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Erosion machines / EDM

An erosion machine / electrical discharge machine is a machine for eroding workpieces. In contrast to cutting machines such as turning machines, milling machines or drilling machines, erosion machines work with the aid of an eroding spark, also referred to as spark erosion. The highest technical precision currently possible can be produced with these electrical discharge machines. Distinction must be made between wire cutting EDM and die-sinking EDM, whereby the start-hole drilling machines represent a special form of die-sinking erosion.

Operating principle

An electrical voltage is applied between the workpiece and the electrode during the machining by erosion machines. The erosion machine uses pulsating direct current and generates an electrical arc in this area. During this process, parts of the workpiece are removed. A non-conductive dielectric flushes away the removed or vaporised components.

The range of applications for EDM

Erosion machines are used primarily in tool making. They are used for machining all metals and metal alloys such as steel, copper, brass, aluminium and bimetals. Die-sinking EDM is used, for example, to produce casting moulds, bending dies or dies. If the machine and electrode are suitable for this purpose, all conductive materials can be machined without contact, regardless of the respective degree of hardness.

Important and well-known international manufacturers of erosion machines

Sodick, Agie, AgieCharmilles, Charmilles, Exeron, Fanuc, Ingersoll, Mitsubishi, ONA, Makino.

If you are looking for a used erosion machine, you will find a large selection of these such as die-sinking EDM, wire cutting EDM or start-hole drilling machines, which are in good condition. Furthermore, used erosion machines are cheaper than new EDMs.

Wire cutting EDM

A wire erosion machine is a machine for erosion workpieces. In contrast to machines such as turning machines, milling machines or drilling machines, wire erosion machines operate without making contact, with the aid of an erosion spark, also referred to as spark erosion. The highest technical precision currently possible can be produced with these erosion machines.

Operating principle

Wire erosion machines use a metal wire to cut programmed contours out of workpieces. During machining, a metal wire made of brass, various alloys or even molybdenum is fed to the workpiece. Electrical potential is then applied to the workpiece and wire. The wire cutting EDM uses pulsating direct current and generates an electrical arc between the wire and workpiece. During this process, parts of the workpiece are removed by ablation or vaporisation. The used wire is discharged. A non-conductive dielectric flushes away the removed or vaporised components. Depending on the wire erosion machine and setting, particularly fine cuts can be made.

The range of applications

Wire erosion machines are used to machine extrusion dies, punches, guide plates or cutting plates, for example. If the wire cutting EDM and erosion wire are suitable for this, all conductive materials can be cut without making contact and with high precision regardless of the respective degree of hardness. The U/V axis on wire cutting EDM can produce conics and different profiles on the top and bottom of the workpiece. Additional rotary axes can also be attached to the machine.

Important and well-known international manufacturers of wire cutting erosion machines

Sodick, Agie, AgieCharmilles, Charmilles, Exeron, Fanuc, Ingersoll, Mitsubishi, ONA, Makino

If you are looking for a used wire cutting EDM, you will find a large selection of these in good condition. Furthermore, used erosion machines are cheaper than new wire cutting EDMs.

Die-sinking EDM

A die-sinking erosion machine is a machine for erosion of workpieces. In contrast to machines that work by machining such as turning machines, milling machines or drilling machines, die-sinking EDMs operate without making contact, with the aid of an eroding spark, also referred to as spark erosion. The highest technical precision currently possible can be produced with these die-sinking erosion machines.

Operating principle

A die-sinking erosion machine uses an electrode to make recesses in workpieces. The electrode usually forms the negative shape of the contour to be created. During machining, the electrode and workpiece are energised and guided close together. A pulsating direct current produces an electrical arc which causes vaporisation or ablation of small quantities of the material. This process takes place in a bath of non-conductive dielectric and repeats until the desired shape is obtained. The dielectric (usually oil) is used here to cool and carry away the removed material.

Range of applications

Die-sinking erosion machines are used, for example, to produce punching and forming tools, injection moulds and much more from high-strength metals. If the die-sinking erosion machine and electrode are suitable for this, all conductive materials can be processed without making contact and with high precision, regardless of the respective degree of hardness. With the aid of a C-axis, the electrode can also perform coordinated rotary movements to cut threads or in combination with the X/Y-axis movement, paths can be implemented or undercuts can be made. Additional rotary axes can also be installed if required. Very fine surfaces can be created by using die-sinking EDM.

