One of the biggest problems producers face in processing metal tubes, particularly if they want to finish as well as cut, is excessive steps. Every time production stops for changeovers or recalculations, time is wasted unnecessarily. The ideal system is streamlined, offering producers seamless loading, cutting, finishing, and unloading or packaging options.
But for many producers, this process is cumbersome. Multiple slowdowns along the production line translate ultimately into lost profits. However, there is a solution: a rotating-head cutoff machine coupled with MES software to automate every aspect of the process and give manufacturers real-time data with which to make adjustments.
How Can A Rotating-Head Cutoff Machine Streamline Production?
Tube cutoff lathes can be stationary or rotating head. The primary difference is in how the cutting head operates. In a standard lathe, the metal tubes must be loaded, cut, unloaded, and taken to another location to be finished. Additionally, a stationary head machine requires the material to spin rapidly, which can lead to vibration that causes burrs, nicks and safety issues.
A rotating-head tube cutoff lathe, on the other hand, holds the metal tube stationary while both ends are cut and chamfered simultaneously. The cutting head moves around the material, greatly reducing the waste produced from mistakes in cutting or finishing. This creates a much better final product.
The real beauty of a rotating-head system, however, lies in how much more quickly manufacturers can run their orders, whether small or large. The addition of MES software creates a streamlined process in which metal tubes are loaded, cut, finished, and unloaded without stoppages or slowdowns. Because the software guides every aspect of the process, the need for multiple stops and starts is eliminated. With the right equipment, steps such as loading, moving, repositioning and unloading can also be eliminated, creating a system that is completely automated.
Programs can be built into the software for facing, grooving, boring, deep-weld beveling and OD turning. These processes often take a great deal of time when done individually, so combining them into one run speeds up the production run and allows the manufacturer to move more material quickly. Loading and unloading can also be streamlined with the inclusion of strap, chain or inclined table loaders or even H-rack systems.
Plants that incorporate MES (manufacturing execution system) software can realize additional benefits. These systems are designed to give the manufacturer a bird’s-eye view of the overall production system. Because of this capability, slowdowns or stoppages can quickly be identified and addressed. With the help of this type of system and software, both managers and employees have the information they need to ensure that any problems in production are short-lived.
At Hautau, we have been designing custom rotating-head cutoff lathe solutions for over 50 years. With the addition of new MES integration, we are able to meet any production needs for both large and small manufacturers. Give us a call to speak to one of our professionals and learn how a new Hautau system, complete with loading, unloading, cutting and finishing capabilities, can help you ramp up metal tube production and profits this year!