Multi-tasking additive manufacturing technology
- November 4, 2018
Mazak has expanded its multi-tasking technology with the debut of its VC-500A/5X AM HWD HYBRID Multi-Tasking Machine.
The VC-500A/5X AM HWD incorporates new Hot Wire additive manufacturing technology Mazak developed in collaboration with Lincoln Electric. With Hot Wire technology, the VC-500A/5X AM HWD offers a high-speed additive solution and programmable welding automation as well as full 5 axis machining centre capabilities.
As with conventional welding, an arc torch melts metal wire directly on to a base material and/or part. The two materials – wire and workpiece – can be dissimilar, which allows shops to generate exceptionally precise sealing coatings along with near-net shape part features. The machine may also be used to repair costly complex components such as impellers and turbine blades along with tool and die parts.
The machine’s Hot Wire head has the same 5 axis capability as its milling spindle, which maintains the maneuverability necessary to build new part features or weldments on all of a workpiece’s surfaces. It is well suited for high-volume additive manufacturing and helps minimize equipment and material costs.
The Hot Wire laser cladding head incorporates an automatic wire feeder system that feeds welding wire to an Argon gas nozzle. The head delivers a deposition rate of three to four pounds per hour with a 98 per cent material utilization rate.
The VC-500A/5X AM HWD has a trunnion-style rotary/tilt table for the accurate, cost-effective processing of small complex parts via full 5 axis machining. The machine also features the Mazatrol SmoothX CNC with MTConnect capability, which allows for easier programming and faster part cycle times – in either EIA/ISO or Mazatrol conversational language – along with digital connectivity.
On the milling side, the VC-500A/5X AM HWD comes standard equipped with a robust, high-performance CAT-40, 12,000 rpm spindle that delivers exceptional metal removal capabilities in all common materials, including steel, aluminum and cast iron. A 30-tool storage magazine ensures continuous uninterrupted part machining, as does the machine’s compact chip conveyor and mist collector with smoke filter.