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Heimatec Discusses Market Opportunities, Challenges And Strategies

Heimatec Discusses Market Opportunities, Challenges and Strategies

Karl Moessmer (left), regional manager for Singapore, and Dirk Hund (right), sales manager, at Heimatec, speaks with Asia Pacific Metalworking Equipment News (APMEN) about the opportunities in the market, the challenges they are seeing, and their strategies to navigate these issues. Interview by Stephen Las Marias.

Established in 1987, Heimatec GmbH manufactures precision tools for turning and milling centres. The company is headquartered in Renchen, Germany, and has subsidiaries in Moscow, Russia; Chicago, Illinois, USA; and Pune, India; and has a representative office in Singapore.

At the recent MTA Vietnam 2019 event in Ho Chi Minh, Karl Moessmer, regional manager for Singapore, and Dirk Hund, sales manager, at Heimatec, speaks with Asia Pacific Metalworking Equipment News (APMEN) about the opportunities in the market, the challenges they are seeing, and their strategies to navigate these issues.

For those who may not be familiar, please give us a quick background on Heimatec.

Karl Moessmer (KM): Heimatec manufactures static and live tools for turning and milling centres, as well as machine centres. Static tools are the most basic kind of additional accessories for machine tools, whereas live tools give manufacturers a greater flexibility to manufacture, let’s say, more complex components. In this sector, we face substantial competition from Europe, especially, Italy and Germany, and to a certain extent, from Japan. Our participation in this show underscores our focus on the Asia Pacific market. And we have Vietnam in mind as we can see more and more foreign direct investments flowing into the country. That means more sophisticated machineries are being placed in various industries in the region.

What opportunities are you seeing?

KM: The number of machineries—machine tools, turning centres, machining centres—is increasing. And with it, the demand for the tools. Of course, Vietnam might be at the early stage for this kind of industrialisation, but it will grow like any other country did in the past. We don’t want to step in when all the positions are occupied already. We want to be part of it from the very beginning. This is where we see an opportunity.

Dirk Hund (DH): I agree with Karl. I am in close contact with him about the market situation here in Southeast Asia, and not every country has this big potential. But we definitely see one in Vietnam, Thailand, Philippines, and South Korea. These are the main regions we are looking at.

What are the industry drivers in the markets you are involved in?

DH: Investments. Government regulations or government programmes supporting various industries drive the region and investments. And for sure, bigger brands, bigger companies, when they come to the country and they start a production facility, they need to get third party suppliers. Those who will manufacture parts for those companies are potential customers for us, as long as they have such types of machines.

KM: The investment is also driven by whoever is supporting it—for instance, car manufacturing. We see a lot of potential in this area, but car manufacturing has been shifting all over the place. Right now, maybe the biggest chance remains in Thailand. But we also see part of production in this area shifting to the Philippines.

We always have to be on our toes to follow where the market is. The market is changing, depending on how strong the government is supporting a certain industry. Maybe around 5 to 10 years ago, it was disk drive manufacturing, they are using a lot of machine tools. But this production has been shifting all over the Asia Pacific. We have to open our eyes and travel a lot so that we can get first-hand information from the market. And in exhibitions like this, the feedback we receive will tell us how to change our attitude toward the market potential.

What challenges are you seeing?

KM: The biggest challenge is the different types of language. It is not enough that you can say ‘Hello’ or ‘Good morning’; you have to be able to explain the technical product.

DH: Finding the right partner. Not everybody, or not every company, can afford to open up their own facility here, or sales or service department. I believe it’s necessary to be successful in the country. If it is Vietnam, or Thailand, or whatever, you need to have good partners. And as Karl said, language is another barrier. It’s hard to find people who can speak English, even at least a few words.

Also, while one challenge is the technical part, which Karl described, the other one is the economic part. If you want to become successful in this market, you have to follow a strategy. In Europe, we use a lot of time just to think about how we can approach our customers, and follow a specific route just to have a clear picture about the country or market, find out where the business clusters are, like automotive, medical device businesses—maybe Hanoi is automotive, and Ho Chi Minh is aerospace—and you need to follow up once you find the machine tool builders.

You have to contact them, try to find possibilities to get in there, and then identify your customers. And do it like a sniper. This is sometimes hard to explain to some partners here in Asia, if you have found one. Sometimes, it’s difficult to deliver the message.

KM: One technical aspect to consider is that all the advanced machine tools require advanced and stable power supply. In the instance there are brownouts, when you don’t have a stable supply of power, you are in big trouble when you have highly advanced machineries—enormous damage can be caused when there are power interruptions. Therefore, the infrastructure is also important.

