My thoughts on new Mazak EZ machines
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    Default My thoughts on new Mazak EZ machines

    On Wednesday, I attended an open house at the local Mazak dealer in Cumming GA. They were showing off the new EZ machines and had some Mazak techs available. I was going to post this in the Mazak forum but thought this would reach more people.

    I dont have any experience with Mazak so I cant answer every question but I was really interested to find out what these machines were like and why did they create a new control when they have a relatively new control already.

    I will break this up into a few posts to keep the length shorter.

    The EZ turning center that was at the show was a basic two axis 8" chuck machine. It did have a parts catcher and a servo tailstock which I believe is an option. On the whole I was impressed with the construction and ease of access to coolant tank, door size and chuck. I dont remember the distance between chuck and tailstock when parked but it seemed to have more room than many of the newer machines I have looked at from Okuma and others.

    This machine had a coolant tank that was accessible from the back of the machine so you have to have room in back. The chip conveyor was out the right side but I was told it could also go out the back. There was one hydraulic system but it looks like the sheetmetal had a cutout for another one to be added perhaps for the second spindle?

    I was surprised to see the linear rail machine used way oil instead of grease?

    The parts catcher and catcher bin look a bit light and seem to be an afterthought. I dont think there was enough adjustment for the parts catcher if you are using long soft jaws. The catch bin was small and kind of in the way and the plastic cover wont last long if your employees are even just a bit careless.

    Overall I liked the machine and if I wanted to save a few pennies I would consider it.

    Charles

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    On to the machining center, It was a 40x20 machine and I think it is the only one available for now. The casting looks very skinny and is disproportionate to the machine in my opinion. Also I was surprised by how large the enclosure was and how high the table was above the floor.

    I am kind of short and I dont know if I would like a table that high. Also to reach the spindle when it was at z home would be a challenge for anyone shorter than me. The machine was grease lubricated by a central cartridge. I still dont know why the lathe was oil lubricated? It had one coolant pump and a small filter but that supplied the main coolant ring and the through the spindle coolant. You only have the one pressure available, under 300 psi if I remember. The programable coolant nozzle was really neat and I liked the design. I dont know why they couldnt incorporate that into the control but it had a separate control mounted on the cabinet with a magnet. I really liked the compact design.

    The tech did say it was very underpowered compared to the normal machines Mazak sells. He kind of said it like he wasnt really impressed with the decisions on that one. But he may have just been tired and bored also.

    I dont know that I would buy the machining center, I dont know if the savings would be enough to want to have it. That is just my opinion, but it would be a big improvement over what I have now.

    Charles

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    Now onto the control, I have only a basic familiarity with the Mazak control so I cant really comment about it in operation but the Mazatrol screen looked very much like all the others I can remember seeing. In fact the control looked much more like how I would prefer it to look compared to the almost StarTrek look they have been showing off with the other new control.

    What are the main differences and why did they make the new control? As it was explained to me the EZ control didnt have the Windows back end running concurrently with the Mazak front end. This control is much more of an industrial control like I think most of us would be used to.

    He said a lot of complaints about the other control were address with this one but I cant list them as I dont really know what all those were. I will say that the screens were adjustable and they seemed to have a nice layout. None of the three circle thing they keep showing in the videos. Just a nice big screen with data on it.

    It uses an onscreen keyboard which I dont really like but that is the way of it. You can network it to download programs. There is a 3D solid simulation that works with Mazatrol programs, dont think it works with G-code programs but I think the two axis backplot will work?

    What I dont like about it, the resolution on the new screens are so good that you can get the characters so small and thin that I found it hard to read sometimes. Adjusting my glasses helps but I would like to see if you could set the text to a larger font.

    Also when he ran the program on the lathe and went to flip the part in the chuck for side two of the part it seemed like there was a lot of button pushing going on. I suspect this is for safety reasons?

    A few features he showed me looked like you had to go to a lot of screens but I think that could be solved by setting up the screens to how you use the machine. The last thing is I dont think there is enough adjustability in the mounting for taller people and it would be nice if it could swivel off the vertical. Perhaps it could but I didnt see how.

    Well that is about as much as I can remember, I wish I had taken a few photos but I didnt think about it as I figured the Mazak website would have a bunch of nice photos. But when I checked them out earlier today I was really disappointed in how little information was available.

    Charles

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    Quote Originally Posted by CBlair View Post
    On to the machining center, It was a 40x20 machine and I think it is the only one available for now. The casting looks very skinny and is disproportionate to the machine in my opinion. Also I was surprised by how large the enclosure was and how high the table was above the floor.

