Poor edge quality

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Gerry A Brown
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Poor edge quality

Postby Gerry A Brown » Sat, Feb 11 2012, 12:57PM

Hi everyone,

We have been trying different cutters & feed speeds to improve edge quality but can't seem to get a smooth edge on our outline cuts. The rough edge telegraphs through the .5 mill edge tape. We are using a .5" Vortex XP compression cutter with 2 flutes 18000 spindle speed & 700 IPM feed speed on .75 & .625 Panolam melamine. We have tried both climb & conventional cutting direction. The face cut is acceptable except sometimes we get chipping where the cutter ramps in but the rough edge is our biggest concern. When I say rough I mean pieces of core protruding from the edge of the board.

Any tips would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Gerry

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Gerry A Brown
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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Gerry A Brown » Sun, Feb 12 2012, 11:24AM

I posted this question at Woodweb & from the replies there & more reading here the solution seems to be a double pass preferably climb on the the first pass & conventional on the second. This could also eliminate the ramp in chipping. From reading the forum here this is not possible on the Thermwood. The only other options I am told is to find a board with a softer core & change the cutter & slow the feed rate. Slowing down the feed rate will eat cutters so that does not seem to be an option.

In reading the forums here I see requests for this feature going back years but I did not see any response from a Thermwood rep indicating that this was something that will be, won't be, or might be implemented. Have I missed the posting from Thermwood or have they not responded to this issue? As some have said this is a very common option with CNC routers that is even available on Shopbot link. We purchase a machine that is capable of high feed rates but it is crippled buy the lack of this option. For me the edge quality is imperative I need to resolve this issue or I cannot run more cabinets.

I admit I am green as grass with the CNC so if I am out in left field on this please someone educate me.

Thanks,
Gerry

Forrest Chapman
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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Forrest Chapman » Sun, Feb 12 2012, 11:36AM

Hi Gerry, I think your speeds are close but you might want to slow the rpm to 16.5 or 17 to get a little more tool life. That being said I don't think the cutter feed or rpm speeds are the problem with the edge I think it is the core material. We have had a problem in the past with a loose or dry core on PB ironically from a Canadian source. If you look at the material as with all composite pressed sheets the core will get less dense the closer it gets to the center. Sometimes due to the process it actually is completely dry and the core flakes out after cutting. In the worst case scenario I've been able to pull sheets apart from one end to the other on a whole bundle. Check around and see if you can find any other brands to try out.

Forrest

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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Forrest Chapman » Sun, Feb 12 2012, 11:56AM

I see you posted your second comment before I finished mine. As for the double pass feature you are correct that myself and a few others have brought it to the attention of Thermwood even speaking at length on the phone with a few of the guys and they are aware of the issues we face. The initial conversations date back several years and although I've been critical of the time lapse I am also pleased with some recent changes that are close to being made available to everyone as well as some announcements that lead me to believe a few more things are on the horizon. Keep bringing it to the surface though as the reminders only reinforce the critical nature of these features. Forrest

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Gerry A Brown
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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Gerry A Brown » Sun, Feb 12 2012, 4:20PM

Hi Forest,

I think the core of the Panolam material is harder to cut cleanly than other brands. It has more hardwood in the core. I will try another brand although I am reluctant as the Panolam melamine is a good product.

You Said "I am also pleased with some recent changes that are close to being made available to everyone as well as some announcements that lead me to believe a few more things are on the horizon."
Could you point me to those announcements I don't remember reading anything other than general assurances that we will get some improvements soon. On things like the double pass outline cut have you ever heard Thermwood say they would be, might be, or thinking of implementing this? It seems useless to wait in vain for something that may never happen. If that is not ever going to get implemented we should consider investing in a solution ourselves. As in a bander with premill but if the double pass option is coming that would be a waste of money. I think premill is redundant if the router is producing a good edge. I guess what it comes down to is you need good information to make good decisions for your business & I don't think we are getting good information.

Thanks for your input,
Gerry

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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Forrest Chapman » Sun, Feb 12 2012, 8:35PM

I also have cut panolam and like the harder core but have not had issues with it like you are talking about. Make sure that you are not getting leftover dust stuck to the edge by static. This can clog up the glue pot and get pressed under the tape causing bumpy edging.

As far as the improvements go I can tell you that they have made significant additions to ecabinets that will be released soon. Recently they made announcements that all windows 2000 controllers will have to be updated to XP Pro leading me to believe some additions in control nest are very close. I think the majority of discussion on the topic of double pass as well as the ability to drop and drag parts in the nested sheets have been done in private or at trade shows and many of us have been assured that they are considered to be important. But as I keep saying its always good to revisit topics to make sure they know how important these things are to us.

