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FASTEMS fms

meandean77

Plastic
Joined
Jun 23, 2014
Location
United States
My question is, how to utilize FASTEMS fms system. Specifically, what mode does HMC-CNC machine need to be in order for FASTEMS to communicate with and control the machines ? Story- we purchased a USED 2-400mm HMC machine, 24-pallet FASTEMS machine cell, we finally have everything operating and functioning as it should but we are MANUALY driving the pallets in/out of the MACHINES and STORAGE and L1. Now how do we start letting FASTEMS PC/SOFTWARE start driving our jobs? I hope this post starts a dialog about FASTEMS and FMS, there is not a lot of specific operational or problem solving info about this amazing system. FASTEMS software version is 4.5.
 

thesidetalker

Hot Rolled
Joined
Jan 11, 2015
Location
Bay Area, CA
What machines are they? Depends on the integration. If they were fully integrated where fastems could control program select and cycle start, all you have to do is turn on autopilot? On other machines, such as Haas where they don't have the same level of integration, they have to run some kind of waiting program where it just sits in a while/do loop, waiting for a pallet to be 'ready'. I suppose in that case fastems will set a variable on the control to let it know which pallet is there. Just what I've head.

Mine is setup with a Matsuura and Fastems has full control - send/delete/change programs, cycle start, along with reading all tool data from the machine control.
 

JMC

Cast Iron
Joined
Aug 30, 2007
Location
Northern Utah
the fastems reads it? what for.

I looking to justify one of these in the future, I would like to know all I can.

with the systems I have used it reads the tool data to see if there is an expired or broken tool that needs to run with the pallet that is being loaded. Expired tool - pallet won't load.
 

thesidetalker

Hot Rolled
Joined
Jan 11, 2015
Location
Bay Area, CA
the fastems reads it? what for.

I looking to justify one of these in the future, I would like to know all I can.

It can see which tools are in the machine(s) and how much life remains to determine whether or not a job can be completed. You can set this to different levels of control - checking whether the tool exists or not (or broken) or if there is enough tool life remaining to complete the part program.


Not sure if meandean has done this yet or not either, but you need to setup pallet fixtures, programs and part data.

Setup fixture data - basically just a name and description of your fixtures. Maybe specific fixture for specific part, or could be different size vises, dovetail fixtures, etc.

Load programs into the system.

Setup a part - name, description, add operations. Operations can be one or multiple programs or even be brought back out to the load station between programs. Simple part would just be: load, run program 1234, unload. You can also specify which load stations or which machines it is allowed to use.


Setup the job - under production, add a job - select the part, qty, due date. They can be planned (to run later) or executed (and setup as rush job - it will always be placed front of the line)

Bring a pallet to load station. Add fixture to pallet. Fastems is always checking resources to see what it can run. Checking pallets for needed fixtures, checking what jobs can run on that fixture (careful, because different jobs can run on the same fixtures, you need to pay attention to loading instructions to see which job is being run!) and checking to see if necessary tools are available.

When it sees the required fixture is available, it will allow you to load material (or if this pallet is in storage, it will bring it to a load station automatically.)

Load material and it will place the job in the queue, or send to machine.

The tool management is nice. I'm not using tool life in fastems just yet (in machine, yes, and with backup tools for some jobs - Fastems will show all redundant tools too) but it is neat to see it working. Say I'm running multiple pallets of a job. Pallet in the machine breaks a tool, or the last tool expires. Fastems immediately knows it doesn't have the required tools to run the next pallet, so unloads it from pallet changer and loads the next scheduled pallet. I have mine to reject the current pallet in the machine if a tool break is detected. It is neat to watch, the pallets in storage with missing resources (tools) just wait. When I replace a tool in the machine, the tool data is updated in Fastems and it automatically sends or schedules those pallets.

The part setup is pretty flexible too. For a part template, you can have multiple operations configured. Say OP1 runs in a dovetail fixture. Then OP2 runs in a vise on a different pallet. Or some parts you might need a manual operation inbetween, move or add a clamp or reposition a part. You can set it up to load material, run program 1, back out to load station for manual operation, then program 2, then unload. This could be just "one operation" in the part template.

Each step of the way you can add setup sheets, notes, pictures etc to see on the operator control by the load station.
 

thesidetalker

Hot Rolled
Joined
Jan 11, 2015
Location
Bay Area, CA
Good question for Fastems. I'm not sure. My matsuura is fanuc 30i and I'd say it works well with Fastems. My assumption is siemens and heidenhain might as well? I haven't asked.

I did specifically ask the sales rep about integrating with Haas, if I get another cell later, then re-purpose this FPC cell for the EC400s. Haas doesn't integrate for shit. All they can do is control variables, as you'd do over RS232 with Q600 commands. No cyclestart control, no send/delete programs, no tool data. You have to store all your programs in each machine and manually check tools. No thanks.
 

Vancbiker

Diamond
Joined
Jan 5, 2014
Location
Vancouver, WA. USA
Several years ago I looked at DMG with Fastems. Not impressed. Makino’s cell control software at the time was much nicer. Fastems had no provision at the time to record a forging or casting serial number in their control and then export the production data associated with the particular part. Hopefully they have added that ability now.
 

meandean77

Plastic
Joined
Jun 23, 2014
Location
United States
thank you "thesidetalker" for your very helpful information. what mode does the machine need to be in to let fastems take over ? at the machine do we press CYCLE START to initiate the fastems takeover ? what COMMUNICATION mode do we need to be in , i assume RS-232 mode ? the last question might explain why i was not able to get the machine to receive a program thru RS-232 from my cad/cam pc. the machine is KIWA KH-45 (2011), control is FANUC 31i-A, i have confirmed that FASTEMS IS in the LADDER diagram so the control is set-up to integrate with the FASTEMS system. thanks again for your help, i'm already having fun just being able to have 24 pallets set-up with different jobs ready to run at a moments notice now we want to utilize the system to its full potential. thesidetalker, its very likely that our machines are configured very similarly if not the same.
 

thesidetalker

Hot Rolled
Joined
Jan 11, 2015
Location
Bay Area, CA
Assuming it is configured like mine, the machine should be in Memory mode. Fastems should be able to change to your pallet change program, but sometimes on the first start it hangs and can't select or cyclestart and you need to do it manually. This can happen depending on what alarms happen, or if Fastems tries unsuccessfully to start pallet change and the machine is in the wrong mode. Gotta reset autopilot back to ON for the machine in Fastems control and manually start pallet change on the machine. Then it'll kick on.

Assuming you have programs, fixtures, parts and orders configured? Or just running a static route on a pallet? (you can manually assign a program to a pallet and it will cycle them automatically)
 








 
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