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Agiecharmilles has launched its next-generation range of wire EDM machine tools, which are suited for precision toolmakers and manufacturers of precision parts.

There are three models in the new range – the Cut 200, Cut 300 and Cut 400.

These new Swiss-designed and built machines replace Agiecharmilles’ range of Cleancut wire EDM machines, first introduced in 2002/3.

All machines have a top cutting speed up to 500mm2/min and are equipped with Agiecharmilles’ Econotec technology, which allows manufacturers to reduce part cycle times by using large (and cheaper) 0.3mm-diameter wires for rough cutting.

Using larger-diameter wires not only results in faster cutting and a reduction in the number of passes required to produce a part, it also helps reduce consumable costs that have a direct impact on reducing the cost-per-part.

The three machines are equipped with ICP (Integrated Collision Protection) on their X-, Y-, U- and V-axes, which allows users to achieve and maintain the machines’ fast rapid rates of 3m/min knowing that should a collision or crash occur (due to programming or manual positioning error) – ICP will absorb the energy of the collision, eliminating potential damage to the machine and/or workpiece.

Econowatt is an energy-saving technology that means that the machines can be switched automatically to ‘sleep mode’ once machining operations have been completed.

Power consumption as a consequence can be reduced from 8kW when running to 1kW when the machine is idle, for example.

This is of particular interest to manufacturers who operate their EDM machines overnight or over the weekends.

Operational speed and efficiency are optimised on the new machines by their automatic wire thread/re-thread capability.

This has resulted in threading cycle times being reduced significantly (now 15sec from spark-to-spark instead of 40 seconds plus on competitor machines), which is suitable for manufacturers machining parts with multi-cavities.

Productivity and efficiency are also achieved via fast measuring cycles (three-point set-up); ultra-fast filling and/or emptying of the work tank (30sec) and the detection of ‘missing’ guide holes and automatic movement to the next guide hole which, prior to the availability of this smart function, would have caused the machine to stop.

Other new features on the machines include two additions to their technology ‘software’ databases.

Taking their place alongside Agiecharmilles’ Expert Systems (Taper-Expert; CT-Expert and Profil-Expert), are Power-Expert and Surface-Expert.

Power-Expert optimises the power required for roughing operations, taking into account complex part features such as internal radii and steps.

Surface-Expert ensures that homogenous surface finishes are produced during finishing operations, irrespective of a part’s shape or features.

The new machines have retained many of the technology features of the previous Cleancut models, including the Cut 200/300 and 400’s digital CC generator, which delivers cutting speeds up to 500mm2/min and is suitable for machining a range of materials to exacting accuracy standards and surface finishes (Ra 0.1um).

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