Mazak machine support in South Eastern Wisconsin, opinions on Machinery Systems inc.
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    Default Mazak machine support in South Eastern Wisconsin, opinions on Machinery Systems inc.

    We have a 2011 530C that we bought for ~$67,000 from Machinery Systems Illinois, a company that does service directly for Mazak in South Eastern Wisconsin from their locations in Illinois, or Brookfield, Wisconsin, and we've had pretty constant tool change issues with that machine.

    It appears it was sold to us with at least one known problem, but possibly as many as 4 known problems (~18 tool pot tabs missing, a bad spindle motor, and a faulty tool changer, and a Renishaw RTS that won't communicate after the Mach Sys field setup work). The tool pots were supplied, but took about 3-4 weeks to arrive because they didn't have 18 pots in the USA, and we installed those ourselves so they cost us up time to install.

    Service techs have been very hard to get on any of these issues. We wasted 8 days of our lead programmer who gets paid about $65 an hour here working with it, because he was the only guy experienced enough to work on it, and because we couldn't get a service tech in faster than 2 weeks. We aligned the 2 alignment conditions and the home position. We would improve a condition, attempt to run, throw a tool, and return to work on the machine, so that process cost the 8 days before we realized everything we can do is done, and it is still throwing tools- it's looking like this is a mechanical issue possibly with the draw bar collet for the pull studs. We also bought that machine with a spindle noise that turned out to be a bad spindle motor bearing (the spindle cartridge was a new rebuild, so they had been servicing it and should have known about the motor needing replacement also at point of sale on account of being familiar with the sound of their equipment). We also were told of a 2 week lead time for the motor install, so we purchased and installed that internally. We lost some time figuring out how to get the spindle probe to hold calibration- that was a small issue. We never got the RTS functional for touching tools. We've got about a documented 3 weeks of time we've sporadically put into service on the machine and it's not fixed. These issues have cumulatively caused about 7-10 weeks of lost time on a machine we need running 20 hours a day 5 days a week. That's almost a full lost quarter of a year of production. This wasn't at all our expectation when we purchased the machine. This has gotten to the point we could have bought a brand new Doosan with equal or better capabilities for $120K, and reclaimed the difference with money lost to down time. That strikes me like theft. I didn't sign up to be robbed of my time.

    The emergency service call we put in today is resulting in a scheduled Monday visit so we're losing 4 business days and 80 hours of operation on it if they can fix that the same day.

    My local Ellison dealer for Doosan will have service guys on site in anywhere from 2 hours to three days- the dumb part of that is that Doosan machines don't really seem to break down- or at least not in any substantial way to even need them to come out so it's exceedingly rare we ever need them, but when we do, they are very fast to put machines back up here.

    This is essentially just a report of our experience with Mazak in South Eastern Wisconsin. The machine isn't running right yet, and that's unfortunate. I know every situation is somewhat different depending on how the customer is valued by the company, age of the equipment, etc. However I never would have expected this out of a 2011 machine thats being sold by the people who service it in this region for MAZAK corporate.

    For the Mazak users in this region what are your experiences? For the customers of Machinery Systems, what are your experiences?

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    By the way I heard today there are 2 spindle designs, and we have the one that is incapable of detecting a false tool load with sensors. I guess in order to get a safe CAT-40 tool change, you have to purchase that option from Mazak on the new machine, the option isn't a field retrofit, and works on a different spindle cartridge design. I don't know why the company would have one safe design and one not, and sell the not safe model. I sell products, and I would just make them all using the better design. Safety shouldn't be optional.

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    My experiences with them have always been positive as far as capability and satisfaction, but the lead time/wait issue has ALWAYS been extent, for at least the last 15 years that I'm aware of. I've heard that there is some favoritism with regard to scheduling as regards size of customer and monies spent per annum, but imagine that exists in most places these days.

    If you want to entertain having someone else look at it, I cannot recommend member "EWLSEY" highly enough. Seriously. Ask around and you will find that I don't give out high praise easily or lightly, either. He hasn't done any Mazak work for us, but he's done some EXCELLENT other work for us. Methodical, as meticulous as you desire, and best of all - rock solid quality at a good price, to boot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zahnrad Kopf View Post
    My experiences with them have always been positive as far as capability and satisfaction, but the lead time/wait issue has ALWAYS been extent, for at least the last 15 years that I'm aware of. I've heard that there is some favoritism with regard to scheduling as regards size of customer and monies spent per annum, but imagine that exists in most places these days.

    If you want to entertain having someone else look at it, I cannot recommend member "EWLSEY" highly enough. Seriously. Ask around and you will find that I don't give out high praise easily or lightly, either. He hasn't done any Mazak work for us, but he's done some EXCELLENT other work for us. Methodical, as meticulous as you desire, and best of all - rock solid quality at a good price, to boot.
    I hope they can fix the tool changer spindle throwing tools thing Monday. Somehow I feel like they will get here and parts will be required, extending that out. I'm wondering how many things we will have to fix with this Machinery Systems Inc sold Mazak before it becomes a normally functional CNC machine. I feel Mazak needs to hire some technical service people to reduce those lead times. Twice I've been told two weeks on issues, today a Mazak tech support person said they could have someone out here today to one of our settup guys, I had been on the phone with Machinery Systems and we called back and requested to speak to that person and were told they had scheduled us for Monday.

