As part of routine maintenance schedules on machining centres and turning centres of all makes and specifications, the need for precision and repeatable accuracy places great onus on the performance of key machine tool components – none more so than the spindle and machine turret.
Degradation of internal components such as spindle bearings and the spindle pull-back mechanism will impact over time on workpiece precision, in the same way as tool wear. As such, spindle performance monitoring is vital, either as a regular routine performed by the operator or undertaken by third-party servicing experts.
Using the right test equipment is essential and, by combining the latest OTT-Jakob Power Check spindle pull force measuring gauge with precision Gewefa test bars and alignment kits, monitoring spindle performance and servicing is now a straightforward and precision-guaranteed operation, says the company.
The Power Check is an adaptable component that can be used as a portable service tool or, in larger machine shops, be permanently located (exactly as a toolholder) in the machine’s carousel to supply ongoing data on spindle condition. Connection to the handheld data collector is wireless so an operator can monitor data collected from up to eight different machine locations. Over 8,000 readings can be stored on the handset, with these easily downloaded to a USB for transfer to a laptop or network computer system.
Other components of the monitoring kit are from the Gewefa inventory. Gewefa offers a range of test bars covering sizes in DIN, HSK, VDI or BT spindle formats. In the monitoring process, these test bars are used to check spindle runout and can be supplied with a flange or in plain format. All Gewefa test bars are precision ground for a combination of precise surface finish and concentricity, and are supplied with test certificates.
The third component is the ‘ATC’ alignment kit, which is used for accurately aligning the tool change arm to the spindle. Comprising four elements – taper, flange, shaft and bush – the components are supplied in a bespoke tool case for safe storage and transportation.