Also, when it comes to shipment of goods. For instance, when you ship a machine tool to Singapore, within the next couple of hours, it is already in the factory. But when you ship to other places, there might be flooded roads when it rains, and all the while the machine is hanging somewhere. Infrastructures must be stabilised and properly developed.

What are your goals and outlook in the Southeast Asian market?

DH: For the next two years, to have a solid base and partnerships here in Vietnam. Whatever the outlook will be, for sure, we want to grow with the market. We know we have to invest a lot of time and patience to develop it the right way, and every single euro we can make as a turnover will be perfect.

As long as we can do some turnover in the region, I can support our management back home, to be patient and do this more in the region. Because it has a potential. The challenge also is for the management of companies to stay focused on the Southeast Asian region. It has different cultures, different nationalities, different behaviours, and all these doesn’t make it easy.

Finally, what would be your advice to customers when it comes to their tool selection?

KM: My advice is not to focus on the initial price offer primarily, but to look at quality, reliability and durability. Cheap products come at a cheap price. Some investors have this sort of a twisted concept: they buy a machine costing half a million dollars, and then try to save money on the tool on the lower end of investment. This is where they try to save. What if the tool does not perform? Then the whole machine will be idle just to change an endmill—on which they saved a dollar.

This is a big challenge in some of the markets. When you buy cheap machines, you buy cheap tooling, cheap cutting tools, and then you save on the materials, but then you want to produce a top-class product… How can it be? If you want to sell to markets that are able and willing to pay a good price, then you have to supply top quality products. These products cannot be produced with cheap machines, cheap tools, and cheap materials.



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Addressing Temperature Effects In Turning

Addressing Temperature Effects In Turning

One of the most serious enemies of carbide inserts is the high temperature of the materials that results from the machining process. Here’s how high temperatures in machining are being addressed through the latest insert technologies. Article by ISCAR.

Cooling is essential to the machining world, where appropriate cooling can significantly increase insert life and reduce manufacturing costs, due to the changes in chip shape and the resulting temperature during the machining process.

In the last few years, the concept and implementation of cooling solutions for cutting tools has enjoyed a surge of popularity and enthusiasm as if it had never existed before. CNC machine manufacturers throughout the world have invested time and resources to develop solutions that can supply coolant at high pressures and today all new machines are supplied with a high-pressure coolant option.

Manufacturers from industries such as aerospace, automotive, and large part production appreciate the immense advantage of supplying coolant directly to the cutting edge and are only ordering machines for milling centers or turning centers with high pressure coolant capabilities—minimum 70 bar and up to 300 bar. Mass production manufacturers are also benefiting from the integration of ISCAR’s JETCUT tools into their processes.

One of the most serious enemies of carbide inserts is the high temperature of the materials that results from the machining process. Temperatures vary, depending both on the properties of the metal that is being machined and on environmental work conditions. The average temperature during machining can range from 300 deg C to 900 deg C.

As the temperature rises, the lifespan of the inserts is shortened. Increased wear can damage workpiece quality and negatively affect machining properties: the heat generated between the insert and the workpiece can cause a change in chip shape and plastic deformation of the insert.

High pressure starting at 70 bar can be effective in breaking chips and, in cases when it is difficult to break chips and the chip formed is long and curled, coolant applied correctly and under high pressure can solve this problem.

Judicious application of coolant can prevent the workpiece materials from deformation and can act as protectant for the machine. In many cases, effective and efficient cooling can actually mean the difference between profit and loss.

Cooling Technology

Cooling has a major influence on machining exotic materials such as Inconel, Titanium, Hastelloy, Monel and other alloys, which are all used in the aerospace industry. These workpiece materials are difficult to machine as they have a very high nickel level and possess a tendency to stick to cutter edges due to their elastic, sticky and ductile properties – which is one of the reasons that parts for the aerospace industry are extremely expensive. Machining these types of materials without coolant is almost impossible, as the high temperatures and stickiness cause instantaneous wear and premature failure for carbide inserts.

In addition to reducing temperatures for exotic metals, the use of coolant creates a shielded area between the insert and the workpiece material, so preventing material from sticking to the cutting edge – which is a major factor in premature failure for inserts.

In groove turn operations, it is particularly important to select the right grade for chip breaking. An incorrect choice of grade or chip breaker can spell disaster for the manufacturer. In addition, cooling has a significant effect on chip breaking effectiveness and correct coolant application can mean the difference between success and failure.

