Understanding Chip Management: Selecting the Correct Type of Chip Conveyor for Your Machining Needs

  • Machine Tools

ELK GROVE VILLAGE, IL, February 27, 2024 - 

In the machining industry, precision and efficiency are key. Chip conveyors play an essential role in this environment, quietly ensuring machine tools stay clean and operational. Choosing the right size of chip conveyor is more than a minor detail; it's a critical decision for machine tool operation. 

Understanding Chip Volume

The volume of chips produced during machining operations can vary widely, depending on the type of operation and the material being processed. High-volume operations, such as large-scale milling or turning, generate a lot of chips that need to be efficiently removed to prevent machine downtime or damage.

Proper sizing of a chip conveyor for your application is crucial. A conveyor that's too small can quickly become overwhelmed, leading to clogs and stoppages. Alternatively, an oversized conveyor may be an unnecessary cost and take up valuable floor space. The goal is to match the conveyor's capacity with your machine tool's chip output, ensuring a smooth and continuous removal process.

Material Properties Matter

The type of material being machined plays a significant role in selecting the right chip conveyor. Hard, abrasive materials like titanium and Inconel produce chips that can be challenging to manage. These materials require conveyors designed to withstand the abrasive nature of chips without excessive wear. Additionally, the shape of the chips can influence conveyor selection. For example, long, stringy chips from turning operations pose a different challenge than the fine chips produced by milling. Understanding the characteristics of the materials you work with will guide you in choosing a conveyor system that can handle the specific challenges they present.

Application: Machining Type Matters

The machining application—whether turning, milling, drilling, or boring—also influences the most appropriate chip conveyor choice. Each process generates chips in different shapes, sizes, and volumes, necessitating a tailored approach to chip management. For instance,

  • Turning operations often produce long, stringy chips that can wrap around components and cause jams. Conveyors with specific features to handle these types of chips, such as those with a high torque motor or specialized chip breakers, are ideal.
  • Milling and drilling operations typically generate smaller, more granular chips that can be easier to convey. However, they may require finer filtration to prevent small particles from recirculating.
  • Boring operations, depending on depth and diameter, can produce a mix of chip types. This necessitates a versatile conveyor system capable of handling both fine and coarse debris.

The Right Conveyor for the Job

Selecting the right chip conveyor involves more than just matching specifications; it's about understanding the unique needs of your machining operations. Here are some tips to ensure you make the right choice:

  • Assess Your Needs: Consider the volume of chips produced, the types of materials you're machining, and the specific applications involved. This assessment will help narrow down the type of conveyor system best suited to your operations.
  • Consult with Experts: Manufacturers like Shibaura Machine have extensive experience in matching chip conveyors to specific machining environments. Leverage their expertise to ensure you get a system that fits your needs.
  • Consider Future Needs: While it's critical to address current requirements, think about future applications as well. Choosing a versatile conveyor system can save you from upgrading sooner than expected.

Maximize Your Machining Performance

Proper sizing and selection of chip conveyors are essential to machine tool efficiency and longevity. By considering the volume of chips produced, the material properties, and the specific machining applications, you can ensure that your conveyor system enhances your operations.

Shibaura Machine's Machine Tool team is dedicated to providing solutions that meet these needs, ensuring your machining processes run smoothly and efficiently. Remember, the right chip conveyor is not just an accessory; it's an integral part of your machining ecosystem.


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