In the panel processing process, the handling of the machined panels is of paramount importance, perhaps as much as the machining itself, because accidental falls or tipping can damage the panels themselves or require the involvement of extra labour for low value-added activities. Automating unloading operations, on the other hand, guarantees precise handling that safeguards the panels, avoiding waste of material, time and resources.
How can panel unloading from the CNC be automated?
In order to make the unloading of CNC-machined panels automatic, at Muratori Machines we have developed and patented Off Loader, the automatic unloading system, connected to the Alu Ranger Vertical Table Machining Centre.
The Off Loader is equipped with a tilting vacuum table, covered with a breathable cloth, also patented, and is able to tilt until it covers the table top of the machining centre to pick up and hold the panels, and return to a horizontal position to unload the workpieces.
Off Loader performs the automatic unloading of panels in 4 steps:
- The unloading table approaches and aligns with the Work Centre to pick up the panels
- The vacuum table is pressed onto the workpieces, triggering the vacuum exchange of the table of the Machining Centre with the table of the Unloader
- The unloading table moves away from the machining centre and back into a horizontal position, leaving the CNC ready to load and position the next panel via Alu Loader and Alu Feeder.
- The operator operates the breathable belt, via foot pedal, to approach the panels and complete the unloading from the Off Loader.
Off Loader, therefore, is the optimal, patented solution for generating efficiency by automating the unloading of aluminium and composite panels, processed by the Vertical Table Machining Centre. But that’s not all. At Muratori Machines we know that every machining operation can be perfected, made more efficient from a practical and economic point of view. To this end, we have developed the Integrated Work Cell, which complements the Off Loader technology with the Alu Loader automatic loader and positioner, both of which are connected to the vacuum system of the Alu Ranger Vertical Table Machining Centre.
The Alu Loader allows the machined panels to be loaded automatically, by picking them up from pallets with gripper arms equipped with vacuum suction cups, and to position them correctly on the sacrificial board (or spoil board), at the same height and inclination as the table of the Alu Ranger machining centres, without tipping.
For machining panels made of ACM/ACP, Mineral Core, HPL, Fibrocement, Aluminium Honeycomb, Aluminium Corrugated, the most suitable technology is the CNC Alu Ranger VGroove, a powerful Machining Centre with Vertical Table designed and equipped for cutting, drilling and milling composite panels at very high speed, which permits adapting tools, rotation speed, machining feed and lubrication, depending on the material.
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