After researching and studying the influence of coolant on its inserts, ISCAR applied the scientific knowledge acquired to the successful implementation of new and groundbreaking cooling technologies in turning operations. The company developed and integrated external and internal tools to deliver coolant directly to the cutting edge, including the JETCUT range. This has succeeded in increasing tool lifespan and productivity and, even at low pressures such as 10 or 20 bar, the advantages of directing coolant flow straight at the cutting edge can be seen in the reduction of temperature during machining.

Manufacturers engaging in high volume machining have noted a substantial increase in tool life and productivity after integrating JETCUT tools to pinpoint coolant directly to the cutting zone. This is because lowering the temperature in this way facilitates longer tool life, increasing cutting conditions such as speed and feed.

Manufacturers who work with problematic exotic materials such as Inconel, titanium and stainless steels have also managed to achieve higher productivity by incorporating JETCUT tools. Pinpointing high pressure coolant straight onto the cutting zone prevents a sticky edge, consequently extending tool life.

In response to the growing demands of many industry sectors, ISCAR expanded its jet high pressure line by adding turning tools fitted with the JET-R-TURN hollow rigid clamp, which also acts as a coolant nozzle. Until now, ISCAR’s ISOTURN range of tools featuring a jet high pressure cooling option were designed with a lever clamping mechanism, as an upper clamp would obstruct the coolant jet from reaching the cutting edge.
The new design enables jet high pressure coolant to reach the cutting edge without any obstacles.

ISCAR offers tools with JET-R-TURN Rigid Clamp mechanism for the most popular standard CNMG, WNMG and DNMG insert geometries. It features strong and reliable clamping mechanism, which prolongs tool life; directs the coolant jet directed to the cutting edge; and has excellent corner location repeatability and performance in heavy cut machining.

The new external tools feature three coolant connection options: rear threaded inlet, bottom threaded inlet, and bottom inlet for adjustable shank overhang, as in ISCAR’s JHP-MC tools.

All external tools are equipped also with a frontal bottom coolant outlet directed to the insert flank, which enhances the cooling effect. The through-tool coolant provides improved tool life, chip control and productivity advantages when high pressure coolant is induced. In addition, the 10–15 bar standard pressure provides better performance when compared to external cooling results.

Every Second Counts

What is a second in our life? Every second can be multiplied and translated to millions of seconds when considering mass production of standard parts. Saving a single second times a million parts is equivalent to a whole working month, which represents a major savings and is the dream of every mass production manufacturer.

And ISCAR’s wide range of JETCUT tools for a variety of applications, from turning and grooving to parting, helps manufacturers achieve this, and more.


Read more:

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Seco Tools Releases New Duratomic TM Grades For Stainless Steel Turning

Seco Tools Releases New Duratomic TM Grades for Stainless Steel Turning

Seco Tools has announced the release of three new grades specifically for stainless steel turning featuring the company’s latest Duratomic generation and its Used-Edge Detection technology. The new TM grades TM1501, TM2501 and TM3501 secure operations and improve productivity in materials ranging from austenitic stainless steel to high-alloyed, super-duplex stainless steels. The expanded range of 479 total TM insert configurations also includes three new geometries with chipbreakers optimised for finishing and medium-roughing applications in stainless steel.

TM1501 is designed for the highest level of speed, productivity and wear resistance in stable continuous cut applications for austenitic stainless steel components. The first-choice grade for any low to medium-alloyed stainless steel, TM2501 excels as a general grade that provides long tool life and toughness across the widest application area. And a brand-new grade for the toughest high-alloyed stainless steels, including duplex and super-duplex stainless steels, TM3501 also offers good performance across all stainless steel applications.

The addition of the unique FF1 chipbreaker for the TM3501 grade provides superior chip control in stainless steel finishing, while the new MR3 and M3 complements MF4 and M5 in medium-roughing applications. These three Duratomic grades feature innovations based on world-leading coating chemistry developments adapted to manufacturers’ application needs. In addition to offering superior mechanical and thermal properties, this coating also provides the chrome-colored Used-Edge Detection technology, which makes every edge count and reduces potential waste.


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Optimised Tool Management Through Integrated Process Chain

Optimised Tool Management Through Integrated Process Chain

From the shrink fit chuck to the presetting device, aerospace supplier Heggemann relies on consistent Haimer quality in tool management. Article by Haimer.

Anyone who concentrates on the development and production of sophisticated metallic lightweight components and subassemblies is a predestined partner of the aerospace and automotive industry. And Heggemann AG is one such company. Since the company was founded in 1962, it has been supplying these two premium industries. But most of the orders come from the aerospace industry, for which Heggemann holds all the important certificates.

