Adding a 4th axis rotary table to a milling machine in any sort of work setting provides several advantages to machine work. Having another axis to work with gives milling machine users more precision and accuracy, without having to change positions of the part being machined.
Also, an additional axis would prove to make any milling machine more diverse in the work it is capable of doing; lathe machines introduce the aspect of a rotating part, so a rotary table would add the same benefits provided. A 4th axis rotary table, in general, can provide more precision and ease to a complex design, reducing time and costs for the production of a certain piece.
How It Works
To clarify, a 4th axis rotary table serves to add a rotating aspect to the desired piece being shaped. Similar to a lathe’s rotating head-stock, the rotary table serves to hold the piece and move at exact intervals of revolutions. Because it can move in precise degrees of motion, users can easily calculate correct positions, just like it can be done with the other three axes of motion on the machine. Once all four axes are used, making grooves or holes in the piece is much easier than without the rotary table, saving time by discarding the task of removing and resetting the piece in another position. Having the ability to move the piece in determined intervals and precision with diverse planes of motion is important for more complex machine work.
The Importance of a 4th Axis Rotary Table
Just like with the other three axes of motion, the 4th axis can be adjusted for specific amounts of distances to accurately tell what position you are at in relation to the dimensions of the piece. Furthermore, the scales used to measure its motion can save time and resources by reducing the amount of mistakes that could result in major delays, such as re-working the piece from the beginning. Since users will easily be able to calculate and set the positions needed for the work done, machining multiple pieces is simpler to accomplish.
Examples of Diversity
As stated before, the rotary table adds more diversity to the work the milling machine is capable of doing; some work required with a lathe can be done with the additional axis of motion. Machining the part with holes, for example, may require the user to work with a circular pattern with equal distances, which is certainly possible with 360 degree movements. Along with cutting circular patterns easily, arc cuts, grooves, and other complex curves are included with the benefits of a rotary table; cutting out the teeth of gear parts is another way of work possible.
The capabilities of a 4th axis rotary table is only limited by the skill of the user. It is able to provide the extended degree of motion necessary for complex work needed by any skilled machinist. With quality parts, a machinist is capable of intricate pieces of work, and it would be limiting to not have another axis of motion available. It is important to consider the expansion of work choices for machine work, and this addition is a good starting point for such consideration.