High-volume producer of machining centers highlights horizontals

  • 30-Jun-2008 07:30 EDT

Haas’ newest horizontal machining center is the EC-550.

The new EC-630PP (PP for pallet pool) horizontal machining center from Haas Automation Inc. was one of the company’s highlighted products at the recent Westec show, where the company’s sprawling display was front and center. The company says the machine tool dramatically expands the production capability of its EC series of horizontal machining centers (HMCs).

The addition of a fully integrated, six-station pallet pool to the shop-proven Haas EC-630 brings true “lights out” machining capability to small- and medium-sized manufacturers and production shops, the company says. Designed for high-volume production and unattended operation, the EC-630PP features a 40 x 33 x 35-in work envelope, a 50-taper geared-head spindle, a six-station pallet pool with 630-mm pallets, and a high-precision 1-degree pallet indexer. For long-cycle production with minimal non-cutting, the EC-630 is equipped with a 72-pocket side-mount tool changer, a large-volume coolant tank, and a high-capacity belt conveyor for efficient chip removal. Also standard are 710-ipm rapids, a 15-in color LCD monitor with USB port, 1 MB of program memory, a flood and washdown coolant system, and a programmable coolant nozzle.

Each of the 630-mm pallets in the six-station pool has a load capacity up to 2640 lb. The pallets can be scheduled individually according to priority and sequencing requirements, which allows high-priority parts to be machined first and/or staged more often. Completed pallets are returned automatically to the holding location, or can be sequenced to a protected operator station for immediate unloading and reloading. The machine’s enclosure accommodates parts up to 39.4 in in both diameter and height.

Another highlight was Haas’ newest horizontal machining center, the EC-550, which represents the latest expansion of the company’s rugged line of high-productivity HMCs. It features a 30 x 34 x 32-in work envelope, 50-taper geared-head spindle, dual pallet changer with 550-mm pallets, 50-pocket side-mount tool changer, and a built-in 1-degree pallet indexer.

The EC-550’s standard geared head couples the motor directly to the spindle through a Haas-built, high-precision gearbox. This smooth-running system is very efficient, the company says, and offers tremendous thermal stability. The two-speed gearbox provides 450 lb·ft of torque for heavy material removal, and speeds to 6000 rpm for finish cuts. For high-speed work, an optional 10,000-rpm inline direct-drive spindle is available. Driven by a 45-hp vector dual-drive system, this spindle yields 170 lb·ft of torque at 1400 rpm, and a peak power rating of 60 hp at 7000 rpm.

Each of the EC-550’s pallets handles a 2205-lb load, and the servo-driven pallet changer swaps pallets quickly. A separate, protected load station allows the operator to safely load and unload parts or change fixtures on one pallet while parts are being machined on the other, keeping spindle run-time at a maximum.

For long-cycle production with minimal downtime, the EC-550 also is equipped with a large-volume coolant tank and a high-capacity belt conveyor for chip removal. Also standard are 710-ipm rapids, a 15-in color LCD monitor with USB port, 1 MB of program memory, a flood and washdown coolant system, and a programmable coolant nozzle.

High-productivity options for the EC-550 include, in addition to the 10,000-rpm spindle, a full fourth axis, a 72-pocket side-mount tool changer, high-pressure through-spindle coolant, a wireless probing system, and high-speed machining software.

Haas claims that more than 85,000 of its CNC machines and 53,000 of its rotary products are in use around the world. In 2008, the company will build more than 14,000 machines, with about 60% of them going to international markets.

All Haas products are manufactured in the company’s 1-million ft2 facility in Southern California.

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