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Double column machining for the automotive sector

2019-01-09

Okuma offers high precision for large dies

Okuma meets the special demands of the automotive industry. Its double column machining centres provide high precision during the manufacturing of large parts.

With over 50 years of experience and a production capacity of 40 units per month, Okuma is world-leading in manufacturing double column machining centres. Currently, there are over 8,000 Okuma double column machines in use of which roughly 3,500 are used in the automotive sector. Machines like the MCR-BIII or the recently introduced MCR-S are used by nearly every automotive manufacturer worldwide. Most cars on today’s streets are therefore at least indirectly and partially manufactured by an Okuma machine.

Special requirements in the automotive sector

Within the automotive sector, Okuma’s double column machining centres are mainly used for manufacturing dies for the production of car body shells. This process poses various challenges as the large workpieces require high dimensional accuracy. Dies also need to possess very smooth and clean surfaces. Achieving the required results is difficult because the manufacturing process can take several days. The long machining time makes the workpiece vulnerable to deviations due to temperature changes and other external influences during the manufacturing process.

Intelligent Technology for high quality

These problems are solved by multiple highly-tailored applications and features. Okuma’s Thermo-Friendly Concept helps to both minimise the amount of heat generated and compensate thermal deformations that cannot be avoided. The Premium Solution Hyper-Surface allows for excellent surface quality by correcting machining data automatically which improves overall quality and eliminates the need for hand-finishing. The solid cast iron double column construction of the machines ensures great rigidity and close tolerances. A touch probe enables on-machine gauging of complex shapes in mid-process. “Manufacturers in the automotive sector appreciate our double column machines’ high dimensional accuracy of less than 20 µm even for workpieces measuring up to 2,000 mm in width and 5,000 mm in length,” says Pablo Liechti, Product Manager DCMC.

High productivity

Okuma’s double columns are equipped with a multitude of applications making them as productive as possible. The Intelligent Technology SERVONAVI optimises cutting and feed rates. “This enables us to shorten production times by up to 25 percent,” states Liechti. The Thermo-Friendly Concept also increases productivity by minimising warm-up times. In order to meet the manufactures’ specific demands, Okuma’s double column machining centres can be configured in many ways. Customers can choose different spindles, a wide range of attachment heads and table sizes up to 4,500 mm in width and 12,000 mm in length. Many additional features and setups are available.

Okuma Europe GmbH is the Germany-based sales and service affiliate of Okuma Corporation, a world leader in CNC (computer numeric control) machine tools, founded in 1898 in Nagoya, Japan. The company is the industry’s only single-source provider, with the CNC machine, drive, motors, encoders, spindle and CNC control all manufactured by Okuma. Okuma’s innovative and reliable technology, paired with comprehensive, localised service protection, allows users to run continuously with confidence – maximising profitability. Along with its industry-leading distribution network, Okuma facilitates quality, productivity and efficiency, empowering the customer and enabling competitive advantage in today’s demanding manufacturing environment. For more information, visit www.okuma.eu.

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This inner die for the production of automotive body parts was manufactured by an Okuma double column machining centre. © Okuma

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Double column machines such as the MCR-S are used for manufacturing large dies. © Okuma

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The double column structure provides great rigidity and ensures close tolerances. © Okuma

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The automotive industry is one of the key sectors where Okuma’s double column machining centres are used. © Okuma