A significant aspect of maintaining production rates and throughput is the equipment’s ability to perform. Without preventive maintenance plans and a timely schedule, facilities run the risk of increased downtimes and costly repairs. Let’s go over some of the most essential steps for CNC machine maintenance to assist in smooth operations.
Create a Machining Checklist
All team members who use the CNC equipment need to follow a machining checklist. By creating one of these you can account for any missteps that occur along the way and keep a comprehensive servicing log that outlines the machine’s performance.
A checklist also keeps communication consistent from shift to shift and highlights focus areas for the machine. All necessary channels will remain in the loop on machining needs.
Build a Spare Parts Inventory
Sometimes, as machines age, their parts become more challenging to obtain. Consider building a spare parts inventory that includes essential elements like ball screws, lubricants, belts, and any customized elements. A facility’s engineers should all possess the knowledge to repair or replace these small but important features to decrease costly downtimes.
A CNC machine’s ball screw assembly is a critical element of performance factors, and it will signal when it’s time for maintenance. By keeping these elements in the spare parts inventory, you can prevent costly downtimes and overall damage.
Schedule Routine Maintenance
Aside from housing a spare parts inventory, you want to ensure there is a maintenance schedule on board. This will create a timeline for servicing and dedicate a block of time specific to the machine’s upkeep. There may not be enough time day to day to run diagnostic tools, but the maintenance schedule can ensure the CNC machine receives adequate care.
Replace Worn Parts Timely
During the routine maintenance checks, any signs of worn or damaged parts are an indication of needed repairs. This is where the spare parts inventory plays a crucial role in machining repairs because you can turn to the stock to perform repairs in a timely manner. Additionally, this keeps the machine’s production high and unexpected downtimes low.
Performing routine and preventive maintenance on CNC machines is a critical step in reducing costs and a facility’s performance. Without these action steps, the throughput and safety of the facility are in jeopardy.