The CNC drilling machine Endeavour, uses unique steel fabrication technology to achieve industry-leading productivity for a drill/saw with three spindles, all with sub-axis positioning. Ficep was the first firm to develop automation for three spindle-drilling lines in the early 60’s.
The Endeavour uses a positive rack and pinion system to achieve exceptional accuracy. The positioning of the section to be processed is achieved to exacting standards regardless of the section’s surface condition. This carriage system also automatically measures the stock length of the section prior to processing to maximize material utilization. This positive feeding system advances the section through the drill/saw so all the stock length material can be utilized without requiring a drop. If a trim cut is desired, this is automatically removed and placed on a small parts conveyor without any involvement of the operator or attendant. If short parts are required, or a drop is generated, they are processed in the same fully automatic manner. The Endeavour three spindle drilling line is engineered with FICEP’s “Direct Drive” spindle technology to deliver 100% of the motor’s 31 KW (42 HP) power to the tool at speeds up to 5,000 RPM. The positive spindle feed is designed to take full advantage of today’s high performance carbide tooling. Each spindle is furnished with a 6-position automatic tool changer to accommodate HSK-50 tool holders to generate holes sizes of up to 40 mm (1-9/16”). The Endeavour family of drills has the unique feature that each drilling spindle has its own independent sub-axis so operations can be generated in all three surfaces simultaneously even when they are not in line. For example the three spindles could be milling, scribing and drilling at the same time. Studies have concluded that the drilling process can be over three times quicker when comparing the drilling productivity of the Endeavour to three spindle drills without sub-axis positioning. Each of the 3 drill spindles can be furnished with scribing tools to establish layout locations, detail orientation and weld symbols where required. When scribing is accomplished with a drill line that has sub-axis positioning all three surfaces are scribed simultaneously! As an option an underside-scribing tool, also with sub axis positioning, can be added to permit 4-side simultaneous scribing to eliminate manual layout.
FICEP invented and has received numerous patents for the automatic importation of the locations of the intersecting members from the 3-D model. These innovative patents eliminate any manual programming to establish not just holes but all the required layout locations. The Endeavour family of FICEP multiple spindle drilling lines can be fully integrated with a FICEP engineered and manufactured band saw of a corresponding size. The band saws feature full automation of clamping, feeding, blade adjustments and rotation of the saw to the desired miter angle with positive rack and pinion positioning. Even the lateral position of the optional vertical clamp can be adjusted to accommodate the depth of the section being processed. Industries leading cutting times are achieved with a proprietary pneumatic blade dampening system to reduce blade harmonics while increasing the life of the cutting tool. As an alternative to integrating a band saw into the line, a robotic thermal cutting system can be implemented. The robot uses both plasma and oxy-fuel thermal cutting technologies in conjunction with an automatic torch changer to achieve cut off, copes, mechanical openings, rat holes, weld prep and more.