MoldMaking Technology

NOV 2018

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EDM/Additive Manufacturing 16 MoldMaking Technology —— NOVEMBER 2018 capable of accommodating these large workpieces are often the premium, large- capacity models in the EDM lineup. These premium models tend to offer many capabilities that, while impressive, are not strictly necessary for the application at hand, and thus add unnecessary cost. Moving forward, expect EDM manufac- turers to introduce models that target the additive marketplace more adequately, with fast cutting speeds and large capacity but without advanced technology for six-, seven- or eight-pass •inishes. These machines will be a much better •it for the type of additive work that looms on the horizon without breaking the bank. The automatic wire threading (AWT) on these machines will be important as well. While additive jobs will often not require numerous •ine-start holes (unlike some typical EDM jobs), they will still require a highly capable threader. This is because €D parts frequently use exotic geometries, hollow cavities and more. These factors, alongside the increased wire breaks on €D applications, mean that a reliable threader will be a key factor for success. Look for threaders that are annealing, which keeps the wire straight even through a tall, hollow workpiece. Also verify that AWT performance is reliable even at the full Z height, as operators can expect to see taller work with some frequency. The growth of additive manufacturing seems poised to bene•it mold builders here in the United States, where access to high-end technology may contribute to reshoring. However, the shops that will capture much of this new business will be the shops that recognize new demands and new ways of doing things. As the capacity of 3D printers grows, it is critical to select an EDM machine with a tall Z height to accommodate. CONTRIBUTORS Evan Syverson is the additive and HSM business manager of Sodick Inc., and Tully Mijatovic is an applications engineer for Sodick Inc. FOR MORE INFORMATION Sodick Inc. / 888-639-2325 / sodick.com eep your Hot Runner & Cavity plates ready for production. Let Thermal-Tech keep it clean, maintained and ready to run. We handle PM services front to back and accessory cooling plates in between! Thermal-Tech SERVICES MANIFOLD CLEANING EXTRUDE HONING HOT RUNNER CONTROLS HOT RUNNER REBUILDING ULTRASONIC CLEANING K

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