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Experiences with FMS systems for horizontal mills, particularly Fastems?

Jackpot

Plastic
Joined
Mar 14, 2021
Location
Northern CA
Hi All,

I'm looking at adding our first horizontal to our shop, and with an FMS system. Not a lot of threads out there regarding the systems I'm looking at, and would be very helpful to hear of other people's experiences. Largely cutting aluminum and stainless. High mix stuff but transitioning to production jobs over course of next 3 years. I'm looking at these two systems:

- Okuma MB-5000HII with Fastems FPC (or perhaps FMS ONE). We currently have a few other Okumas.
- Makino a61nx with MMC2

The latter is likely to be the better machine and potentially a better overall integrated solution. Makino is one of a handful of builders that makes and services their own FMS. However, I really don't have a feel for the Fastems system that is designed to work with any make mill. Does anyone have experience with Fastems FPC or FMS ONE? Is anyone using this automation in conjunction with their MMS software (manufacturing management)? If anyone has had positive experiences with their products, I'd be very interested to hear!
 

tws

Plastic
Joined
Apr 2, 2012
Location
Midwest
You may want to look at relatively new EROWA option. EROWA Robot Easy 800 (ERE 800) has 800kg/1760 lb maximum payload with (6) position magazine available that has an option to manually rotate each pallet/tombstone for part load/unload/set-up.
 

Orange Vise

Stainless
Joined
Feb 10, 2012
Location
California
We're a Mori shop and don't have direct experience with either of the systems you mentioned, so this is just general advice.

Do you need expandability? Both systems should be expandable, but how do they compare in terms of real estate, cost, and layout options?

500mm horizontals have two pallet capacity standards: 500kg (1100lbs) and 700kg (1540lbs). I would insist on getting a system that supports 700kg - makes a big difference in the density of workholding. We build tombstone packages and our highest density 500mm hexagons exceed 1,000 lbs BEFORE adding parts.

You mention this is your first horizontal. This might be a 2-step process - figuring out horizontal machining first, then figuring out FMS lights-out production second. You may be better off spending the same money and getting two 2-pallet HMCs first and bridging the two with an FMS later. It takes some experience to confidently load a bunch of tombstones, all with different programs assigned, and schedule them to run unattended, 12 hours later in the middle of night.
 








 
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