By automating cutter re-sharpening operations, Gleason power-skiving machines require minimum operator involvement, reducing the time typically required for frequent tool changes and subsequent first-part inspection cycles. Additionally, the usual cost for external tool refurbishment can be avoided.
As compared with the typical cutter re-sharpening process, the on-board unit is fast and simple. The machine’s axes position the cutter to the grinding wheel, before the re-sharpening unit executes the necessary grinding strokes, with the cutter performing the infeed and indexing from tooth to tooth. All of this is undertaken automatically and based on the cutter geometry that exists after a certain number of gears have been cut. After the initial corrections are made based on the first gear cut, a consistent gear quality is more easily maintained throughout the complete life of the tool. The frequency of re-sharpening cycles can be selected depending on the gear quality required.
Tool cost-per-piece is also lower compared with external reconditioning, with no tool changes, first-part-inspections and machine adjustments during a cutter’s lifetime, as well as no handling and logistics costs for reconditioning cycles. With a lot less cutters in circulation, tool investment is reduced significantly.