“We also undergo annual audits, not only by the German Federal Aviation Administration, but also by major manufacturers such as Airbus and Boeing, as well as first-tier suppliers such as MTU, Rolls Royce, and so on,” says Dr. Christian Howe, a member of the board at Heggemann. “Our slogan is ‘360°–From Engineering to Production’. Accordingly, we support our customers in all phases of the product development—from conception and development through simulation and engineering, to prototype construction, and the general and functional testing or the production of small series.”

The intelligent NG coil and integrated contact cooling make the Haimer Power Clamp Comfort NG shrinking machines very comfortable to work with help.

Machining at the Highest Quality Level

The highest quality standards apply at all times. This can be seen in production with state-of-the-art CNC milling and turning centres at the company. Ulrich Ahlers, head of machining at Heggemann, explains, “Here we cut a wide range of very demanding materials from titanium, Inconel, stainless steel, and steel, to high-strength aluminium. In most cases, it is the individual parts and small series that have a high demand for precision and quality. Accordingly, not only the machine shop floor, but also the tools and the tool management are of great importance.”

Ahlers and Juergen Ballbach, who is responsible for tool management, have taken on this field in order to optimise it. “Our desire was to achieve the greatest possible consistency in terms of the shrinking, balancing and presetting devices used. We succeeded in doing this together with our partner Haimer,” says Ahlers.

Ballbach has been using two Haimer Power Clamp Comfort NG shrinking machines in order to shrink the required milling tools. “As the name implies, the intelligent NG coil and integrated contact cooling make these devices very comfortable to work with,” says Ballbach.

Balancing System for Tools and Flywheels

Two years ago, Heggemann invested in a Haimer Tool Dynamic Comfort balancing system. Ahlers explains, “We mill here with up to 18,000rpm and use cantilevered tools. If they show an imbalance, this puts a strain on the spindle and noticeably shortens its service life. These are considerable costs that can be avoided by the balancing process on the Tool Dynamic. In addition, finely balanced tools achieve a higher level of precision and surface quality on the component due to reduced vibrations.”

The Heggemann staff wanted to balance not only the tools, but also the special products. These are the elements for flywheels, for which the client orders the balancing including documentation. After consultation with Haimer, the strategy was to install just the large standard software package to define forbidden areas for balancing. The software tool ‘Alternative Balancing Positions’ is also required here. Appropriate holders for the flywheel elements were made by the machining specialists themselves. Ahlers sums up, “We saved the required external service and thus time and money.”

When an outdated tool presetting device was to be replaced, the staff in charge tested, amongst others, Haimer’s Microset VIO linear—a fully automated presetting device.

“Due to our small lot sizes, we have to measure tools every day. That is why we wanted to keep the effort as low as possible,” says Ahlers. “The HAIMER Microset VIO has fully convinced us with all its capabilities. Especially since we now achieve a manufacturer’s consistency for shrinking and balancing, which gives us further advantages.” Amongst other things, he highlights the completed premium maintenance service contract, which covers all Haimer devices, thus minimising effort and costs.

Fully Automatic Tool Presetting

In addition to the fully automatic operation, which ensures simple operation and process-reliable measurement, it was important for the chippers to be connected to the hyperMILL CAM system used in Heggemann. It should be possible to realise a functioning process chain from the CAM to the machine, which looks like this: The programmers create a tool list for each job based on the included tool library, which is then sent to the Microset VIO linear as a measurement job for tool presetting. The operator inserts the respective tool, selects the link to the 3D CAD tool data via the touch screen, and starts the automatic measuring process.

The Haimer Microset VIO linear receives all the required information regarding X and Z dimensions as well as the starting position through the connection to the CAM system hyperMILL. The presetting device then supplies preselected actual values ​​in the complete tool set via post processor and network to the intended machine tool.

“Previously, we used different brands that are usually cheaper to buy, but do not have the same precision nor comparable life. We have found that if the quality is right—and at Haimer, it fits 100 percent—the extra investment will pay off long term,” says Ballbach, who now prefers to use Haimer devices, including Haimer tool holders.

Increasing Cooperation with Haimer

Heggemann and Haimer have been continuing to develop their partnership. When Ballbach spoke with Thorsten Böker, technical sales representative at Haimer, about the difficulty of special processing, he had a proposed solution. It concerned a bifurcated component into which two elongated grooves approximately 100mm apart must be inserted as fits. So far, this task was taken over by an oversized carbide end mill, which had to be ground free by hand to get through the first tab. Heggemann now manages this machining with Haimer Duo-Lock, a modular tool system with solid carbide exchangeable head milling cutters and extensions in various geometries and lengths.

