From cutting to bending: The software ensures economical and precise production

For a few years already, the high-tech manufacturers transfluid have provided smooth tube bending with their t project software, for instance through digital collision tests. The increasing digitalisation and networking of the processes in tube production requires more and more advanced solutions. The engineers at transfluid have developed the software further and constructed it both for networked use and to be integrated in the production proces. In addition to this, it can also be used to process production data. The data from the production and the various steps can easily be retrieved online through one of the available ERP Systems.

The transfluid t project software determines bending times, accurate cutting lengths and records tube data. © transfluidThe transfluid t project software determines bending times, accurate cutting lengths and records tube data. © transfluid

Everything under control: List of cuts and individual marking

The software solutions contribute to the economical processing of tube, starting with the determination of the cutting length for various cutting machines, in particular for the orbital transfluid t cut machine for chipless cutting. The software generates a list with the details of the cuts, which improves the cutting and the use of the half-finished product, with as little waste as possible.

A unique marking with all the important data – such as those associated with the bending process or connecting systems - is generated, to ensure that the component is identifiable throughout the process. The required data transfer can be done via an interface with CAD, ERP or also other programs, which deliver the data relevant to the process.

In those cases where a robot is assigned a bending task it is possible for the necessary manufacturing data to be processed without having to program the robot. © transfluidIn those cases where a robot is assigned a bending task it is possible for the necessary manufacturing data to be processed without having to program the robot. © transfluid

Production information includes the quality of the bending

The software prevents collisions with the machine, the tools and also the surrounding area before initiating the bending process. The CAD program delivers the necessary machine and tool parameters online. In those cases where a robot is assigned a bending task it is possible for the necessary manufacturing data to be processed without having to program the robot.

The software can adjust the bending speed on all transfluid machines for the specific product, in order to be able to process tubes safely and without oscillations, which is particular important for long, small-diameter tubes. A software module captures the status of the production process and provides the central systems with the production-related information about the status and the quality of the production (CPK). This is how the networked transfluid software delivers an efficient production process.

The software prevents collisions with the machine, the tools and also the surrounding area before initiating the bending process. © transfluidThe software prevents collisions with the machine, the tools and also the surrounding area before initiating the bending process. © transfluid

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.

www.transfluid.net

Published inProcessing

Interviewwith Benedikt Hümmler, managing director, engineering/production at transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

What is your assessment of the current market situation for your sector?
It is actually extremely positive at present for German mechanical engineering, which is working at a very high level. And is also because of the great potential for innovation that we have. We take advantage of it in a very effective and deliberate manner.

What do you understand by “Industry 4.0”?
For our business, Industy 4.0 is an important step into the connected future. For many of our clients it is still not clear how it will benefit them. Many look at this topic in isolation and not as a supplementary and performance-improving opportunity. That is not quite happening yet.

(on the left) Benedikt Hümmler, managing director, engineering/production at transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH.(on the left) Benedikt Hümmler, managing director, engineering/production at transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH.

Is transfluid already planning to or already integrating digital technologies?
We are gradually making our products capable of 4.0-communications for our various customers and, if the customer wants it, we offer the corresponding software to install, which can collect and process the operational parameters. With this and the corresponding hardware we can achieve the current idea of 4.0.

What do you see as future trends for your business sector?
At present it is fair to expect that the mechanical engineering sector will have to consolidate again, after this period of strong demand. Just as before, the trend towards adopting automation techniques will continue and more strongly so. This will make it easier to even out geographical differences and the associated costs. The higher the technical level of our clients’ equipment, the more relevant it becomes to ask whether the production can be done independently of the employee. This would make it possible to establish production anywhere in the word that meets the same quality requirements.

Published inProduction

The transfluid software improves mobile processes and high-performance bending machine for large tubes offer up to 60% time savings

Digital solutions are required by the international shipbuilding and off-shore industry for efficient planning of their resources and processes. To support that, the high-tech machine manufacturer transfluid combine their bending technologies for large diameter tubes with online networking aimed at practical applications, as with the ‘t project’ software calculating beforehand the exact orientation of the flanges, when bending straight tubes with welded flanges. Mobile measuring tools acquire data on-site, for instance in order to measure template tubes accurately. In addition to that, transfluid offers the option of tube end-forming processes with the rotary tube forming UMR ‘t form’ machine. For instance, it is possible to introduce flared flanges economically and subsequently bend the tube.

Bending tubes with a diameter of up to 400mm faster
“Saving time and money are aspects that we make possible for this industry, when it comes to tube processing”, says transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH director Stefanie Flaeper. “Our ‘t bend’ CNC bending machine has replaced the need to weld bends onto large tubes a long time ago, as it lowers the production costs.” In addition to that, the bending systems save up to 60% of the production time for tubes with a diameter up to 400mm. The fast setting-up of the machine, at times in less than 10 minutes, also plays a crucial role. Equipped with a fully automated CNC control system, the transfluid units can process tubes with thin and thick walls and made of any material, even with radii of 1.5 x tube diameter or more. These tight bending radii are achieved with unrivalled minimal thinning of the tube walls. This leads to benefits also in terms of space on board the ship.

© transfluid: As the mobile version, 't project Draft' contributes to more time-efficient and more flexible tube manufacturing.© transfluid: As the mobile version, 't project Draft' contributes to more time-efficient and more flexible tube manufacturing.

Better bending of tubes with flanges with the transfluid software
It is possible to achieve much simpler and much cheaper tube processing, when the flanges are welded onto the straight tube beforehand, because the welding process is considerably faster at that stage. With the internal connection to the CAD programs, the ‘t project’ bending software can process the isometrics immediately. Flanges can be chosen from a database and integrated in the isometrics, also in terms of bending technology. “With the directional bending of the flanged tubes our solution is able to improve the flexibility of the manufacturing. The processes clearly become simpler”, explains Stefanie Flaeper.

‘t project’ for mobile use on board
The tablet version of the ‘t project Draft’ software offers greater freedom for on-site practical applications. It allows the user to acquire data with a very light, portable measuring system. It is thus possible to collect data, for instance for connector tubes, both the geometries of the process, as well as the flanges and the position of the flanges. Time savings are particularly significant for this aspect. The process of measuring on board only requires a few minutes, even for more complex tubes with flanges. All the data is acquired digitally, documented and the data can be transferred online and be available to the technical office, as well as the bending machine. Once a tube-part has been completed, it can be measured once again, in order to guarantee a smooth installation. And here is an additional time benefit: whilst tubes are processed with the measurement data that was provided, further measurements can be taken on board.

Effective forming of tube ends
A key aspect of tube processing in the shipbuilding industry is the forming of tube ends, like the forming of flared flanges on the tubes. With the rolling UMR ‘t form’ machine it is possible to shape tubes with diameters up to 325mm. Almost tool-independent, it uses a controlled shaping cone, which can be programmed freely during the task. Another interesting shaping option is the cylindrical expansion of tube ends, in order to connect two tubes. The transfluid solution to this challenge is suitable for tubes with a nominal size up to 250. The traditional practice in shipbuilding of welding with two seams on each connection sleeve for large nominal sizes is now redundant.
transfluid will be SMM 2018, hall B2.3G, stand 324, to present its high-tech solutions for the processing of tubes in shipbuilding.