    I am kind of short and I dont know if I would like a table that high. Also to reach the spindle when it was at z home would be a challenge for anyone shorter than me. The machine was grease lubricated by a central cartridge. I still dont know why the lathe was oil lubricated? It had one coolant pump and a small filter but that supplied the main coolant ring and the through the spindle coolant. You only have the one pressure available, under 300 psi if I remember. The programable coolant nozzle was really neat and I liked the design. I dont know why they couldnt incorporate that into the control but it had a separate control mounted on the cabinet with a magnet. I really liked the compact design.

    The tech did say it was very underpowered compared to the normal machines Mazak sells. He kind of said it like he wasnt really impressed with the decisions on that one. But he may have just been tired and bored also.

    I dont know that I would buy the machining center, I dont know if the savings would be enough to want to have it. That is just my opinion, but it would be a big improvement over what I have now.

    Charles

    I found a lot of the same. Grilled the salesman a bunch about the spindle power.

    All that machine and it only has a 10horsepower spindle. Also very large and bulky for being only 12,700lbs. The base casting was ridiculously skinny for the machine enclosure size. My fadal looks wider in the y axis.

    They also happened to have a pretty weak demo going on.

    The tech also told me it was only capable for 3 axis work. Not 4 or 5 axis capable.

    I was genuinely disappointed in how little anybody knew about the machines although I was out after I stopped laughing that it only had a 10hp spindle.

    One thing to add is the door is extremely heavy. Iím a skinny guy so opening that 100lb door was not something I would want to do all day.


    As far as the lathe goes I didnít look too hard as they only had a 2axis lathe there. But it looks exactly like a doosan lynx same footprint similar work envelope same exposed linear rails. Just wayyyyy more money for what in my eyes is a comparable machine. Only thing it has going for it is the Mazak control.

    So thatís that i was not impressed by the new lineup. Donít know who those machines are marketed to. The mill is comparatively priced to a doosan maybe 10% more but the lathe is like 40%-50% more and I got quotes for the lynx and the qt-8 in the same time period but ended up getting a used machine

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    VC-Ez 20 | Mazak Ez

    ^^^ more pics and videos of the machines. THIS is the portal for the EZ series so click the orange blocks / tabs for deeper info and videos.

    Quotes I had and the website state,

    "A rugged 25 hp, 12,000 rpm (standard) or versatile 29.5 hp, 15,000 rpm (optional) spindle "

    From specimen quote :

    MAIN SPINDLE MOTOR AC 18.5KW (25HP)/5-MIN 12000rpm (CAT40) 1
    Grease Lubrication / 95.5NM (standard).

    MAIN SPINDLE MOTOR AC 22KW (29 .5HP)/10%ED 15000rpm (CAT40) 1 ~ {about $6K upgrade ).
    Oil/Air Lubrication / 110NM

    Best to look at the actual power - torque curves.


    ____________________________

    The casting is deceptive as its taller BUT has a T - "Footprint". Aided by a 4 auger option.



    mazak-ez-3q-base-column.jpg, mazak-ez-20-chip-auger-systems.jpg, mazak-ez-4020-side-cutaway.jpg

    (Each image clickable ^^^ to expand).

    Very few 40x 20 mills with a stacked XY table have good ergonomics to load tools to the spindle.

    MAZAK on the VCN machines insist tool should be loaded into the tool magazine not into into the spindle - which makes hands on work more tricky unless you have a different machine with a different layout like a VTC (vertical travelling column) or integrex even.

    HAAS VF 3 has pretty good ergo's for a 4020.

    ____________________________________________


    I think MAZAK's thinking is in terms of the potential down turn and pandemic etc. for a more affordable machine in the $100K range.

    The machine has pre-tensioned ballscrews, spindle chiller and pitch error compensation (on all the ball screws) and thermal compensation like Okuma "Thermo friendly " concept. Compare that to a HAAS (in this case). [Not HAAS bashing].

    The "Normal" MAZAK 4020 machine type offering is a VCN 570-C

    VCN-570C

    ^^^ That machine is a $140K to $160K proposition - comparable to a Makino PS-105.




    _________

    Possibly there are DOOSANS that are less than $100K for a 4020 machine ? Larger bed casting , broader-lower, rather than taller-narrower on the EZ. The Bed casting on the EZ would be more rigid theoretically BUT not sure whether the saddle on the EZ with the table all the way to the left or right would "Droop" a few micron or not ? If you machine more on the center of the table and the table is close to the (stout) column it should be pretty rigid but couldn't say about fully travelled left or right ? Seems the design would be less dependent on the quality of foundation - one of the EZ series goals for easy installation (I believe).

