Portable Machine for Linear and Gantry Milling

Nov. 3, 2011
New design from Climax has split bed rails, bed length extensions, and reduced friction rail technology

A portable milling machine with a split-rail system that allows configurations for both linear milling and gantry milling was introduced this week by Climax Portable Machine Tools. It has a rigid, modular bed that allows shorter bed sections to be combined to fit the length of the work area as needed, with no compromise in rigidity but the option to extend the bed to two or three times its original length.

Two new machines from CPMT are designed with a split rail system for alternate configurations to perform linear milling and gantry milling. A rigid, modular bed design allows shorter bed sections to be combined to fit the length of the work area, as needed, without losing rigidity, and to extend the bed two or three times its standard length.

To convert from linear milling to large surface or gantry milling, a machinist removes the RAM, splits the bed and saddle into two separate rails for gantry milling, and then reattaches the RAM to the saddle and rails. The developer called its design the first of its kind, and indicated that machinists and service technicians working in power generation, mining, heavy construction, and shipbuilding industries will be able to use the LM5200 and LM6200 models for on-site machining of various large-surface areas without multiple setups.

A sample of parts within the range of the new designs include pump and motor mounts, compressor and heat equipment bases, exchanger faces, sole plates, and sections of large surfaces. CPMT also identified drilling and boring, and other features on flat and rounded surfaces.

"This tool came out of conversations with our customers who told us they wanted a portable milling machine that minimizes the number of changeovers to complete a job, is versatile, rigid and that maximizes the mill's footprint for each workspace," stated Geoff Gilmore, president of Climax Portable Machine Tools. "Our engineering and design team realized that to meet customer demand, we needed to develop a milling machine that would completely re-define the concept of a portable milling machine.

Gilmore said the linear/gantry mill combination sets a new standard for “precision, functionality and features." The developer predicted the two models would expand the number of machining projects machinists can do without having to purchase or transport additional mills. The two models, it claimed, allow precision milling, drilling and boring to be done more efficiently to meet tight tolerances in both linear and gantry milling configurations.

Specifically, the Climax LM5200 model can be configured to bed lengths of 48, 72, and 96 inches (1,219.2, 1,828.8, and 2,438.4 mm) and RAM lengths of 26 or 44 inches (660.4 or 1,117.6 mm.)

The Climax LM6200 model can be configured to bed lengths from 48 to 192 inches (1,219.2 to 4,876.88 mm) with RAM lengths of 36, 48, 82, and 116 inches (914.4, 1,219.2, 2,082.8, and 2,946.4.)

Both models are outfitted with CPMT’s Reduced Friction Rail Technology that ensures continuous and non-stick slip travel throughout the entire length of the piece being machined, for a uniform finish with no shingling.

The design includes a milling head that can be rotated 360°, and electric feeds that can be mounted on the X, Y or Z axis.

The machines have a heavy-duty spindle and are available with a choice of hydraulic power units for horizontal, vertical or inverted milling that is “fast” and “aggressive,” according to the developer.

About the Author

Robert Brooks | Content Director

Robert Brooks has been a business-to-business reporter, writer, editor, and columnist for more than 20 years, specializing in the primary metal and basic manufacturing industries. His work has covered a wide range of topics, including process technology, resource development, material selection, product design, workforce development, and industrial market strategies, among others. Currently, he specializes in subjects related to metal component and product design, development, and manufacturing — including castings, forgings, machined parts, and fabrications.

Brooks is a graduate of Kenyon College (B.A. English, Political Science) and Emory University (M.A. English.)

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