An automotive components manufacturer in Spain has purchased Renishaw Equator, the versatile shop floor comparative gauge to check the quality of stamped parts and assemblies.
Renishaw Equator comparative gauges can reduce quality check waiting time to zero, gauge difficult features and are available at a very competitive price.
Eponsa, located near Barcelona, Spain purchased the innovative shop floor comparative gauge to reduce non-productive waiting times involved in quality checks while maintaining the high quality and manufacturing efficiencies critical for the success of an automotive subcontractor.
The Equator gauge can also scan the form of part features with its SP25 probe and change styli with the stylus change rack, included as standard to check a large variety of parts.
Explaining that the Equator could reduce or eliminate quality room waiting times, Eponsa says that the comparative gauge can be used on the shop floor alongside the machines producing the parts. With Equator available at a low purchase cost, the company can actually afford to position several Equators at various locations.
Eponsa plans to have Equators alongside the stamping area and in the area for assembling mechanisms where their speed of operation and measurement capability will ensure rapid, comprehensive and fully automated gauging.
Automated shop floor gauging
Equator gauges can reduce the workload on shop floors significantly by replacing measurement processes using hand gauges.
Thousands of parts are inspected every day using documented procedures including visual checks followed by dimensional measurements with hand instruments such as callipers and plug gauges.
Operators can usually detect potential problems before the scrap parts are made, thanks to the automated stamping processes that make them very consistent and reduce the chances of human error.
But measurement with hand gauges is time consuming as well as repetitive and depends on the operator’s skills. Equator is an independent and traceable test of part quality, with the difference that all shop floor operators can use it rather than just the quality staff, reducing the quality check waiting time.
Easy shop floor use
The Equator system includes easy-to-use graphical software called MODUS Organiser designed for shop floor operators to activate checks with just a few minutes of training. The operators can select programs and start checking the parts in a few seconds, with an immediate view of how long the check will take on a countdown timer.
Once the check is complete, the operator sees a clear indication of whether a part has passed or failed, leaving the quality department to deal with only suspicious parts, instead of every part, reducing the load on the department considerably.
Restricted access to programs
The access-controlled software allows operators to select gauging programs, but not to change them in any way, ensuring that the programs are running correctly.
Operators can also find the right program in MODUS Organiser easily with photos provided for each part that also shows them how the part is placed on the fixture. The intention is to use as few fixtures as possible, with many parts using each configuration.
Gauging repeatability through mastering
Equator uses a comparison method of mastering and measuring typically used in dedicated gauging systems. A master component with features of known dimensions is used to ‘zero’ the system, with all subsequent measurements compared to this part.
The key to the Equator system is a highly repeatable and radically different metrology mechanism based on a structure known as parallel kinematics. This mechanism is lightweight, allowing rapid motion, yet very stiff during comparison measurement of features, with repeatability of less than ±2 µm.
Improved efficiency and reduced costs
Automotive subcontractors are under pressure to reduce costs while simultaneously improving efficiency and quality. Eponsa firmly believe that Equator gauging technology is the breakthrough they need to help them achieve the right balance.
Equator comparative gauges are available in Australia and New Zealand through Renishaw Oceania .