Aerospace manufacturer establishing two-machine cell at newly-renovated expansion facility for machining aluminum parts for F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and other critical defense projects
Anaheim, CA, August 2009 - California-based, Pacific Contours, a supplier of key aerospace parts, has ordered two HyperMach H4000 5-axis horizontal profilers to produce aluminum airframes and bulkheads for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) and the CH-47 Chinook helicopter, among others. The H4000's will operate as a two-machine cell at Pacific Contours' newly-established facility near San Diego. This is the second order for MAG's newest aerospace platform and represents a continuing trend of top-tier manufacturers investing in new equipment to expand capacity and perform tight-tolerance machining on multiple surfaces, according to Randy Von Moll, aerospace product manager for MAG. Brek Manufacturing, also in California, ordered a six-machine H4000 cell last September.
"We first saw the HyperMach H4000 at the IMTS show last year," said Michael Rapacz, president of Pacific Contours. "The quality, appearance and design benefits of the machine were unlike anything I'd seen. We're cutting five sides on parts up to 2800 lbs (1270 kg), so the generous work envelope is a huge plus, and the horizontal orientation takes chip management issues out of play." The H4000 is a high-speed, high-power 5-axis contouring machine, with full-portal construction, a fully enclosed cutting zone, and a suite of material handling systems. Designed to be an easy-to-use, low-maintenance workhorse, the H4000 includes patented features that improve ergonomics, maintainability and reliability.
"The H4000's multi-patented design adapts proven modular components from our HyperMach five-axis vertical profiler family," said Von Moll. "Pacific Contours is producing high-value parts with tight tolerances and complex contour surface geometries, so they need the most advanced technology machine tools available. The H4000's are optimized for ultra-high-speed, high-precision machining of large aluminum plate and forgings - it's the perfect solution." The machine's automatic part load and horizontal spindle work in combination with a high efficiency drop-through chip evacuation system, further improving productivity by reducing labor and parasitic time to keep the machine clean.
The two-machine, multi-pallet cell will use MAG's proven CINCRON© cell controller and automation for increased asset utilization and productivity. "The spindle works 24 hours a day and we don't need to stop for workpiece loading/unloading and setups," said Rapacz. "This machine has enabled us to ramp up existing business, as well as accommodate new work on the JSF."
Pacific Contours recently outgrew its Anaheim facility and expanded via purchase of aircraft component manufacturer Pacific Jaycraft in Spring Valley, CA, near San Diego. The facility is being completely renovated and the new HyperMach cell will be the centerpiece of the new plant. "The only existing machine we're keeping in the new facility is a Cincinnati T10 that was purchased in 1987," said Rapacz. "It's been cutting cast iron and is still doing a great job, so we'll have the new MAG machines working next to the old."
About Pacific Contours
Pacific Contours specializes in complex machining and assembly of high-demand products for the aerospace industry. Pacific Contours focuses on defense work, manufacturing a wide variety of parts including bulkheads, escape hatches, jettison cockpit doors, and upper and lower cabin doors for numerous aircraft programs. Pacific Contours has been a supplier to Boeing for 12 years and was 2007 Boeing Supplier of the Year. In 2008, Pacific Contours received the prestigious Nunn-Perry Award from the Department of Defense in recognition of its outstanding Mentor-Protégé team.
MAG is a leading machine tool and systems company serving the durable-goods industry worldwide with complete manufacturing solutions. The company offers a comprehensive line of equipment and technologies including process development, automated assembly, turning, milling, automotive powertrain production, composites processing, maintenance, automation and controls, and core components. Key industrial markets served by these technologies include aerospace, automotive and truck, heavy equipment, oil and gas, rail, solar energy, wind turbine production and general machining.
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