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A million dollar Haas? The HDC-3-5AX 5-axis Double Column Mill

Donkey Hotey

Titanium
Joined
Dec 22, 2007
Just got an email about an upcoming Haas offering. Like most of their products, I would expect that the machine recycles components and technology from other proven machines. How good the final machine is might depend on the talent and care of the people doing the installation and alignment. Here is how Haas describes it:


The HDC-3-5AX is a 5-axis double-column mill designed for complex, large-part machining, such as airframe components, layup molds, and composite structures. The machine’s rigid construction provides a very stable cutting platform. The fully supported X-axis travels easily handle parts weighing up to 10,000 lb (4536 kg). The table surface consists of three blank tooling plates that are easily machined for custom fixturing.
  • Dual-axis spindle head provides ±245 degrees of C-axis rotation and ±120 degrees of B-axis tilt
  • HSK-A100 integral-motor spindle
  • 50+1 side-mount tool changer
  • Control pendant on moveable stand for easy access
  • 153" x 49" (3886 x 1245 mm) table, with 3 blank bolt-on tooling plates for custom fixturing
  • Fully supported X-axis travel
  • 10,000 lb (4536 kg) part capacity
Having purchased and used a GR-712 (7 foot by 12 foot CAT40 gantry router) back in 2010, with the extended Z (24" instead of 11"), I have some experience with using their machines for larger parts. I will say that we made parts on that machine that it had no business doing. Haas never represented it as a mill so anything I got out of it beyond a "router" was considered by me to be a bonus. I was more of a fan than many because of what we did with such a relatively low-cost machine.

And that gets to the questions: the GR was around 1/4 the price of this newest offering. Considering we'd need a laser interferometer to spot the difference between this price and a full million bucks, I'm curious who is eager to buy one or what they'd consider as the competition in this price range. I have a product in mind that could use this capability if I choose to purse it. Despite that, I don't think I could absorb the risk a million dollars would represent. For me, the GR712 or possibly GM2-5AX at less than half the price, would likely do the job.
 
Id hate to be the Guinea pig on that one!
I'm a fan, (at least used to be) of Haas for their 3 axis mills but this is way outside of their wheelhouse.
 
Looks like a glorified router...

No machine weight listed in the specs... Only 4.5 tonnes max on the table, and evenly distributed at that.

Hsk-a 100 but only 149Nm (presumably peak, 1min rating knowing Haas...) and 44kw...

I strongly suspect that pretty much any Taiwanese bridge mill of similar capacity would absolutely embarrass that thing...
 
Maybe the Haas million is like the Haaspower, overstated. Sort of equivalent to a Zimbabwean dollar. :stirthepot:
 
My gut feel is the same as yours. Big risk at that money. There are probably better options out there.
 
Only 4.5 tonnes max on the table, and evenly distributed at that.
Maybe so but, some quick math says that's covering the entire table, 13" deep in aluminum. That's one helluva lot bigger than any billet I've ever seen. I was told that 7-8" thick was kinda' the limit for aluminum alloys because of inclusions beyond that. Yeah, exceptions but, they won't cover every inch of that table.

Or with steel? It's 3X as dense so 1/3 of 13.33 or 4.44" thick, over the entire surface. Again: that's a huge billet to start with that I'd never likely see.

It's more likely to see some casting that is being post machined and a lot lighter, or an assembly that is being milled and drilled as an assembly. I'm imagining some of the new cast chassis parts that are being embedded in EVs. I'll bet an entire car chassis (minus the body) could fit into this machine. They could hit all the suspension pads and drill holes, battery mounts, etc, and do it with a Haas learning curve and cost.

Hsk-a 100 but only 149Nm (presumably peak, 1min rating knowing Haas...) and 44kw...
Even if it's overrated by 4X, that's still more than most cutters will ever use in dynamic cutter paths.

