MACH prize win leads to further investment at HepcoMotion

HepcoMotion is a world-leader in linear motion technology, with its linear guide systems featuring V guide technology being used by machine designers across a wide range of industry sectors, including food processing and packaging, automotive (particularly EVs), renewable energy systems and medical. Continued product development and increased demand resulted in a need to invest in machine tools that would both improve productivity and enhance existing capacity. A visit to the XYZ Machine Tools stand at the recent MACH exhibition made that investment a little easier.

HepcoMotion’s Engineering Manager, Ryan Berry was investigating improvements in the machining of ballscrews to support a new product launch planned in the near future, so a turning centre was on his list. There was also a need to upgrade milling capability to relieve capacity in the production. While on the XYZ Machine Tools stand he was invited to fill out his details to be entered into the now traditional XYZ prize draw, the winner of which would receive either the free use of a bed mill for 12 months or the option for a £10,000 discount off any machine in the XYZ range. On being advised of his success in the draw Mr Berry chose the latter, placing an order recently for an XYZ CT 65 HD turning centre as his machine of choice.

“We needed a turning centre that was capable of efficiently machining our hardened ballscrew ends, and the design of the CT 65 HD with its hardened box ways meant it would be robust enough for that work,” says Ryan Berry. “The machine also had the advantage of ease of programming and quick changeover making it ideal for both low and high volume work. At HepcoMotion we have built the business on the fundamentals of quality products, excellent customer service, and cost-effective products, we see the same mindset at XYZ Machine Tools. We placed the order and were surprised to be advised that delivery would be within four weeks. With the machine now in-situ XYZ is providing operator training for eight of our people, split over two groups.”

The XYZ CT 65 HD sits within the XYZ Machine Tools turning centre range and features the Siemens 828D ShopTurn Touchscreen Control, a 23 HP / 17 kW/4000 revs/min spindle, 66 mm bar capacity, 12 position Sauter VDI turret, along with a parts catcher, remote electronic handwheel, swarf conveyor and Renishaw automatic tool setting arm as standard. While retaining a compact footprint of just 2,950 x 2,030 x 1,650 mm (W,D,H) including the swarf conveyor, the solid cast construction weighing in at 3600 kg gives it exceptional rigidity. The machine installed at HepcoMotion has been enhanced with the addition of a bar feed unit, this allows ballscrews up to 3.5 metres in length to be processed and, with the relocation of an existing XYZ bed mill a dedicated machine cell has been created for ballscrew production.

With the order and delivery of the XYZ CT 65 HD complete, attention switched to milling, which was what Mr Berry had originally gone to MACH to see. Here he was looking to improve efficiency on one-off and low-volume production by replacing older machines with the latest technology. Having seen the latest XYZ RMX 5000 bed mill with the touchscreen ProtoTRAK control system and a smaller XYZ KMX SLV turret mill, he was convinced that this pairing would provide the enhanced productivity within a toolroom environment. These two machines were delivered on the 15th July and will quickly be in operation following operator training.

The RMX 5000 machine adds capacity with its 1930 x 356 mm table and a programmable 7.5 kW/5000 revs/min spindle, with the ProtoTRAK control also giving full CNC control of three axes. The smaller KMV SLV turret mill complements the larger RMX 5000 and is equipped with the 2-axis ProtoTRAK KMX CNC control system. “These two machines will relieve pressure on our production machines by providing a toolroom capability for one-off components and low volume production,” says Ryan Berry. “This investment is part of our ongoing development of the business here in Tiverton along with expansion of our other manufacturing plants. This year will see a further £2 million spent on 14 machines across our manufacturing capability, with 12 destined for Tiverton and two earmarked for our new facility in the Netherlands.”

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