Published inProcessing

transfluid’s mandrel bending machine delivers better processes through sequential control

Safety is an issue that is extremely important in the aviation and aerospace industry, perhaps more so than in any other industry, and therefore the demands are very high, also on tube processing, as managing director Stefanie Flaeper explains: “There is often demand for fast production processes of small batches of complex components, of course. In addition, high and ultra-high strength materials are an important matter for tubes that are more lightweight and that can be subjected to greater loading. What makes the development of tube processing technologies for the aviation and aerospace industry particularly interesting is that there are always new technical milestones that require sophisticated solutions.” Such as the project that the company is working on at present for a leading manufacturer of aeroplanes.  The new, specially designed t bend mandrel bending machine from transfluid is capable of bending titanium, aluminium and stainless steel tubes with a diameter of up to 60mm and a wall thickness of 0.5-1.5mm.  Furthermore, the design makes it possible to achieve a radius of 1xD.

© transfluid : All sequences can be programmed easily on the t bend-mandrel bending machine from transfluid. The operator can assign them to a product and recall them when needed.© transfluid : All sequences can be programmed easily on the t bend-mandrel bending machine from transfluid. The operator can assign them to a product and recall them when needed.

Axis synchronisation through smart sequential control

The other feature that makes it special is the option to control the wall thinning. This is where safety plays a key role with regards to the later application of the processed tubes in the aeroplanes. The wall thickness has to meet the specifications after the bending too; the flow through the workpiece and its stability have to be preserved. That is why the transfluid engineers have developed the push bending option for the process. The controlled push bending is applied during the last bend through a controlled inner tube.

“All the electrical axes are equipped with servo-electrical motors and their drives can be neatly synchronized”, Stefanie Flaeper explains about the technical details. “A key benefit is the complete synchronization of all the moving axes in different sequences, which is what makes our new sequential control possible.” This separates each movement of all the axes and moves the different units at the right time. That way it is possible to gradually introduce a bend with ease and either push or slow down with the required power.

Customized storage of production data and protected retrieval

All the sequences on this innovative mandrel bending machine are easy to program. The operator can allocate them to the product and retrieve them as and when needed. In addition to the actual process the sequencing will also take into account the material, radii and manufacturing processes of the product.

All control aspects can be accessed via the network. This allows the desired geometries to be taken from the CAD software and the data from the impact test be recorded in the same way. The measuring unit can be connected to the system too, depending on the size of the lots and batches. The sequence control will also store the relevant data for the production, as defined by the customer. They can then be recalled and processed with a password and the correct authorization. Furthermore, the machine’s software and all the control components, as well as the control panel (MMI), are compatible with Industry 4.0. These particular features make it possible to set up the machine with almost no operator intervention. Tube processing improvement that is right on target for the aviation and aerospace industry.

 

Published inProcessing

For the past 30 years transfluid has been shaping progress in tube processing

When people think about 1st April they mostly think about spectacular stories that ultimately turn out to be a joke. That is not the case for Gerd Nöker and Ludger Bludau. They both remember how the history of their company also started on a 1st April and now, 30 years later, the success it enjoys is greater than ever. The story is about transfluid: established in 1998 as a two-man business, the current GmbH is now a sought-after international partner providing solutions for machines to bend and process tubes. Since 2013 it is also a world market leader in CNC-controlled rolling tube forming. There is very little now to remind us of those humble beginnings, when there was just 125m2 available. But there is one aspect that transfluid has remained true to for the past three decades: its commitment to progress in tube processing for the benefit of its customers.

Always one step ahead
When you walk through transfluid’s production halls in 2018 you will see fully automated production units and robots, working efficiently and accurately as bending and end forming systems. “When we started out in 1988 the internet was not playing a role yet and I am sure that nobody could have predicted how digitalization would revolutionize whole industry sectors on such a massive scale and in the shortest of time - including tube processing, of course”, says business co-founder Gerd Nöker. In spite of that, the first development that transfluid – still Nöker & Bludau oHG at the time - launched on the global market was a small sensation. This was, after all, the first manual tube bending machine for small tubes, up to 16mm diameter; the t bend MB 642 is the unparalleled top seller and it is still requested from all over the world for on-site jobs.

© transfluid : The t form UMR moulding machines open up for new shaping options for tubes that have already been moulded axially, for the production of sharp-edged contours for sealing elements.© transfluid : The t form UMR moulding machines open up for new shaping options for tubes that have already been moulded axially, for the production of sharp-edged contours for sealing elements.

The solution for tubes
There are now more than 12,000 machines in circulation globally, shaping tubes according to the concept of Bestform. transfluid is “the solution for tubes”, whether it is end forming, bending, cutting or connecting of the machines to an automatic cell. With their traditional technical creativity, the experts are, of course, also developing fully-automated solutions, including customized solutions to meet their customers’ individual requirements. The client base comes from a number of sectors: the plant and machine construction sector is represented just as strongly as the automotive and energy industries and shipbuilding, as well as many more.  Ludger Bludau points out that “this is exactly what still makes our work so exciting after 30 years. We have the opportunity to grow again and again, together with our customers, thanks to the new challenges, and thus redefine the boundaries of what can be achieved in tube processing”. Greater efficiency, flexibility and optimized processes: transfluid offers all of this with its smart software, into which the experts have packed all their know-how. The comprehensive portfolio is completed with a wide choice of stock machines, offering fast delivery prompt support to deal with everyday challenges.

Strong team and entrepreneurial vision
A lot of room is needed for so many ideas and transfluid has created this over time. In 1991 the business found a new home at the current site in Schmallenberg. In addition to that, the business’ leadership has grown from two to five proud members. Benedikt Hümmler, Burkhard Tigges and Stefanie Flaeper have further strengthened the Bludau and Nöker founding duo. With their combined strengths and strategic vision, the leadership group of five keeps the business on the road to success, supported by a strong and committed team. It is noteworthy that there are 10 employees who have known the business since the beginning and are still working for transfluid.

Global market leadership leads to knowledge exchange
transfluid’s position as an international market leader through its technology was confirmed in 2013 in a special way. With the newly developed CNC-controlled incremental tube end forming, the business was added to and is still included in the “List of global market leaders” of the South Westfalia Chamber of Commerce. Highly complex moulding geometries can now be achieved with the novel rolling process, such as end forming with very strict tolerances, groove structure with sharp edges and polished surfaces. This kind of forming are independent of special dies because they are adjustable. “We are of course proud of this recognition, as it is the result of intensive development work, into which a lot of our know-how has been poured”, says Stephanie Flaeper, managing director at transfluid. “However, it is also important for us to share this knowledge in the interest of advanced developments.” Therefore, the company regularly invites other experts to exchange experiences and thoughts at its Innovation Days. The experts meet once a year in Sauerland, to learn about the latest developments and to discuss the challenges of tube processing together. One thing is always clear during these events: transfluid will continue to chart new routes over the next 30 years.

