Advanced Machine Works

How to Choose the Right Flexible Tooling System for Your Needs

If you’re in the market for a new flexible tooling system, we understand the seriousness of your situation. It represents a significant investment, and making the right choice is crucial. It can mean the difference between excellent levels of output and productivity and wasting hundreds of thousands of dollars a year on downtime and maintenance.

What key attributes should you look for in a flexible tooling system? Join us as we explore five key considerations.

1. Meets Your Needs

Of course, your starting point must be what your business needs. Here are some important factors to consider:

  • Types of parts you manufacture
  • Production volume
  • Flexibility required
  • Acceptable tolerances
  • Budget constraints
  • Future-proofing – growth areas you want to expand into

Facility modification is a further consideration. Some flexible tooling systems require you to make significant changes to your manufacturing facility, which can result in downtime during the installation process. Added to that are the ongoing costs of maintaining these alterations. Such systems offer questionable flexibility. Instead, look for systems that are truly flexible.

This assessment is the backbone of your purchasing decision. Consult widely, investigate diligently, and try to forecast prudently so you know exactly what you’re looking for before investigating potential systems.

2. Explore the Market

Now you know what you’re looking for, it’s time to start scouring the market for potential options. Rather than letting manufacturers convince you that their system meets your need, be clear about exactly what you need. Don’t compromise on crucial details like flexibility, accuracy, and reliability.

3. Understand the Challenges

Sad to say, most flexible tooling systems fail businesses in four key areas:

  • Difficult to verify: It’s only possible to cut parts accurately if they’re held precisely in position. Most current systems require manual rather than automatic verification. This is labor-intensive, costly, and prone to human error.
  • Complicated: Many flexible tooling systems feature a complex jumble of mechanical and electronic parts. It only takes one of these to fail for the entire system to break down. Plus, they’re highly susceptible to damage from moisture and dust.
  • Lack of flexibility: Some systems use traditional actuators that must be positioned by hand. This is time-consuming and open to human error.
  • Expensive and inefficient: Think twice if you need to modify your facility to accommodate the flexible tooling system. They can end up costing you more than the machine they’re servicing.

4. Identify the Best System for Your Needs

It’s clear what you need to avoid, but is there really a system out there that addresses all these issues? There is – the AccuLoc6 flexible tooling system.

  • Efficient: It can be either fully or semi-automated, increasing accuracy while cutting down on costs.
  • Flexible: Designed to hold parts of almost any size and shape with 6-axis adjustability.
  • Reliable: No moving parts or electronics mean less downtime and outstanding durability.
  • Verifiable: AccuLoc6 uses lockable end effectors, which can be verified using automated tools such as spindle probes.

Choose AccuLoc6 for Your Facility

AccuLoc6 represents a huge leap forward in flexible tooling systems. Invest in a system that will last for decades, require minimal oversight, and reduce your maintenance costs. 

To learn more, contact Advanced Machine Works at (918) 884-3750 or reach out online today!

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