Advanced tool grinding technology, more capable and precise than ever, has meant new ground-breaking cutting tools, such as a variable geometry designs. Just as importantly, other machine tool providers need to offer automation and advanced in-process sensing to make proven tool grinding operations even more efficient. With the introduction of extremely hard tooling materials, tool grinding suppliers are even looking at offering alternative means of creating tools, such as lasers and EDM.
“Our customers demand exact precision,” stated Bjorn Schwarzenbach of Rollomatic (Mundelein, IL), a supplier of tool grinding and laser cutting equipment. These demands are the same for customers owning a couple of machines for special tooling, to those that own a hundred machines used in round-the-clock production, according to Schwarzenbach, and durability is also a given. “Some of our customers have had our 600 series grinders for over 20 years, producing tools with the same precision,” he said.
Precision remains key. For example, the company’s GrindSmart 529XS guarantees holding concentricity and runout accuracy to less than 2 µm (0.00008″). According to Schwarzenbach, maintaining the quality of the environment is critical to accuracy. “We know that holding the temperature inside the machine for any of our models is important for the grinding process of each tool,” he said.