Published inProcessing

A solution for the aviation and aerospace industry: transfluid’s mandrel bending machine delivers better processes through sequential control

2018 04 17 115727Safety is an issue that is extremely important in the aviation and aerospace industry, perhaps more so than in any other industry, and therefore the demands are very high, also on tube processing, as managing director Stefanie Flaeper explains: “There is often demand for fast production processes of small batches of complex components, of course. In addition, high and ultra-high strength materials are an important matter for tubes that are more lightweight and that can be subjected to greater loading. What makes the development of tube processing technologies for the aviation and aerospace industry particularly interesting is that there are always new technical milestones that require sophisticated solutions.” Such as the project that the company is working on at present for a leading manufacturer of aeroplanes.  The new, specially designed t bend mandrel bending machine from transfluid is capable of bending titanium, aluminium and stainless steel tubes with a diameter of up to 60mm and a wall thickness of 0.5-1.5mm.  Furthermore, the design makes it possible to achieve a radius of 1xD.

Axis synchronisation through smart sequential control

The other feature that makes it special is the option to control the wall thinning. This is where safety plays a key role with regards to the later application of the processed tubes in the aeroplanes. The wall thickness has to meet the specifications after the bending too; the flow through the workpiece and its stability have to be preserved. That is why the transfluid engineers have developed the push bending option for the process. The controlled push bending is applied during the last bend through a controlled inner tube.
“All the electrical axes are equipped with servo-electrical motors and their drives can be neatly synchronized”, Stefanie Flaeper explains about the technical details. “A key benefit is the complete synchronization of all the moving axes in different sequences, which is what makes our new sequential control possible.” This separates each movement of all the axes and moves the different units at the right time. That way it is possible to gradually introduce a bend with ease and either push or slow down with the required power.

Customized storage of production data and protected retrieval

All the sequences on this innovative mandrel bending machine are easy to program. The operator can allocate them to the product and retrieve them as and when needed. In addition to the actual process the sequencing will also take into account the material, radii and manufacturing processes of the product.
All control aspects can be accessed via the network. This allows the desired geometries to be taken from the CAD software and the data from the impact test be recorded in the same way. The measuring unit can be connected to the system too, depending on the size of the lots and batches. The sequence control will also store the relevant data for the production, as defined by the customer. They can then be recalled and processed with a password and the correct authorization. Furthermore, the machine’s software and all the control components, as well as the control panel (MMI), are compatible with Industry 4.0. These particular features make it possible to set up the machine with almost no operator intervention. Tube processing improvement that is right on target for the aviation and aerospace industry.

Poor concentration and fatigue – never! Robots have always been seen by their human counterparts as reliable and indispensable “colleagues”. They are now increasingly handling the welding, bending, cutting, separation, transfer and storage of pipes and tubes. Thanks to artificial intelligence and machine learning, robots are set to become even more flexible and will eventually replace purely repetitive robots altogether.

You turn up at work in the morning, and the first thing you do is switch on the telly. It doesn’t seem very appropriate at first sight. But this is precisely what is being turned into reality with the camera-controlled and fully electric manufacturing cell from Transfluid Maschinenbau – the element which is right at the heart of a smart tube forming system. What you can see “flickering” on a large screen is not the latest news bulletin, but valuable details about the energy consumption, CPK value and quantity of the tubes formed up to now.

2018 02 08 072647Robots as an important module
Robots are an important module at the Transfluid tube forming centre and are used in the production of air conditioning lines. As well as a camera monitoring system, the plant has a magazine, a 4-axle handling system, two combination machines for tube forming purposes, a bending machine, a chamfering unit, a dot-matrix printer and two robots.

Before bending can start, one side of a tube is always handled in combination with a tube forming machine, while the other side is chiplessly cut after the bending process and is then also formed. Should this be required, the robot subsequently holds the tube into a deburring device. “Both ends can be visually monitored via a camera,” says Stefanie Flaeper, Managing Director of Transfluid. “Alternatively, the robot holds the tube into a labelling unit where it can then be marked at all the required points – and in fact completely without any clamping device.”

100 per cent quality
Using a forming system with a rotary table, it would then be possible to join two tubes together with a flange. For the manufacturing process this means maximum safety, a high yield and 100 per cent documented quality – while informative “entertainment” is provided on a large screen as a nice side-effect.

Robots have definitely proved their worth in pipe and tube forming. Flaeper emphasises that they “ensure controlled handling” because a robot is, after all, ideally suited for the manufacturing of bent components. “On the other hand, they tend to be of lesser significance in the handling of long, straight tubes and pipes. Linear systems are faster for this purpose.” Robots are particularly widespread in machining, “because this involves either complex handling or manipulating heavy parts.”

Use in welding
For Polysoude and its customers robots are a good supplement to conventional automation solutions. A robot makes it possible to guide the torch along the pipes themselves in manual tungsten inert gas (TIG) welding, even where there isn’t much space. It also ensures “a high-quality seam thanks to the precision and reproducibility of movements in complex geometries,” says Hans-Peter Mariner, Managing Director of Polysoude.

Robots are generally very widespread in welding, but not particularly in TIG welding. TIG is used “almost never in conjunction with narrow gap welding or the welding of pipe-floor joints.” This is due to legal requirements which include, for instance, a shielded zone without user access – unlike conventional automation solutions. Polysoude, however, allows the use of robots in TIG welding.

Robots and nuclear fusion
The essential criterion for choosing a specific type of robot is the level of precision which, says Mariner, “is a matter of the TIG welding itself, even under full load, within a range of 5/10 mm.” Furthermore, “it’s important for a robot to be easy to program and to have sensors, especially for smart tracking purposes.”

TIG welding with the use of robots has achieved a certain amount of fame in one of the most ambitious projects in the world, called ITER (International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor). The project is to prove that nuclear fusion as an energy source can be used for electric power production without major carbon emissions. 35 countries are participating in the design of the planned Tokamaks nuclear fusion chamber.

Welding together extremely thick walls
Polysoude supplied a robotic welding system to the Italian company Simic where they were used for the construction of radial plates for ITER. The plates were made from stainless steel, each with a wall thickness of 100 mm. Welding together these parts turned out to be an extraordinary challenge. The work is currently performed on site, in southern  France, with major requirements in terms of bonding precision and zero error quality.

TIG hot wire narrow gap welding turned out to be the best choice for welding together such extremely thick parts. The tool carriers for narrow gap burners, such as robots and welding trolleys, have been adjusted to suit the target object in both size and geometry. TIG narrow gap welding, incidentally, can also be applied for pieces up to 400 mm in wall thickness.

