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FANUC Robodrill still going strong after 14 years

FANUC Robodrill still going strong after 14 years

Added to MTDCNC by FANUC on 05 November 2013

If you were asked when you bought a new high speed CNC machine tool what your expectations were in relation to its longevity and life cycle, your answer probably wouldn’t be 14 years. Especially when you take into consideration how technology moves on and how it’s often beneficial from an accounting perspective to continually invest in machinery and upgrade your workshop, not to mention making the right impression amongst your client base.

Well at B.M. Injection Ltd many machines have come and gone over the last 15 years but one machine remains the backbone of the company’s electrode manufacture, that machine being a FANUC Robodrill. Originally purchased in 1999, still the most worked machine in their factory, this machining centre was bought to improve throughput, surface finish and accuracy of their graphite electrode machining processes. The purchase of the FANUC machine was integral to the businesses decision to eliminateany hand fettling operations and ultimately reduce their electrode component cycle time.

Technical Director, Mark Combes takes up the story;

‘Electrode manufacture requires high speed, high feed machining. When we explored what machine tools were available, there were a few manufacturers who could offffer us this process, however, the FANUC solution seemed to have the edge. The Robodrill offered the latest (at the time) 16iM control, a 12,000 rpm spindle, and functions within the control that allowed us to contour at high speeds. The price was also very attractive.’

‘Our investment decision has been proved correct time and time again, this machine has never had a breakdown, continually works on a double shift and in the 14 years of ownership has not once failed to produce a component above the standard we require.’

‘Cost effifficient, reliable and durable are three words I would use to describe this machine. With us continually machining at the maximum spindle speed available, it still amazes me that 14 years on we have yet to need a new or refurbished spindle.’

‘Without question when we do eventually look to either add another high speed milling machine or replace the FANUC Robodrill, our first point of contact will indeed be FANUC.’

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