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Productivity has become a vital tool for enterprise management, and the composites industry is no exception to this rule. Productivity may be obtained by reorganising workstations and material flows but also by the use of new equipment. Here is an example involving a milling machine designed for the high-speed machining of composite panels for POP (point-of-purchasing advertising) and building applications.
(Published on November-December 2008 – JEC Magazine #45)
Mecanumeric, a company with over 20 years experience in automatic controls and robotics, designs and manufactures machines that use the following technologies: milling and engraving with high-frequency spindles; YAG and CO2 laser cutting and engraving; cutting and semi-cutting with tangential controlled knife; abrasive waterjet cutting; vacuum forming and furnaces. This numerically-controlled equipment, either standard or customised, is used in many fields of application such as graphic arts, POP, plastics processing, composite materials and the aluminium industry.
High-speed machining of facade cladding
One of its latest products is the 4-axis multi-head high-productivity milling machine, Mecabond, especially designed for POP applications and building facades. It facilitates the rapid manufacturing of panels made out of composite materials and painted aluminium, as used in the cladding of facades. It is specifically targeted at aluminium sheet manufacturers and industrial joiners, offering them the possibility to produce their own ready-to-assemble panels, with the part produced in this way being slotted and ready to be folded and "clipped" on site.
This equipment, in a useful format of 2 x 4 m up to 2.5 x 6 m, enables the high-speed machining of composite panels (Alucobond©, Reynobond©, etc.) thanks to an 8 kW vertical head with automatic tool changer, in conjunction with a 4.5 kW directional horizontal head for milling cutters. This horizontal head is mounted on a fourth numerical axis that offers every possible orientation through 360°. It is also possible to replace the milling cutter with a standard milling tool. This makes it possible for the operator to carry out lateral milling on vacuum formed parts, tools, etc.