Supporting students studying the manufacturing trade is critical when it comes to the future of our industry. Ensuring that they receive proper education with the advanced equipment that is used in the field is also important.
To enforce these beliefs, Haimer USA entered a partnership agreement with the Institute for Manufacturing Productivity at York Technical College (Rock Hill, S.C.). By supplying equipment to the school, the company gives students, and those already working in the manufacturing industry who receive training at York, exposure to processes that can make them and their employers more successful.
Since it opened in October 2002, the technical college’s Institute for Manufacturing Productivity has served more than 2,000 industry students worldwide. The institute represents a joint effort of several companies to provide an advantage for their customers by delivering education and training opportunities. Within its 20,000-square-foot facility, instructors from the technical college, along with adjunct instructors from partner companies, train students how to use state-of-the-art machining centers and other high-tech manufacturing equipment. Also, the institute assists local industry with identifying in-house manufacturing, process and operational improvements.
York acquired a Haimer tool balancing machine and a Haimer shrink-fit system in 2006. "We use them internally for our machining instruction and to expose folks from local industry to the concepts," says Tom Dickerson, York Tech’s machine tool technology department manager. "We also wanted to try to get ahead of local industry to show them the way to do things a little bit better," he adds.
The Haimer-York Tech association began with a chance meeting between Mr. Dickerson and local Haimer sales representative Tom Marron, which led to a demonstration of the equipment. "That’s when I said I have to have it," Mr. Dickerson recalls. "When I saw it I was sold."
The balancing machine, Haimer’s TD2002, is accurate and easy to use, according to the company. Its accuracy comes from centrifugal force sensors, hard bearing technology, a clamping spindle adapter and its solid calibration process. The ease of use comes from its simple process: After the imbalance is measured, software calculates where to add, remove or displace weight on the toolholder to ensure that the tool will be balanced quickly and easily so that it runs smoothly. This allows the machine tool an opportunity to achieve its full potential by increasing machining capacity.
Haimer’s shrink-fit systems use high frequency and high power to heat the toolholder for quick tool removal and insertion. With Haimer’s intelligent coil, the system adapts to the chuck, distributes heat more evenly and only heats the clamping area of the holder, which decreases the time it takes to cool down and is gentler on the tool.
Once inserted into their holders and balanced, York Tech’s tools are mounted on one of between six and 15 new Okuma machine tools it uses in its instruction. The Okuma machines come via a partnership forged between the school and Okuma 7 years ago. The school also has partnership agreements with Sandvik as well as other companies. The college provides Okuma machine users with operator/programmer training as well as electrical and mechanical maintenance training.
"Some of the training is on spindle replacement," Mr. Dickerson explains. "So while they’re here, we give them 15 or 20 minutes to show them how to prevent having to replace spindles by balancing their tools."
Brendt Holden, president of Haimer USA, says, "York Technical College is offering a unique service to both its students and the applications engineers who take the Okuma training. Tool balancing is a big part of preventive maintenance, and we’re happy to be part of it."
Moreover, Mr. Holden says, "We feel it’s important to assist in providing the latest technology to colleges to help educate the future employees in our industry. With the present and future of our industry being so dedicated to lean manufacturing, the ability to fully explain preventive maintenance is critical."