“The switch to this tool has paid off in no time,” says Ahlers. The problem solver was ultimately the extension that Haimer has already delivered unencumbered. It saves the manual grinding of every single tool. All that needs to be changed is the HM tool head, which is considerably less expensive. In addition, the screw head can be changed quickly at the workplace, according to Ballbach.

“Because the Duo-Lock tools can be preselected with a repeat accuracy of 0.01mm due to their special interface, we do not even have to measure them after the change,” says Ballbach. In addition, the overall system runout of less than 5μm ensures best machining results and, according to Ballbach, tool life is three times as long as those of the predecessor tools.

Currently, further Haimer solutions are being tested and discussed at Heggemann. For example, the company is considering using the Haimer Safe-Lock system for heavy machining of demanding materials in the future. Its constructive design combines the frictional clamping forces of the respective clamping process with a form-fitting connection and thus reliably avoids the danger of tool pull out during roughing or power milling.

Focus on Quality

The process and results of the cooperation with Haimer not only satisfy the production staff and those responsible, the Heggemann management also appreciates the quality and reliability of their partner. CEO Christian Howe comments, “Thanks to the high-quality Haimer products, we have succeeded in further improving our production processes. The products perfectly match the requirements of our customers in the aerospace and automotive industries.”



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Tungaloy’s -01 Geometry For High Precision Finish Turning On Swiss Lathes

Tungaloy’s -01 Geometry For High Precision Finish Turning On Swiss Lathes

Tungaloy enhances its ISO positive turning inserts in “-01” geometry to include a 0.4 mm (.0157″) nose radius prepared in a minus tolerance specifically for precision finishing in Swiss turning applications.

The new -01 geometry is designed to deliver consistent chip control at extremely light cutting depths of 0.5 mm (.020″) or smaller. The introduction of a 0.4 mm nose radius insert is implemented due to the increased demands in the Swiss turning market where workpieces with 0.4 mm corner radius requirements are as popular as workpieces with 0.2 mm radii. In addition, these corner radii are often required to be finished equal to or smaller than the required radius dimensions in order to minimise the impact on dimensional accuracy. Therefore, the insert nose radii of the -01 geometry are all designed and constructed in a minus tolerance to the nominal nose radii, and not exceeding it.

Combined with the existing -JS geometry, the first-choice for small part turning, the enhanced lineup of the -01 geometry provides customers with optimal chipbreaker options for various cutting depths and feed rates in Swiss turning operations.

The -01 geometry is optimised for cutting depths of 0.5 mm (.020″) or less, while -JS geometries are effective for depths of cut ranging from 0.5 mm to 3.0 mm (.020″ to .118″).



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ZAYER To Unveil Latest Milling Centre At EMO Hannover

ZAYER To Unveil Latest Milling Centre At EMO Hannover

The newly developed ARION G turning and milling centre from ZAYER is making its German debut at EMO Hannover 2019. This multitask machining centre enables users to perform ZAYER complex turning and milling tasks on a single machine, setting new standards in versatility, flexibility and ergonomics.

According to Iberimex, the importer overseeing ZAYER To Unveil Latest Milling Centre At EMO Hannover trade fair showcase, the ARION G is a highly robust and extremely dynamic manufacturing solution that is both easy to operate and maintain. The use of advanced technologies in the incorporation of materials, processes and mechanisms has resulted in an intelligent machine, with predictive maintenance features enabled by HORUS, a web services platform developed by ZAYER to help users maximise their production, boost efficiency, increase accuracy, and minimise risks.


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Hwacheon C1 Turning Centre

Hwacheon C1 Turning Centre

Hwacheon’s C1 turning centre has a travelling column design, and with orthogonal X, Y and Z-axes, it combines the Hwacheon machining quality of a flatbed lathe with the production characteristics of a machining centre. Workpieces with complex contours can be machined in one clamping position. A counter-spindle allows rear-face Hwacheon machining and finishing without reclamping.

The machine is equipped with a six-inch (15.24 cm) turret as standard and also has an eight-inch (20.32 cm) turret as an option.


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Tungaloy: Positive Insert Line

Tungaloy: Positive Insert Line

Tungaloy is adding a positive insert line to its existing FW and SW turning wiper insert range for general turning operations. Wiper inserts allow running at up to double the recommended feed rate of a normal insert while still providing a surface quality a double that of a normal insert.

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