Industrial robots are getting ... more like automated sculptors producing artwork. Case in point: Daishin’s Seki 5-axis mill. The Japanese company celebrated its 50th anniversary last year by using this machine to carve out a full scale motorcycle helmet out of one piece of aluminum. No breaks, no joints, the 5-Axis mill simply pivots and rotates to carve metal at some absurd angles. Every cut is guided by sophisticated 3D design software (Openmind’s HyperMill). While the Daishin helmet made a nice showpiece for a biannual meeting of machining companies (EMO), this level of production is becoming the new standard. ... now we have machines that can transform computer designs into the highest quality professional metal objects, seemingly at a push of a button.
These industrial robots can carve exquisite pieces out of materials 3D printers can’t touch.