New 5-axis machining centre from Taiwan

June 3rd, 2020 10:48 am | by admin

Taiwanese machine tool builder Leadwell CNC Machines has introduced a new model, the BC-600, at the smaller capacity end of its of BC-series of 5-axis machining centres. On all four models, the rotary axes are provided by a ±110-degree B-axis spindle and an integrated C-axis rotary table, both of which may be interpolated with X, Y and Z to allow full 5-axis machining.

The competitively priced, highly specified machines, which are fitted with scales in the linear and rotary axes as standard, are available in the UK and Ireland through recently appointed sole sales and service agent WH-Lead, which was due to move  into its new Towcester facility in April 2020. The first batch of Leadwell machines for stock and demonstration were scheduled to start arriving from early May.

A notable feature of the 12-tonne BC-600 is its generous working envelope for the nominal 4.7 by 3.8 metre footprint. Travels in X and Y are 1,100 mm and 610 mm respectively, while in the Z-axis components 610 mm tall can be machined with the spindle in the vertical orientation, rising to 790 mm with the spindle horizontal. Cutting feed rate is up to 10 m/min, while rapids are 36 m/min in X and Y, 30 m/min in Z for short idle times and high productivity.

The flush, 600 mm diameter rotary table accepts workpieces weighing up to 400 kg, but the full 1,280 x 610 mm fixed table can accommodate 1,400 kg components for 3- or 4-axis machining. The C-axis uses a direct drive motor to provide high torque and rigidity and to avoid the backlash normally associated with worm gear drives. Maximum standard rotational speed of the C-axis table is 120 rpm but there is an optional 800 rpm version to provide turning capability.

The tilting spindle, which can be positioned to within 20 seconds of arc, is driven at up to 15,000 rpm (optionally 10,000 or 12,000 rpm) by an 18.5 kW motor. It is replenished automatically with 40-taper or HSK-T63 cutters from a 40-station tool magazine. The spindle’s rigidity, coupled with the wide machine column and base and the use of linear roller guideways in the orthogonal axes with dual-nut, 40 mm diameter ballscrews in X and Y, result in the ability to undertake rigorous metal cutting.

A broad spectrum of cuts can therefore be taken, from roughing of tough superalloys to fine finishing of any material, ensuring that single setup production, which is the rationale for 5-axis machining, can be realised.

Controls available are Heidenhain TNC640 with 21 GB of programme storage, a DCM function to minimise the risk of a collision during 5-axis cycles and KinematicsOpt geometry error compensation; or Siemens 840D with either full 5-axis or 4 +1 interpolation; or FANUC 0MiF, which is available only with 4 + 1 capability.

The BC range is completed by models BC-700, BC-800 and BC-960, the largest of which has an installed weight of 18.6 tonnes, an 800 mm diameter table and a working envelope of 2,040 mm by 1,000 mm by 820 (min) / 948 mm (max) in Z.

WH-Lead Ltd
Tel: 0333 0150165




True north for metrology solutions

July 23rd, 2019 12:21 pm | by admin

Following the great success of last year’s event, FARO, Optimax, Bruker Alicona, Aberlink, Heidenhain, Manchester Metrology and the NPL have joined together to stage an even larger Northern Metrology networking event. Given the positive reaction of last year’s event visitors, once again the venue will be the home of Manchester City FC, the spectacular Etihad Stadium.

Given the increasing complexity and challenging precision standards of today’s components, the importance of accurate measurement has never been greater. The global metrology industry continuously responds to the rising demands for ever more accurate and easier to use products. By harnessing advanced technologies, the industry’s prolific R&D departments regularly develops and launches advanced new metrology instruments and software, in addition to providing effective new measuring services.

The forthcoming Northern Metrology networking provides visitors with the ideal opportunity to witness practical demonstrations of many of the metrology industry’s latest innovations and to discuss their specific measurement problems with industry experts. Due to the diverse range of products being demonstrated at last year’s event, many attendees were able to find cost-effective answers to their most vexing measuring problems.

Throughout the day there will be featured presentations identifying key metrology news and solutions for your industry. If feasible, attendees are encouraged to bring parts along so that they can be scanned and measured on the day. Visitors are also able to take advantage of free Manchester City stadium tours (spaces are limited, therefore please register interest upon registration).

Where: Etihad Stadium, Manchester City Football Club

When: 18th September 2019

Time: 9.30-16.30

Register here for FREE:

FARO Technologies UK Ltd
Tel: 024 76 217690


HEIDENHAIN (GB) celebrates 50th anniversary

February 13th, 2019 11:38 am | by admin

HEIDENHAIN’s product portfolio includes TNC controls, digital readouts, linear and rotary encoders, length gauges and measuring probes


Established in Burgess Hill, West Sussex in 1969, HEIDENHAIN (GB) Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of the German manufacturing group DR. JOHANNES HEIDENHAIN GmbH, is this year celebrating 50 years of supporting manufacturing industry.

Employing 24 people, the company is the sales, service, and distribution centre for the UK and Ireland for the complete range of HEIDENHAIN products. Application engineering as well as customer service and support are provided covering the firm’s CNC systems, digital readouts, linear and rotary encoders, length gauges, measuring probes and machine calibration equipment.

Headed by managing director Neil Prescott, HEIDENHAIN (GB) is a member of the Manufacturing Technologies Association (MTA), the Gauge & Toolmakers Association (GTMA) and plays an active role on the committee of the LAMDAMAP (Laser Metrology, Coordinate Measuring Machine and Machine Tool Performance) international conference and exhibition, supporting the event with the provision of student scholarships.

A network of highly trained, regionally based distributors specialises in offering local sales and service of HEIDENHAIN’s encoder products. All distributors are authorised, have exclusive access to the manufacturer’s technical databases, are assisted as required by specialists in Burgess Hill and use test equipment that is calibrated every two years.

Tel: 01444 247711