Machine Tapping Large Bore Nuts with Torque Monitor & Control

Our customers frequently ask for our advice to improve operations and 30% increase in shift production for a tapping operation.

The original machine used reversing motor contactors to electrically reverse the spindle motor for tapping, then reversing out of the tapped part.  This allowed the motor to draw peak current, on each start of the motor. There was no limiting of monitoring of the motor current/torque as the tap became dull.

Sharpening the tap is inexpensive compared to the cost of a brand new tap. A broken tap would force lost production while the tap was removed from the part.

In our design, we selected three methods of motor control.

  1. Ramp accel/decel of the motor/spindle
  2. Limit the maximum torque supplied to the motor
  3. Monitor the actual current draw of the motor
  4. Controlling the accel/decel through the VFD (variable frequency drive) dramatically reduced the motor heating on forward/reverse transitions.  It also eliminated the slamming of the reversing motion.

Controlling the current/torque limit has several advantages:

  1. Stop the motor, if necessary, before a tap breaks,
  2. Eliminate the slug of energy, which shortened life of the other machine components.
  3. Monitoring the current/torque allowed the operator to be alerted that the tap life was nearly completed. The operator would replace the tap with a sharp tap and continue operation,

Performance and Cost Benefits

  1. Eliminate cost of Broken taps
  2. Eliminate downtime of broken taps in parts
  3. Improve operators skill with dull tap alert

Candy Cane Packaging: Two Axis Servo ‘registration control’ Retrofit


Shrink Wrap Registration

Horizontal film packaging requires the packaging material to be coordinated and “registered” to the material movement through the sealing machine.  Improper registration would cause the wrapper to cut and sealed without  the lable being properly centered on the package.

This mechanical machine was not originally capable of registration.  The addition of a line shaft encoder, a film tension servo and candy belt drive servo gives this machine new registration capabilities.

This software system was designed installed and debugged in less than one week, using the Kollmorgan KAS platform, with PDMM servo control, AKD Drives and AKM servo motors.

Pharmaceutical Plant Wide Production Monitoring

Kane Engineering partnered with Business Intellegence Solutions. LLC of Zeeland Michigan to supply a plant wide prodcution monitoring solutions. With over 50 Machines and camera inspection systems reporting to a single central server, this information was concentrated to provide a wide variety of information.

Large flat panel monitors display the status of production systems. Reports are automatically generated for production meetings. Unscheduled downtime and alarms conditions are immediately reported, as necessary to the appropriate departments and persons.

Guitar String Winder – Manufacturing

Four Wound Guitar Strings

Guitar Strings are wound, with a core wire at the center. Any small variation in the diameter of the wound string may cause the sound of the string to be dull or unacceptable.

Kane Engineering designed a special control program to monitor and adapt to changes in the wound string.

The servo controlled winder system allows single or multiple wraps on the core string for nearly any standard of custom designed guitar.

Plastic Extrusion Controls

Plastic Conduit is wound to a steel reel over seven feet in diameter. The final product is conduit for buried underground wiring and fiber optic cable. Our customer requested a system to control the side-to-side bobbin winding for even layers of material.

Design of the system includes, light curtain height sensor for speed loop control of the winder reel speed with a high perfomance vector variable speed AC Drive.  The rotation of the reel is electronically geared to move a servo drive ball screw to guide the conduit to the reel.