Haas gimble head + VF style machine
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  1. #1
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    Default Haas gimble head + VF style machine

    VR-8 | 5-Axis Mill | HSK-Taper | Vertical Mills – Haas CNC Machines

    Just got this in an email today. Anyone using this type (not Haas, but any) of machine? Pros and cons vs a 5 axis with rotary table?

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    that is a new version of there old vr6 and vr11 machines that were made around 2000 ish. I personally liked the machine, and it was fairly popular with the aerospace industry. its 1 drawback on the older version was the heads would only tilt 45° in any 1 direction.

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    I'm not sure for a machine in this size range. For rather larger machines (think the big bridge or gantry mills - Fidia, Brandtmann, etc.) they are very often two axis heads.
    I think even the very largest DMG Duoblocks have rotary tables with a sort of "nutating" knuckle head - but while they get quite large, I don't think they are fidia large.

    A really *KEY* question is what is the effective working envelope at A=90° - that is, how big a part can you mill the vertical sides of? They are listing this machine at 64x40, but how much of that is lost between the "hinge" and the end of the tool? And for a given part, how much do you care?

    Note that rotary tables (like on my DMU) are kind of by force square symmetric - you get some kind of circular work area that takes up a square space. But the VR machines are all 40" Y x whatever length. So the VR-11's 120x40 layout would have to be, well, a 120" rotary table. Maybe not a great model if the part is something like a wing spar - pretty long and relatively narrow.

    Seemed to me, from various visits to IMTS and scanning on the web, that aerospace folks do a lot of "profiler" work - meaning they want head tilt, but not as much 90° head tilt as you'd think - more like like applications where they mill out pockets in a curved shape, and all of the pockets have angled walls.

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    Another thought - if you have a work mix that contains, say, 50% wild 3+2 parts, and 50% large plates that you need to drill holes in, then a VR style machine might work out better than a trunnion machine. Assuming the loss of rigidty/power/etc., don't make it uninteresting for 3-axis work. (My circa 2006 self would have been happy to buy a 2020 VR-8 - my 2020 self is no longer so sure of the one-machine-to-rule-them-all theory of shop setup.)

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    Seems to me a gimbel couldn't be anywhere even close as rigid as a standard VF machine.https://www.practicalmachinist.com/v...ilies/Yawn.gif

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    Seems to me a gimbel couldn't be anywhere even close as rigid as a standard VF machine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChipSplitter View Post
    Seems to me a gimbel couldn't be anywhere even close as rigid as a standard VF machine.
    Yeah probably not, but do you think that's their primary design consideration here? How rigid is a right angle head on a VF machine? Certainly wouldn't even compare to this one.

    Lot of other work out there to do besides milling blocks held in vises.

    Perhaps 5axis trimming of vacuum formed composites?

    Or just look in the cnc machining forum, someone asking about side holes in large plates. Piece of cake on a machine like this.

    Doesn't have to be plates. Could just be large parts too big or heavy to fit in a UMC. I've had quite a few RFQs for big parts with funky angle cuts or holes.


    Machine like that would help on many of the repeat jobs I do currently, but I don't think could justify the cost yet. Quite a few large plates with side holes or milled pockets, and several structural tubes with funky end cuts and weld chamfers. Both type of parts I use right angle heads for. A machine like this would certainly make programming easier and faster. Not to mention setup at the machine would be a breeze using DWO instead of all the different work offsets and figuring X/Y tool lengths. Kind of a PITA.

    Don't think I'll buy one any time soon, but there is work out there where a machine like this can make sense.

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    Note that Fidia, Brandtmann (diff name now), and a variety of others make very large mills with 2-axis swivel heads, the Zimmerman (sp?) even has a 3rd axis in the head (the use of which they could not really explain to me, but this was at a trade show.)

    All of these machines will have the same rigidity challenges - and all get the same sorts of advantages that @thesidetalker speaks of.

    (The VR-8 might not be the sweet spot, the VR-9 and VR-11 may fit more work flows.)

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    I'm not trying to knock the machine. I can see what you mean that it has a niche in the 5-axis market.


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