Engineers at German-based EDAG needed a rotating ring table for small-lot production of cars. It had to hold as many as four car-body tools, up to 20 tons, and have enough room in its center hole to accommodate a heavy-duty robot. The table would be used to keep a robotic arm busy assembling cars as pieces were loaded and removed from tools not being currently used.
Large rings on the market were not strong enough to bear the weight of the tools nor large enough to encompass the robot. The company worked with Weiss North America Inc., Willoughby, Ohio, the firm that developed the CR Series of rotary rings which feature large open centers, to modify a CR 2600 table to meet key specifications.
The new table’s drive-plate vertical axis can withstand 112,400 lb of dynamic and 228,400 lb of static force. The central opening is 6.5 ft in diameter. And the table is only about a foot off the ground, which makes manual loading easy.
The customized tables can handle manual and automatic loading and also retain aspects of the CR Series, including a flat design, zero backlash, and efficient power transmission.