IMTS 2012: Higher Cutting-Capacity FEELER Turning Centers

Methods Machine Tools Inc. introduced the FEELER FT-Series High Performance CNC Turning Centers recently, and will exhibit the new machine at IMTS in September. The machine presents a new all-boxway design that increases cutting capacity significantly, according to MMT; All FEELER machines offer design and engineering by Methods, and are backed by Methods’ application expertise, support, and technology-center network of technology centers.

The FEELER FT-Series turning centers have a single-piece structure with boxways, 45-degree slant bed, and solid base, so they are especially sturdy when performing heavy-duty cutting.

“For increased productivity, the new FT-Series design provides customers with exceptional cutting capacity,” according to product manager Paul Hurtig. “Methods’ engineers have incorporated new features for unsurpassed performance and value.”

The FEELER FT-Series includes four models – FT-200, FT-250, FT-350 and FT-350L. For rigidity during heavy-duty cutting, each model has a single-piece structure with boxways, 45-degree slant bed, and ‘robust’ base: FEA analysis is used to ensure a solid machine base with excellent overall structural rigidity and stability.

Additional new design features include a more rigid Z-Axis and tailstock rail for maximum support and accurate tracking. The FT-Series includes a new spindle headstock with a FEELER sleeve-type spindle, and a high-rigidity servo turret including clamping with curvic coupling for stable and swift tool changes. For excellent multitasking capabilities, 7.5-HP milling motor with 51.6 ft/lb torque is provided.

The FEELER FT-Series is driven by FANUC 0i-TD control and 12-station turret. Customers may choose from four different gearboxes and two spindle types. Spindles range from 2,500 rpm to 4,500 rpm and offer chuck diameter sizes from 8 in. (210 mm) up to 15 in. (381 mm). Bar capacity ranges from 2.6 in. (65 mm) to 4.5 in. (115 mm). Maximum turning diameter is offered from 13.0 in. (330 mm) to 25.0 in. (620 mm) and maximum turning length from 21 in. (530 mm) to 60.2 in. (1,530 mm). Machine weight ranges from 9,925 lbs (4,500 kg) to 21,500 lbs (9,750 kg), depending on the model.

A BMT-65 tool system features a solid interface for tool-holding. Servo programmable tailstock is standard. For maximum machine component longevity, a fully enclosed CE cabinet prevents dust and fumes from entering.

The Methods-FEELER CNC lathes and turning centers include the HT-Series, FTC-Series and FT-Series. The full range of FEELER machines includes vertical machining centers, turning centers, bridge mills and boring mills.

FEELER machines are manufactured by Fair Friend Group — established in 1979 and now one of the world’s largest machine tool builders, with manufacturing operations in Taiwan, China, Japan, and the U.S.

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