    I think in this case Mazak are going after "Better than HAAS" idea at a similar price.

    ________

    According to the video I saw the programmable coolant nozzle IS also controllable at the control and controlled by a special code that can be programmed for also - (I think ???).

    I agree the control seems more "Rational" in design. (less "Over-designed " maybe ?).

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    The programable nozzle is not controlled by the control. It has its own control that is activated by a code in the program. There are extra blank spots on the control for buttons or switches and I would expect the programmable nozzle to use one of these for the manual override. But they didnt set it up that way.

    And the control for it should be from the machine control rather than looking like a purchased third party addition. At least that is what I was trying to say, but didnt. Ha ha.

    Charles

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    I saw the torque curve documents that according to them were not official yet.

    Spindle is 25hp for 5min
    10hp continuously and thatís both spindle the 12k and the 15k

    When I first saw the programmable coolant nozzle I just assumed it was an add on by another company. Did not look well integrated at all almost looked like it was just zip tied up there and it was hanging crooked.

    The doosan mills are under 100k for a 4020 size machine last I got a quote and thatís with more options than the Mazak. The Mazak was just under 100k I think.

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    I love my old mazak. Got a quote on a new 2 axis machine much like my qt15- very basic. Over $100k.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CBlair View Post
    The programable nozzle is not controlled by the control. It has its own control that is activated by a code in the program. There are extra blank spots on the control for buttons or switches and I would expect the programmable nozzle to use one of these for the manual override. But they didnt set it up that way.

    And the control for it should be from the machine control rather than looking like a purchased third party addition. At least that is what I was trying to say, but didnt. Ha ha.

    Charles
    Yeah , I think that's how it's supposed to go;

    Not sure if they anticipate the operator to fiddle about with that on the special separate control box VS whatever a programmer didn't anticipate / lack of up-chain feed back ??? - That was my interpretation but that could be a bit of a "Rationalization" lol. Probably lifted from HAAS but the HAAS implementation isn't super slick either but maybe better than zip-tied in.

    I'm glad to see MAZAK make an effort for a less expensive machine / fast installable.

    On paper they figure the plonk-down-a-bility of the EZ series with a beefy forklift that one theoretically saves $ 15K (shrugging shoulders.).

    I duuno - I kinda feel like those that WANT to buy a DOOSAN buy a DOOSAN, those that like/love MAZAK buy MAZAK and those that really dig what HAAS is all about do that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cameraman View Post
    Yeah , I think that's how it's supposed to go;

    Not sure if they anticipate the operator to fiddle about with that on the special separate control box VS whatever a programmer didn't anticipate / lack of up-chain feed back ??? - That was my interpretation but that could be a bit of a "Rationalization" lol. Probably lifted from HAAS but the HAAS implementation isn't super slick either but maybe better than zip-tied in.

    I'm glad to see MAZAK make an effort for a less expensive machine / fast installable.

    On paper they figure the plonk-down-a-bility of the EZ series with a beefy forklift that one theoretically saves $ 15K (shrugging shoulders.).

    I duuno - I kinda feel like those that WANT to buy a DOOSAN buy a DOOSAN, those that like/love MAZAK buy MAZAK and those that really dig what HAAS is all about do that.
    Fadal had a better system for their programmable coolant 20 years ago. Itís just sad honestly...

    Iím a big Mazak fan Iím just not rich enough to afford them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cameraman View Post
    Yeah , I think that's how it's supposed to go;

    Not sure if they anticipate the operator to fiddle about with that on the special separate control box VS whatever a programmer didn't anticipate / lack of up-chain feed back ??? - That was my interpretation but that could be a bit of a "Rationalization" lol. Probably lifted from HAAS but the HAAS implementation isn't super slick either but maybe better than zip-tied in.

    I'm glad to see MAZAK make an effort for a less expensive machine / fast installable.

    On paper they figure the plonk-down-a-bility of the EZ series with a beefy forklift that one theoretically saves $ 15K (shrugging shoulders.).

    I duuno - I kinda feel like those that WANT to buy a DOOSAN buy a DOOSAN, those that like/love MAZAK buy MAZAK and those that really dig what HAAS is all about do that.
    For sure. I shopped around a lot before settling on Mazak for first lathe and mill in 1999. No brainer to pick Mazak when I added 2nd lathe and mill a few years later, and I already knew the Fusion control. Machines were installed and I hit the ground running.
    And now I have a spanking new Mazak lathe and mill with Smooth G controls. The mill talks to you. "Good morning, its Friday May 28". It talks a lot and I need to find the STFU key. I turned the mill on and walked away to do something else nearby and this long conversation started after it booted up. WTF! I was on the phone with Applications and he walked me through a few probe items and also walked me through how to turn the voice off. I did but it did not work. There is an option to have the voice of a woman or man. Maybe I need to change the voice to a man before it will turn off.
    WARNING, DO NOT PUT AN AMAZON ALEXA IN THE ROOM WITH THE TALKING CONTROL! All sorts of stuff will show up at your door.

