Rex Cut and AVR Quebec case study on finishingClick image to enlarge

AV&R Aerospace, Montreal QC, needed to refine its precision application of robotic finishing of aerospace turbine blades. It found what it needed with the Smooth touch wheel from Rex-Cut.

Known as profiling, a precise edge is needed on the blades to control airflow while increasing efficiency and fuel economy in aircraft engines. When the blades are first cut, there are sharp edges and square angles that need to be profiled to very exact tolerances. The first generation of blades supported by AV&R Aerospace needed a tolerance of 100 microns. This tolerance continued to shrink, dropping to 37.5 microns in the second-generation blade, and falling as low as 12.5 microns in the current generation.

To achieve such demanding specifications, AV&R Aerospace tested many types of abrasive wheels. Non-woven nylon convolute wheels simply could not achieve the required tolerance consistently. But the firm found that the Smooth Touch wheel, from Rex-Cut, was able to hit the 12.5 micron mark in a very repeatable fashion.

Rex-Cut wheels are crafted from non-woven cotton fiber that’s denser than non-woven nylon. Cotton fiber abrasive products have a cushion action while in use, and due to their density, will hold up well grinding on an edge. Rex-Cut wheels can be used with precision without changing the geometry of the part.

Non-woven cotton wheels feature a consistent finish throughout the life of the wheel, and there is no backing that can gouge the surface of the material. In fact AV&R Aerospace discovered that Rex-Cut wheels lasted ten times as long as other products.

Rex-Cut wheels and the human touch

When AV&R Aerospace helped their clients move from human deburring to robotic operations, they had to meet the needs of very demanding inspectors. There was a very specific process, known as Tri-blending, where abrasive wheels were needed to join three different surfaces. The inspectors were used to very specific results achieved by human operators, and AV&R Aerospace knew they needed to replicate these results if they were to be successful.

The firm once again tested multiple abrasive wheels, but only Rex-Cut wheel achieved the same results as a human operator when deployed in a robotic application. The Rex-Cut Smooth Touch wheels, using cotton’s inherently natural mechanical strength, combined with laminated layers of abrasive, were able to hold up under the high-stress environment and “fool” the inspectors.

AV&R Aerospace won the Fanuc America’s ASI 2014 Innovative System of the Year Award with its Jet Engine Blades Weld Blending and Profiling System, and this Blending and Profiling System is outfitted with Rex-Cut Abrasives Type 1 Smooth Touch wheels.

Normand Stoycheff, support and client service manager with AV&R Aerospace, highlights one other important value of working with Rex-Cut.

“We work in a high technology environment,” he explains. “Every time we have a new order for a new part that is to be crafted manually, if I need help, I would call Rex-Cut and they would create the custom abrasive that I needed. This is something that I really appreciate from this company compared to other larger firms. Because we’re small, so it’s hard to gain the understanding of the big companies—they’re simply not listening to us. With Rex-Cut, I tell them my process and they suggest a solution. They even created the Smooth Touch high-density abrasive especially for us. It’s that level of service that really makes the difference.”

Toyota Canada invests in STEM education

Toyota Canada Foundation has announced a $150,000 investment in STEM education for youth.

Shaping the Future

by Andrew Brooks

Canada’s mould, tool and die industry is looking for collaborative, tech-forward suppliers

Extending Tool Life

by Lincoln Brunner

Prevention, maintenance keys to extending bend tooling life

What is old is new

The problem
Reduce costs, bring outsourced work inhouse

The solution
New Laser cutting machine cuts costs, brings tighter quality control to formerly outsourced work

Lincoln Electric EVP Blankenship retires

Lincoln Electric’s Executive Vice-President and President of Americas welding segment George D. Blankenship, has retired effective May 31, 2020. 

Breaking Additive Manufacturing Barriers: A Bigger Build

New robotics-enabled technology promises to break some major additive barriers

Morphing into manufacturing

Rowland Emergency Vehicle Products Inc., Mississauga, ON, began as a repair and maintenance business, but its reputation for developing, designing and manufacturing products that address the needs of its customers has steadily grown.

TRUMPF Canada expands operations

TRUMPF Canada has strengthened its commitment to the Canadian market by expanding into a facility double the size of its previous operation. The company commemorated the move with a grand opening during which TRUMPF management used TRUMPF power tools to cut a metal ribbon.

Staying Sharp

by Mary Scianna

Blade failure can have a catastrophic impact on your sawing operations

North American Robotic orders surge in 2014

Robot orders and shipments in North America set new records in the first nine months of 2014, according to Robotic Industries Association (RIA), the industry's trade group.

Stoking up Business

by Noelle Stapinsky

Ontario job shop redefines itself with OEM products

ARKU forms fab equipment rebuild service

ARKU, Cincinnati, OH, has created a rebuilding service for its levelers and coil lines in North America.

3 Ways to Optimize Your Turret Layout

by Thomas S. Weir 

Reduce downtime, increase productivity and get better punching and forming results

Stay In Touch

twitter facebook linkedIn