MarkSTAHL is a German company based in Jahndorf, Saxony, operating worldwide in the production of tubular parts for a wide variety of industries, including marine, medical, aerospace, mining, furniture, industrial and non-industrial vehicle manufacturing.
The parts made by MarkSTAHL are often used for innovative applications, so the company is often relied upon to solve issues arising from small and diverse batches with cut, pierced and bent tubes of any diameter or section.
In the production of cut and bent tubes, guaranteeing the exact shape of the finished part is difficult because the deformation of the material in the bending process affects the position of holes, trims and other cutting geometries.
For this reason, MarkSTAHL needed to acquire a production process able to link the various machining operations and establish machine interconnectivity that could automatically correct the deformation effect of the bending operation.
A production process that maximized productivity while ensuring maximum flexibility and eliminated waste as well as trial and error tests.
The technology to create this type of process already exists and is called ALL-IN-ONE: the integration technology between laser cutting and tube bending systems developed by BLM GROUP.
With ALL-IN-ONE, the deformation and elongation of the tube during bending is calculated by the software and compensated for in the laser cutting process, producing the part right at the first time. It eliminates the added time and material waste during testing and correction.
Today at MarkSTAHL, there are three BLM GROUP systems, all perfectly interconnected with ALL-IN-ONE technology:
• A LT8.10 Lasertube system with a 3D laser cutting head and capable of cutting tubes from 12 mm to 240 mm in diameter.
• A LT5 Lasertube system capable to cut tubes up to 120 mm diameter very fast and with high productivity.
• An E-TURN 52 tube bending machine used for in-process right and left bending of workpieces with an outer diameter from 6 mm to 52 mm.
The process is extremely lean. The LT8.10 or LT5 laser-cut the parts making the necessary corrections for the subsequent bending process. Then the tubes are automatically transferred to the tube bending machine by the loader.
The E-TURN 52 recognizes the position of the pre-cut holes and orients the tube accordingly. It then performs the subsequent bending operations, automatically compensating for springback of the material.
The result is the part is right from the start: no more scrap, no more trial and error tests.
- Eliminating trial and error testing
- No dependency on the operator’s experience
- Complete automation of the programming of the entire process
- Repeatability and precision of the parts made
- Production of small production batches with extreme efficiency
LT8.10 and LT5 correct the position of the cutting geometries on the tube before the bending process to account for the deformation effects of the tube.
The E-TURN 52 identifies the pre-cut features and correctly positions the tube to bend, while compensating for material springback, to produce the part to specification.