Multi-axis capability has given machine shop Midwest Precision Tool & Die Inc. (MPTD) the opportunity to work with aerospace and defense suppliers and several other industries.

Founded in 1991 by Owner and President Burd McCoy, MPTD entered aerospace 20 years ago, specializing in milling, CNC turning, EDM, and precision grinding.

Its success led MPTD to obtain a large aerospace contract, and this one meant they had to face a new challenge: machining Inconel, a difficult metal to shape and machine. Rapid work hardening tends to drastically deform either the Inconel workpiece or the tool on subsequent passes. To fulfill the aerospace contract demands, MPTD looked for machines that could work with Inconel’s properties.

Partners

An MC Machinery customer for 25 years, engineers at MPTD understand the importance of a good partnership, and after much research and deliberation, the company decided to purchase:

  • A Mitsubishi LT-400M turning center lathe with live tooling for milling capabilities
  • A DV-1000 vertical machining center with a high-powered, 12,000rpm spindle

“We attended a few trade shows where these machines were on display – allowing us to see the machines at work,” says Mike McCoy, manufacturing engineer at MPTD. “Looking at the performance of these machines and the financing options available through MC Machinery, we knew this was the best choice.”

“We’ve invested a lot into our technology to fit within the aerospace industry,” says Steve Brown, MC Machinery Midwest regional manager. “We can confidently say we’ve developed products and solutions that are specifically tailored to customers doing production aerospace work.”

Brown helped MPTD understand the difficulties in machining Inconel, and when it became time, to decide what machine was best suited for its needs.

Live-tooling on the LT-400M has allowed the company to eliminate secondary operations and run complete parts at one time instead of switching to various stations, while the DV-1000 has helped increase part throughput. When quantifying advantages of the machines, there has been up to a 40% reduction in cycle times, allowing MPTD to quickly produce accurate parts with room for more customer growth.

“The machines have allowed us to increase revenue,” McCoy says. “They haven’t served as machine upgrades or replacements, but more of an addition that was necessary to keep up with customer demand.”

MPTD machinist programs a Mitsubishi Electric CNC controller.

Getting up to speed

LT series CNC lathes’ full-enclosure, cast-iron designs feature a 30° slant bed to support the spindle head, turret, and tailstock with low center of gravity. Precision linear guideways and a rigid, servo-driven turret increase rapid-travel speeds for smooth, heavy-duty cutting. DV series machines can accommodate smaller cutting tools for more intricate milling work in addition to general shop work.

MC Machinery’s support and service provides a week of on-site training and continues to provide additional application support over the phone.

“Since this was going to be MPTD’s first machine with a Mitsubishi Electric CNC controller, we knew that training was going to be very important,” Brown says. “We have provided multiple on-site training sessions to help them correctly run parts, and each session gets more advanced. We also fly some of our engineers to the facility, allowing us to provide true hands-on support.”

“Due to the increase in demand and the success of these machines, we are thinking about purchasing another LT-400 and DV-1000,” McCoy says.

Aside from bringing together machinist and tool makers with skills dedicated to customer satisfaction, part of MPTD’s success is its continuous investment in equipment to keep up with industry technology, trends, and customer demands. MPTD recognizes the quality of its employees and dedication to its customers and its motto is “Quality isn’t a process; it’s a state of mind at Midwest Precision.”

“When we work with a company we know it’s a long-term partnership and we value that relationship,” Brown says. “We look forward to growing with MPTD for the next 25 years.”

MC Machinery Systems Inc.
www.mcmachinery.com
IMTS 2018 Booth #338158

Midwest Precision Tool & Die Inc.
www.midwestprecision-sd.com