Important and well-known international manufacturers of die sinking erosion machines

Sodick, Agie, AgieCharmilles, Charmilles, Exeron, Ingersoll, Mitsubishi, ONA, Makino

If you are looking for a used die-sinking EDM, you will find a large selection of these in good condition. Furthermore, used die-sinking erosion machines are cheaper than new ones.

Start-hole drilling machines

A start-hole drilling machine is used for workpiece preparation in metal processing, in particular wire cutting.

Operating principle

During spark erosion, the start-hole drilling machine guides the electrode to such a narrow gap in the workpiece until a spark is generated, which removes and vaporises the material at a point. Depending on the intensity, frequency, duration, length, gap width and polarity of the discharges, differing ablation results are obtained. Even very narrow long holes can be achieved in this way. The electrode material is selected depending on the material to be machined. Copper, brass, graphite, copper alloys and carbide are the most common electrode materials used. All conductive materials can be processed regardless of their degree of hardness. During start-hole drilling, the machining takes place in a non-conductive medium, the so-called dielectric (usually oil or deionised water). Depending on the start-hole drilling machine, this is either in a basin or the area to be eroded is flushed with dielectric by means of hoses.

Range of applications

Start-hole drilling machines are the simplest of all erosion systems. They are used to drill deep holes in solid blocks of base material. They are generally not suitable for forming complex structures. Compared to deep hole drilling, start-hole drilling has the advantage that it is carried out without tools. There are no chips that could clog the borehole or cause a drill to jam. Holes drilled by start-hole drilling machines are characterised by their very high precision. These high-precision long holes are required for guiding shafts and axles, precise cooling channels or long threads. In addition, start-hole drilling machines are used for the machining of already hardened workpieces to produce starting holes for wire cutting EDM. Besides simple start-hole drilling machines there are also start-hole erosion machines with CNC control and additional axes for automatically drilling several holes at different angles. In this case, a start-hole erosion machine such as a die-sinking erosion machine can also be equipped with an electrode changer.

Important and well-known international manufacturers of start-hole drilling machines

Sodick, Agie, AgieCharmilles, Charmilles, Mitsubishi, Joemars, Heun, Madra

If you are looking for a used start-hole drilling machine, you will find a large selection of these in good condition. Since the range of tasks of the start-hole drilling machine is usually limited in operation, it is worth considering buying a used tool rather than a new one.

Milling machines

A milling machine is a cutting machine tool. The milling machine removes material from a workpiece by means of rotating cutting tools in order to make it into the desired shape. Milling is derived from drilling, but there are at least three feed directions available for milling, which means that even complex three-dimensional bodies can be produced. Milling machines can produce complex parts such as an engine block or gears, but simple jobs such as drilling or reaming precise bores are also possible.

Milling machines are characterised by three or more axes of movement, which are assigned to the tool or workpiece fixture. However, the axes of motion are arranged in quite different ways on modern milling machines and they often also have turning and swivelling tool holders or workpiece holders.

A distinction is made depending on the type of construction and application - knee-type milling machines, bed-type milling machines and special milling machines.

Knee-type milling machines: The decisive feature of a knee-type milling machine is the machine table which is mounted on a column or bed and can be moved in different directions. They are mainly suitable for machining small to medium-sized workpieces.

Bed-type milling machines: What bed-type milling machines have in common is that the bed, the “machine table”, rests fully in any position and thus does not have any tilting movements. Along the bed, several machine stands equipped with different tools can machine heavy or bulky workpieces at the same time.

Gantry milling machines: The workpiece is also fully supported on the bed of the gantry milling machine. But with gantry milling machines, the head is guided on a cross beam with columns, similar to a gantry. In this process, the workpiece lies between the columns. The cross beam thus executes the movements in the X and Y axes, partly also in the Z axis. Since the workpiece does not move, particularly heavy workpieces can be machined. For smaller workpieces, the Z movement is sometimes performed on the table.

