Spindle probes for CNC machine tools can be highly repeatable, but their performance relies on accurate calibration. Renishaw has developed a simple solution to overcome the challenges associated with the manual probe calibration process while consistently achieving high levels of repeatability.
Accurate calibration ensures the probe’s performance is repeatable within the machine tool environment.
Today, many users perform the probe calibration process manually, which can cause variability even among skilled operators. Inaccurate probe calibration can affect all subsequent measurements; the Renishaw ACS-1 addresses this via a lockable mechanism that removes the need to use precision gauge blocks or slip gauges.
Introducing the ACS-1 process
ACS-1 is mounted on the machine tool table or chuck using its magnetic base. A test bar (or a tool of known length) establishes an accurate datum surface by pushing the plunger down to the desired position; the plunger is locked in place. The probe’s overall length can be accurately calibrated, using the calibration disk (the top surface of the lockable plunger). e probe’s stylus ball diameter calibration takes place on the Datum sphere, which can be mounted in two different positions on ACS-1, according to the CNC machine configuration.
The advantages of ACS-1
The Datum sphere can be mounted on one of two faces, both at a 45-degree angle. The mounting options allow ACS-1 to be the ideal probe calibration device for various CNC machine tool configurations. This includes vertical mills, lathes, turn-mills, and 5-axis machines, as the magnetic base allows the artefact to be mounted vertically or horizontally.
The ACS-1 can determine the probe’s overall length and stylus ball diameter within minutes, and does not require batteries.
Richard Cox, Design Group Applications Manager for Renishaw’s Machine Tool Products division, said. “ACS-1 is highly accurate, it reduces manual operation, therefore reducing human error, ensuring quick, accurate measurements. It also sits alongside our fully automated solution, AutoClock, offered by our associate company, MSP. Renishaw has engineered a cost-effective solution for simple, accurate probe calibration.”
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