver high-precision components on time.  This drives growth in learning about CNC machinery and adoption because CNC equipment reduces operating costs and improves the efficiency of mass production.  CNC machines allow accuracy when carving complex shapes such as diagonals and curves and the demand has become high with the rise of CAD, CAM and CNC software advancements. 

CNC machine operators save time between design and production which improves a facility’s capabilities and increases revenue.  CNC machinery provides more precise detailing than 3D printers and can work with a wider range of materials.  With improved production capacity, better quality and precision, CNC machines are the machine manufacturers should be using to help support a wide range of industries. 

Automotive, electronics, defense/intelligence, aerospace, healthcare and industrial manufacturers all benefit from the use of CNC lathes.  Though maintenance and services costs may be high and can somewhat affect adoption to the machine, reduced production costs and versatility of where you can use CNC machines can create significant growth opportunities.  

CNC lathes decrease time requirements in a fast paced production environment.  Production facilities are finding more use for CNC machines in their factories and are finding that quality precision and reduced labor costs will benefit production and

Contact Sheldon Precision today for your custom quote and be one of the early adaptors of this modern machine https://sheldonprecision.com/request-a-quote/