Reaching for the stars
Naturally, reliability and quality are greatly prioritised on the ITER project which has been in progress at the Cadarache Nuclear Research Centre in France since 2007. The Tokamaks chamber, which is surrounded by super-conductive magnets, is to serve as the place where the hydrogen isotopes deuterium and tritium are to be heated up to a temperature of 100m°C, causing them to fuse. It’s a technology that reaches for the stars – quite literally, by seeking to imitate them. After all, it is nuclear fusion that enables the sun and the stars give off energy.

2018 02 08 072842

However, ITER has also drawn criticism, due to its immense expenses – estimated at over €15 billion – for one of the biggest building sites in Europe, coupled with a delay in completion. Advocates of the projects, on the other hand, see nuclear fusion above all as a highly efficient form of energy production, apparently generating 10 times as much in output. Moreover, it is considered to be an energy source without carbon emissions and virtually no radioactive waste. The first hydrogen plasma is expected to be produced around 2025. Robots, too, are helping towards the success of the ITER project.

Robots in machine processing
Sometimes it’s the combination that matters. Twister, a bending system developed by Wafios, can even be used in pipe/hose combinations. To boost productivity, Wafios has linked the system to a KUKA robot, and operation is amazingly simple. KUKA, a company that makes robots, has seen steady growth in the market for robotic handling for several years now.

Until recently the focus has been mainly on handling processes where the demand on accuracy is relatively modest. Either the process chain included a processing tool with a specific element which compensated for inaccuracies – a polishing disc, grinding head or flexibly deflecting deburring spindle – or the issue of accuracy was more or less irrelevant. “Such handling processes are still often carried out by humans. However, due to increasing cost pressure, yet unchanging quality requirements or lack of human resources, they will be handled more and more by machines or automatically,” says Alexander Bailey, Market Segment Manager CNC/Machining at KUKA Roboter.

China as a future market
It’s a development which KUKA is prepared for. The general industry is growing very strongly, mainly outside Germany. “All you need to do is look at the electronics market which offers enormous potential for growth in automation,” says Bay. Apparently, this is particularly true for Asia, and the focus on the general industry goes hand in hand with increasing internationalism. Germany continues to be seen by KUKA as an important market for a robotic automation solutions. “However, we also believe that the big growth markets of the future are outside Germany and Europe. This is why we are focusing above all on Asia and, within Asia, on China, the country which – according to the International Federation of Robotics (IFR) – has the biggest and fastest growing market for industrial robots.”

There are good reasons why the Middle Kingdom is considered to be the future market for robotics. It is already by far the biggest sales market in industrial robotics and is marked by extremely high growth rates. In three years’ time the International Federation of Robotics is expecting China’s annual sales of industrial robotics to rise to 160,000 items, which would then be nearly 40 per cent of all global sales.

Milling gigantic pipes
Another domain that is important for KUKA is the increasingly attractive market of plastic pipes. And so the company makes not only the KUKA 120 R2700 Extra HA robot, but also the KL 1500-3 T linear unit, two KUKA MG 360 servo motors for the external rotational axis and the KUKA CNC controller. These systems form part of a completely integrated automation solution, developed by Eugen Riexinger for the production of pipes for the Weholite licence-holder Asset International Ltd. in Newport, South Wales. The automation solution allows the precise milling of gigantic pipes with diameters up to 3.5 metres.

These oversized pipes are used, among other things, in gravity drainage, in mechanical drainage, in underground channels, in retention basins and in low-pressure applications. As the system is barrier-free, a robot can move directly to the relevant plastic pipe on the linear unit and can then flexibly work on the component, as required. Graham Bennett, Operations Manager at Asset International, is pleased with this solution: It’s helped us achieve a significant increase in productivity.” For shorter manufacturing times, the company has apparently even increased its capacity by over 50 per cent.

Robots – colleagues of the future
There can be no question that the use of robots already has enormous potential: Whenever the product quality is impacted by the workforce, robots have major potential. One important driver in the application of robots is considered to be the automotive industry.

And the end of this potential is still a long way off. Until now robots have mainly performed repetitive tasks, working at the same level of consistent precision and repeatability. “The requirements of the future will be different – especially in professional service robotics,” says Alexander Bay, Market Segment Manager CNC/Machining at KUKA Roboter. “If robots are to move into other areas, they’ll need to become more flexible, and this is where machine learning might help.”

Part of Industry 4.0
Robots are increasingly also entering Industry 4.0. Serving as flexible production elements, robots will be able to collect data in production and then exchange them with IT systems. “As a result,” says Bay, “production routines will become even more efficient, and systems will be able to respond quickly to specific customer requests.”

Another trend is the simplification of programming. “This will include online connectivity for robots, enabling them, for instance, to import data from external systems, such as CAD,” says Stefanie Flaeper, Managing Director of Transfluid. It’s apparently quite a challenge to use robots for very small production sizes – something which is still only possible to a limited extent.

Industrial and private environments
KUKA sees great future potential in the 3C, logistics and service/consumer robotics. Also, says Bay, robotics is increasingly moving from the highly organised sphere of industrial production into the more “chaotic” private environment. This is because artificial intelligence can help to prepare robotic systems for imponderables and changes.

Nevertheless, one thing is certain: “Robots will move closer to people, taking over even more tasks from humans and supporting them in carrying out certain difficult jobs,” says Transfluid’s Managing Director Stefanie Flaeper. “It would also be interesting if a robot could imitate the movements of a human being in a production process with a high level of accuracy, but without the need to be programmed.” Humans and robots side by side, as it were. Generation R will take over ...

Published inMachinery

transfluid drives prototyping and the manufacture of automation systems further forward

Advanced ideas require development space in order to optimise tube machining processes through the introduction of perfectly suited solutions. This already applies to prototyping, and of course to fully automated complex production systems. This is why the solution finders from transfluid have now further extended their production area by an additional 1000 square metres, to a new total floor area of 7000 square metres. "This investment was an obvious one to make, since it enables us to improve further our customer-facing development and high-tech production facilities", explains Stefanie Flaeper, the transfluid CEO. "In particular for our t motion automation systems product sector, we now have much more resource available in terms of physical space, not just in relation to assembly work but also for test runs and commissioning runs. There is now also scope for implementing pre-series for our customers to further guarantee and evaluate our production process before the plant is shipped.

More space for prototyping in the new transfluid halls. © transfluidMore space for prototyping in the new transfluid halls. © transfluid

Prototyping from cutting and bending through to end forming
The additional space and latitude afforded by this new-build also stands to benefit the in-hour Prototyping department at transfluid. "To protect changed processes, we have been offering our customers intensive prototyping for many years. This for example applies to projects where, in the past, tube connections need to be welded or solded, and where these parts were then to be replaced by geometric end formingoperations", explains Stefanie Flaeper. "In such cases, components frequently need to be tested and installed prior to any final changeover. On this, we work very closely with our customers".

