« BACK  

Unique robotic tube bending system can dramatically speed production

The Twister robotic tube bending machine provides unprecedented flexibility for manufacturing complex preassembled tubular parts
The Twister robotic tube bending machine provides unprecedented flexibility for manufacturing complex preassembled tubular parts

A unique robot-based CNC tube bending machine that provides metal fabricators with unprecedented flexibility for manufacturing complex preassembled tubular parts is now available from Unison.

Known as the 'Twister', the machine combines a high performance multi-axis industrial robot with an exceptionally compact and versatile all-electric tube bending station. It is ideal for companies seeking to streamline their manufacturing operations by eliminating process stages, or wishing to accelerate small batch size production of specialist parts by minimizing tool changeovers.

The Twister robotic tube bender has been launched following the new joint sales and marketing initiative announced by Unison and Rosenberger, which aims to provide customers with the widest choice of all-electric tube bending and allied processing automation on the market, backed by extensive applications support expertise. Both companies are renowned innovators of tube bending automation, and their combined range of all-electric, servomotor-controlled machines now covers tube diameters from 16 to 200 mm.

Conventionally, most tube bending operations are performed on straight sections of tube, and other components that make up the final assembled product such as tube fittings or other rigid tubes or hoses are added after bending in subsequent process stages. To a large degree, this manufacturing sequence is dictated by the tube bender, which grips the tube with an in-line collet to progressively push it past the bending head and rotate it for any out-of-plane bends. As a consequence, the tube material needs to be straight and free from obstructions, and bends can only be made in an order that corresponds to the direction of tube advancement.

Developed by Rosenberger specifically to provide a more flexible solution than conventional systems for bending preassembled tubular parts, the Twister uses a fully articulated six-axis industrial robot for all tube transport, material feed and rotate functions. The robot arm is equipped with pneumatically-powered gripper fingers - which are part-specific and exchangeable under program control - and handles all X, Y and Z axis movement of the tube as it is being bent.

All axes are driven by servo motors and capable of extremely precise positioning - tubes can be bent to within 0.05 degrees, with a repeatable feed accuracy of just 0.01 mm. Unlike conventional tube benders, the grippers can relinquish their hold and reposition during the bending cycle while the tube is clamped - for example, to hold the other end of the tube - enabling complex shapes to be formed in any desired sequence.

The pedestal-mounted bending station can be equipped with up to five bending heads to facilitate uninterrupted production of parts with multiple bend radii, and is capable of right and left bending to any angle up to 210 degrees. Changeover of tools and part programs is simple and can be accomplished in less than five minutes. Like the robot, the bending heads are driven by high accuracy, energy-efficient servo motors, and offer fully programmable speed profiles for optimum control of material flow.

All machine setup and operation is controlled via an ergonomic HMI, based on a mobile touch-sensitive panel with an integral PC. Part programs can be generated using the panel PC or any standard office computer, and verified before downloading to the bending machine's PLC-based CNC controller. The software provides a unified environment, capitalizing on the tight functional integration of the robot and bending station to ensure that its programming is as simple as a conventional all-electric bending machine.

According to Alan Pickering of Unison, "Rosenberger has an installed base of over 1000 bending machines, with a particularly significant presence in the automotive industry. To date, the company has supplied 40 Twister machines to this sector, for manufacturing a wide range of parts including seat brackets, head restraint frames and preassembled components such as hydraulic power transmission lines. We believe that the machine's use of a robot as an intrinsic part of the bending process, rather than just for handling, has considerable merit for a wide range of tube bending applications. The Twister can easily be integrated with other process automation such as cutting or end-forming machines, and is readily scalable to suit large automated manufacturing cells."

Unison currently offers three versions of Twister, capable of bending steel tubes with outside diameters of 20, 30 and 50 mm. The 20 and 30 mm models can handle tube thicknesses up to 2 mm, while the larger model can accommodate a tube thickness of 4 mm.

Rosenberger and Unison are two of the world's leading pioneers of all-electric tube bending technology. Together, the companies employ more than 120 people, and as a result of their joint venture now offer a very broad product portfolio, backed by extensive applications knowledge to help customers choose the most cost-effective solution for their manufacturing needs. Rosenberger is headquartered in Simonswald, Germany, with further sales and support offices in Germany and France, and Unison is headquartered in Scarborough, UK, with a sales and distribution network in Germany and the USA. The cooperation agreement will expand the presence of both companies in domestic and overseas markets.

PUBLISHED: 06 Dec 12 Bookmark and Share
Company:
Unison
Country:
UK
Tel:
+44 1723 582868
Fax:
+44 1723 582379
Email:
alanp@unisonltd.com
Website:
www.unisonltd.com
Other News from Unison:

