Mitutoyo’s ‘Form’ Follows Function for Davall Gears.

With a proud heritage that stretches back to 1885, Hatfield, Hertfordshire based Davall Gears is a long established UK manufacturer and supplier involved in the design and production of gearing systems and specialist gearboxes. In addition to serving a long list of domestic customers involved in the demanding Aerospace, Defence, Medical, Industrial Automotive and Auto-sport sectors, the company boasts a growing international customer base.

Regular investments ensure that Davall Gears’ experienced workforce have access to a wide range of modern CNC machine tools, electro discharge machines, gear cutting machines, precision grinding facilities and advanced inspection aids. The company’s impressive plant list and the work of its skilled staff enables Davall Gears to undertake a full range of customers’ gear related requirements, from prototype work, through development stages and on to full production.

Increased levels of production of parts with demanding form specifications prompted Davall Gears to search for a CNC driven form measurement device that would not only deliver the required precision, but would also provide enhanced levels of automation and efficiency. After considering several alternatives, an advanced SV–C3200 Formtracer was purchased from Mitutoyo UK.

Davall Gears Managing Director Simon Usher explained. “Because of the demanding quality standards specified by our global customer base we make use of a range of advanced, high-precision inspection equipment. To improve our efficiency, when possible we use inspection equipment that delivers a level of automation. As we are often asked to supply inspection documentation by our customers, we also look to purchase inspection equipment that is able to automatically generate in-depth statistical inspection reports.

“As our form measuring function was recently placed under pressure by our increasing workload, in accordance with our policy of continuous improvements we recently decided to purchase a more up to date Formtracer. Although we had used a previous generation Mitutoyo Formtracer and been pleased with its performance and reliability, mindful of the potential technical progress made by other metrology companies we witnesses demonstrations of high-end models from several leading manufacturers.

“Although a couple of the alternative machines satisfied much of our needs, the SV–C3200 Formtracer from Mitutoyo was the only machine that fully met our challenging list of criteria and that gave us all of all of the new, advanced facilities that we needed. “The SV–C3200 provided us with the required levels of accuracy, in addition we were certain that the automated CNC Mitutoyo Formtracer would improve our inspection throughput. Also, the SV–C3200 has excellent report generating facilities.

“A major benefit of Mitutoyo’s SV–C3200 Formtracer was that, as an advanced hybrid CNC measuring instrument, in addition to performing our critical form measuring functions, our new Mitutoyo machine is able to accurately measure the surface finish of our products. “After the SV–C3200 Formtracer’s installation and following our operators’ training, the ease of use of the machine meant that it was soon in full operation and was delivering the promised levels of accuracy and efficiency. Due to the SV–C3200 Formtracer’s automated nature, our operators are now able to achieve much faster form and the surface finish inspection times. As we have written programs for many of our components our staff now simply clamp the component to be inspected onto the machine, download the relevant program and begin an automatic CNC inspection procedure. At the end of each routine, if required, the machine generates the kind of detailed inspection report required by our customers.

“As form and surface finish are critical, gear related inspection parameters, it is a major advantage that we are able to achieve outstanding levels of accuracy in these important areas. Also, the impressive speed and the automated CNC nature of our new Mitutoyo SV–C3200 should ensure that it is able to handle the form and surface inspection needs of all future production increases.”

Mitutoyo’s SV–C3200 is an advanced, high-accuracy measuring instrument that enables the precise measurement of form, surface roughness and contour by the use of a single easy to use unit. The highly flexible machine provides users with high drive speeds that are achieved through the impressive speed of its traverse movements. An auto-stop feature assures safety even during high-speed movements, if the arm is removed or shifts during a measurement routine, the safety mechanism is triggered and stops the machine.

A convenient remote-control unit enables safe, easy and fast measurement. The unit allows operators to move quickly from positioning to measurement. Trouble free, high-speed operation is further guaranteed as all detector and drive unit cables are housed inside the main unit, eliminating the risk of abrasion and damage.

The SV–C3200 Formtracer incorporates an ABS scale in the Z2 axis, totally eliminating the need for the tedious origin point re-setting routines that are necessary in less capable, conventional machines.

A continuous top to bottom measurement function means that upper and lower surfaces can be measured continuously by using Mitutoyo’s double-sided conical stylus. Continuous measurement data can be used to facilitate analysis of features that were previously difficult to measure, such as the effective diameter of internal screw-threads.

The SV–C3200 machine makes use of Mitutoyo’s advanced Formtracepak surface roughness measuring software. The easy to use application performs surface roughness analyses that conform to international standards such as ISO, JIS ANSI, and VDA. As Formtracepak provides parameter calculation functions and a rich set of graphic analysis functions, the flexible software can be used for a wide range of functions from routine quality control tasks to advanced R&D applications.