5-axis portal mill for prototype tool and mould making

A portal 5-axis milling machine has been introduced by German machine tool manufacturer Zimmermann at the lower end of its price range. Available in the UK and Ireland through sole agent Kingsbury, the compact FZU is intended primarily for prototype, tool and mould making as well as machining of composite components such as airframes.

Of thermo-symmetrical and stable design, the machine is ideal for highly productive manufacture from aluminium, plastics and model board. It is well suited to use in the automotive industry, which expects components with almost perfect surface finishes and ever higher accuracies and at the same time needs to introduce new vehicles to the market in ever shorter lead-times.

Unlike other machines in the Zimmermann range, the FZU is shipped in one piece so does not need to be assembled at the customer’s premises. The consequent short commissioning time means that the machining centre quickly starts producing components. As a special foundation is not required, installation cost is lower.

Working volume is large for the footprint, with a choice of X-axis travel of 2,000, 4,000 or 6,000 mm, a 3,000 mm Y-axis, and either 1,250 or 1,500 mm movement in Z. Acceleration at up to 3 m/s2 to 60 m/min feed rate ensures high productivity and short non-cutting times. Maximum table load is 10 tonnes.

The fourth and fifth CNC axes are provided by the new VH10 spindle head, now the smallest in the manufacturer’s range. Of slender design, it has minimal interference contours and high clamping force for stable milling.

A powerful HSK-A63 spindle is standard, delivering 34 kW of power and 39 Nm of torque continuously and offering a maximum speed of 24,000 rpm. The A-axis swivels through 220 degrees, while C-axis rotation is 300 or 360 degrees for the smaller and larger Z-axis travels respectively. Resolution in both rotary axes is 0.0001 degree.

Control is provided by either a Heidenhain TNC 640 or Siemens Sinumerik 840D sl. Other options are spindle probing, tool measuring, and capacity for 40 or 60 tools in the magazine instead of the standard 20 tools.

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