This building modification has equipped the Prototyping department with three times as much floor space as before. Here, machines are available to tackle the full range of reshaping processes, for diameters of 4 to 70 mm diameter. Also, in order to perform complete processes, there is a chipless orbitalcutting system here as well as corresponding CNC bending technology. "If all steps can be performed here, our customers are then much better able to gain an overview of the processes involved, which gives them a great deal more peace of mind", states Stefanie Flaeper. During the extension work, a high-bay store for spare parts was installed. This provides quick turnarounds for service, which in turn makes the production operations of transfluid systems more dependable. These new facilities have provided transfluid with the space now and into the future for new and advanced solutions. The company presented these at the Tube 2018 trade fair, in Hall 5 on Stand G34.

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH
transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.
www.transfluid.net

Published inProduction

Fully automatic solution from transfluid for efficient exhaust manifold production

Streamline operations are particularly required in such cases, in which a product cannot be installed until several components are available. This was the reason why in a recent project, transfluid developed a system solution for the efficient production of a complete exhaust manifold made of 4 or 6 different stainless steel tubes.

For this purpose, a 6-meter long tube is first loaded onto the tube-bending machine. Each individual tube is fitted with up to 4 bends. After the bending process, the tube is cut, chip-free, on the bending machine directly using a blade cutting process and is then inserted by robot into the corresponding forming machine. It forms an asymmetric geometry, which fits each individual bend progression. After processing, the components are then fed directly into a welding cell. It welds the tubes to flanges. This way, one complete module is always available as a unit.

The complexity of processing increases during chaotic production, while the achieved complete results are at the same time efficient and fast. © transfluidThe complexity of processing increases during chaotic production, while the achieved complete results are at the same time efficient and fast. © transfluid

Chaotic production for improved operations

As in this case, complete tube sets are in part used during tube processing. It gets more complicated and demanding when dealing with a wider range of tube sizes and geometries. The experts at transfluid have developed special automation systems, that allow a chaotic production to be implemented as an especially efficient solution.

"This kind of production comes very close to a "one piece flow", thus significantly reducing the time period from tube production to installation." explains Stefanie Flaeper, CEO at transfluid. "It is in any event the most effective solution. And it is also the solution that can significantly streamline operations despite an increase in complexity. We have already implemented this successfully for several customers."

More flexible to better results

Often, a higher degree of complexity is needed for hydraulic systems during production. "Here, our customers frequently want to produce a complete piping kit, which consists of up to 8 nominal widths as a unit, for example", explains Stefanie Flaeper. In these cases, the machine setup is somewhat more complex. However, it offers several distinct benefits as compared to conventional tube production, during which in part a significant number of tubes have to be produced one after another, which are then combined to a single tube set. Here, machine set-up is not required, production is time optimized and there is almost no need for warehousing and commissioning areas.

For production of this kind, transfluid integrates chipless cutting systems, forming machines or cutting ring pre-assembly systems and bending machines into the thus optimized process. These systems can be linked with one another, thus allowing monitoring from the outside, creating processes as early as during machine set-up and can thus be utilized in Industry 4.0-capable processes. This way, the transfluid automation systems allow an exceptionally efficient chaotic production, after which a completely produced component is available after each work cycle.

These and other solutions for tubes will also be the topic of discussion during the in-depth debates to be held on the occasion of the FABTECH trade show at the transfluid booth Bl1069.

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.

www.tube-processing-machines.com

Published inProcessing

Manufacturer of leading tube processing machines invites U.S. partners to technical training and information-sharing workshops

Advanced tube processing machines that deliver the latest tube solutions are extremely complex. To grasp all of their technological and value-added features and functions while also providing optimal support, even the most experienced service professionals need to attend training workshops regularly. For transfluid, a high-tech machine manufacturer whose products are in high demand worldwide, this combination of regular training workshops and practical knowledge building is a fundamental principle. That is why the company recently invited the employees of its sales and service partners in the U.S. – Advanced Fabricating Machinery and Modern Machinery – to its German headquarters in North Rhine-Westphalia.

2017 08 02 090920(from the left): Marcus D. Daniels (Service employee for Advanced Fabricating Machinery, Dennis Nolte (head of Assembly at transfluid ), Craig Eugene Van Sant (owner and CEO of Advanced Fabricating Machinery), John Michael Evans (head of Service at Advanced Fabricating Machinery), Vaton Belaqa (service employee at transfluid ), David Kesselring (service employee at Modern Machinery), Carlos Alicea Vazquez (head of Service at Modern Machinery).

It was the first time that employees of Modern Machinery visited the company headquarters in Germany. Modern Machinery has been looking after transfluid customers in Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky and Michigan since 2016. For many years, Advanced Fabricating Machinery has been providing on-site support for our American transfluid customers, covering primarily the East Coast region all the way down to Georgia, including Tennessee.

Technological focus in the interest of the customers

“We are very pleased to welcome our American partners here for the service training workshops and, naturally, would like to thank them for attending. For outstanding service in the U.S., it is very important to us to share information in person and to transfer knowledge. This helps all of us to advance together. Our customers, particularly in the United States, will benefit from this. And that, of course, is our main priority,” says Stefanie Flaeper, CEO of transfluid, in describing the visit. The intensive training workshops focused on tube bending and tube forming machines, cutting tubes or pipes cleanly without chips using t cut machines; and lastly, the options and benefits of tailor-made transfluid automated systems for tube processing that meet specific customer needs.

Comprehensive support within 24 hours

In view of the strong increase in its customer base in the U.S., the recent training workshops offered by transfluid have once again improved the services expertise of its partners. Within their respective regions, both Advanced Fabricating Machinery and Modern Machinery can now respond to support requests within 24 hours, thus ensuring immediate service for transfluid customers in the U.S.

For questions regarding transfluid services in the U.S., please contact: Craig Van Sant, President of Advanced Fabricating Machinery, Inc. (Tel: +1 603 475 4346 / E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or Yannick Bludau, regional sales manager for transfluid in North America, (Cell: +49 151 12698817 / E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.

www.tube-processing-machines.com

Published inProcessing

transfluid also presents flexible tube machining solutions with process networking possibilities at the Hanover trade fair

The increasingly powerful digital connection for tube machining processes is a tailored driver of technical progress within the industry. For hydraulics in particular, solutions are required, which ensure safe tube machining, as well as automated processes where required.
Powerful automation is even possible with very low unit quantities, for example with the technical machining of hydraulic connection elements. As such, transfluid - with its axial forming machines of type REB and tool-independent rolling forming with systems of type SRM - offers the solution for hose connections or DKOL connections directly on the tube, for example. These enable sharp-edged contours for sealing elements and optimum surfaces. The production of flanges between 20° and 90° with short clamping lengths can be realised with transfluid forming machines of type UMR - for optimum sealing surfaces and in a single process.

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Digitally connected with design and measuring systems
“In the future, greater flexibility will be required for even better processes. I think for example of the online connection between design and our bending software t project. And also of systems that measure both at the building and the finished tube. Such a system must of course be simple to use. That is sure to deliver greater bending freedom”; Stefanie Flaeper, managing director of transfluid, outlines the demands and further developments.

