All the latest news from Ward CNC


T W Ward CNC Machinery (Ward CNC) based in Sheffield & Redditch has added the exciting new high specification AXILE range of overhead traveling gantry-type, five-axis vertical machining centres to its already considerable range of multi-axis, single set-up manufacturing solutions.

“The AXILE G8 model brings to the UK market a new dimension of high-end, high-speed, five-axis machining,” at competitive prices says Ward CNC Managing Director Simon Whitworth.

“Our customers now have access to a machine with a proven track record in industry sectors that include aerospace - where it is efficiently and effectively machining turbine blades and other complex workpieces, for example. Crucially, the machine’s price-competitiveness will enable UK companies to enjoy similar success but at a price for capability that few will match.”

The announcement by Ward CNC that it is handling the machine - manufactured by Buffalo Machinery in Taiwan – on an exclusive distributor basis in the UK and Ireland, perfectly complements and enhances its already well established ranges from - Hyundai-Wia, Hartford, Takisawa Japan, Takisawa Taiwan, Soraluce and Hankook.

Buffalo Machinery has been manufacturing machine tools since 1997 (the company was established in 1979) and it applies this long-established expertise in the AXILE G8’s design and construction.

The G8 model incorporates a Kessler (Germany) 800 mm diameter table unit for workpieces weighing 1,300 kgs and X, Y and Z axes capacities of 670 mm by 820 mm by 600 mm. The machine’s positioning capability of 0.008 mm and repeatability of 0.004 mm are provided via direct servo-driven double roller type linear guideways and linear measurement feedback scales (0.0001 mm resolution) on the X, Y and Z axes with pre-loaded double nut ballscrews. The Y-Axis has twin LH and RH Linear Guideway, drive and measurement system and the Z-Axis incorporates a three guideway design for enhanced rigidity and cutting performance. The feed rate available in X, Y and Z is 60 m/min.

Oil cooled rotary torque motors drive the rotary C-Axis with dual torque motor drive on the swiveling A-Axis (+/- 5 secs of arc rotary scale feedback). The 360° C-Axis positions at 100 rev/min and the A-Axis (+/- 120°) has a positioning speed of 80 rev/min. Hydraulic brakes are incorporated in every element to enhance cutting capability when static. The 800 mm diameter tee slotted table platen is prepared with 3 off 80 bar hydraulic ports and 1 off 6 bar pneumatic port for fixture and workholding management.

The G8 design incorporates many features such as 24 individual temperature sensors throughout the entire machine to feed back operational thermal status to the CNC for accuracy performance enhancement and specialized coolant delivery, flushing and swarf management.

Two Kessler (Germany) HSK A63 synchronous motor spindle options are available incorporating Air / Oil lubrication – 39.0 kW, 15,000 RPM, 187 Nm and 35.0 kW, 20,000 RPM, 130 Nm. The spindle has 20 bar through spindle coolant as standard with options up to 70 bars pressure and higher including stepless programmable pressure, cartridge and paper band filtration plus additional coolant management features.

Twin Automatic Tool Exchange carousels with 32 / 64, 48 / 96 or 60 / 120 tools are mounted in the machine behind the spindle offering an ATC capacity up to 120 tools to facilitate sister tools, complex part machining and unmanned operation.

2 laser tool setting options are available – U-Type table mounted for high accuracy or wall to wall type with auto protection covers for enhanced protection.

The G8 is ergonomically designed to provide good user friendly features for the operator such as an automatic sliding roof to facilitate loading and unloading by overhead crane and close access to the worktable and spindle.

There is a choice of CNC system – Heidenhain iTNC 530 or TNC 640, Siemens 840D or Fanuc 31iMB5 – and the innovative Smart Technology control functionality, which is embedded in the machine’s Industry 4.0 strategies. Standard features include Kinematics, Dynamic Collision Monitoring, Tool Centre point Management, Tilted Working Plane, Collision Avoidance, 5-Axis Transformation plus much more.

Additional AXILE features include:

  • TPC - Tool-Tip Positioning Control – real-time direct displacement measuring/monitoring for enhanced accuracy;
  • SVS - Spindle Vibration Supervision – spindle vibration monitoring and real time control technology offers three levels of spindle vibration monitoring.
  • MRRO - Metal Removal Rate Optimization – chatter-free machining via cutting force monitoring;
  • AAC - Axial Accuracy Control – thermal monitoring and compensation technology;

Options include automatic workpiece measurement, automatic compensation of linear and rotary axes displacement via Heidenhain Kinematics functionality. As standard, the machine is supplied with chain-type chip conveyor.

The result is a first class machine tool offering exceptional performance, accuracy, quality and a range of features at a price range that offers exceptional value. The latest G6 model from AXILE offering a design that accommodates full factory automation capability can be seen soon at Ward CNC.

The G8 can be seen at Ward CNC’s Sheffield Head Office Showroom being put through its paces where several open house demonstration events are planned. Call Ward CNC’s sales team on 0114 276 5411 to register an interest in attending one of the demonstration days. Tailored finance packages, preventative maintenance and extended warranty packages are also available.