5-axis radial machining Open Mind presents new function in its CAD/CAM suite
The Hypermill CAD/CAM suite from Open Mind is a highly regarded end-to-end complete solution in the mould and die industry, as it also covers aspects such as electrode manufacturing and wire EDM. It is now the introduction of the function — 5-axis radial machining — to take center stage.
5-axis radial machining function is especially suitable for the process-optimised production of round moulds with surfaces that require zero post-processing, such as in blow moulds. In bumper production, high surface qualities are achieved by using high-precision machining technology.
The rise in complexity of bottle designs is also increasing the quality expectations put on blow moulds. There is a wide variety of containers that often have additional features that double up as functional elements. This can include handles, decorations, and individual brand logos. The 3-axis machining of these types of molds sometimes requires very long tools and part reclamping to mill undercut areas. A 3-axis approach also means that the point where the milling tool makes contact with the semicircular profile varies, which can result in uneven surfaces. This is where optimized 5-axis strategies can help.
The improvements to the current version of Hypermill combined with 5-axis radial machining are setting standards in blow mould machining. Thanks to a new, radial projection method, the toolpaths are calculated extremely quickly, and the user can apply various machining strategies to respond flexibly to the component conditions. The new ‘Flow Equidistant’ infeed strategy is the first of its kind that supports the generation of toolpaths with a constant infeed for vertical and challenging surfaces. This means these surfaces can be integrated into the overall machining sequence and processed in a single step. Seamless machining with a very high surface quality is guaranteed. Every machining sequence needs to produce sharp corners at the junction of the upper and lower halves of the mould to avoid problems during the moulding process. An automatic tangent extension feature eliminates the manual CAD steps needed to extend the numerous surface elements found in complex designs.
Bumper segments with a high level of surface quality
Hypermill high-precision machining technologies are also used in the tool and mold making to manufacture bumper segments, for example. The highly superior quality of the components’ surface is achieved using ball and barrel cutters. Two CAM technologies ensure that the various tools and positions during machining are no longer recognisable after the process has been completed. The first of these is the ‘Surface precision mode,’ which calculates the toolpath directly on the surfaces of the CAD model. The machining tolerance can be controlled down to the µm range. The distribution of the NC point is optimally adapted to the machining tolerance, resulting in a homogeneous milling pattern. The second of these is the ‘Smooth overlap’ function, which improves the surface quality of transitional areas, making transitions so smooth that they are hard to measure and almost invisible to the naked eye.
The new 5-axis radial machining makes this software even more suitable for industries that require high-quality moulds, such as the food and beverage, pharmaceutical, cosmetics, household goods and automotive industries. The CAD/CAM suite covers every process from the data import to the NC code simulation — and that includes electrode manufacturing and wire EDM. Hypermill offers extensive options to automate the CAM programming process and can be integrated into higher-level systems such as MES or PLM systems.