More effective bending – 42 mm and more
This was the objective of the engineers at transfluid, when they developed their mandrel bending machine of type t bend DB 40220-3A-CNC. With this machine, it is possible to bend thick and thin-walled tubes with diameters in particular from 40 mm and up to 220 mm. The stable design ensures a long service life and simple, rapid tool changes enable diverse applications and improved efficiency

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Collision-free right/left bending
The right/left-bending machine t bend DB 642 CNC R/L VE with rotating head delivers a strong performance when producing extremely demanding geometries, even when structural obstacles are present. With this servo-electrically driven concept for tube diameters up to 42 mm, each bending head has two tool levels as standard. Process assurance is provided by the complete visualisation of production processes on the freely programmable CNC touch panel control

Mobile and high-performing in application on site
transfluid offers flexibility together with simple and effective technology for bending directly on site in the building, with its latest generation of the mobile bending machine t bend MB 642. With it, hydraulic lines can be laid at the installation site. As additional equipment, you can also chose from the internal and external deburrer, a saw, an assembly device for all conventional connection systems (flanging and cutting ring fittings), as well as metal circular saws.

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH
transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.
www.tube-processing-machines.com

Published inProduction

transfluid simplifies complex tube processing with an automatic tool change system

Continually faster and more adaptable: Bending of tubes with diameters of up to 127 mm is growing continually more demanding, while the subsequent costs are to approximate zero. "It isn't only about implementing technical efficiency in processes or machines anymore," says Stefanie Flaeper, managing director at transfluid. "Most of all, the increased demands to new products must be implemented here. No matter the time efficiency and precision, the solution should, of course, be controllable." The specialists from Germany have developed their tube bending machine t bend DB 40120-CNC-VE for this. It permits bending radii of 1 x D at very thin wall thicknesses for such tubes.

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The new pipe bending machine DB 40120-CNC-VE by transfluid changes tools automatically. © transfluid

More effective with transfluid sequence control
In the scope of a current project, the setup of this special bending system has been implemented fully electrically. All movement axes are optimally synchronised by the special transfluid sequence control or can be programmed controlled against each other. Additionally, it is possible to easily optimise the process via this sequence control, which effectively improves product-specific cycle times.

Another strong point is simple operation. All parameters can be taken from the CAD. Necessary form clamps are integrated in the automatic sequence. The transfluid engineers have implemented reduction of the follow-up costs by an automatic clamp die change system. The time frame for tool change is comparable to that of a radii changer.

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The transfluid machine permits bending radii of 1 x D and more for tubes with diameters up to 127 mm while reducing wall thicknesses from 2 mm to 1.5 mm. © transfluid

Changing the clam dies up to eight times
The new DB 40120-CNC-VE has two tool levels. It is able to change the clamp dies eight times, so that each tube can be bent even in highly complex geometries. This form of tool equipment is particularly efficient, reducing follow-up costs to a minimum. "In particular because the diameters are relatively similar and radii are very tight with 1 x D, only the bending geometries really change in new products. This means that only new clamp dies need to be used," explains Stefanie Flaeper. To implement the tight radii at a relatively thin wall thickness, the new tube bending machine has an additional boosting device that can controlledly support even the last bend at short rest lengths.

Video t bend DB 40120-CNC-VE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Br6ZqXje2DI

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH
transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.
www.tube-processing-machines.com

Next trade fair: Hanover Messe, 24.-28.04.2017, Hall 020 / Booth B14

Published inProcessing
Monday, 30 January 2017 08:22

Reliably brought into form

Newly developed axial tube forming machine REB 645 by transfluid with automatic tool detection
Workpieces of a special end form geometry are in demand again and again. Whether for the initial production or repeated precision: Ensuring exact parameters is necessary for an efficient implementation. Thus, the solution finders of transfluid have developed a solution with automatic tool detection for tube forming. Hence, the new axial tube forming machine form REB 645 allows for tube end forming with fast tool changes for complex geometries and extreme degrees of forming.

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The new tube forming machine REB 645 with automatic tool detection © transfluid

From the barcode to the better result
The starting point is a barcode scanning system. Using this system, the operation data of a tube with individual barcode can be easily read – for an end forming for example. For this purpose, all tools of the machine, which is equipped with 6 forming stations, have sensors (RFID). This ensures that the right programme and the appropriate tools are available. If the automatic inspection unit detects a wrong tool, the operating panel with data memory displays this information immediately. Here, the identification for the correct tool for the change is indicated as well. Using the convenient quick-connecting system of the transfluid solution with fork for fixing and locking bolt for securing the mount, the machine operator can directly change the tool and precisely perform the tube end forming afterwards.

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Prior to the end forming, the operation parameters are read via a barcode. © transfluid

Certainly flexible and reliable
The REB 645 allows the axial forming of tubes with diameters from 6 to 45 mm. By means of a servomotor, the tool sequence is positioned horizontally and vertically. In addition, rolling stations for specific forming processes can be integrated. Upon request, the machine can be equipped with electric or hydraulic numeric drives. In case of extremely short cycle times, these forming procedures can also be carried out gradually in transfer systems. With the new tube forming machine, transfluid ensures even more reliable processes and more flexibility for individual requirements.

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All tools of the t form REB 645 by Transfluid are equipped with sensors (RFID). © transfluid

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH
transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.
www.tube-processing-machines.com

Published inProduction

Coordinated transfluid technology improves process safety

Many paths not only lead to Rome, but also to the desired product result. Of course, the production plants and systems are very important for safe processes in tube processing. The solution finders of transfluid use their knowledge in development of the properly coordinated tube bending and tube forming machines for this.

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© transfluid Caption: At the beginning of the process, transfluid ensures quick sequences by chipless clean cutting. Forming comes first, followed by bending.

The high-tech machine constructors produce additional added value also by precisely coordinated production of tools, as Stefanie Flaeper, managing director at transfluid, explains: "We develop tool technologies that match our machines. Of course, they correspond to the complete requirements that our customer has to his specific product or any new one." This development always must be viewed in connection with a machine accordingly. "Of course, we share our individually developed know-how with our customers," says Flaeper. "They participate and profit from this in different ways."

New paths for better production

Effective new design of individual process steps often secures economically more efficient production. For example, a transfluid project required a production cell for production of special short tube parts. A classical process would have been defined initially by cutting the tubes by metal circular saw, unilateral forming of the hose connection, bending, cutting off the oversize and forming the second tube end. "We don't stop our considerations at the proper shape," Stefanie Flaeper emphasises. "The path to the result must be just right as well. That includes making it more economically efficient, process-safe and easier for our customers."

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© transfluid Caption: The individually adjusted transfluid production cell from the portfolio range 't motion' ensures the matching result quickly and effectively.

