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Malvern subcontractor Insight Precision, which works for the machine tool, mining, energy, electronics and automotive test equipment sectors, has reduced floor-to-floor times and increased production output by using two clamping systems from 1st Machine Tool Accessories (1st MTA): the Chick One-Lok and the Qwik-Lok.

There are seven vertical machining centres on the shop floor at Malvern, including five-axis models, and the Chick One-Lok is used on all of them. It is secured either using the T-slots in the machine tables or the cross slots in baseplates mounted on the tables.

The other Chick workholding solution from 1st MTA in use at Malvern, called Qwik-Lok, is said to be ideal for tackling larger batch sizes. It is normally used with soft aluminium jaws that have been pre-machined with a specific shape to securely hold multiple components. They are usually of the same type, but may be different parts of an assembly, for example.

Founder and owner Chris Poole is now considering using Chick’s precision-ground foundation plates, which allow fixtures to be mounted quickly and consistently, reducing setup times and improving repeatability.

Key benefits of product application

  • Poole said: ‘The One-Lok is a fast-acting alternative to a conventional vice and saves a lot of time. Instead of having to wind the handle sometimes dozens of times to clamp a component, the Chick system is adjusted in seconds using a Qwikslide mechanism.’
  • The One-Lok allows the moveable jaw to be unlocked and slid rapidly to approximately the right position, near the workpiece, after which just a few turns of the handle are enough to secure the part.
  • Its mechanism is fully enclosed and protected from the build-up of swarf.
  • A squeeze-clamping action applies an equal and opposite force to the fixed jaw as the moving jaw closes and also imparts a pull-down force, ensuring security as well as accurate location and machining.
  • Chick’s interchangeable jaw system, which requires a single turn of a locking screw, speeds changeover from hard to soft jaws.
  • The twin-station system supports high productivity by being able to squeeze two moveable jaws from either end against a fixed jaw at the centre, thereby doubling the number of components that can be machined in one clamping.
  • It drastically reduces load/unload time as well as overall cycle time, as fewer tool changes mean much less idle time over the course of a batch.
  • The jaws snap on and off quickly, which allows the company to start the next run of components with minimum delay.

1st Machine Tool Accessories

1st Machine Tool Accessories Ltd specialises in high quality workholding equipment and associated products from the world’s leading producers.

1st Machine Tool Accessories Ltd specialises in high quality workholding equipment and associated products from the world’s leading producers.

1st MTA:

·         provides technical assistance via trained representatives including site visits and demonstrations where possible;

·         is constantly expanding and updating the product range to give customers the best possible choice;

·         offers bespoke/customised solutions;

·         provides the easiest and most efficient way to order all your machine tools and accessories by phone, fax or on-line.

The product range includes:

·         Kitagawa:

o   Chucks: power, collet, manual, speciality and all accessories.

o   Cylinders: hydraulic and pneumatic.

o   NC Rotary Tables.

o   Vises: precision machine.

·         Fixturing and Clamping Parts.

·         Collets:

o   Varibore,

o   Spring,

o   Emergency

o   Pull back.

·         Chick Workholding: the leader in modern workholding for modern CNC machines.

·         Brighetti Reduction Bushes:

o   Slotted

o   Cylindrical

o   Conical

o   Elastic

o   Fixed by dowels.

·         OK Vise: low-profile clamping.

·         Mitee Bite: versatile, cost-effective clamping – fast and easy operation.

·         Cooljet High Pressure Coolant.

·         Magnetic Filtration

·         Bison:

o   Chucks: manual and power;

o   Hydraulic/pneumatic cylinders;

o   Precision machine and bench vises;

o   Rotary tables and indexing fixtures

·         Abbott Workholding:

o   Pie jaws;

o   Tooling columns.

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