The machine base is a robust fully fabricated structure manufactured from mild steel with adjustable feet fitted for levelling. A ground mild steel plate is permanently secured to the framework to the right of the operator and supports 3 x 100mm bore pneumatic actuators with a second plate mounted on bearings providing the length adjustment facility to the operator’s left.
Each actuator is fitted with an individual hardened form tool to round out, profile, and size both ends of the flat tube stock simultaneously.
At the centre position a further actuator mounted within the framework uses a lever mechanism to work in conjunction with the form tool to produce a swage on one end of the tube to act as a positioning device when the tube is assembled into the radiator/cooler.
Initially on loading the tubes are located into slots machined out in a pair of hardened clamp tools and pushed up to a stop. On closing the guard doors the sequence automatically initiates with the closing of the clamps and the commencement of the forming operations. Again, pneumatic actuators are used to index the tubes to each forming position with the entire indexing mechanism being mounted on high load precision linear bearing units for ultimate reliability and accuracy.
The total forming process is complete when the finished tube is presented at the front of the machine for the operator to unload and start the next cycle by loading a blank tube. Length adjustment is a simple matter of removing a location pin and sliding both the tooling carriage and left hand clamp tool to one of many pre-determined positions and securing in place by replacing the pin. For longer tubes additional centre supports are provided to prevent deformation during forming, again using the quick release pin method for adjustment and setting.
Alternative forms can easily be produced as all tooling is interchangeable and numerous sets can be manufactured to suit customer’s individual product requirements. Setting collars and dowel locations are utilised for all tools to ensure no finite setting is required maximising the quick change and rapid turn around benefits.
The plc control provides the ability to set a batch count, with simple start/stop functions and a re-set facility in the event of an unscheduled e-stop or guard open condition to ensure no tool damage occurs regardless of when the stop transpired. The electrical control system is housed in a cabinet fitted within the machine framework with a separate enclosure housing the actuator control valves. All electrical connections are via plug and socket for ease of maintenance with all pneumatic connections using quick release push in fittings. The machine is fully guarded to CE standards with clear polycarbonate panels to give all round visibility and the entire guard framework is removable for maintenance access.
- Unique tooling design to produce accurate and repeatable forms.
- Use of pneumatics over hydraulics giving a cleaner and simpler system.
- Forms both ends of the tube at once for rapid cycle time.
- Flexibility to produce multiple tube forms and lengths.
- Self-contained machine.
- Only requires electrical and air supplies.
- Speed of changeover.
- Automated operation.
- Fully adjustable.
- Simple to operate.