PEKO Precision Products

PRODUCT REVIEW: Volumill, with GibbsCAM integration

Posted by Scott Baxter on Mar 5, 2019 11:16:00 AM

Product Type: CAM Software

Manufacturer: Celeritive

Model: VoluMill

Where to buy: VoluMill Authorized Channel Partners

Performance Rating: 5/5
Quality Rating: 5/5
User Friendly Rating: 4/5
Price Rating: 4.5/5

Overall Rating:  4.6/5 stars

Introduction:

Celeritive Technologies is a California based manufacturing software company that created VoluMill.  Regarding VoluMill, the company boasts "A science based tool-path with really smart engineering".  With over 50 years of machining under our belt, PEKO is happy to substantiate this claim. 

Manufacturing has always been competitive but in recent years, part design has become increasingly more complex, and we were in need of a way to increase our machine efficiency.  With a fleet of over 100 CNC machining centers producing thousands of precision CNC machined parts annually to feed our contract manufacturing lines, our production team endlessly scours the landscape for new technologies.  

VoluMill has met those needs and then some.

A high efficiency mill option for roughing milled parts, VoluMill has increased our MRR and reduced the stress on our machines and tooling.  

Industry - CNC Machining - Large Parts 32"

As with anyone trying high speed machining techniques for the first time, there was skepticism when reviewing the Speed/Feed output; Those concerns were quickly put to rest.  VoluMill offers programming from solid models or from wireframe geometry, both with multiple high speed milling options for a variety of conditions.  This review highlights our experience and our real world feedback regarding Celebritive's VoluMill software.

How did PEKO come about using this product?

A few years ago, at a local trade show, a gentleman representing the newly released "VoluMill" product approached me.  He intrigued me with tales of a new software that can improve material removal speeds by over 80%.  Skeptical but curious, we invited the representatives to our shop for some demos.  Years later, the rest is history.

Since we already use GibbsCAM at PEKO, this was a perfect fit. 

The wireframe version became standard in GibbsCam several years ago.  We were offered an upgrade to the Solids version; we upgraded all of our seats after a short time.

What are some benefits we have seen?

  • Reduced spindle & tool load while increasing metal removal rates.
  • Fast, accurate way to rough mill
  • Multiple milling strategies
  • Error free code produced without overcutting
  • Easy editing of parameters for fine tuning for cutting conditions

What are some shortfalls of this equipment?

  • Large file size output, need new options for running large programs (Spoon feeding, Data servers )
  • learning curve with Set-up personnel
  • Large file size limits single block execution at set-up, machine runs at very high RPM & feed rate leaving little chance of catching programming error at the machine set-up.

Price vs value

With the wireframe version being offered for free it was a no brainer. The upgrade to the Solids version was a minimal expense and ROI was very quick.

CNC boring mill machiningHow WELL DOES IT WORK and how IS the usability?

VoluMill has proven itself by producing error free roughing code that greatly reduced our cycle times. There is a short learning curve and minimal effort when programming.  The “Technology Expert” feature is great for initial machining parameters and makes fine tuning settings for different machining conditions fast and easy.

The program code, spindle speeds, and feed rates calculated are accurate and error free.  With most of the toolpath being automated we had concerns of overcutting outside of the desired features, this has not been an issue when the proper parameters are in place.

What were some alternatives we could have pursued?

There is a similar option in GibbsCam as a standard high speed machining strategy.  Having tested both options VoluMill is feature packed and the more versatile option.

 

Conclusion

We have been very impressed with VoluMill, seeing increased metal removal rates all while easing the loads in the machine.  The upgrade to the solids version was money well spent.  Once getting past a few initial hurdles VoluMill has become a great addition to our machining skillset that increased our milling efficiency.

Overall an excellent product and a great addition to our manufacturing equipment fleet.

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Topics: Product Review