Debunking Common Myths About Robotic Machine Tending
New technology and options are challenging for some people to accept. This can lead to misunderstanding and misinformation about this new technology that may prevent established OEMs, entrepreneurs, and startup companies from maximizing their potential by taking advantage of a beneficial service option.
A relatively new area in machining shops and services is to use robotic machine tending. This is an automated option that utilizes robotic arms or systems to load the workpieces into machining centers and equipment, to complete repositioning if needed in the process, and then to remove the finished part and send it forward through the system.
Recognizing the value that robotic machine tending has for an OEM and for the machining service starts with also debunking some of the common misconceptions about the use of the technology.
Myth: System Setup is Costly and Takes Time
The use of robotic machine tending is no different than using computer files to set up CAD/CAM systems for CNC machining equipment. The new technology is designed without the need for writing complex programs or using a specific computer language. In fact, most of these systems use a touchscreen type of interface that allows for point and click programming for the specific part or component. Additionally, all of these programs can be saved once created, allowing them to be called up for future use with the press of a button.
Myth: Robotics Add to the Cost of Production
With the need for less manual handling of the material and the part throughout the machining processes, the production speed can be increased. Robotic tending can operate 24/7 with precision and accuracy, which also reduces waste due to slight variations in the placement of the material in the machining equipment.
The overall result of these benefits is a lower cost of production to the machining company, which can then be passed along to the OEM. For low to high volume production of precision parts, robotics offers a cost-effective solution that is well worth considering.