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Holzher Evolution CNC vs. Pod and Rail5/27
I have been looking at CNC machines for a while and am getting closer to purchase. Pod and rail seems to suit my needs but I have seen video of Holzher 7405 vertical CNC machine and it looks interesting. I have a large shop so footprint not a major consideration. Does the vertical machine perform better than pod and rail? Is it less expensive than pod and rail? Any opinions or anyone with any experience with 7405 will be appreciated.
I wasn't aware holzher had a vertical machine, i have only seen biesse and homag. i assume they are similar.
vertical machines do have their place, but in my opinion limited. Footprint is nice. Not having to move pods all of the time is nice. There are likely limitations on how much routing can be done. I have never received a quote but at shows they seem to be about the same price as a point to point.
However if you have a large shop i would think that throughput would be needed??? Then pendulum processing on a ptp i would think would be more efficient.
in my opinion unless you can combine processes like dowel insertion or maybe put a return conveyor on a vertical the ptp is the way to go.
I looked at them when in Atlanta. If you are mainly drilling and edge boring, they look pretty nice. If you do a lot of routing and you have enough floor space, they lose their appeal. Any chunks coming off are not allowed. From my viewing, all of the offcuts had to be turned to dust by one of the routers. Those type of machines are great for some operations, but I don't have the work to feed it.
Like Mike said about the verticals. They seem to be suited to rectangular panels with little to no drops. If you are going to be machining lumber the PTP's make sense. Maybe they are also good when very high volumes of stack cut parts are run on the panel saw. If you are primarily panel processing a self loading nested machine is a better answer. PTPs are typically more expensive by quite a bit than verticals. I've got a PTP, Nested router (not self load) and an excellent beam saw.
Thanks so far for your responses. The no drops issue is a real negative. I will be speaking to someone tomorrow who runs one and I will get all the details. Thanks again for your opinions.
To begin with I am the CNC Product Manager at Holz-Her and obviously deeply involved with the Evolution.
The Evolution is unique within the vertical machining arena, while as mentioned there are other vertical machining centers in the market they have a major limitation. As they clamp the bottom the part to provide part movement this restricts any routing on the bottom edge, restricts how close to the bottom of the panel one can route, drill or groove and can leave marks on high gloss material. In many cases one has to machine the upper portion of the component and then flip and re-index.
Holz-Her addressed this limitation by developing a patent pending work holding system of automatic positioning vacuum pods as used on a traditional point to point. This provides the ability to machine the full face of the panel as well as the ability of machine all 4 sides of the component and full perimeter machining.
This distinct advantage was recognized by the judges at IWF in awarding the Evolution the Challengers Award
The Evolution provides 10 vertical drills, 6 horizontal drills, X axis saw and HSK router spindle with a 6 position automatic tool changer.
Yes it is true in vertical machining that it is best to turn all drops into dust there are some exceptions and need to be reviewed on a case by case basis, but generally you want to turn all cuts into dust to take advantage of the full dust collection the enclosed machine provides.
The advantages of vertical machining are first the footprint, secondly the dust containment and collection as the machine is enclosed, there is a reduction of operator fatigue and the price is generally significantly lower than a traditional point to point while providing a full compliment of machining functions.
This forum is designed not to be a selling platform and I want to respect that, I hope this information is of value and would welcome the opportunity to further discuss one on one the specific application and features of this new technology
I can be reached at 704-756-9964 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks for your response ,
I work with an Evolution 7405 so here is my opinion based on every day experience.
Thanks for the comments from the users perspective it is always a help to hear comments from those who run the machine day in and day out.
Vertical machining like any other process has it's limitations, nesting cannot not horizontal drill, ptp parts have to be cut and requires a second operator and the footprint.
As for your points, many are valid, yes off-all is an issue with any vertical, we do not want scrap blocking the dust collection and more importantly do not want it to fall and interfere with the X axis movement of the part
Generally if the offall is small, toe kick for example we use a 20mm hogging bit, clean it our and then do a tool change for corner radius needed, it added 7 seconds to a standard side panel. On some large parts like closet components we are able to use the vacuum pods to hold the scrap part and the finished part and then just removed both at the end of the cycle.
As the Evolution uses vacuum pods (like a ptp) to hold and move the work piece we do not have the potential interference of clamps as with other verticals
The 3 dust collection ports on the Evolution are behind the router head, at the drill head shroud and at the base of the machine. If you are onion skinning you are blocking off the dust collection at the router completely which is why you are getting no dust collection at that point
In most cases a good blowing with a air gun will release the dust and let it fall to the base where it can be picked up by the collector.
We have run mdf doors on a nbm and vertical and there was a huge improvement in dust collection on the vertical
With offall on a ptp you still have the issue of collecting it and disposing it, turning it all to dust may take a few seconds more but then it it gone
The Evolution has been the most successful product launch by Holz-Her
Is the Evolution unique in it's ability to machine all 4 sides in one set up..yes but does it replace all other types of CNC machines.. certainly no
In the right application though it can make a significant difference
We have a Biesse BreMa Eko 902 in addition to two Morbidelli pod and rail PTP.
Each has its place; the vertical machine is great for one of cabinets as there is no setup between parts. Our vertical has two clamps on bottom edge which hold great on small parts especially with heavy routing (not sure how good the vacuum cups hold on Holzher). The clamps automatically re-position them self as needed to allow machining on bottom edge.
For standard cabinet sides the PTP is much faster due to the ability to use multiple fields and not having to re-position the clamps on larger parts.
We pretty much do the same on large cutouts, then finish with laminate trimmer. The pods are small and the vacuum inadequate (at least for our needs) It's okay for moving parts during drilling processes but not always adequate for some routing. What's really absurd is the machine is sold with a vacuum generator, not a pump. It was never explained to my boss what it was all about. What's more absurd is Holzher promotes its Ecomode which is supposed to manage energy efficiency yet the vacuum generator is far less efficient than an electric pump. Our air compressor was cycling every 2 1/2 minutes. Holzher supplied a small electric pump after we complained (and ruined parts and wasted time) but my own opinion is it is bad business to sell a machine like that with only a vacuum generator. Like selling a Ferrari with tires only rated for 100mph
Cabmaker...where are you located ?
Your comments regarding the vacuum system does not reflect the Evolution specification supplied by Holz-Her US
Feel free to reply to me directly
We're in Hendersonville N.C.
I believe the machine came from you guys.
All US installations of the Evolution are provided with a 9 c/m dry vane Becker vacuum pump.
The first machines delivered to the US were built with the Venturi vacuum system and it was determined early on that this system would not be adequate for the US market and were replaced with the Becker pump
The Becker pump is now standard on all Evolution machines in the US
"were built with the Venturi vacuum system and it was determined early on that this system would not be adequate for the US market" So why would there be a difference between what was deemed adequate in Europe and the US? I've seen similar things before about what is sold in Europe & here.
Hey Larry, I'll take a stab at this.
Thanks very much for the information...currently we are in the market for such a machine and to hear about a machine from an operator is priceless