Veteran machine tool companies headed for advancement
Written by Cheng Lin
Production line management focus
Every machine tool is equipped with many components and those components are manufactured either in-house or by outsourcing. In central Taiwan there are some companies that have been in the sector for over 60 years and have nearly completed all of their production lines through those years. As experienced experts in the machine tool sector, longstanding Taiwanese manufacturers work with each other and their supply chain to achieve the most efficient production lines that promises excellent quality.
Furthermore, many of them have the facilities for critical components that serve special functions, such as casting, machine body, power turrets, indexes, axial connectors, tool holders, sheet metals, and other critical parts that affect machine tool quality. With in-house lines to produce these critical components, many Taiwanese companies has full control of all the significant needs from end-to-end. In order to further advance the production quality, those companies work with leading machine tools and related component manufacturers in the supply chain.
Versatile designs for the 21st century
The main appeal of machine tools designed and developed by these companies is versatility. With so many manufacturers worldwide dealing with multiple order requests for a variety of products on short runs, processing pieces on different machine centers are costly and time consuming. Many Taiwan companies answer this 21st century phenomenon with equipment that combines turning and milling, and even integrates other functions, so that one machine can replace two or even three other equipment in the factory. The result is savings in footprint, manpower and machine tools.
For instance, the CNC lathe “Vturn-Q200” is equipped with a power turret and integrates a milling processing function, so that users do not need to buy both a lathe and milling equipment or change pieces between the two centers. Instead, the excellent design of the Vturn-Q200 not only saves processing time, but also maintains processing accuracy.
The Vturn-Q200 can be equipped with up to three turrets power, with each turret containing 16 tools. The tool holder size is BMT55, the milling tool transmission specification is DIN1809 and the highest speed is at 6,000 RPM. The turret can either be powered or conventional, hence the machine can be used for complicated turning and milling processes. Together with an advanced automatic feeder or robotic arm, also designed by professional engineers, production lines can cope with various order requests and proceed in mass production.
Second specialization: Plastics machine sector
Besides the well-known role in the machine tool sector, many Taiwanese machine tool manufacturers directly support the domestic plastics machine manufacturers, as Taiwan is also a primary exporter of plastics machines. Among all those versatile machine tool machine makers, some may even have more close partnerships with local plastics machine producers. This makes Taiwan so unique in the world industry.
The hydraulic injection molding machine VE/VS/VR series range from 50 tons to 1,300 tons; in electric counterparts there are machines range from 50 tons to 300 tons. The new servo series VSP-180F two-platen concentrates forces and rigidity on the platens, so that deformation of molds is void and injection accuracy is hence improved. Together with 8800T 15″ touch screen, the scan of VSP-180F can be finished within 0.25ms. The hydraulic pump of VSP-180F is driven by servo motor and thus the pump is more accurate and highly efficient, without redundant heat emission. The “green concept’ design saves 60% energy consumption.
One can say that Taiwanese people are fully developed machine tool manufacturers because they feature production lines for turrets, motors, machine tools, and even plastics injection machines. All these products demonstrate that machine tool manufacturers in the island are mature in mechanical planning and practical manufacture. Back to the metalworking sector, Taiwan leads the trend without a doubt; this can be illustrated by their products’ wide applications.
Latest developments in machine tools
One of the latest promotion, Vcenter-AX350 five-axis machine center, designed using class A structure is highly appreciated by many. It can perform the most accurate measurement with the best surface curve geometry. The machine is not expensive the way it was designed. Even job shop owners can use it.
For over 60 years, Taiwan companies have developed machine tools and produced machines that have been utilized to process automotive components, engine components, wheels, molds, machine tool components, medical appliances, food machines, woodworking machines, and aerospace parts. For processing needs that require multi-axis, Taiwanese machines are the best match.
On the other hand, Vturn-Q200 multi-tasking turn-mill machine center integrates turning, lathing, drilling, and grinding functions into one. Users can chose to install conventional, powered, or powered cutter heads with Y-axis, depending on the processing demands. Along with automatic feeding system and other automation design, thV-turn-Q200 is widely distributed, as users find it well designed for their processing demands.
Now Taiwanese machine makers are working on advancing their machine tool product type. In the near future, Taiwanese machines are expected to be more accurate, advanced in multi-tasking, and excellent automation.
Aside from the above mentioned machine series, there are still many other new designs made by engineers for various sectors. These innovations demonstrate the young and creative spirit of Taiwanese companies. In looking forward to the future, Taiwan will keep up with the latest trends and technologies, and bring more value-added innovations to its ever expanding market.