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November 2018

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Grinding, Deburring and Polishing Robotic Cell

At IMTS 2018, ABCO Automation featured SmartForce, a self-contained turn-key grinding, deburring and polishing robotic cell. Developed in conjunction with 3M, KUKA and PushCorp, SmartForce is a flexible automation solution for manual machining processes.

"We designed and built SmartForce to address the growing need to automate manual grinding, deburring and polishing," said Brad Kemmerer, President, ABCO Automation. "Today's manufacturers recognize that new employees entering the workforce do not want jobs that are gritty, taxing and hazardous. SmartForce offers companies a solution that removes employees from working under those conditions, repositions employees in auxiliary roles and replaces direct labor with a robot that delivers consistent, quality results."

With a compact footprint that is less than 100 sq. ft., SmartForce is mobile and flexible. The robotic cell is pre-engineered and pre-assembled on a metal skid base, which allows manufacturers to not only use it right away but to also easily move the cell from one section of a facility to another. In addition, other components, such as conveyors and post-processing inspection equipment, can be added to further automate the cell.

The cell's key components include:

  • KUKA KR-60 3 F robot
  • 3M abrasives
  • PushCorp end-of-arm tool
  • Safety guarding
  • Coolmate coolant system
  • Metal skid base
  • Dial part infeed table.

Kemmerer added, "What makes SmartForce so effective is the combination of PushCorp's end-of-arm tool with 3M's abrasive discs. The end-of-arm tool features a toolholder mounted on a force control actively-compliant tool. The tool enables the robot to have human-touch capabilities that can grind, deburr or polish in any orientation, even over contours. The tool's unique capabilities, in conjunction with ABCO programming, provides our grinding, deburring and polishing solution its `SmartForce.'"

The IMTS SmartForce robotic cell featured 3M Cubitron II Fibre Disc 982C, suited for edge chamfering, beveling and removing carbon steel welds, mill scale, pits and imperfections and machining grooves as well as the Scotch-Brite light grinding and blending disc, which is designed to achieve a high cut-rate for optimal weld grinding and blending in mild-steel applications.

For more information contact:

ABCO Automation, Inc.

6202 Technology Drive

Greensboro, NC 27214


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