November 16, 2021 Volume 17 Issue 43

Mechanical News & Products

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Roller-type LM guide for ultra-heavy loads

THK's model HRX is the company's roller-type linear motion (LM) guide. It features ultra-high rigidity in addition to the ability to handle ultra-heavy loads. On the HRX, each row of rollers is arranged at an angle of 45 degrees. This ensures the LM block receives an equal load rating (high rigidity) in all directions. Made for the development of high-precision, energy-saving, high-speed machines with long service lives.
Learn more.


Live tooling for popular turning center lines

Heimatec, a world leader in live tools and multi-spindle drill heads, announces the immediate availability of live tooling for all popular models in the Hyundai, Miyano, and Nakamura turning center lines. According to Preben Hansen, president of Platinum Tooling Technologies and master North American importer for Heimatec, "We're carrying a substantial inventory of live tools for our customers' machines now, and it represents a substantial financial and warehouse-space commitment we've made to support them in the North American market."
Learn more.


MW Components launches eCommerce experience

MW OnDemand combines over 1 million parts from well-known brands such as Century Spring, Accurate Screw Machine, RAF Electronic Hardware, Servometer, and Maudlin into a single location. Customers can select and purchase products from across the MW Components portfolio, simplifying the entire component sourcing process. Customers can shop tens of thousands of stock spring designs along with fasteners, shims, electrical contacts, metal stampings, tubing products, bellows, and more.
Learn more.


Desktop Metal qualifies 420 stainless steel for high-volume additive manufacturing

Desktop Metal recently announced the qualification of Grade 420 stainless steel (420 SS) for use on its Production System platform, which leverages patent-pending Single Pass Jetting (SPJ) technology designed to achieve the fastest build speeds in the metal additive manufacturing industry. Manufacturers can now leverage SPJ technology for the mass production of high-strength, end-use parts in 420 SS for demanding applications in industries such as medical, aerospace, defense, and consumer products.
Learn more.


Engineer's Toolbox:
How to select the proper pin for your application

Fasteners are some of the most important parts of an assembly. In this technical article, Jeff Greenwood from SPIROL focuses on how to select the proper pin for your application, including pins used as hinges, hub and shaft fixtures, alignment, movement stops, and joining. Press fit pins are discussed here, as they are the most common type of pins used in modern manufacturing. Lots of good info and examples in this one.
Read the full article.


New PETs for automotive exterior components

Polyplastics Group has introduced two new RENATUS polyethylene terephthalate (PET) grades that deliver superior mechanical properties, appearance, and weather resistance for automotive exterior components. RH030 (30% glass filled) and RH045 (45% glass filled) maintain their jet blackness and reduce whitening on the surface of molded articles in outdoor environments, making them ideally suited for applications such as automotive side mirrors and rear wiper arms/blades. Since PET parts are not painted, weathering degradation can occur over time when the glass filler starts to float and the jet blackness decreases. Accelerated weather resistance testing demonstrates that Polyplastics' new PET materials maintain lower index values than competing products, indicating that whitening is being reduced.
Learn more.


Quick release couplings with safety lock

To reduce the time involved in setting up equipment and production lines, JW Winco has incorporated a new coupling in its product portfolio. With the GN 1050 quick release coupling, components can be quickly and securely connected to a machine or device with just a click. A safety locking button protects the coupling from being accidentally opened.
Read the full article.


Wheel nut can't loosen by itself -- even in extreme applications

Designed for flat-faced steel rims, the Nord-Lock wheel nut safely secures wheels on on-road and off-road heavy vehicles by maintaining high clamping force even under extreme operating conditions. When assembled correctly, the Nord-Lock wheel nut cannot loosen by itself. It's a simple and cost-effective way to make wheels safe and secure for more productive and efficient operations.
See how Nord-Lock wheel nuts work.


Join carbon materials and more with innovative C-Solder

C-Solder tin-based soldering alloys from Goodfellow enable the joining of carbon materials as well as carbon to metals (copper, aluminum) and aluminum to aluminum. The resulting bond is mechanically strong and electrically conductive. C-Solder is both flux-free and lead-free, has a melting point of 232 degrees C (solidus temperature), has excellent flow, does not leave a residue, and is not affected by cleaning solvents.
View the 1-minute video.
Learn more from Goodfellow.


Tiny crossed roller bearings boast big capabilities

IKO International has unveiled its newest crossed roller bearing, the CRBT105A. This ultra-small, ultra-thin unit is designed to provide exceptional rigidity for space-constrained automated machine applications such as robots with articulating arms and compact surveillance cameras. The CRBT105A features a 10-mm bore diameter, 21-mm outside diameter, and a narrow width of 5 mm. Despite its compact size, this bearing offers rigidity up to four times greater than double-row angular contact ball-type bearings.
Learn more.


Steel disc couplings with updated design offer backlash-free operation in drive applications

RINGFEDER has released an updated version of its proven TND Series of steel disc couplings, which feature backlash-free torque transmission and excellent positioning accuracy in machines that involve synchronous operation, frequent starts and stops, or reversing operations. Typical drive applications include printing and packaging machines, compressors, pumps, and variable speed drives. Two coupling types are available: High Deflection (HD), which offers excellent shaft misalignment compensation, and High Torque (HT), which incorporates a higher power density. TND Series couplings achieve superior concentricity, maximum operational reliability, smooth operation, and low vibration levels.
Learn more.