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    Ha Ha Ha, that is hilarious...thanks for the warning.

    For what it is worth I believe the control on the EZ series will not support Smooth G.

    Charles

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scruffy887 View Post
    The mill talks to you. "Good morning, its Friday May 28". It talks a lot and I need to find the STFU key. I turned the mill on and walked away to do something else nearby and this long conversation started after it booted up. WTF! I was on the phone with Applications and he walked me through a few probe items and also walked me through how to turn the voice off. I did but it did not work. There is an option to have the voice of a woman or man. Maybe I need to change the voice to a man before it will turn off.
    WARNING, DO NOT PUT AN AMAZON ALEXA IN THE ROOM WITH THE TALKING CONTROL! All sorts of stuff will show up at your door.
    Thanks for the post! I haven't had that good a laugh in awhile!

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    Just another note on Smooth G machines. The control panel has a motion sensor. The control will go to sleep depending on what mode the control is in. I think different levels of sleep, not sure yet. But when not executing a program it does sleep. Walk in front of
    or near the control panel and it beeps and wakes up, work area lights also come on.

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    If Mazak can sell these EZ machines at a Haas price point, I would imagine they will be very popular.

    Mazatrol is a powerful onboard programming system for lathe and 2-1/2 axis mill work. Once experienced with it, Mazatrol is simply hard to beat in a job shop.

    As long as Mazak has done their homework on the mechanical side, these EZ machines will cost Gene Haas some sleep....

    ToolCat

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scruffy887 View Post
    For sure. I shopped around a lot before settling on Mazak for first lathe and mill in 1999. No brainer to pick Mazak when I added 2nd lathe and mill a few years later, and I already knew the Fusion control. Machines were installed and I hit the ground running.
    And now I have a spanking new Mazak lathe and mill with Smooth G controls. The mill talks to you. "Good morning, its Friday May 28". It talks a lot and I need to find the STFU key. I turned the mill on and walked away to do something else nearby and this long conversation started after it booted up. WTF! I was on the phone with Applications and he walked me through a few probe items and also walked me through how to turn the voice off. I did but it did not work. There is an option to have the voice of a woman or man. Maybe I need to change the voice to a man before it will turn off.
    WARNING, DO NOT PUT AN AMAZON ALEXA IN THE ROOM WITH THE TALKING CONTROL! All sorts of stuff will show up at your door.
    Too funny. They are excellent job shop and oil field type of work machines. They excell when experienced machinists run them . Haas has really been taking Mazak to school yet they are each one best suited to the specific needs of a shop.

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    First post on here!

    maybe better than zip-tied in
    The control unit is mounted with magnets and this is it's new home:

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    Peter.

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    Ran two newer lathes. Smart and SmoothG. Guys who run Mazaks will find comfort in the control layout and recognizing things right away. If shops want to wheel and deal and get rid of a few Haas for a few Mazaks, take comfort in knowing that you can setup the Work Offset as a G53.5 if I recall and your G code should pretty much go right in and work. You will use the tool data page like every other fanuc lathe. If you keep tool data in both you should be able to run both EIA and Mazatrol.

    So far in a production shop(and non) I still find a real programmer will be faster with EIA(programming and cycle time). Just my two cents.

    Rigidity probably better than Haas, but not by much but the machine layout is far better in my opinion(they take up less floor space I think).

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    Quote Originally Posted by BTI_LTD View Post
    First post on here!



    The control unit is mounted with magnets and this is it's new home:

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    Peter.
    Thank you for posting Peter, I just found out about your product yesterday. Before I saw your post here. You have a great looking design, I didnt realize that the product they were using wasnt of their own design. That explains why it looked like an aftermarket product.

    I wish you good success, I may even get one of them from you. But not right now, other priorities in the shop demand attention.

    Charles

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    The Haas P-cool isn't programmable per say like with an M code or G code. But it is pretty easy to use. Just adjust the nozzle to the position then enter the number in the column next to the tool your using, do that for each tool. I think it's pretty good, if you use a lot of different tool lengths where its hard to adjust the regular coolant nozzles to hit each tool in the right spot.


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