Once the beta test began at M-Tech Lab in Indianapolis for a new Hurco software feature, cycle time was cut by 30% and machine jerk was virtually eliminated. President and M-Tech founder Tom Miller said he seeks speed versus accuracy for the type of machining M-Tech does. “We are builders of custom orthotics...We focus on throughput and speed. With UltiMotion we’re seeing 30-35% faster throughput,” said Miller.
The majority of the orthotics M-Tech machines are custom designed to a person’s foot, but all of them are elliptical in shape and have contours throughout. UltiMotion handles such complex geometry easily because the spindle can cut very fast in a smooth elliptical motion. The secret to UltiMotion is the advanced trajectory algorithm in the software that generates significantly faster yet smoother motion than conventional motions systems that rely on hardware. Controlling motion with software versus hardware is theoretically a simple idea, but development of UltiMotion was a complex and comprehensive project with the best software engineers in the world pushing the envelope of motion control. The advancements in motion control are so significant that Hurco was awarded a patent for UltiMotion with several other patents pending.
Another noticeable benefit M-Tech has experienced is the lack of machine jerk. “With UltiMotion our machine runs very fast and we don’t get any jerks,” observed Miller. In the long run, smooth motion reduces stress on the ball screw and minimizes the wear and tear on the machining center's components.
Miller opened M-Tech in 1995 and fills approximately 10,000 prescriptions for custom orthotics each year. His customers are physicians throughout the United States and the U.S. military, which provides soldiers with inserts for their combat boots. Miller started his business in his basement, then moved to his garage, and opened M-Tech Lab in 1995. His organization was an important partner in allowing Hurco to test UltiMotion so it would be a software feature that would deliver measurable value to customers in terms of cycle time reduction, which ultimately increases the profit margin of each part.
Tom MillerM Tech Lab8653 Bash StreetIndianapolis, IN 46256www.mtechlab.com