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Turning reinvented

Technology 2017-04-19 Åsa Backman Stefan Estassy

PrimeTurning™ is a new turning concept that will very well change the way we look at turning.

​​​The Sandvik Coromant Center in Sandviken, Sweden is a hub of intense activity involving testing, training, meetings and collaborations. The word on everyone’s lips is PrimeTurning™, a completely new turning concept with the potential to change the way the world looks at turning. The concept comprises a new turning method, dedicated CoroTurn® Prime tools and the PrimeTurning code generator. R&D engineers Ronnie Löf, Adam Johansson and Joe Truong and product manager Håkan Ericksson explain the innovation.

​What is PrimeTurning?
Löf: Simply summarized, PrimeTurning is a turning strategy where you enter the component at the chuck and remove material in the direction towards the end of the component instead of the conventional way from end to chuck. This way of turning allows for a small entering angle, which provides considerable productivity gains. However, PrimeTurning allows for all-directional turning, which means that conventional turning can be used with the same tools, even though conventional turning will only provide conventional productivity results.

What problem does it solve?
Johansson: Every machining strategy has its pros and cons that have to be balanced. Experienced turners know that a small entering angle allows for increased feed. Yet they are bound to use entering angles of around 90 degrees to be able to reach the shoulder and to avoid the nasty long, curved chips that a small entering angle characteristically provides. PrimeTurning solves these problems. It provides perfect reach at the shoulder and allows for entering angles of 25 to 30 degrees, with excellent chip control and maintained tolerances.

​It sounds so easy. What’s the innovation?
Truong: I’ve seen customers turning from chuck to end with small entering angles before, but the problem has always been chip control, regardless of what direction you turn. It’s just not been possible. The innovation includes mentally overcoming an established fact and then solving the obstacles. Chip breakers, edge preparation and a machining strategy that accounts for chip thickness and gradual release of cutting forces when entering the workpiece are a few examples.

What customers will benefit from PrimeTurning?
Ericksson: PrimeTurning will actually boost productivity for a large portion of all turning operations. However, large batch manufacturers will see the greatest cost-per-part savings, especially if turning is a bottleneck operation. The method requires stable components and a stable setup, due to the increased radial forces. This means that conventional turning is required for vibration-prone parts of slender components.

How is PrimeTurning perceived by the customers?
Johansson: We’ve made several tests now, and everyone – colleagues, partners and customers – is impressed. Cory Koch, an application engineer at Hartwig Inc., who was introduced to PrimeTurning and the CoroTurn Prime tools at a customer event in the US in October 2016, told us, “These tools will change the way our customers process their parts, allowing better tool life, much higher material removal rates and the ability to maintain tighter tolerances. In my experience, these properties do not normally go hand-in-hand; but with the dedicated tooling, they come together eloquently. The tools are so versatile in their design that you must think outside of the box to start to scratch the surface of what is possible.”



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