Swiss-style machines dominate the production of small, precise parts for medical, watchmaking and other applications, but with more than a dozen sharp little tools ganged up in various locations within their confined work areas, changeovers pose a real challenge. Because typical ER toolholders for Swiss-style machines do not include a locking nut, the wrench frequently slips off, leading to operator injuries – some severe – and to tooling damage. Although some shops assume these accidents are unavoidable, today’s tooling innovations not only can ensure operator safety during tool changeouts, they also can speed and simplify the process.
Toolholder manufacturers develop their products to solve problems, and the solution for Swiss-style machines is simple: Create an anti-slip nut design that keeps the collet wrench securely in place. REGO-FIX first took that approach when it introduced its AX-style nuts, with a raised-tooth pattern on their end faces to engage a wrench more securely. REGO-FIX intRlox Hi-Q/ERMX clamping nuts take that innovation further, with a patented anti-slip design that uses rounded locking grooves around the nut profiles. In this configuration, the wrench grips from the sides of the nut, and the action of tightening or loosening locks the wrench in place. To maximize convenience, the design retains compatibility with all existing ER collets and can replace any brand of older-style nut.
To enhance their fit in the tight space of a Swiss-style machine’s work area, intRlox nuts use a slim, compact profile with a minimal external diameter and no raised or protruding teeth. The lack of raised areas that can wear or round enables the nuts to retain more of their material and gives them additional strength. To give operators even more accessibility for tool changeovers, REGO-FIX also created an extension tube accessory that matches the mini nut wrench on one end and the intRlox mini nuts on the other, with the option of using either a ratchet or a torque wrench.
Along with intRlox mini nuts, REGO-FIX innovated SwissQuick ER to ER adapters, an easy, unique way to preset tool length offline, speed up the replacement of worn tools and reduce downtime for increased productivity. These “mini-holders” provide the shortest, most-rigid ER-to-ER reduction available, with a solid ER body profile on the back end and a smaller ER-series cavity on the front. The solid-body design heightens accuracy, with a cavity TIR of less than 0.0001″ (3 um) from taper to collet, repeatable within 0.0005″ on tool length.
Additionally, to maximize ease and accuracy on Swiss-style machines, REGO-FIX high-precision cylindrical shank toolholders incorporate a double ER collet cavity that accommodates two cutting tools. These toolholders come in a wide variety of metric and inch sizes, include intRlox mini clamping nuts and can double as extensions. With TIR of less than 0.0001″ from ER cavity to cylindrical O.D., these toolholders offer precise results.
Swiss-style machines excel at turning small parts with demandingly strict tolerances, but their unique capabilities come with some complex challenges. To support precision manufacturing and enhance operator safety at the same time, REGO-FIX addresses those challenges with targeted solutions that simplify precision manufacturing.