The heart of the machine is the spindle drum with six spindles for simultaneous machining of several workpieces. The main spindles in the drum have a travel of up to 180 millimetres. The drum moves the workpieces to the tools quickly and very precisely. It only takes 0.65 seconds for one of the six spindles to travel to the next position. For spindles to return to the starting position after machining has been completed in the six stations, the drum has to turn 300 degrees in reverse. For this, the unit, which weighs over three metric tons, only needs one second. The biggest challenge: a safe energy supply system for all six spindles.
Together with the motion plastics specialist igus, a unique energy supply system was developed which follows the rotation of the drum and enables the linear movements of the spindle drum. A total of 8 energy chains, 64 cables and 73 hoses are used in the multi-spindle automatic lathe.