Ahead of IMTS, Metal Storm Highlights Latest Array of Technologies

This year's really big machining and manufacturing show, the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS), is three months away (Sept. 8-13, in Chicago). For those anxious to get an early taste of what some exhibitors will have on display at McCormick Place, or get a sense of business trends and equipment developments, there is a two-day regional event next week in Massachusetts that will feature more than 50 machines in operation, along with cutting tools, metrology systems, and other equipment, plus 11 education seminars.

Before Methods Machine Tools and its equipment partners hit IMTS, they will collaborate on an open house at the distributor's Massachusetts headquarters. Before Methods Machine Tools and its equipment supplier partners hit IMTS, they will collaborate on an open house called Metal Storm at the distributor's Massachusetts headquarters.

The event is Metal Storm, a biennial open house at the Methods Machine Tools headquarters in Sudbury, Mass., near Boston. The company, which supplies machining systems, automation, and accessories throughout North America, uses the occasion to promote current product lines, capabilities, and services and highlight new additions. Methods officials are expecting more than 1,500 people from 450 companies throughout the country to attend Metal Storm. (ThomasNet News has been invited to cover the event.)

Major displays this year include machining systems from Yasda, whose equipment was added by Methods in 2013. Featured will be the new H40i-PC24 5-axis machining center, early details of which are highlighted in a press release here on ThomasNet News. Also on display from Yasda will be the new YBM 640V3 and YBM 950V 3-axis CNC vertical jig borers.

Among other suppliers, KIWA Machinery Co. Ltd. is unveiling the KMH Series of competitively priced horizontal machining centers at Metal Storm. Pallet sizes in the line range from 300 to 1,250 mm. On display will be 30- and 40-taper, 300-mm pallet models and a 40-taper, 500-mm version.

Nakamura-Tome is showing the AS-200 High Performance Multitasking Turning Center, which was launched late last year. It is a compact (1,650 by 1,600 mm), rigid, heavy-duty machine with a single spindle and turret. Designed to produce finished parts without secondary operations, it is claimed to have a powerful milling drive along with a high-speed C-axis and a Y-axis with an 82-mm stroke. The unit has a maximum turning diameter of 340 mm and a maximum turning length of 300 mm. The machine is competitively priced and designed for shops that want flexible, multitasking finishing capability.

Feeler Machine Tools is exhibiting the FT-250SY, a 4-axis turning center that's new to North America. Also new from the company is the SBM 2000 Universal Milling Machine, which has an articulated head.

EDM machinery will be represented at Metal Storm, as well. Among units to be displayed are RoboCut machines from Fanuc. These will be equipped with polycrystalline diamond cutting wires and the company's latest Automatic Wire Feed system.

Another supplier, Current EDM, will demonstrate its CT400 machine for the drilling of small holes. The CT400 is a midsize drilling machine with a moveable bridge that allows for an extended (400-mm) Y-axis stroke. Features of the machine include a 400-mm servo stroke, worktable sized for large parts, and tilt-rotary table for 5-axis applications.

For attendees involved with or looking at aerospace and automotive fabrication, FFG Europe Group, which comprises four Italian machine builders, will be on site. The companies are Jobs, Sigma, Sachman, and Rambaudi.

On display will be Sigma's Tandem 6A, a 6-axis vertical machining center engineered for high-precision work. Features of the machine include a continuous tilting spindle holder head (B-axis) with a 110-deg stroke and two 660-mm continuous rotary tables (C-axis).

In other equipment areas, Carl Zeiss is showing surface and roundness metrology machines.

VISIONx is exhibiting the new 700 Series 5-axis inspection and measurement system for aerospace components. The 700 Series is designed for automatic shop floor inspection of complex parts. (VISIONx maintains that the 700 Series is ideal for inspecting EDM-drilled holes.) Features include X-, Y-, and Z-axis travels of 300 mm; 20-times equivalent high-resolution optical magnification; advanced inspection software; automatic image and data collection; and automatic documentation of data and report generation.

Topics of the technical seminars, meanwhile, range from the return on investment and production benefits of machine tool automation to turnkey engineering, to design for manufacturing and assembly, to geometric dimensioning and tolerancing.

Information about attending Metal Storm is available from Methods Machine Tools.


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