As manufacturing technology has grown more and more sophisticated, the level of complexity has grown as well. Even modest machine tools today have precision that can be measured in microns – which means part and tool setup must be just as precise. Of course, CNC technology has always depended on accurate measurements, but the process of part locating and inspection can be cumbersome and time-consuming. So, just as Mazak simplified CNC programming with MAZATROL, it now offers a software solution called SMOOTH Set & Inspect that makes part setup, inspection and tool setting as simple as answering a few questions and hitting a machine’s “cycle start” button.
A part of the SMOOTH TECHNOLOGY suite of software solutions available on MAZATROL Smooth controls, SMOOTH Set & Inspect fully integrates Renishaw inspection probes with Mazak’s CNC platform. The result is a secure, efficient solution that can cut inspection setup down from 10-15 minutes to 20 seconds, time savings that add up quickly.
The key to SMOOTH Set & Inspect is the streamlined user interface, which offers a conversational platform for inspection and tool setting much like MAZATROL itself. After selecting whether to perform a measurement or calibration cycle, users make a selection from a list of part feature types or tool setting options and enter in the correct parameters. The control does the rest of the work, automatically generating an inspection program, and results are available immediately through the interface for quick corrections.
SMOOTH Set & Inspect also supports the creation of in-process gauging programs, which can be generated with the same conversational style. The finished product can be copied and pasted directly into a part program for mid or post-process gauging. Likewise, inspection programs can be built into processes designed for unattended production; to ensure continued precision across hours of machining, inspection can be performed, for instance, every 10 pieces or every 30 minutes. And for part validation, the program can even generate alarms for incorrectly sized parts for improved process security.
In the past, so much of manufacturing relied on machinists looking through G-code textbooks and manuals to build each part program piece by piece, inspection routines included. Mazak has continuously created easier ways to develop programs, starting with MAZATROL. SMOOTH Set & Inspect brings the same conversational simplicity to probing and tool setting, helping shops further reduce setup time and achieve exceptional accuracy.