All of the technical services at Jones Metal Products Company anticipate that at least one operation will be required for a part before or after it is hydroformed, rubber pad formed, or formed on a fluid cell press. To respond to the need for trimming, Jones Metal has several ways to go in-house, depending on the shape of the part, the industry using the part, and the kinds of operations that need to be accomplished. The laser cutters offer specific trimming operations for metal parts formed at Jones Metal Products.
The 3-axis laser cuts most of the sheet metal blanks which supply the forming machines. Customers can be assured that sheet metal is not wasted (cuts are programmed to maximize the number of blanks produced from a sheet), and cuts are made cleanly and accurately. This machine cuts through sheets up to 90 thousandths of an inch thick.
The 5-axis laser has trimming features that make it a perfect fit with many of the parts formed at Jones Metal. The technology fits well with complex-contoured parts for aerospace and other industries. Cutting on a contoured surface while remaining normal to the surface is difficult, if not impossible, on most trimming machines. But the 5-axis laser does the job, and tolerances can to be held to as little as ten thousandths of an inch.
On the 5-axis laser trim work can be accomplished with the use of simple locating fixtures, instead of costly die sets. The fixtures are used to secure the part in the machine. These fixtures can range from inexpensive and simple to design fixtures called â€œherringbones,â€ or more complex fixtures utilizing clamps and vacuum to secure the part in place. Customer requirements typically dictate what type fixture is necessary; all are designed and manufactured in- house. Keeping a contoured surface immovable while drilling holes and trimming flanges also is accomplished with fixtures. They are both a time-saver and a money-saver.
There are parts that require both a 5-axis laser and the 5-axis machining center treatment, as with some aerospace parts. Some customers require a â€œpre-trimâ€ at the laser cutter and a finishing trim at the machining center. Jones Metal is set up to handle both in-house with state of the art equipment and experienced technicians at each station.
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