Hermle’s Inaugural Five-Axis Summit: Unlocking the Potential of Precision Machining

Hermle, a leading five-axis machine tool supplier, hosted its first-ever Five-Axis Summit from October 3-5 at its North American headquarters in Franklin, Wisconsin. Aimed at dispelling misconceptions and fostering education on five-axis machining, the summit attracted manufacturers and industry experts keen on exploring the complexities and advantages of this advanced technology.

The event featured an informative technical agenda, covering diverse five-axis topics, including controls, part planning, and automation. Hermle’s emphasis on inclusivity was evident, with content designed to be agnostic to machine tool brands. Seven live machine demonstrations on the showroom floor showcased the practical applications of five-axis technology, while 30 partner exhibitors represented crucial peripherals such as tooling, workholding, and software.

Dispelling the myth that five-axis machining is challenging, Markus Puntigam, VP of Sales and Marketing at Hermle, highlighted the prevalence and ease of 3+2 machining. The summit showcased a 3+2 machining application, emphasizing its accessibility and widespread use compared to full simultaneous five-axis motion.

Cullen Morrison, Regional Sales Manager at Hermle, encouraged a shift in perspective among job shops, emphasizing that embracing five-axis machining could lead to heightened efficiency and competitiveness. Attendees like Dylan Jackson, CEO and programmer at Proteum Machining, recognized the strategic importance of adopting five-axis capabilities for improved part complexity and reduced setup times.

The summit also shed light on the integration of automation with five-axis machining. Hermle showcased three fully automated machine demonstrations, featuring the HS Flex/HS Flex Heavy pallet system, RS 05 robotic cell, and RS 1 with a robotic arm. Automation, Morrison emphasized, is not limited to high-volume production but can also enhance efficiency for smaller batches and single-piece manufacturing.

Gail Plush, a manufacturing engineer at Rolls Royce, shared insights into his facility’s extensive use of five-axis machines since 2009, employing Hermle machines since 2016. Plush highlighted the facility’s commitment to continuous advancement, leveraging automation solutions like pallet pools, extended tool changers, and advanced sensors for data-driven operations.

Hermle’s Five-Axis Summit successfully showcased the transformative potential of five-axis machining, encouraging manufacturers to embrace innovation and automation for enhanced productivity and competitiveness. The event is set to become a recurring feature in non-IMTS years, reaffirming Hermle’s commitment to educating and empowering the manufacturing community.

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