I strongly suspect that pretty much any Taiwanese bridge mill of similar capacity would absolutely embarrass that thing...
Fair enough. At what cost? I'm trying to learn, not defend it. If the nearest Taiwanese mill is two or three times the cost, it's not a comparable machine. I never said our GR-712 was a great hogging machine but, I didn't have the option for a million bucks. That I got the money for the GR was a minor miracle and my sales guy stretched every dollar. It got us into parts we couldn't have made any other way.
 
Maybe so but, some quick math says that's covering the entire table, 13" deep in aluminum. That's one helluva lot bigger than any billet I've ever seen. I was told that 7-8" thick was kinda' the limit for aluminum alloys because of inclusions beyond that. Yeah, exceptions but, they won't cover every inch of that table.

Or with steel? It's 3X as dense so 1/3 of 13.33 or 4.44" thick, over the entire surface. Again: that's a huge billet to start with that I'd never likely see.

It's more likely to see some casting that is being post machined and a lot lighter, or an assembly that is being milled and drilled as an assembly. I'm imagining some of the new cast chassis parts that are being embedded in EVs. I'll bet an entire car chassis (minus the body) could fit into this machine. They could hit all the suspension pads and drill holes, battery mounts, etc, and do it with a Haas learning curve and cost.


Even if it's overrated by 4X, that's still more than most cutters will ever use in dynamic cutter paths.


Fair enough. At what cost? I'm trying to learn, not defend it. If the nearest Taiwanese mill is two or three times the cost, it's not a comparable machine. I never said our GR-712 was a great hogging machine but, I didn't have the option for a million bucks. That I got the money for the GR was a minor miracle and my sales guy stretched every dollar. It got us into parts we couldn't have made any other way.

I only have one frame of reference, I bought a Hurco DCX32 in 2011 and it cost IIRC £320k. I was told at the time that I could buy the same machine from another builder with a Fanuc or Siemens control for around £30k less. Hurco at the time did not offer a 5x head (I didn't need/want that anyway, but they do now although I don't know how much it costs), but most of the Taiwanese builders did and the cost was around £400k at that time, again IIRC.

The DCX32 weighed 40 metric tonnes, and could hold 11 metric tonnes on the table, and had 3.2 x 2.2m travels. It had a 60KW integrated motor 6krpm spindle, and I often felt that it did not have enough torque.

That Haas would need to be priced like a router for it to make sense. If it actually costs close to a million dollars then you could probably almost buy two superior machines from Taiwan for the same money...

Edit:
I fairly frequently had steel forgings and plate profiles on the DCX that exceeded the weight capacity of that Haas. By the looks of it, I probably had pieces that exceeded the weight of that Haas....
 
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yet another piece of TURD from HASS. someone would have to be absolutely mentally retarded to buy this pile of junk.
we bought a 1 yr old Zimmerman 6x3m gantry for 1.3m and it is easily 10x the machine than this POS will ever be. looks like the entire machine MAY be 50k lbs or so. Zimmerman is 200k and doesnt need anything more than 8-10" slab under it.
there are MULTITUDES better options out there. another case of HASS not listening to their customers/markets, and instead shoving utter SHIT down unsuspecting/unexperienced people's throats.
 
Maybe it'll have 20 ft-lbs of spindle torque like their last sad joke of a machine.
They have been failing with this machine configuration for over 20 years. Every one was an absolute turd.
They have so much going for them as a MTB and it's so depressing that they insanely insist on producing garbage outside of their fine VF line.
 
Curious if Hass will install this gantry mill in their factory. I forgot the brand, but they were milling castings with a Japanese gantry in one of their video tours.
 
Haas is always "trying" to be "innovative"........................lame, just lame. How many odd ball machines have come and gone from Haas?...........most end up on the cheap or go right to the great smelter in the sky....................
 
thought haas had a run at these big bridge mills many moons ago just like a stint at vtls.....might be time that they are looking to add or replace several bridges in their production area where they have several Okumas lined up milling their large bases maybe it made sense to look at these again. i believe those okuma 5ax bridges were in the 1.5 mill range and that was from about a decade + ago
 








 
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