Gear Production

APR 2016

Gear Production

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12—GEAR Production Supplement I n recent years, gear manufacturers have made enormous strides in reducing cycle times with highly productive new machine and cutting tool technologies. But for Gleason, taking cost out of the gear production process doesn't end there. We've long believed that workholding is as important as any other manufacturing component. This has never been more true than in today's just-in-time manufacturing environment. In the past, a volume manufacturer might have purchased a machine dedicated to producing just a single part number throughout its life. Part change-over requirements were infrequent, if not altogether nonexistent. But today, many manufacturers are meeting fast-changing customer demand and marketplace conditions with production of much smaller batch sizes, requiring more frequent part change-over. Setting up a machine to run a new part number quickly, easily and with greater repeatability isn't a once- or twice-a-year thing. It's likely happening several times a day. Time Is Money Preparing a traditional workholding assembly for the production of a new part can typically take F E A T U R E By Tim Zenoski | Director, Global Product Management, Workholding | The Gleason Works Workholding Slashes Setup Times A new generation of modular, quick-change workholding systems requiring fewer tools, less time and minimal operator experience has arrived. anywhere from 20 to 30 minutes and requires a high level of operator expertise. First, the machine operator must remove the existing tooling from the spindle piece by piece, bolt by bolt, all while leaning awkwardly into the work envelope and making sure not to drop slippery The operator installs a new Quik-Flex Plus module onto the common workholding interface.

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