February 19, 2009 - WorkNC CAM/CAD software has formed a very important part of the process chain optimization at Babilon GmbH, based in Breuberg, Germany. The company specializes in the manufacture of injection molds and die casting tooling for the automotive industry, as well as the machining of pump impellers. Babilon realised that urgent productivity improvements were required in its electrode programming and graphite milling operations.
Jochen Babilon, Director said, “To meet the deadlines and quality requirements of our customers we need a continuous flow of data through the factory. Starting with the imported 3D CAD models, we add draft angles, create documentation and detailed drawings, and follow the process right through to the finished tool. Efficient operation requires motivated staff and the use of innovative technology.” To manufacture mold inserts, Babilon needs roughing and finishing electrodes for each shape as well as mirrored versions for each opposite hand. Jochen Babilon explained, “Our existing CAM system required us to write four similar programs to machine each mirrored pair of electrodes. We wanted to be able to automatically extract the four programs directly from the CAD model.”
Within two days of the installation of WorkNC, Babilon was generating its own programs. Jochen Babilon was impressed, “The software is easy to use and we were able to create roughing, finishing and mirrored versions of each electrode with little effort, including the associated machining toolpaths.” The company produces around 400 electrodes every month, so the time saving in programing alone is considerable.
On the strength of WorkNC, the company invested in new high speed machining centers with pallet handling for its graphite cutting, and used WorkNC’s Multi Part Machining (MPM) capabilities to optimize productivity. MPM considers a complete pallet load of electrodes as one part, using each tool across all the electrodes on the pallet. The software ensures collision free cutterpaths as it moves across the job, and eliminates the many time consuming tool change operations which would otherwise be required.
Safety is paramount for Babilon, as operators cannot react quickly enough to prevent a collision on a high speed machine. MPM automatically determines a safe retract height above the tallest electrode, and the clear graphics enable the programmer to identify the slightest potential problem.
Jochen Babilon has expanded the use of WorkNC within his company, “I never need to concern myself about collisions with WorkNC, toolpaths always run safely. We now program all our graphite and steel machining with the software and we have recently started using it for our 5-axis toolpaths. Our machine operators can be assured of an error free cutterpath as long as they comply with the tool length specifications associated with the job. All our collision avoidance is handled by WorkNC.” Babilon has considerably increased the level of its unmanned operation, thanks to the reliability of the software, and can start a 40 hour machining operation during the weekend with absolute confidence.
Since the installation of WorkNC, Babilon has been benefiting from Sescoi’s continuous software development program. Improved stock handling and rest material detection, new scalable surface finishing toolpaths, and new CAD tools for plugging and extending surfaces have been particularly useful.
Jochen Babilon likes the graphic interface, “Machining, verification and design all operate through the same integrated interface. This makes the software even easier to use and provides us with new tools for part analysis.” CAD model manipulation allows the user to measure features such as draft angles, radii and heights, while the single user interface makes it possible to edit both geometry and toolpaths, and simulate the results in the same environment.
Jochen Babilon concluded, “Sescoi is the right partner for us, both now and for the future. We will continue to expand the use of the collision checked and safe programs produced by WorkNC. This will further enhance our manufacturing processes and strengthen our competitive edge.”
For over 20 years, Sescoi has been developing software solutions renown for their quality, reliability, ease of use, and automatic features, as well as for world-class technical support and service.
Sescoi has established sales and support offices across the United States, Europe and Asia in order to serve thousands of local and international customers from a range of industries.
Sescoi's software solutions include:
- WorkNC, a range of automatic CAM/CAD solutions for 2 to 5-axis milling,
- WorkNC-CAD, a uniform CAD solution for the entire manufacturing process