Metronics' easy-to-use ”Go/No-Go” inspection set to USURP co-ordinate measuring

Assembly Automation

ISSN: 0144-5154

Article publication date: 1 June 2005




(2005), "Metronics' easy-to-use ”Go/No-Go” inspection set to USURP co-ordinate measuring", Assembly Automation, Vol. 25 No. 2.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2005, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Metronics' easy-to-use ”Go/No-Go” inspection set to USURP co-ordinate measuring

Metronics' easy-to-use ”Go/No-Go” inspection set to USURP co-ordinate measuring

Keywords: Inspection

According to Jonathan Tate, Metrology Manager at control and inspection specialist ACI Europe “The co-ordinate measuring machine (CMM) is in many ways being challenged”, he says, “not solely because in repetitive inspection environments such machines are very expensive to buy and operate (in terms of both personnel and cycle times), but also because simple `go/no-go' tolerance checks are still perfectly adequate for a whole host of components”.

For many people, this is very much a case of déjà vu; in a lot of cases, the return of traditional “go/no-go” gauging to replace the all-singing, all-dancing CMMs that have been the vogue for some years.

Initially targeted at production departments, system integrators and probe manufacturers, and applications across the manufacturing spectrum, Gage-Chek can accommodate up to eight encoder or LVDT/Half Bridge inputs – including length gauges, and linear and rotary encoders, as well as a wide range of measuring instruments – and is able to measure up to 16 dimensions per part (Plate 4).

Plate 4 The Metronics Gage-Chek DRO enables complex parts to be measured, making it ideal for repetitive multi-gauge inspection routines

The system's versatile go/no-go display combines familiar DRO functionality with colour graphics and audio alerts to provide fast and accurate measurement feedback, and its ruggedness and ease of use makes it ideal for shopfloor application.

“The device does not compete with either single gauging nor multiple 16-/ 32-channel applications”, continues Jonathan Tate. “However, it is ideally suited to tasks such as cell-type manufacturing where the machine operator is also responsible for his own inspection and where the need is to inspect all/sample parts for both quality control and process feedback and correction purposes. This type of system is already in use by a major automotive manufacturer in the UK.

“Gage-Chek is simple to operate and, equally important, it is easy to program and re-program to suit workpiece variation, and can hold up to 100 different parts. This has to be appealing to shopfloor operators now that the quality function is increasingly falling within the remit of production.”

Gage-Chek inputs can be algebraically and mathematically combined for dimensions such as thickness, flatness, dwell angles and maximum tip heights, for example, and results can be displayed numerically, graphically or archived for process studies such as simple statistical process control (i.e. X-Bar and Range charts). The addition of events and variables allows complex functions to be evaluated by Gage-Chek.

The devices' DRO mode also provides icons indicating process study has been performed, complete with in/ out-of-tolerance alert. It also contains many other features such as Dynamic Max and Dynamic Min, in real-time if using digital inputs and triggering of data logging from a second channel criteria. Other features for the LVDT/ Half Bridge market are the ability to rest recalibration times and a check on limits of change for recalibration of LVDTs. In addition, a serial link to a PC for long-term storage and analysis of data is available and also allows transfer of parts and settings to a PC.

“Effectively, the device complements traditional `go/no-go' gauging with the added flexibility of multiple workpiece inspection as well as statistical process control, when required.”

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