    So I feel like they had a capability to be here today because they said that they did, but moved the appointment to Monday of next week as a result of learning it was a Machinery Systems Inc sold used machine they were talking about, and that really pissed me off because Machinery Systems is the actual solitary service provider to Mazak in this region, and they sold this messed up machine that we're trying to resolve the problems on, so it reflects on Mazak and Machinery Systems Inc. They don't get a free pass. The affiliation of the reseller being the actual regional support provider for the brand played huge in the purchasing decision. We expected that network to sell a functional machine, and to be able to support one in a timely manner. Neither of those things happened.

    If they said, hey this machine needs a $4500 rebuilt spindle motor we can't actually get a service guy out to install, and the RTS we are advertising doesn't actually communicate, the autodoor glass we just replaced will be broken when it gets to you because we aren't going to properly secure the door for shipment, and the tool changer is missing 18 pot orientation tabs, because the tool changer is totally misaligned and malfunctioning, we'd never have bought the machine.

    The working affiliation of Mazak to Machinery Systems Inc, implied we were working with someone as solid as Mazak.

    Granted if they had said, "Mazak doesn't even have the ability to recognize with sensors that a tool is loaded on top of the spindle orientation tabs" that alone would have killed the deal. The machine isn't properly designed to begin with. The 30 Tool magazine is small, smaller when you realize you can only count on one tool to be properly loaded- the one you put in the spindle by hand.

    We also have a 5 axis VCU500A-5X, and it has a major engineering flaw also- if you tilt the table 90, you need an 8" gauge length to reach table center, so tool runout is a major issue to contend with on that machine. I can't believe they can't even put a machine into a 3D software and say "holy shit we can't reach table center, we need to raise the trunion pivot point, or lower the head to get to it." Whoever screwed that up should have to wear a shirt all year that says, "Lead Idiot".

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    I actually had a settup guy tell me today, well, we could put in ____ (a program) ... but we'd have to put someone on this machine all day because they would have to hand load the tools.

    NO WE CAN'T WORK THAT WAY. WE AREN'T CHINESE. SHIT COSTS TOO MUCH HERE IN AMERICA TO PRETEND WE CAN BE MAINLAND CHINESE LABORERS FOR THE MAZAK.

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    I would caution you against hand loading tools. How many cycles will you get before someone loads the wrong tools and buries it at light speed? I couldn't trust myself to get that right every time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ewlsey View Post
    I would caution you against hand loading tools. How many cycles will you get before someone loads the wrong tools and buries it at light speed? I couldn't trust myself to get that right every time.
    Good point. I couldn't afford it anyway. We pay people pretty decent money and the machines have to run reliable and smooth or we're taking a bath. One machine down often puts 1-3 other machines down as someone works to get the problem machine back up. This Mazak has cost a lot of money. It hasn't made really any money. There is one other non earning machine here, - a Mitsubishi wire EDM, and the Mazak and the Mits have one characteristic in common- they both have Mitsubishi components.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Green0 View Post
    There is one other non earning machine here, - a Mitsubishi wire EDM, and the Mazak and the Mits have one characteristic in common- they both have Mitsubishi components.
    Push it out into the alley. I will have a truck come by and rid the eyesore from your view. You're welcome.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zahnrad Kopf View Post
    Push it out into the alley. I will have a truck come by and rid the eyesore from your view. You're welcome.
    If you have $71.5K to break me even on the machine and parts to date and can rig it out, I'll throw in all our wasted time for free right now, call my Ellison sales guy and get another DNM5700S with Samschully 4th axis, conveyor, 15K spindle, 40 tool ATC, probe and RTS on the way. We'll throw in a spare tube of way lube grease. With the Doosan you know it's going to run- you know the $120K plus shipping, rigging, and half a week of your guys hooking up air and getting it set, is going to run 18 hours a day- all year, for as far as I've ever been able to experience.

    Mazak called and got a guy here. If they can make the tool changer work, the machine will probably run well. It holds tolerances, but we don't have any one tool parts to take advantage of the current capabilities.

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    I finally got a chance to see and talk to the technician. This is the same person who settup the machine- he was here for 5-6 days setting up the pair. He tested pullforce today at 1900lbs which is in spec, then checked the hydraulic reservoir which we were never aware existed, and it was apparently empty. Initial settup was like 3 days for this machine, so there was plenty of time to check that and the get the RTS working then, and we appreciate being informed of basic fluids and stuff too. The pull force went to 2150lbs, so small positive change in that. He believes the alignment work our programmer did over the 8 sporadic days on the arm cam lobe, the arm at rest, and the arm at the rotated position, as well as the home position is good work. The machine is changing tools again, but it's hard to be really confident when the pull force change was so small. I would guess it was always empty, we have only run this machine probably 2 weeks of total time in the several months we have had it because it has always been problematic to get it functionally 100%.

