Gleason's latest generation of Profile Grinding Machines now can be equipped to perform a new process called OPTI-GRIND that significantly improves productivity and quality levels for fine finishing cylindrical gears as large as six meters in diameter, and up to module 16.
The new OPTI-GRIND process enables end users to achieve both ‘optimum' productivity, and ‘optimum' surface finishes, by simultaneously using multiple dressable grinding wheels for profile grinding rather than just the single grinding wheel that is typically used, according to the company's press release.
The new process offers end users a number of variations to choose from to meet their specific applications. For example, when optimum productivity is required, OPTI-GRIND is up to 40 percent faster because it uses three grinding wheels to rough grind four tooth flanks simultaneously, as compared to the typical process of a single wheel roughing only two tooth flanks at once. OPTI-GRIND then is used to finish grind conventionally, with a single wheel that has been dressed to produce the desired surface finishes and flank modifications.
OPTI-GRIND's multiple-wheel configuration offers advantages for gear producers serving the wind power and other industries requiring optimum surface finishes. Where a single dressable wheel must be designed for compromise in order to perform both roughing and finishing, the multiple wheel configuration of OPTI-GRIND makes it possible to utilize wheels designed for maximum roughing productivity, up to 40 percent faster than a single dressable wheel. Then a finishing wheel is designed to produce the desired tooth modifications including grinding of the root without burning, and to deliver surface finishes up to four times finer than what would be possible conventionally.
In addition to the new multiple wheel design, the OPTI-GRIND process relies on the use of the latest Siemens 840D CNC and Gleason Windows-based Intelligent Dialogue software to simplify setup and operation. Grinding technology database recommends and optimizes the production methodology for any of the OPTI-GRIND process variations before machining starts, enabling even less experienced operators to produce high quality parts. The OPTI-GRIND process is one of many technologies offered in Gleason Profile Grinding Machines for workpiece diameters up to six meters.