DATRON Dynamics

Part Set-up

As necessary as it is to optimize the cycle time of a part, so is the time it takes to set up a part.

In some cases, the preparation and time to run a job can be equally as long or longer than to machine the part.

DATRON has developed two types of systems to help expedite the setup process.

Measuring Probe

An integrated, mechanical touch probe that can find the zero point, compensate for surface variances, or skew your part if it is not perpendicular to your machining axis.

Adding a measuring probing solution to your CNC machine is not uncommon, but it is generally a third-party device deposited in your tool change magazine. These devices take time to load, consume an extra tool position in your magazine, and are often limited in capabilities. DATRON developed an integrated measuring probe mounted to the Z-axis, with powerful functionality and capabilities built into the next Control Software.

The measuring probe uses a Renishaw TP-20 ruby stylus that reduces surface scratching. Its magnetic mount is designed to break away in case of a collision. The mechanical probe has optional software features that can be added post-installation, depending on what capabilities you need.

X,Y Measuring

The measuring probe comes with software that can measure in two directions: X and Y.

Measuring in X and Y directions is commonly used to find part zero and saves time compared to using a dial indicator. You can activate the probe from your program or from the touch-screen control panel to locate a zero point precisely. Ensure your part is registered exactly to the workpiece to reduce a part rejection rate.

Several automated canned commands allow you to automatically measure standard requirements, such as finding the center point of a circular workpiece or the lower left corner of a rectangular workpiece. The command can also measure two points along one edge and automatically orient your machining program to that plane.

This can also be used to measure parts pre-machining to qualify if the part is mounted within tolerance. It can also be used post-machining to qualify that the part was machined properly, for example, validating that no tools broke during the machining operations and the part is within tolerance, just like a CMM.

If you need to find the surface of your part, you can instruct the probe to take a single-point measurement on the surface, and you are ready to go.

Z Surface Mapping

Applications requiring precision machining depths over a large workpiece can be challenging.

Mounting your large workpiece perfectly flat or at a level can take several minutes or hours. DATRON developed a feature that makes all these setup challenges easy to overcome. Using the optional software Z surface mapping feature, you can take a matrix of measurements and vectorize that surface before machining. The next Control Software will automatically raise and lower the Z-axis to compensate for the measured variances. This takes away the necessity of having to mount your workpiece perfectly flat. For example, you could easily engrave a .002” depth line around the perimeter of a 30” x 40” rectangular sheet without much care, and your sheet would be perfectly flat. It also allows you to measure a curved or irregular surface and apply the tool paths to that surface, even though you programmed the part as if it were a flat part. Engraving a logo on a round tube is one example of this application.

X,Y,Z Measuring

Vision System

The second system you can use is a vision system where you can quickly find the part zero point or optically recognize a feature and perform a machining operation based on its findings.

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DATRON Dynamics

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