Robot For Machining Walk-In Baths Pays For Itself In Four Months
- At the Coventry factory of Carefree Bathing, a Motoman
robot has taken over machining of glass reinforced plastic (GRP) bath
ware, which previously involved manually carrying out arduous, noisy
and dusty trimming and drilling operations.
- The Motoman UP50-35 six-axis robot was supplied through
specialist integrator, RobotSense, which programmed 24 GRP trimming and
routing cycles plus 12 chipboard machining programs for the different
styles and sizes of walk-in bath manufactured for the elderly and
- The remainder of the robot cell including the enclosure and
fixturing were configured by Carefree Bathing, hence the relatively low
- The bath is transferred to the robot cell where the GRP
shell is automatically finish-trimmed and the holes drilled for the jet
spa system using a routing cutter in a high-speed spindle mounted on
the wrist of the UP50-35. A typical spa system can have 24 jets.
- Due to the flexibility and speed of the Motoman robot, the
cycle time has been reduced by 85 percent compared with manual
machining, allowing Carefree Bathing to cope with demand.
- Freestone also commented that pre- and post-sale service
from both Motoman and Robotsense has been very good. He is now keen to
automate other operations in the factory that lend themselves to being
carried out by robot.