Machining centres: An enhanced version of the milling machine is the machining centre, the prefix machining indicates that a machining centre combines several manufacturing processes, for example besides drilling and milling also thread cutting or reaming, whereby the tool change takes place automatically from an integrated tool magazine. Machining centres are equipped with an appropriate CNC control system for this purpose.

Important, well-known manufacturers of milling machines / machining centres include DMG Mori, Hermle, Mikron, Exeron, Röders, Hurco, Mazak, etc.

If you are looking for a used milling machine, especially a CNC machining centre, you will find a large selection of CNC milling machines that are in good condition. Furthermore, used milling machines are cheaper than new ones.

Machining centres

A machining centre, also known as a manufacturing centre, is a metalworking machine for automatic, cutting machining, which is suitable for complete machining, i.e. includes the functions of a turning machine, milling machine and drilling machine. To do so, the machining centre is equipped with a control system that uses the functions in accordance with the requirements and programming. For this purpose it also has an automatic tool changer.

Machining centres with an additional automatic workpiece changer are referred to as flexible manufacturing cells. If the base design of the machining centre is a turning machine, it is also referred to as a turning centre, with a workpiece changer known accordingly as a rotating cell.

Without certain add-ons, machining centres are usually machines designed on the basis of a milling machine. Machining centres have higher productivity than universal machines and CNC machines, but less flexibility and are therefore suitable for the production of small and medium series.

Machining centres are differentiated by the construction direction of the main spindle. Horizontal machining centres have a horizontal main spindle, vertical machining centres have a vertical spindle. With universal machining centres, the spindle can be used both horizontally and vertically.

Another distinguishing criterion is the number of axes. Machining centres can be equipped with rotating and swivelling machine tables to extend their functionality, so that one or two additional axes are available in them. Even demanding turning operations can be carried out on the latest machines on rotating tables. Another possibility of axis movement is that the milling head can be swivelled or a dividing head can be mounted on the table. Supported by an appropriate control system, the axes can be moved simultaneously, enabling even better and faster machining with fewer clamping operations in the machining centre.

Well-known international manufacturers of machining centres include DMG Mori and Deckel Maho Gildemeister Mori Seiki, Hermle, Mikron, Exeron, Hurco, Hedelius, etc.

If you are looking for a used machining centre, be it a vertical machining centre or a horizontal machining centre, you will find a large selection of used machining centres in good condition. Furthermore, the used machining centres are cheaper than new ones.

HSC machining centres

A HSC (High Speed Cutting) machining centre is a metalworking machine for automatic cutting machining. Unlike conventional machining centres, an HSC machine operates at higher speeds and feed rates.

The speed of a HSC machining centre is usually between 24,000 and 60,000 rpm, the feed speed of these machining centres is usually 5-10 times higher.

By machining with HSC machines, better surfaces can be achieved in an economical way, which can result in less post-machining work being required. Lower cutting forces are applied by using smaller feed rates per tooth. This makes the machining of hard and thin-walled workpieces possible.

Well-known international manufacturers of HSC machining centres include DMG Mori b, Mikron, Hermle, Exeron, Röders, Ingersoll, etc.

If you are looking for a used HSC machining centre, be it a vertical machining centre or a 5-axis machining centre, you will find a large selection of used HSC machining centres in good condition. Furthermore, the used High Speed Cutting machines are cheaper than new HSC machining centres.

Turning machines / CNC turning machines

The turning machine is a machine tool for machining by means of turning. The workpiece is clamped and brought to a constant rotational speed by an electric motor. Tools are then used for machining.

The configuration of CNC turning machines can vary from simple turning machines to turning/milling centres. In turning/milling centres, turning, milling and drilling can be carried out on the workpiece with a single clamping procedure. In between there are CNC turning machines, which are equipped with a tool turret with several places for tools and in some cases also for driven tools. Driven tools can also be used to drill holes and perform simple milling work on the workpiece.

Turning cells consisting of a CNC turning machine and material feed system, such as bar feeders, can increase efficiency in small and large series.

Well-known international manufacturers of CNC turning machines include Mori Seiki, Gildemeister, Traub, Okuma, EMCO, etc.

If you are looking for a used CNC turning machine, you will find a selection of used machines in good condition. Furthermore, these used turning machines are cheaper than new turning machines.

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