GF Machining Showcases New EDM Series Among Medical Machining Advancements at MD&M West 2016

LINCOLNSHIRE, Ill. – GF Machining Solutions will demonstrate the high performance and high productivity of its new AgieCharmilles CUT E (efficiency) 350 as part of the CUT E Series of wire EDMs at MDM 2016 on February 9-11 at the Anaheim Convention Center, Anaheim California. Along with the new series, the company will spotlight other advanced high-precision machining systems such as the AgieCharmilles FORM 20iRTC sinker EDM and the Mikron HSM 200U LP (linear performance) milling machine all designed specifically for demanding medical part processing applications.

The CUT E Series incorporates a broad range of technologies that help medical manufacturers increase their flexibility and accelerate their time to market. These include new, large-touchscreen human-machine interfaces (HMI) that are intuitive in operation and feature onboard Intelligent Collision Protection, built-in machining strategies and flexible job management. Information about geometries, machining processes and command programs is processed in a single file, thus allowing jobs to be transferred among different machines within the CUT E Series. The machines then automatically manage all necessary modifications.

Additionally, more than 10 automated measurement cycles are available to assist with workpiece preparation. And the machines' onboard AC CAM Easy systems allow operators to prepare ISO files and post-process them into a job during machining.

The CUT E Series features the modern Intelligent Power Generator (IPG) to further improve cutting speed, precision and surface quality. The machines can use dedicated wire for decreased part cost and increased throughput, and their POWER-EXPERT modules automatically determine the optimal power to send through the wire, which is especially beneficial in stepped medical parts. The Corner Strategy module on the series machines automatically adjusts parameters during changes in direction to produce sharp angels and small radii. These features combine to reduce cutting times by up to 18% as compared to standard machines.

Machine ergonomics and design have also been enhanced with the CUT E Series. The machines feature compact, space-saving stacked-axis designs as well as "wet bases" that incorporate the dielectric tanks within them – all of which significantly boost rigidity and cutting accuracy. Drop doors provide easy, convenient access to worktables, and side-by-side filters are easily accessible to speed and simplify maintenance.

Integrated glass scales preserve long-term, repeatable accuracy, require no recalibration and eliminate errors found in traditional screw systems due to backlash and wear. The CUT E 350 allows use of an optional large, 25 kg spool to facilitate greater levels of automation and unmanned machining. It also features a reliable wire circuit system for perfect unrolling that does not disrupt the EDM process.

The GF Machining Solutions FORM 20iRTC is one of the first machines to incorporate the company's AC Form HMI (human machine interface). And as such, it delivers user friendliness and intuitiveness to today's medical part machining operations. The machine provides the industry's best price-to-performance ratio and also boasts outstanding connectivity capability, overall enhanced performance and a modern compact design.

Additionally, the organization and layout of screens within the AC FORM HMI make it easy to use, especially for inexperienced operators. New operators as well can quickly learn it and confidently run the machine.

From simple Z-axis-level measuring to rotating workpieces around machine C axes, the most common measuring cycles are also integrated into the interface. Manual adjustments and alignments to workpieces are unnecessary, so non-burn times are greatly reduced. Plus, novice machine operators are able to easily achieve expert diesinking EDM results.

As a Windows-based platform, the FORM 20iRTC seamlessly integrates into workshop management systems. Other new features, including GF Machining Solutions' eConnect, eSupervision and eTracking, further boost machine functionality for process control and outside system connectivity.

At the heart of the FORM 20iRTC is GF Machining Solutions' proprietary, high-end Intelligent Power Generator (IPG) with built-in quality-boosting and cost-saving intelligence. With every machine pulse, the 70-amp generator on the FORM 20iRTC continuously optimizes the EDM process and dramatically reduces electrode wear as well as provides extremely uniform surface finishes. The machine reliably generates surface finishes of Ra 0.1 micron and radii down to 0.0007".

Also embedded within the FORM 20iRTC machine is GF Machining Solutions' TECFORM module that eliminates the need for operators to adjust the machine generator parameters. Optimized performance, efficiency and increased production time are all achieved automatically.

Designed with a shop's valuable floor space in mind, the FORM 20iRTC is the industry's most compact standard die-sinking EDM, yet provides ample axis travels of 13.78" x 9.84" x 9.84" (350 mm x 250 mm x 250 mm). Within its space-saving footprints, the FORM 20 machine even includes an integrated four-position linear tool changer. On the milling side at MDM 2016, the GF Machining Solutions Mikron HSM 200U LP – available in 3- and 5-axis versions – brings speed, efficiency, precision and superior surface finishes to the machining of small, highly complex components such as steel denture bars, medical implants, tiny sinker EDM electrodes and other similar highly detailed parts.

The machine accommodates the medical industry's increased need for lean manufacturing via small-footprint, high-speed machines. Additionally, the compact size of the Mikron HSM 200U LP allows it to fit into most facilities having limited floorspace, which is key for dental labs and other locations with extremely limited working areas. The Mikron HSM 200U LP can produce workpieces via true 5-axis simultaneous highspeed machining. Linear motor technology in the main machine axes and optimized direct-drive motors for the B and C axes result in high precision and part surface finishes as fine as Ra 0.05 µm. Furthermore, the machine's powerful 50,000-rpm, 11.4- hp Step-Tec spindle also contributes to precise part details and excellent surface finishes.

To further enhance productivity, the Mikron HSM 200U LP possesses the capability for 24/7 unattended machining using its optional Mikron pallet magazines with System 3R and Erowa interfaces. These fully integrated pallet magazines can be loaded without interrupting cutting operations already in progress. The automation of tool or workpiece handling is possible from three sides of the machine.

A Heidenhain iTNC 530 control system and Smart machining modules on the Mikron HSM 200U LP provide advanced levels of monitoring critical to the production of high value precision medical parts. The system allows the machine to automatically check and evaluate tools and workpieces, inspect tools for breakage and perform measurements of the workpiece. Additionally, the Smart machine modules automatically monitor spindle vibration, calibrate machine geometry and transmit process status messages to an operator's cell phone.

To avoid inconsistent loading of small tools and 3D geometry errors due to the inaccurate measurement of those tools, the Mikron HSM 200U LP features Intelligent Tool Measurement (ITM). ITM records the complete tool tip up to a diameter of 0.47" on image sensors. Special software cleans and measures the recorded tool geometry for repeatability in the micrometer range.

About GF Machining Solutions

GF Machining Solutions is the world's leading provider of machines, automation solutions and services to the tool and mold making industry and to manufactures of precision components. The products range from electric discharge machines, highspeed and high-performance Milling machines, including clamping and palletization systems, and 3D Laser surface texturing machines, to services, spare parts and expendable parts, consumables and automation solutions. As a globally active group, GF Machining Solutions, a Division of Georg Fischer Group (Switzerland), maintains a presence on 50 sites worldwide within its own organization. Its 2,873 employees generated sales of CHF 867 million in 2013. For more information on the company's products and services, contact Gisbert Ledvon at GF Machining Solutions, 560 Bond St., Lincolnshire, IL 60069-4224, Tel: 1-800-282-1336, Fax: 847-913-5340, Email:, or visit


Gisbert Ledvon

Business Development Manager

GF Machining Solutions


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