Arm muscles in on gaging labs

Arm muscles in on gaging labs

The days of maintaining a separate gaging room on the shop floor may be numbered. Faro Technologies, Inc. (www.faro.com), has introduced the PowerGage, a package that bundles the company's highly portable 4-foot Gage arm with a rugged laptop computer loaded with PowerInspect software from Delcam Inc. (www.delcam.com). The 20-lb. Gage arm, with an accuracy of 0.0002-in., can be mounted on a granite surface plate or on a rigid point of a machining center, and is designed to provide on-the-spot 3D CMM inspection. Metrological and CAD-to-part data can be gathered as parts finish processing or performed in-process, as when milling a new die, eliminating removal, replacement and re-calibration of the part in the machine. The PowerInspect software records all of the user's measurements automatically and can compare the data against all mainstream CAD formats, perform statistical analysis such as Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerance (GD&T), and generate comprehensive reports with detailed graphics. An array of probes and mounting feet are available for the PowerGage, and options that increase portability include a rechargeable battery pack and a support cart with a granite top pre-drilled for mounting. A standard USB cable couples the arm to the computer. The decision that remains is, how to use the extra space when the gaging room's equipment is moved out?

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