Digital Optical Comparator

Methods Machine Tools Inc. is the exclusive distributor of the VisionGauge digital optical comparators throughout North America.

Methods Machine Tools Inc. is the exclusive distributor of the VisionGauge digital optical comparators throughout North America. These optical comparators, developed by VISIONx Inc., are available at Methods Technology Centers and distributors.

The digital optical comparators include the ability to digitally compare a part to its CAD data quickly and easily, at high accuracy, the company says. This data can also be archived and documented electronically. This digital optical comparator automatically produces an operator-independent “pass/fail” result and display any deviation from specification by comparing a part against bi-directional tolerances at user-specified control points.

The digital optical comparators combine the capabilities of an optical comparator, video CMM, machine vision and vision system. Similar to a CMM, VisionGauges are designed to produce highly accurate measurements in both manual and fully automated modes. The comparators feature an extensive set of machine vision tools to carry out pattern matching, color verification, defect detection and more. A high resolution imaging system features detailed inspection of subjective properties, such as surface finish verification, digital image collection, annotation and electronic distribution.

These comparators are delivered shopfloor ready, are portable and are also equally suitable for the metrology lab. Fully digital, they efficiently collect complete digital records of inspections including images, measurements and other statistical data that are critical for Statistical Process Control for documenting quality compliance. A range of powerful edge detection measurement tools produce sub-pixel accurate readings. Equipped with a barcode reader and joystick interface, the comparators are very intuitive and require only minimal operator training.

The comparators feature a high-resolution megapixel digital camera and a low-distortion, wide field-of-view telecentric lens for capturing a high contrast and geometrically precise part image that can be easily viewed in full daylight, the company says. For easy part fixturing, they include a hard chrome-plated X-axis stage constructed of hardened tool steel and designed with dual standard dovetail grooves.

Featuring VisionGauge online software, the comparators project high resolution video images from the camera, along with a digital CAD data “overlay,” on a large quad-monitor display. Systems are offered in a small space-saving footprint of only 66" (168 cm) long × 20" (51 cm) wide.

These instruments are available in industry standard 5 ×, 10 ×, 20 ×, 50 × and 100 × magnifications. The systems are also available in multi-magnification configurations. Systems are Windows-based and delivered network-ready in a “rolling cart” shopfloor setup.

 

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