How Does 5-axis Machining Increase Productivity?
CNC 5-axis machining technologies continue to advance, increasing in the level of functionality and ease of operation. In addition, CNC computer systems also continue to evolve making programming much easier and faster than in the past. Collectively, these technology advancements lead to more efficient and productive 5-axis machining operations.
Over time, machined parts have become increasingly more complex, and conventional machining is simply unable to meet these demands. 5-axis machining is a cost-effective solution that delivers increased uniformity, higher production efficiency, and more flexibility. For these reasons, OEMs across a myriad of industries rely on CNC 5-axis machining for their heavy fabrication projects. 5-axis machining offers many benefits that lead to lower production costs and faster speed to market. One key advantage of employing 5-axis machines is the efficiency gains it provides manufacturers. The following further explains how 5-axis machining increases productivity on the machine shop floor – saving OEMs time and money.
Increased Productivity from 5-axis Machining
One of the advantages of CNC machines that is often underestimated is the flexibility and versatility that 5-axis machining offers designers. Traditional CNC machines are able to move along 3 axes: the X-, Y- , and Z-axes at the same time. 5-axis CNC machines are able to operate along these 3 axes as well as 2 additional rotational axes, A- and B-, for a total of 5-axes working simultaneously. In general, the more axes a CNC machine can operate on, the more intricate and complex geometries it can fabricate. Thus, 5-axis CNC machining has a huge advantage over traditional CNC machines and is able to manufacture complex parts that are often not feasible with conventional CNC machines. Given its ability to fabricate more intricate designs, 5-axis machining enables designers the opportunity to create even more complex shapes and sizes of parts.
Traditional CNC machining requires multiple setups in order to rotate the part orientation to perform the desired cutting and machining steps. 5-axis machining requires a single setup and is able to work on every surface of the part at once. The advantage of a single setup is that the time required to machine a part is significantly decreased, increasing operations productivity and equipment utilization rates. 5-axis machines reduce the amount of non-cutting time on a given machine with faster workpiece indexing and higher machining rates that are feasible by using all 5 axes simultaneously.
5-axis machines are known for their enhanced accuracy and product quality. CNC machines execute the same program every single time for a given part - delivering precision, consistency, and quality. As noted, 5-axis machines are able to fabricate an entire part with a single setup. This is a huge shift from traditional CNC machining that requires multiple setups in order to rotate the part orientation to perform the desired cutting and machining steps. Each time the part is removed and reinserted into a new position, there is an opportunity for misalignments and errors. 5-axis machining with its single setup results in more accurate, uniform, and reproducible products. The unparalleled precision that is possible with 5-axis machines results in fewer off-spec parts that require rework – further increasing operations productivity.
There have also been programming advancements in recent years that further enable productivity gains for 5-axis machining. For example, the latest software enables more efficient tool paths during machining. There are also new programming features that are targeted at performing specific applications more effectively and efficiently, such as high-feed machining or blade and impeller cutting. These improvements may only save seconds or minutes but these incremental savings add up over time, contributing to a higher productivity and a more cost-effective solution for 5-axis machining.
CNC machining also delivers increased productivity due to automation. CNC 5-axis machining is highly automated, resulting in more rapid production as well as increased efficiency and uniformity – savings OEMs time and money.
Could your project benefit from the precision and efficiency of 5-axis machining?
Contact the team at ABS today to learn about our advanced machining solutions for heavy fabrications, including our 5-axis machining.
ABS 5-Axis Machining – A Core Competency
Not every machine shop can effectively perform 5-axis machining and fabricate quality heavy fabrications. These projects require specific tools, equipment, and processes as well as personnel with the right skills and expertise to handle such large structures and operate the specialized machinery. With over 50 years of experience serving a variety of industries, ABS offers OEMs proven experience, facilities, and know-how to safely and successfully perform heavy fabrication projects. In addition to expertise, ABS offers state-of-the-art technologies such as our 5-axis machines.
Simply put, the use of state-of-the-art equipment leads to higher quality and more consistent machined parts. At ABS, we are known for our capital investment initiatives in order to provide customers with the most advanced facilities and technologies including CNC machining and 5-axis machining. Additionally, ABS maintains a massive fleet of machinery comprised of dozens of duplicate pieces of equipment. This redundancy allows us to offer unparalleled versatility, nimbly adjusting operations as necessary to accommodate fluctuations in customer needs.
Our 5-axis machining department was built from the ground up with our clients' needs in mind. From the development of large custom designed 5-axis boring mills, to our in-house tool design group, our division is well equipped to handle the most challenging designs. ABS developed this manufacturing cell focusing on complex shrouded impellers first, which are known in the industry as “single piece wheels”. Building on the successful launch of the most complex designs, ABS rapidly tooled up to cost effectively manufacture impellers up to 80 inches in diameter.
Today the cell has significantly expanded. Many of our machines are equipped with state-of-the-art controls, and driven by the latest and most advanced software available on the market. Our continuous internal development on both or process and machine design keep ABS at the forefront of the industry. In addition, our extensive support staff in quality, equipped with the most advanced CMM technology, help ensure the impellers we produce are of the highest quality. We continue with our success, executing our strategy and partnering with leading Turbo Machinery OEMs globally.
Established in 1971, ABS Machining has grown to become the recognized global leader in large CNC machining, fabrication, and assembly for OEMs. The key to our success has been exceptional people, unparalleled facilities, and an unwavering commitment to quality. Our people are experts in their given field. Their expertise is matched only by their passion for serving our clients. We continue to invest in our people with education programs, cross training and in our internal accredited apprenticeship center.
Our facilities are state-of-the-art and we are equipped to serve our client’s requirements in:
Our massive fleet of machines and automated welding systems has delivered solutions to the most technically challenging projects. Our commitment to maintaining unparalleled facilities is evidenced by our renowned continuous capital reinvestment initiatives. Our commitment to quality goes well beyond our ISO 9001:2015 Registration. From the inception of all programs, ABS quality professionals work closely with each customer to ensure all their unique requirements are met or exceeded. It is this commitment that has positioned ABS as a strategic supplier to leading OEMs worldwide.
Contact us today to see how we can help with your machining project, or give us a call at 1-844-227-6224.
CNC MACHINING · FABRICATION · ASSEMBLY
Precision Machining ↓
ABS offers a unique combination of medium to high volume production machining and welding services.
80 Large Advanced CNC Machine Tools
ABS is one of the largest and most advanced manufacturing companies in North America.
6 Plants with lifting capacity up to 160 Tons
The ABS 5-Axis machining department has been built from the ground up with our customers’ needs in mind.
Centrifugal and Turbo Machined Impellers
Fabrication & Quality Assurance ↓
Heavy Fabrication Mig, Tig, Flux Core, Sub Arc
Mig, Tig, Flux Core, Sub Arc
Inconel 625 Hotwire Tig
Inconel 625 Hotwire Tig
Quality Assurance & Control
Quality Assurance & Control