»
Unison Ltd and Pneuform Machines Ltd announce joint venture
»
New head of sales & support appointed to meet Unison growth
»
Unison Ltd is increasing its manufacturing capacity and opening a new factory in Virginia, USA
»
All-electric tube bender multiplies productivity for cleaning trolley maker
»
Ultibend improves productivity with new all-electric tube benders
»
Precision tube bending takes next step in evolution
»
Innovative automated tube bending cell allows wheelbarrow manufacturer to almost double manufacturing output
»
World's most powerful all-electric pipe bending machine swings into action at Norwegian shipyard
»
Custom all-electric tube bender will accelerate right-first-time production for precision metal fabricator
»
Custom tube bender eliminates cut-off waste of tubular parts for exercise machines
»
Unison opens its own service and sales office in North Carolina
»
Accurate and cost effective tube bending - a new machine concept from Unison
»
Unison receives its Queen's Award
»
Tube bending pioneer wins Queen's Award
»
Ultra-powerful all-electric pipe bender starts operations at US shipbuilder
»
Second Unison all-electric bending machine for fast-growing tube fabrication specialist
»
Precision aerospace engineers choose Unison tube bending technology
»
Tube manipulation specialist embraces all-electric technology and enjoys fast return on investment
»
All-electric tube bending machine innovator appoints new American support partner
»
UK tube manipulation sector "in robust health" says Unison after open house event
»
Size matters: all-electric tube benders take a MASSIVE step forwards
»
Tube bending CAD/CAM software also accommodates laser tube cutting
»
Faster and smarter tubular parts production
»
Scarborough could be the UK's next 'engineering hotspot' thanks to the new University Technical College
»
Powerful all-electric pipe bending machine boosts manufacturing throughput and accuracy of large-bore hydraulic parts
»
Tube bending specialist accelerates throughput and implements right-first-time manufacturing with the help of all-electric machine
»
Advanced tube bending technology helps British Airways maintain latest-generation aircraft
»
New all-electric tube bender extends shape-forming capabilities of aerospace manufacturer
»
Tube bending leader adds new low-cost entry-point machine to its range
»
Higher-productivity tube bending to be highlighted at Tube 2014
»
Innovative tube bending CADCAM solution
»
Advanced tube benders speed construction of subsea wellhead trees
»
Proof that engineering careers still appeal to UK youngsters!
»
Novel tube bender boosts productivity by 500% for leading American tubular part fabricator
»
Higher-productivity tube bending to be demonstrated at Fabtech
»
Lord Green opens design and manufacturing facility for tube bending innovator
»
More production capacity fuels international expansion of tube bending innovator
»
World's largest all-electric pipe bender ordered by US shipbuilder
»
Record sales for tube bending machine builder Unison
»
Siemens Subsea Products adopts all-electric tube bending for production of subsea hydraulic flying leads
»
Unique robotic tube bending system can dramatically speed production
»
Clean, green production efficiency underpins tube bending machinery upgrades at leading truck parts manufacturer
»
Yorkshire's centre of engineering excellence continues investing for its future
»
Right-first-time tube bending technology to be highlighted at Farnborough
»
Business Secretary Vince Cable visits fast-growing UK machine builder
»
Novel twin-head tube/bar bender provides platform for high throughput automated production
»
Fully-automated production cell increases wheelbarrow frame manufacturing efficiency
»
Architectural metalworker achieves right-first-time output using unique bend correction system
»
Right-first-time tube bending technology to make European premiere at Tube 2012
»
All-electric tube bender provides production versatility for submarine builder
»
Scarborough plays host to hundreds of budding designers and engineers
»
Unison supports World Motorcycle Land Speed Record Attempt
»
Rotating-head tube bender produces ultra-complex part shapes in one fast automatic cycle
»
Unison to support VTube software in the UK
»
First all-electric tube bender for leading European tube bending specialist
»
Record sales for tube bending machine builder Unison
»
Precision aerospace tubular parts fabricator chooses all-electric CNC tube bender to combat emerging challenges
»
Tube bending excellence 2011
»
Integrated all-electric tube bender and cutter delivers competitive advantage to volume tubular part manufacturers
»
Architectural metalwork leader chooses right-first-time tube bender
»
Advanced tube bender will boost flexibility of performance exhaust manufacturing
»
Scarborough continues investing in the UK's engineering future
»
Metalworking machinery leader opened its doors at Scarborough engineering week
»
Boeing Integrated Defense Systems orders bending machine
»
End-former accelerates refurbishment process for automotive parts specialist
»
Advanced tooling added to tube bending portfolio


Industry News:
Professional O-ring tool kit
First aid for technicians: Professional O-ring tool kit
Firma C Otto Gehrckens GmbH & Co KG (COG), Germany
Construction site Weld Purge Monitor®
Construction site Weld Purge Monitor®
Huntingdon Fusion Techniques Limited, UK
Metalube is making a big investment into the Düsseldorf show this year with the addition of the new stand at Tube 2018
Two stands for Metalube in Düsseldorf
Metalube Ltd, UK
COG Resist® - The new high-tech FFKM compounds from COG
COG Resist® - The new high-tech FFKM compounds from COG
Firma C Otto Gehrckens GmbH & Co KG (COG), Germany
Ajax TOCCO sells new EMMEDI MosWeld SiC HFI Welder on display at Fabtech - Chicago
Ajax TOCCO sells new EMMEDI MosWeld SiC HFI Welder
Ajax Tocco Magnethermic Corporation, USA
Two special flat models with one standard flat model
Zero colour oxide free welds for manual welders
Huntingdon Fusion Techniques Limited, UK
A new high-tech compound for the valves sector and gas industry
FKM seal material Vi 840 - A breakthrough in the valves sector and gas industry
Firma C Otto Gehrckens GmbH & Co KG (COG), Germany
Un-brazing and re-brazing copper angle brackets to copper strips at 1400°F (760°C) in less than a minute using UltraFlex Induction Heating
Un-brazing and re-brazing copper angle brackets to copper strips at 760°C in less than a minute
Ultraflex Power Technologies, USA
Fine Tubes gears up for the recovery of the oil and gas industry
Fine Tubes gears up for the recovery of the oil and gas industry
Fine Tubes Limited, UK
SigmaTEK Systems reported a record-breaking Fabtech Expo
Manufacturing is Looking Good for 2018
SigmaTEK Systems, LLC, USA
» VIEW ALL NEWS «