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Creative Shop Solutions

Smooth operations

By Julie Sammarco

Hydraulic presses run faster, smoother and more efficiently with motion control systems

May 2012 - The more efficiently a machine runs, the greater benefits a company experiences. For Power Partners Inc., Athens, Ga., investing in a hydraulic press with motion controllers was an easy choice. Controllers are designed to make machines run accurately and efficiently.

“Controlling our hydraulic presses with Delta RMC151E motion controllers just made sense,” says David Werling, process engineer for Power Partners Inc. “The RMC provided a tighter performing process and has required less maintenance and tuning.”

deltacomputersMotion controllers make other machines perform better and faster, according to Bill Savela, sales executive at Delta Computer Systems Inc., Battle Ground, Wash. “This is possible because the movements that we control don’t beat up the machine,” he says. “We help the machines to run smoother and last longer, which improves maintenance costs and allows longer productivity before you have to do repairs.”

Power Partners has fabricated overhead distribution transformers for more than 50 years. “Most of our cores are formed using a 200-ton, four-axis die-forming hydraulic press. The presses, now controlled by RMCs, are used to shape cores such that they can be assembled around the transformer coils,” he says.

Before it invested in a hydraulic press with a motion-control system from Delta, its hydraulic presses were controlled by printed circuit boards. “After 30-plus years, the board connections and relays were making intermittent contact. We’d occasionally get a ‘runaway cylinder’ that would damage machine components or tooling,” says Werling. The company installed its first RMC in 2010 and added a second in 2012.

“Before upgrading to the Delta RMC, the tuning process was very labor intensive. We had to move/jump wires and take voltage readings at various points. Delta’s RMC Tools software and plotting functions eliminated all of this. And their customer service and training were excellent.”

The RMC151E motion-control system allows Power Partners to create better parts, according to Werling. “The RMC obtains feedback from MTS sensors, creating an incredibly fast and accurate position control loop,” he says. “The end result is an accurate core and a more efficient transformer for our customers.”

Better machines
The RMC family uses a closed-loop software setup to control position, speed, pressure and force and dual-loop position pressure in electric, hydraulic or pneumatic applications. This delivers better products and makes more efficient use of the machines using the system.

Hydraulic press manufacturers such as Multipress Inc., Columbus, Ohio, also prefer to use motion control systems when building their machines. Barney Raye, president of Multipress, was confident in choosing motion controllers from Delta to use in its presses.

Raye likes the closed-loop system better than older, traditional open-loop systems. The better the control system, the better the machine, which helps customers produce better products, he says.

“Open-loop systems might make parts with accuracy within 2 to 5 percent, but with closed-loop systems, I can get accuracy with less that 1 percent. It’s a more accurate and more repeatable process,” he says. “In a lot of ways, that’s the difference between getting good parts and bad parts.”

Originally, 30-year-old Delta started designing, manufacturing and marketing motion-control products for the sawmill industry. Today, “these machines are applicable and work well in any press application for the metals industry—hydroforming, powder coating, a hydraulic press, anything with precise control,” says Savela.

Customer service also sets Delta apart. According to Werling, “Delta provides free technical support and software/upgrades. The Delta website contains a variety of engineering tools, including video tutorials and application examples” to help integrate the system seamlessly. FFJ

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Sources

  • Delta Computer Systems Inc.
    Battle Ground, Wash.
    phone: 360/254-8688 
    www.deltamotion.com
  • Power Partners Inc.
    Athens, Ga.
    phone: 706/548-3121
    fax: 706/548-1929
    www.powerpartners-usa.com
  • Multipress Inc., Columbus, Ohio, 614/228-0185, fax: 614/228-2358, 
    www.multipress.com
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