Chipless to the faster cycle

Thus, the better system solution after completing the transfluid project is that the material from the coil is initially shortened to the desired lengths in the chipless orbital cutting procedure. The clean cut permits immediate further processing and paves the way for faster cycle times. After cutting, both sides will be reshaped. transfluid generally puts this step before bending. In this case, it avoids having to cut off the overlengths and permits simpler handling, finally, the desired tube parts are bent as well. "It always depends on the process, good interaction of technologies and the possibility of an effective cooperative partnership," Stefanie Flaeper finally summarises.

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.

www.tube-processing-machines.com

Published inProcessing

transfluid large tube bending machines with fast tool changes permit narrow radii even in CuNiFe and stainless steel tubes.

Capacities are planned with increasing efficiency in international ship construction and the offshore area, and present resources are used to higher capacity to improve processes. Therefore, the industry relies more than ever on time- and cost-saving bending machines for large tube diameters in tube processing. Advanced tube bending technologies are proving their worth as an efficient alternative for welding of large tubes. High-tech company transfluid is developing this solution for tubes in the scope of its portfolio range 't bend'. The bending machines permit high-performance processing of tubes with diameters of up to 325 mm.

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Stefanie Flaeper, managing director at transfluid, explains: "Our bending technology considerably reduces the production costs while creating a time benefit of up to 60 %. This is an unbeatable benefit on the international markets." The trend is towards flanges being welded to the straight tube before bending, with the effect of internal linking to the corresponding CAD programs. The isometrics can be directly processed in the transfluid bending software 't project' this way. "We offer enormous flexibility that, together with the extremely short tool change times of less than 20 minutes, permits a clear efficiency increase in tube production," says Stefanie Flaeper.

Mobile use on board
The mobile tablet version 't project Draft' increases flexibility with special requirements. If tube data do not come from the CAD, they can be manually entered in the software. This may be the case if tubes are already present and are measured accordingly. Since this is not always done in-house, but may take place directly on the ships, the tablet version increases flexibility. This software permits isometric measurement and input of tubes. Then the data are sent to the production department directly by email, where production can already start while further tube geometries are recorded on the ship.

End forms and space benefits
The option of end forming processes, e.g. for forming on flanges, is one strength. The transfluid bending technologies permit optimised processing of large tubes and tubes with small diameters. Narrow radii are possible even in CuNiFe and stainless steel pipes, permitting an additional space benefit in the ship.

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH
transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.
www.tube-processing-machines.com

Published inProcessing

Ready for the Series
Transfluid creates expanded prototyping options for new pipe forming geometries

Pipe forming technology is a complex matter – with ever smaller tolerances for advanced new projects from the different industries. These companies with their fresh ideas are, of course united by the wish of transferring the new product to serial production safely and reliably at once after development. This also applies to high-tech machine constructor Transfluid, which uses its pipe processing technologies for research in its internal prototyping department. This is not only about sampling of its own new developments, e.g. in the area of tool technology. Companies without machinery of their own can have their pilot series analysed and precisely improved at Transfluid.

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Different pipe processing technology, such as this continuous SRM type forming machine, are available in the prototyping department for the smallest clamping lengths at optimally controlled forming results.

"Support in this area is in higher demand than expected. Therefore, we have expanded our research and prototyping department once again just recently," says Stefanie Flaeper, managing director at transfluid. "We can perform diverse tests on components and tools with pipe diameters up to 65 mm here." A CNC-controlled type SRM rolling forming machine and two axial forming machines are used for this with a forming power of up to 25 tons. The entire process chain can be implemented with an additional CNC-controlled pipe bending machine and an orbital pipe separation system - to ensure that requirements, e.g. regarding burr formation, can be met.

Tests and documentation for light-weight construction components and high-strength materials as well
For specific customer projects, the experts in the department are testing new forming geometries and tool concepts for serial maturity and quality. The Transfluid team relies, among others, on a tactile and visual measuring system for components and tools. The interim results up to the certain result are documented reliably.

The Transfluid experts have special experience as a technology leader and initial developer of incremental pipe forming, which permits partial rotation-symmetrical forming of pipes made of high- and very-high-strength materials. In particular review and assessment with light-weight components and high-strength materials is possible as well. Depending on geometry, this can even be done tool-independently. Thus, the company can offer the pilot series or prototype production particularly cost-optimised.

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH
transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.
www.tube-processing-machines.com

Published inProduction

transfluid develops a new general of combination machines for axial and rolling pipe forming

The technical evolution is mostly targeted at designing new solutions at the state of the art to simplify work and improve results. The engineers at transfluid followed this principle as well, developing a new generation of combination machines that effectively combine the benefits of the axial and rolling forming.

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The new generation of transfluid combination machines combines the benefits of axial and rolling pipe forming even more effectively.

The plants are particularly characterised by their diversity in forming of parts, as Stefanie Flaeper, managing director at transfluid, explains: "Geometries in pipe end machining can be formed directly on the pipe, replacing usually complicated and expensive turned parts. No soldering or welding is needed: The pipe and its end form are virtually from a single cast."

Flexibly processes
The benefits of this kind of process are clear: Implementation of the combination can be specified by the user directly, or based on the forming geometry. "Usually, up to 6 axial forming stages and at least one rolling unit are used. If trimming, axial and rolling forming are needed, two rolling stations may be required as well," says Stefanie Flaeper. "We also call this 'powered axes'."

Single-drive axes for a more compact setup
Pipe machining may include a simple trim or deburring at the pipe end after forming. Because this is not a demanding process-technical challenge, it is sensible to use compact units for this. transfluid has made it possible to equip all axial forming machines and all combination machines with one or several single-drive axes. These axes have a servo-electrical drive and can be used for the forming stages in each of the holders. This makes the system very compact and particularly flexible. Because the transfluid combination machines have electrical drives, all forming tools are positioned very precisely and the machines can be used much more diversely.

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH
transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers.
www.tube-processing-machines.com

Published inProduction

transfluid develops flexible production cells for smart tube processing Live from the tube Düsseldorf

Precisely produced tubes help make energy and water flow or medical devices support the life-saving work of doctors. Robust, short hose connections for automotive construction or long, multiply-processed tubes, e.g. used as air conditioning lines, also need many different requirements to the proper production solution. Depending on industry and application area, they need to be specifically formed, bent, and diversely processed, of course. The networked 't motion' automation systems by transfluid create combined options for the large series operation for this. This not only leads to capacities but also ensures the process safety that parts are always produced at the same good quality.

"We use our sophisticated technology concepts for tube bending, separation, cleaning and tube forming for the automation systems, supplementing them, e.g., with loading systems, weld seam control or complete handling," says Stefanie Flaeper, managing director at transfluid. "With the easy-to-operate production cell coordinated in this manner, production can start right away. The principle clearly is one of Plug and Produce. Our customers place value on this. They trust in our decades of experience and our progressive high-tech solutions."

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The complete production cells are specifically coordinated with the requirements, including generation of the layout to achieve the perfect material flow.