    He mentioned the drawbar finger collet can loosen and he attempted to tighten it, but he said knowing whether the allen is engaged or not is tough to know, so there is an uncertainty there.

    Our programmer came from a shop with about 50 Mazak machines and we bought the Mazaks we have because of his recommendation, and I thought it was too bad our guy didn't know to check the reservoir but the tech said every machine is different and that it would be nice to have a manual to look at.

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    I guess the machine is still tossing tools, so hydraulic didn't do it. There are some other theories.

    The RTS apparently requires some macro variables that we've unfortunately begun to use for probing macros, so we kill the probing macros to implement a fix to the RTS, so the lack of properly setting that up during the week long settup visit is killing the RTS for now.

    It's nice to have someone working it, I'm hoping the Mazak tool changer can be reliable- but we've not gotten there yet.
    Last edited by Green0; 09-19-2019 at 06:44 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Green0 View Post
    ... it would be nice to have a manual to look at.
    You don't have the manuals ? if so, you just shot all your snivelling right in the foot. The very first thing to do with any machine is GET THE MANUALS.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EmanuelGoldstein View Post
    You don't have the manuals ? if so, you just shot all your snivelling right in the foot. The very first thing to do with any machine is GET THE MANUALS.
    Yeah it would be cool if they were sold with the manuals, that's how we sell them here, but we're not professionals, we're just a shop selling our used machines at times. The 2 we've sold to date left here 100% functional with zero mechanical issues, with all manuals, and if they had had mechanical issues, we would have been honest and disclosed them.

    I think the programmer/Mazak fan did try to get manuals, the Mazaks were really his endorsement and his babies. He suggested 2011 was not old for a Mazak and talked about the Mazak lifetime parts support. Whenever we have a machine install we hope and expect the company representative machine installer to convey some info on the maintenance schedules of the equipment. Obviously not checking the fluids, isn't a comprehensive machine install service in itself.

    Granted this isn't even the underlying issue with this machine, the toolchanger was malfunctioning when it was delivered. The ATC arm bolts were loose when we began the attempts to align the ATC arm. It was shipped as a mechanical mess.

    If someone at the company had told us about the issues, we wouldn't have been in the market for this machine.

    We'll accept $71.5K until the machine is running properly. If anyone really loves Mazak and believes in the brand, that could be a deal.

    I run a manufacturing company, not a machine repair company. We've lost a lot of uncompensated time on this deal.

    There were apparently some comments made by the installer about what did I expect buying a used machine. The answer is one that functionally worked when it was delivered. Without disclosed problems, that's what any buyer expects.

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    Today the ATC arm's positions are reported correct, the arm springs, knuckles, plungers are rebuilt with new parts. There is a problem with the drawbar now. The Drawbar is apparently hesitating to move and then moving rapidly, late, and causing the toolchanger to load and drop the tools. So the sheet metal is off the head and the drawbar assembly is being looked at. Maybe a hydraulic seal or component has failed or is binding. The hydraulic fluid which was fresh yesterday is black today so it was replaced but that is expanding the known scope of the problem from the alignment of the ATC to the drawbar or hydraulic system.

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    Mazak had all but one of the O-rings and seals needed to do the rebuild, so we ordered the one missing O-ring from McMaster Carr and it arrived this morning for the install. The whole spindle had to come out for the seal work. The machine is back together now, it appears that it is working according to the technicians, so they left. So we lucked out on the cam box and hydraulic unit (if it holds). The repair time was 2 full days last week, 2 techs for most of today, and two parts orders for about $500, total services, alignment of the ATC's 3 positions, rebuild of the arm springs and nuckles, rebuild of the draw bar hydraulic seals. We're glad they could come out, and happy to have the machine working. It would have been massively good economically to have gotten the machine in a ready to work condition, but I hope we're out of the woods on it now. We're going to weekly check tighten the screws on the ATC arm to prevent the loss of timing in the future.

    I guess one of the technicians said the 530C manual is on the control, so when he asked about that last week and we had no good answer, it was because we're used to manuals that come with the machine on a USB, or a disc, or in paper form and because I have a 6 figure guy programming these that I expected to manage that cell among other things and keep me out of it. So I haven't seen, collected, or looked at the manuals for our two Mazak machines.

    It was nice to learn there were unlisted lubricant reservoirs on both Mazak machines- they both have that hydraulic unit behind the head up above the machine for the draw bar assembly. It appears that those and the spindle chillers do not have sensors for low fluid alarms. We noticed that the 530C's spindle chiller oil is also low so that will be in Wednesday.

    The 500A/5X has tilt and rotary axis lubricant, and also tilt and rotary clamp lubricant, so we're going to do annuals on the 530C clamp lubricant, and remove the way cover to check the tilt axis lubricant level on Wednesday when that lubricant arrives.


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