Custom modifications for material handling rollers and bumpers

Imao-Fixtureworks offers custom modifications for its standard material handling rollers and bumpers. By modifying off-the-shelf products, a significant amount of time and money is saved. The products can be custom modified in various dimensions, shapes, and sizes to meet specific application requirements. For example, the outside diameter (O.D.) of a roller could be turned down, or a bumper of a certain width could be produced. These modifications eliminate the typical design and production time necessary for a custom roller or bumper to be tooled up and molded.
Learn more.


Optimal damping: Continental develops special bearings and other elements for EVs

Continental has developed special elastomer compounds for electric vehicles. They absorb the vibrations in the high-frequency range and are also lightweight. The company is also adapting other bearing elements such as battery mounts for buses or air press bearings in truck driver cabs to the requirements of e-mobility.
Read the full article.


Advanced graphenes for composites and thermoplastic applications

NeoGraf Solutions has extended its range of next-gen graphite materials with the launch of Graf-X graphene nanoplatelets (GNP) and graphene precursors (GP). Both high-performance additive materials deliver enhanced strength, performance, and reliability in a broad range of thermoset and thermoplastic applications. The new graphene materials can increase the toughness of plastics by up to 2.5 times without a significant weight increase. They can also double thermal conductivity and push the electrical conductivity of plastics into the anti-static and static-dissipative ranges.
Learn more.


You asked. We answered. Wave Spring FAQ E-book

Finding the best possible solution for your design challenge is no easy task. Smalley engineers have created a brand new Ask the Expert -- Wave Spring FAQ E-book that answers all of your wave spring questions in one simple guide. In this E-book, you will learn about wave spring performance, the design process, materials, and common applications.
Download Now!


Bad news for many OEMs: Research reveals traditional supply chains cannot meet EV demands

New research conducted by Wards Intelligence for Hexagon's Manufacturing Intelligence division reveals that traditional carmakers are not prioritizing the adoption of Industry 4.0 processes -- and so they risk being blindsided by new market entrants.

Big Tech and unicorn startups from Silicon Valley, the UK, and China are disrupting the electric vehicles (EV) market with advanced digitalization and automation capabilities, enabling time-to-market reductions from several years to as little as three months.

The EV market is projected to soar to global sales of 34.7 million by 2030, and it is critical for OEMs to match the disruptors' pace of innovation in order to participate. Despite this, only 48% of the auto industry report they plan to invest more in the types of Smart Manufacturing strategies their competitors are using, while 25% have no plans.

The new players benefit from the fact that low EV order volumes are helping speed overtake scale as the key factor in automotive manufacturing. This leaves conventional carmakers exposed when it comes to rapid innovation cycles, especially in the field of electronics, because:

  • Consumers expect more integrated digital technologies,
  • New car designs render as many as 90% of automotive parts from existing ICE vehicles redundant, and
  • Their strategies are more reliant on current supply chains and mass-manufacturing plants provided by companies such as Foxconn and Huawei.

The research finds that only 8% of carmakers see pure-play EV manufacturers as a threat, yet Tesla is already the market leader for battery electric vehicles (BEVs), while the likes of Lucid rapidly are scaling up with vertically integrated EV production.

In contrast, the data reveals a disconnect in the equivalent progress toward digital transformation by larger OEMs. While there has been a definite uptick in interest around "smart" automotive manufacturing, the research shows that recognition of its value is not always accompanied with implementation. Instead, the data reveals that the industry sees sourcing the required volume of parts and inability to achieve economies of scale as the greatest perceived risk to the success of EV supply chains.

"Our findings show that automakers' challenges in getting a foothold in the new EV world order are as much internal as they are external," said Paolo Guglielmini, president of Hexagon's Manufacturing Intelligence division. "The need to make EVs more affordable at current order volumes, coupled with delivering greater choice or 'cars to order,' means traditional high-volume manufacturing lines must be replaced by more agile manufacturing, built around speed to market and possibly forgoing the 'just-in-time' model for good. The challenge for incumbents is doing so, while still achieving the required profit margins. This can only be resolved through vertical integration of the development and manufacturing processes, but this isn't easy and necessitates a cultural shift to match the technology investments.

"Traditional automotive manufacturing business models are being reconfigured to prioritize flexibility over process, empowering people with more integrated processes and greater automation. Digital design and manufacturing approaches are key to agility and are a large part of the reason digital-natives are making waves in the market. The big OEMs are not standing still -- we are seeing incredible innovation by companies that are having to overhaul their global operations at a rate of knots -- but they need to embrace continuous improvement processes and revisit the degree and type of collaboration they have with their suppliers to ensure they come out on the winning side of the electric vehicle pivot."

Overall, the data shows that there is growing interest in smart manufacturing approaches that apply pervasive connectivity, cloud, and edge computing with momentum in data analytics, AI, and robotics, affirming that the industry is on the threshold of unprecedented change with very different ideas and levels of maturity on the journey to Industry 4.0. The convergence of these additional technologies will act as an adoption catalyst, with OEMs and their supply chains trying to adapt to this change as they evolve with the market.

"The Electric Vehicle Pivot" white paper created by Wards Intelligence for Hexagon provides insight and analysis based on research and survey data on the evolving automotive supply chain and the emergence of smart manufacturing associated with the escalating shift to electric vehicles (EV). It can be accessed here: https://emobility.hexagonmi.com/shaping-the-future-of-ev.

Source: Hexagon

Published November 2021

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