I work for a company that makes about six different parts using three Tornos cam swiss screw machines. These machines do not have bar loaders incorporated with them and must be manually loaded about every hour.
Some parts are quite long runs; about 250,000 pieces. Most parts are less than 1/4" OD stock in aluminum or brass. We don't turn the OD. Parts are usually less than 1/2" long. We drill a through hole with a form drill and possibly back drill the other end. Only one part requires us to stop the spindle and cross drill and mill a slot.
Can anyone enlighten me about the difference between a CNC turning center and a CNC swiss screw machine? Ideally I would like to find a package to produce these parts unattended 24/7. My budget might be limited to about $50K. Any suggestions?
If you have such a long production run, and a mechanical will doo the job - buy another mechanical!
CNC allows you to not have special cams and to doo lots'a funky stuff that you can't doo on the mech. Mechs don't go down nearly as often and not nearly as $ when they doo compared to a electric machine.
Maybe you can get your job onto an Esco and put a coil on the back and walk away for a week? LOL! (1/4" is kinda big for an Esco aint it?)
Think Snow Eh!
cnc turning centers have a fixed headstock and the cnc swiss have a sliding headstock. swiss usually have gang tooling arranged about the guide bushing. on star sr machines (which i am familiar with) have 6 tools above the spindle for od work, 4 tools on far side that are live, 3 tools in front of spindle for end work. then there is the subspindle, which is served by 4 tools (live or dead) for endworking and can also be served by the back side of the 3 front endworking tools. this type of machine will set you back about 4X your budget when new. the star sb series is a slightly less complex machine that may suit your application. other swiss makers include tornos, citizen, tsugami, ksi, and hanwha. a cnc swiss will produce your parts far faster than a conventional turning center. you will also have to buy a magazine bar loader to run unattended. budget $20 to $30k for that (new).
could you bowl feed cut parts into your machines?
if your machine has a large enough through hole in the spindle, why cant you just put a bar feeder or bar puller on that machine ?
Get a DMG Sprint 20. Swiss type with sub spindle and bar feeder. Good machine. Doesn't take up much space either.
upgrade the screw machine