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Machining

Originally Published MPMN April 2004

Outsourcing Outlook

Machining

Inspection Process Enhances Machining Services

With the aid of CNC equipment, a company provides machining services to OEMs with capabilities complemented by 3-D CAD software. Milling, turning, electrical-discharge machining, grinding, gun drilling, heat-treating, blasting, anodizing, and electropolishing are on the list of services. A team of biomedical engineers and designers works directly with programmers and operators to develop machining processes for custom instruments and components. A three-stage inspection process includes assessments during the first-article and final phases as well as in-process checks. Treatable materials include stainless steel, titanium, aluminum alloys, plastics, phenolic, and silicone. Gauthier Biomedical, Grafton, WI www.gauthierbiomedical.com 


Component Manufacturer Offers Metal Fabrication


Metal fabrication services are available from a manufacturer of medical device components. Capabilities include centerless grinding, swaging, bending, laser welding, needle assembly, electrical-discharge machining (EDM), CNC flaring, and tip reducing. EDM services feature tubing with outer-diameter ranges of 0.020 to 0.202 in., and hole sizes starting at 0.010 in. Laser welding, suitable for applications such as hypodermic tubing, minimizes the effect of heat in the welded area. Burr-free grinding and cutting are available for tube lengths starting at 3¼8 in. with standard tolerances of ±0.010 to ±0.005 in. The company can process materials including stainless steels, brass, nitinol, titanium, platinum, aluminum, Inconel, and Hastalloy. Popper & Sons, New Hyde Park, NY www.popperandsons.com 
 








Machining Technology Produces Precision Parts

Advanced technology is applied to produce precision-machined parts. Updated CAD and CAM software is networked to the manufacturer's CNC and electrical-discharge machining centers. Tolerances on machined parts are as low as 0.0005 in. The company processes metallic and nonmetallic materials to meet customer requirements. Located in a 100,000-sq-ft facility, the company manufactures customized parts, including clamps, nuts, O-rings, washers, and brackets. Seastrom Manufacturing Company, Inc., Twin Falls, ID www.seastrom-mfg.com 




Software Aids in Quick Prototype Turnaround

Using Solidworks 3-D modeling software speeds up the process of producing prototypes. A manufacturer of sheet-metal prototypes offers 2- to 10-day delivery of parts to mechanical engineers who use the CAD software. The company can use the files as the basis for manufacturing quick-turnaround parts and will generate the flat pattern from the 3-D file. Materials such as aluminum, cold-rolled steel, and stainless steel can be used to create chassis, enclosures, brackets, panels, 19-in. racks, and weldments. Rapid Sheet Metal Inc., Nashua, NH www.rapidsheetmetal.com  


Fabrication Department Meets Machining Demands 

With more than 1000 different mold sizes and a press capacity of more than 350 tn, a molding and machining company offers tight-tolerance machining of most plastic materials. The company handles a wide range of fluoropolymers and Amilon compounds, such as virgin and modified polytetrafluoroethylene blends with carbon and glass. Nonmetallic materials can be folded, bent, shaped, and welded into housings, containers, support brackets, and fixtures. Ultrasonic welding, insert molding, heat staking, hot stamping, pad printing, and assembly are performed within a Class 1000 cleanroom. The company can advise on design and material selection to fit applications requiring chemical resistance, thermal cycling, and high temperature. Amicon Plastics, Houston, TX www.amiconplastics.com 


Manufacturing Equipment Covers Range of Machining Needs

available for customers seeking precision components, such as surgical products, hypotubing, needles, battery contacts, wire forms, and electromagnetic and radio-frequency interference shielding. The company's toolroom equipment includes wire electrical-discharge machines (EDM) with autothreading for unattended operation, a submersible cutting tank, and five programmable axes. In addition to surface grinders and drill presses, a vertical machining center with 20-hp spindle torque is also on-site. The 12,000-sq-ft facility also houses a CNC and EDM microhole drill for holes from 0.004- to 0.256-in. diam. Peridot Corp., Pleasanton, CA www.peridotcorp.com 


Machining Available for 3-D Surfaces

Manufacturers are offered precision machining of surgical instruments, implant devices, and equipment parts. Providing services from prototypes through production, the company incorporates CAD and CAM Unigraphics software for machining and engineering. Capabilities include machining of 3-D surfaces within close tolerances of 0.001 in. on metals, including stainless steel. CNC turning equipment features a full c-axis, live tools, and four y-axis machining, with capabilities for 12 ¥ 25 in., up to a 3-in.-diam through spindle. Precision CNC milling systems handle up to 20 ¥ 40 in. with high-speed machining. BEM CNC, Bensenville, IL www.bemcnc.com 
 


Grinding Machines Produce Intricate Parts

Internally engineered and built grinding machines are used to develop high-quality intricate wire and tubular components. The medical wire component manufacturer offers tolerances within 0.0001 in., tip sharpness of less than 0.00005 in., surface finishes of less than 6 rms, and ground diameters as small as 0.005 in. The equipment is suitable for most metals and plastics with durometers greater than 56. In-house manufacturing services include taper and form grinding, cutting, bending, coining, coating, end-rounding, and laser marking. New England Precision Grinding, Holliston, MA www.nepg1.com 


Prototype Department Expands Range of Services

In order to provide more extensive manufacturing services, an in-house prototype department has expanded to include five-axis CNC milling. Capabilities also include CNC screw machining, wire electrical-discharge machining, laser marking, vacuum heat-treating, and passivation. 

The company assists customers in tracking the development and testing phase of precision-machined medical implants and devices from prototype phase to full production. Assembly, packaging, and sterilization services are part of the overall package. Specialized Medical Devices, Lancaster, PA www.specializedmedical.com 

Copyright ©2004 Medical Product Manufacturing News

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