What’s a Swiss Style Machining?
The invention of the Swiss style machining
process is credited to Jakob Schweizer, a watch maker based in the Bienne,
Switzerland region. In 1872-1873, Schweizer perfected the first proto-type
lathe equipped with what was already becoming an ingenious invention; the
sliding headstock. This feature assured simultaneous rotation of the material
and longitudinal movement and radial tool holders carrying out simple backwards
and forward movements. Swiss style machines were later developed and produced on
a larger scale in the 1880’s by industrialist Nicolas Junker who founded the
company Junker & Cie in Moutier, Switzerland. Although the company has gone
through many names changes it remains a viable machine tool manufacturer today
and is known as Tornos, SA. The Bienne area today, remains a hub of Swiss
watchmaking with factories of very well-known manufacturers such as Rolex,
Swatch, Omega SA and military watch maker Glycine Watch.
More Swiss Style Machines
Today’s CNC Swiss-style machines offer a range of
machining advantages and capabilities. Static and rotating side and end-mounted
tools cut within millimeters of the guide bushing, effectively eliminating
overhang and part deflection allowing the turning of long parts with multiple
diameters and without the need for end support (quill). Multiple axis and driven
tools enable non-turning operations, such as milling, drilling and tapping. CNC
technology permits the use of standard tool geometries to produce complex and
non-round shapes as well. Twin-spindle configurations facilitate finishing of
both ends of a part simultaneously, to some degree and this allows for quicker
cycle times, in most cases. In sum, these machines can produce small, precise
parts complete in one chucking.
Rhein Precision utilizes the Citizen CNC Swiss line of machine tools.
Our machine capacity is from 1/16” up to 1 ¼” for this style of machine. All of our
machines are equipped with magazine bar loaders, high-pressure coolant,
live-tooling, sub-spindles and micro-inch offsetting capability. In many
instances we’ve been able to achieve tolerances of +/-.0001 and quite frequently
hold a total tolerance of less than .0005. The precision and repeatability of
these machines allows us to run “lights out” (unattended) operations and assign
multiple machines to one operator thus reducing labor costs. Both of these
options allow us to be price competitive and give us the flexibility to meet
your quality and delivery needs. Our team of highly skilled machinists are ready
to take on your most challenging parts with the accuracy, repeatability and
quality you require.