Over the years I’ve often heard it said that it is the little things that make the big things happen. In recent years, digitization has put the spotlight on software tools as a means to improve CMM performance. But software can only take one so far. Getting back to basics—good designs and sound engineering—are the keys to high-performing CMM technology.
“Avengers: Endgame” is predicted to pass $937 million shortly. When that happens, media experts will crown the latest Marvel film as the biggest hit ever. The film debuted April 24 but its’ directors along with a number of media outlets have asked viewers not to spoil Endgames for others by talking about it. The point to this is that individuals have gone to great measures to protect the film from leaks and fans have endured long lines and hours of waiting in some cases, to be among the first to see the film on opening weekend.
We talk a lot about CMM software - but the hardware merits a mention or two now and then, especially when there is something new to talk about. Point of fact, our focus is the CMM probe, the most important piece of a coordinate measuring machine. The probe you select can mean the difference between a CMM that is a powerful asset or one that…well…frankly isnt. As Ian Wright says at Engineering.com, “A coordinate measuring machine is only as good as its probe(s).”
The ability to look back gives us the gift of hindsight especially where technology is concerned. A historical review can show us the effects of innovation over time. History can also be educational. George Washington said, “We should not look back unless it is to derive useful lessons from past errors, and for the purpose of profiting by dearly bought experience.”
American singer, actor, pianist and comedian Jimmy Durante was known for two things: his distinctive gravelly speech and his prominent nose which he referred to as the Schnozzola. He coined the phrase, “The nose knows.” The ‘nose’ of 5-axis measurement technology also ‘knows’ when it comes to measuring complex part surfaces. The REVO-2 shoulders the fast motion required for higher throughput while the CMM moves in a slow, linear manner. The REVO-2’s flexible tip-sensing probe boosts accuracy and performance.
Since AIMS ranks customer service right next to superior product quality, I was interested to come across a new survey emphasizing the importance of both. The survey, conducted by iBASEt, targets lean champions, continuous improvement leaders, senior manufacturing execution system (MES) administrators and senior manufacturing engineers. The results are worth exploring.
"It's a jungle out there." The idiom was coined to describe situations considered dangerous or threatening. But it can also apply to purchasing a new CMM, especially when it comes to navigating the different software and hardware choices.
Depending on your application, it can be difficult to know where to start. Conventional prismatic geometry can’t be used to define or measure free form surfaces. Understanding the kind of data your applications will require is an important first step. But you also have to consider other variables. For example, you never know what your customer will send you. The software functions you need today may not be what you need tomorrow. You have to ask yourself what your objectives are and evaluate what you really need from your hardware and software. Making a checklist can be a helpful tool. Paying attention to the way data flows and the standards customers are using is another consideration.