Our customer, a tool manufacturer of their own product, initially inquired 4 months before the tools were delivered to them. They make their product out of 4340 steel that comes in around 35 Rockwell C. They have seen a growth in business of 30% for the last 6 years and are running bar feed lathes, with a current capacity of 7 machines. Initially, the product line that was submitted contained 22 parts, with 9 of them sharing the same 1”x12 thread. The longest of these threads was 8”, thus creating the necessity in a Roll On Roll Off® tool with extra compensation. The design, pictured, added external springs to the Roll On Roll Off® device to allow the head to make the threads at that length and avoid “popping open” as the traditional method requires and necessitates a closing solution. Turning Concepts’ idea was to never let the head open to begin with, so there would be no need to facilitate a closing solution.
With the review of the customer’s parts, the F4 and F45 thread rolling heads were selected as a test tool on a single machine to qualify the feasibility and the reduction in cycle time. The threading cycle for single point cutting the customer started with was 3 ½ minutes. The customer’s floor space was limited as they are running bar feed machines, so the possibility of drastic reduction in cycle time through the addition of thread rolling is appealing to the customer. The customer selected 1 machine to add a Roll On Roll Off® tool for both their 1”x12 thread and the 3/4X16 thread accompanied by a Genesee hollow mill to further reduce their cycle time in preparing the workpiece to the correct pre-roll diameter for rolling. The Genesee hollow mill is an encapsulation tool that feeds at 200 SFM and makes a perfect cut in a single pass. With this combination of tools, a finished thread is completed in 2 passes and will not require deburring after the part is completed.
The tools were delivered within 4 months of the initial inquiry from the customer and per their request, on-site support was provided. Threads were made in the first 4 hours of on-site support and the process was improved until a current thread cycle time of less than 60 seconds for both tools were achieved for 8” of thread. This improvement in cycle time will allow production gains in a single machine that can be duplicated on their 7 additional machines through the end of the year. The process is ongoing and further improvements may be seen throughout this development process. The initial on-site support has been supplemented through email and phone support from both Turning Concepts and Genesee for both the hollow mills and the thread rolling tools. With the quick reaction time from our experts, the customer has been running parts since the installation without a problem from our quick delivery Roll On Roll Off® tool adapted to meet the customer’s demand.