Complete systems for complex challenges

The specialists at transfluid integrate expansions such as marking facilities, seam detection devices, printers, tightness tests or visual, contact-free camera systems for inspecting geometries or surfaces, brazing and welding units and auto-frettage as optional components on request. Effective loading systems, storage systems, supply of the workpieces or complete handling by robot or in linear systems can be added as well. "We coordinate the solution specifically with the customer's requirements, including generation of the layout to achieve optimised material flow and best utilisation," explains Stefanie Flaeper.

What is better? Highly flexible linear systems or robots?

Selection of handling of course also focuses on highest possible efficiency. The devices used strongly depend on the parts to be produced. Stefanie Flaeper presents a general principle: "Everything that can be done to the tube in the straight condition considerably reduces the handling effort. From the bending machine onwards, the robot usually takes over. Linear handling can often be faster, more cost-efficient and easier to reach." For smooth production flow, transfluid develops its production systems to permit loading of isometric data online from a CAD system and to avoid elaborate programming of robots. 

The matching component supply

Coming off of the starting block well and maintaining the head start will bring a runner in first, too. Therefore, the systems for loading and separation already contribute to the high performance of 't motion'. Components (nuts, flanges, screws) are supplied from splitter magazines or rotation separators with presence and position checks. Additionally, supplies from the coil or by loading table, by belt, stage, plate, chain or vibration conveyor are available to match the overall system. In strong connection with its tube forming, separating and tube bending technologies, transfluid thus ensures high-performance linked automation systems linked in a result-oriented manner that offer individual solutions for many different pipe productions. 

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers. As a world-renowned brand, the company from Schmallenberg, South Westphalia is present in Europe and, through its subsidiaries, also in Asia.

www.tube-processing-machines.com

Innovative developments by transfluid make processing of tubing more cost-effective

transfluid has again pushed forward the boundaries of technology in the form of its automatic machine for the shaping of tubing. Thanks to imaginative developments in engineering techniques it is now possible for the first time to create non-tool-based, CNC-controlled profiles. In addition, the engineers at transfluid have also provided the option of working with tubing chuck sizes of less than 0.5 x D and to cut and shape these - all in one single work process.

The latest brainchild in the field of continuous shaping of tubing generated by the team based in Schmallenberg in Westphalia in Germany involves the use of an 'SRM'-type machine to expand tubing (T-pieces) with the help of very simple tools. This continuous shaping machine can produce items in both horizontal and vertical designs to meet the needs of individual applications and requirements. All functions are operated servo-electrically and can also be CNC-controlled as necessary.

tpeice 1

Increased demand for flexible production processes

Stefanie Flaeper, CEO of transfluid, has this to say about the new system: "Our 'SRM' machine for continuous shaping of tubing can be modified and is thus highly flexible irrespective of whether it is employed for non-tool-based shaping or, as in this instance, for the expansion of tubing. And it is the flexibility that is an important feature of our development concepts that our customers find particularly attractive."

The company is also responsible for innovations with regard to axial tube forming, specifically in connection with tool technology, and these result in improved quality and output. "Multiple shaping operations of a tube end can be undertaken with the help of our pneumatically opening segment tool," explains Stefanie Flaeper. transfluid has equipped these tools with a pneumatic system that controls and opens elements and can verify their positioning. "With our special tools for tube forming, we have managed to ensure that the external surfaces of tubing remain untouched during the shaping processes so that there are no scratches or friction deposits on surfaces. This is because our tools open and close as appropriate to the required position during shaping."

tpeice 2

Cost-efficient tool systems

By combining flexibility with the frequently required lightweight construction concepts, especially those of the automotive industry, transfluid has built tool systems with which it is possible to prepare tubing in specific wall thicknesses. This is a particularly efficient solution because it means that thinner tubing can be employed and the wall thicknesses can be created that are required for further processing for use in the various applications.

But in the case of transfluid, flexibility also means in this context that shaping can be first undertaken before the tubing is bent, an approach that relies largely on the availability of the suitable tube bending technology. And this technique also saves money as it is thus no longer necessary to use expensive spanning devices for forming while outgoings for internal logistics operations, handling and loading are reduced. Not only this, but transfluid is also able to provide tube bending machines with an automatic clamp set changer, something that is of additional benefit in situations in which multilevel tools are being employed.

transfluid intends to systematically continue with its current developments in tubing shaping and bending technology with the aim of making tube processing even more efficient. 

Trade fair: Tube, Düsseldorf, 4 - 8 April 2016, hall 05/stand G34

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH

transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers. As a world-renowned brand, the company from Schmallenberg, South Westphalia is present in Europe and, through its subsidiaries, also in Asia.

www.tube-processing-machines.com

Published inProcessing

transfluid is ensuring bending freedom with its new ‘t bend’ mandrel bending machine
Adaptability and flexibility have always been a successful characteristic in evolution. This is just as true in nature as it is for advanced technology for bending tubes. The mechanical engineering company transfluid used this principle for the new, fully automatic ‘t bend’ mandrel bending machine DB 622-CNC. The current system development for tube processing has no corners or edges and is completely encased in a round, new design. “The compact design, with an integrated safety housing around the machine, allows operation with a separate safety apparatus”, explains Stefanie Flaeper, Managing Director at transfluid.

mandrel trans

Radii changers for form spanners and spanners
The fully automatic system can be freely programmed without specific CNC knowledge using touch panel control, allowing exact bending of round steel tubes with a diameter of 22 x 2.0 mm, of stainless steel tubes with a diameter of 22 x 1.5 mm and of square tubes with a diameter of 16 x 1.5 mm. Bending angles of up to 180° are possible. The machine has mandrel support for the precise placement of the mandrel tip. It is also fitted with a radii changer for two changes of the processing level. This also allows the processing of a tube with alternating form spanners or spanners. The maximum change height is approximately 60 mm and the radii difference between the levels is 1.5 x D.

Flexibility and safety in production
The control system works with three individual axes for bending, turning and length positioning. Once the bending data has been entered the bending programme is generated automatically and can also be manually optimised during operation. Furthermore it is possible to split one bending process into several segments in order, for example, to achieve different speeds on one arc. The speeds of the servo axes are automatically synchronised to one another in order to minimise wear and power consumption. The system has been developed and realised as a whole in accordance with the latest technical safety regulations. transfluid is thus ensuring efficient and safe tube processing.

Trade fair: Tube, Düsseldorf, 04-08/04/2016, Hall 05 / Stand G34

transfluid Maschinenbau GmbH
transfluid is sought after worldwide as a partner for manufacturing tube bending machines and tube processing machines. transfluid has been developing its technologies for tube machining since 1988, so that it can provide customer-oriented, tailor-made solutions – for plant and machine construction, the automotive and energy industries, shipbuilding and medical device manufacturers. As a world-renowned brand, the company from Schmallenberg, South Westphalia is present in Europe and, through its subsidiaries, also in Asia.
www.tube-processing-machines.com

Published inProduction
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