Quick change and repeatable Z tooling for MT3 and R8 spindles?

Quick change and repeatable Z tooling for MT3 and R8 spindles?

Industrial and hobby machinists alike all have the same pet hate when it comes to changing tools whether using a Bridgeport knee mill or a bench top CNC mill:

“It takes too long!”

Lets explore this topic and how Emvioeng.com will help small and large workshops alike become more efficient.

Typically the process of a toolchange may go something like this:

  1. Stop the spindle
  2. move the spindle to top so you can access the drawbar
  3. Release the drawbar and tap it to release the taper tool <—our pet hate
  4. Unscrew the drawbar to remove the taper tool
  5. Insert a new tool in the spindle
  6. Screw in and tighten the drawbar
  7. Touch off new tool
  8. Start cutting

In manual only machine tools, this may be your only option or if you use R8 or Morse taper collets or ER spring collet holders you could get away with just swapping out the cutter. You still need to find the new Z-axis zero every time. How many jobs have been put off because changing from the roughing tool to the finishing tool is a pain. Worse yet, how many jobs have been scrapped because the tool was broken on the workpiece during touchoff?

If the machine has a good digital readout on the Z-axis or if the machine is 3 axis CNC capable the re-zeroing is a waste of time. So how does one cut the time required?

Two easy fixes: a power drawbar and repeatable Z tooling.

With all this in mind pioneering tooling companies have developed quick changing and repeatable tool offset tooling previously only available to larger machine tools with spindle tapers based on the ISO, NTBM, HSK etc tool holders. Of course the cost of such tooling may sometimes be prohibitive to import from the USA or further afield.

It is thus with great pleasure that Emvio Engineering will be bring to the European market, reasonably priced repeatable tooling based on the well know 3/4″ shank double contact tooling (*).

We will be stocking ER25 and ER32 collet holders to allow for the most versatility when setting up your tools for a job. Our tool holders come in two tiers to suit every need: budget and potential expansion of your machines capabilities. So head on over to //emvioeng.com/shop

The first variety is the plain band type that allows for easy manual tool changing but still offers speed and repeatability. Our topshelf variety will allow the use of a homebuilt or commercial tool changer due to the ground groove on the tools body making them incredibly futureproof.

To go with the Tool Holders, we will also be holding stock of specially ground R8 collets, ER25 and ER32 collets, collet wrenches and in due course tightening fixtures. All products can be found in our brand new web shop. All Smoothstepper sales will also be handled through the webshop too.

(*)Some may know it as TTS® but bear in mind that is a registered name as used by Tormach.

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