Forrest

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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Kerry Fullington » Mon, Feb 13 2012, 8:17AM

Is a double pass feature really the answer we are looking for? It will significantly increase machining time. Wouldn't it be better to do a little experimenting with alternate tooling and feed speeds? Maybe three flute cutters. Try a different material and compare edge quality. Try a different banding.
There has been this same discussion on the True 32 forum about particles from the core telegraphing through banding. They are wiping and blowing off the edges before banding. That in itself seems like a big pain. i would look for a tooling/new material solution.

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Gerry A Brown
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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Gerry A Brown » Mon, Feb 13 2012, 9:25AM

Forrest,
What cutter feed speed & RPM were you using on the Panolam board. It gives me some hope if you were able to cut this board cleanly as all other responses I have gotten have indicated the double pass as the solution.

Kerry,
I agree if there is a way to resolve this without wasting machine time that would be preferred. I have gotten some suggestions for cutters & have some on order. Someone suggested that a double pass only on the front edge would be enough & that makes sense & would shorten machine time a lot. I have also ordered some melamine from another manufacturer & will give that a try. In some situations a 1 mm edge tape is available but the selection is limited so this isn't a solution for all situations. The problem is not sawdust on the edge it is pieces of the board core that are pulled part way out or turned rather than being cut. This board core seems to have larger partials compared to other manufactures & they say it is 60% hardwood so maybe a softwood core is the compromise I need to make.

Thanks for the input,

Gerry

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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Forrest Chapman » Mon, Feb 13 2012, 11:00AM

We only wanted the said double pass feature for machining without the lip. I haven't had to many problems with bumps in the PB but do occasionally get a sprig in the edge of plywood where there is a void. I do believe that when a lip is left there is more chance for the core to flack out into the glue. One way to eliminate this is a pre-mill bander. It also allows you to apply any thickness edge on the fly. So all your edgebanding is set up as 0mm and whatever thickness you actually run is removed by the pre-mill. Forrest

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Neville Bastian
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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Neville Bastian » Mon, Feb 13 2012, 7:14PM

Gerry has this poor edge appeared just recently over a few days? The reason I ask is that I had a similar issue a couple of years back on my MTR. Not sure if yours is the same as mine but when the spindle goes up and down it travels on some narrow guides with very small allen keyed bolts. When we checked them we found a few that were hard to get to were loose. Once tightened they stopped a very small movement. When the machine is stopped and in its retracted point it has no movement. Lower it down to bed level and it might be more obvious.
For us it took a technician 8 hrs to find it. Previously we cut each sheet twice for months to get the quality and accuracy to a acceptable level. Very costly.
If I am not clear let me know and I will send you some pictures via email.
Regards

Neville
Neville Australia

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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Rob Davis » Tue, Feb 14 2012, 8:32AM

Neville, I'd love some pictures as this is a new one on me and with our machine aging, we are trying to stay ahead fo the simple stuff to keep it runing well. Sounds liek these shoudl be checked from time to time, huh? I think I know to what you are refrencing but to make sure. Thanks in advance.
rob@spicelandwood.com

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Gerry A Brown
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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Gerry A Brown » Tue, Feb 14 2012, 9:32PM

Neville,
We just got our machine up & running & the edge quality problem has been there since the first cuts. We have slowed the feed rate to 600 & with a new bit the edge is better. Our machine is a CS 45 so the Z axis does not seem to have any adjustment in the ways. I am going to try a board from another manufacturer. I would like to see the photo if you have time to send it.

Thanks,
Gerry

Will Williamson
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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Will Williamson » Wed, Feb 15 2012, 8:49AM

So this is a new machine and you have been working with tech support to resolve it?
Will

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Dave Poulin
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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Dave Poulin » Wed, Feb 15 2012, 9:13AM

Gerry,

Im a shop in Ontario, using the same product as you, we use s411 from panolam. Since we had our machine, i've cut well over 50 lifts of this stuff. Played with different tools, speeds and even different boards and I still have that problem.
Could tell you that the columbia melamine is no better.

Give me a call when you come in the shop today, 905-687-6478

Dave

http://www.cabinetworksplus.com
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Jason Susnjara
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Re: Poor edge quality

Postby Jason Susnjara » Wed, Feb 15 2012, 2:16PM

Hi Gerry,

Like others have mentioned, trying a different material would be the easiest choice. Not that the tooling couldn't be the problem but I think the Vortex tooling that you are using is great. We use the 3/8" and 1/2" mortising/compression bits for shows/demos and have had great success but I have not tried cutting panolam with them. Have you tried a 3 flute bit from Vortex? The other flute might give you a better edge but your speed might need to increase your feed speed. Here is a chip load chart from Vortex. http://www.vortextool.com/images/chipLoadChart.pdf

Also, I have talked to the programmers and they already have the clean up pass on the wishlist however they can't give me a date as to when this would be available.

thanks,
Jason Susnjara
V.P., Marketing
Thermwood Corp.

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