Brother beats the competition with quicker cycle times and better surface finishing all within a small footprint

Chad Wren, Owner of Wrengineering
Owns a Brother SPEEDIO R450X1 16k 22t CTSI

(See photos supplied of produced products below)

Chad Wren, owner of Wrengineering, owned multiple (Competitor Machines) with Midaco pallet changers. They were having surface finishing issues, along with the need to replace a lot of spindles. He set out to find a reliable robust machine with a small footprint that would alleviate their issues. Chad purchased a Brother SPEEDIO R450X1 16k 22t CTSI.

We spoke with Chad about his Brother machine, and how his shop was doing since his purchase…

What were the benefits of the Brother?
The major benefits so far have been quicker cycle times, better surface finish, and utilizing less physical floor space.

How difficult/easy was the transition to Brother from your existing machines?
The transition was easy. We were able to take the same program from our (Competitor Machine), changing minimal code, and see a dramatic reduction in cycle time. The main thing we had to re-learn was part and tool probing without a step by step user interface. This was not a deal breaker just different after using (Competitor Machine) for so long.

Have you seen an increase in productivity?
Yes, we have. Not only due to the faster cycle times but also because of the machine’s design allowing the flushing of chips out the back of the machine. This has eliminated the labor -intensive, time wasting, morning clean-out our shop has to do each day on the (Competitor Machine).

Since you have owned your Brother, how many times has a service call been required?
In the 6-7 months since we have had our machine, we have had a few service calls. Those were really for minor adjustments needed from the install and also for installation of equipment after the original sale.

Can you show us a photo of one of your parts that you previously ran on your (competitor machine) and now running on the Brother? What were the original cycle times and what are the new times on the Brother?

Part #1: 8 min. difference on the Brother.  Part #2: 10.8 min. difference on the Brother

Have you seen any change in capability with the move to 30-taper?
We have adjusted our machining strategy slightly by using more HSM tool paths, which is a good thing.

Do you have future plans for additional Brother machines?
We plan on replacing most of our aging (Competitor Machines) with Brother machines as we can. This should help us reduce cycle times and also allow us to add capacity without needing to add additional square footage to our facility.

Does this machine make you more efficient and competitive in the market? If so, why?
I believe it does, especially in the small manufacturer category. This category is flooded with (Competitor Machine) equipment which I know I can beat making small-sized parts.

What is the overall impression of Brother and what it can do for Machine Shops that are currently running many “typical 40 X 20 – 40 taper” vertical machining centers?
My overall impression of Brother so far is that it is built for speed with a simplistic design. The four main things that struck me right away compared to the (Competitor Machine) is: #1 the smooth quiet spindle accelerating and decelerating in an instant. #2 the amazing speed of the tool changer. #3 the extremely fast rapids. #4 the great surface finish, especially end milling compared to a (Competitor Machine). Any (Competitor Machine) owner is probably familiar with the step over marks when end milling, and occasional marks in the quadrants side milling around part.

How was the installation support and assistance by Yamazen when purchasing your first Brother machine?
I am very satisfied with sales and service support we have received. Yamazen made sure everything was taken care of.

Finally, is there anything else that you would like to comment on that you have found has been a difference? Something in the control, on the machine, etc. that has impressed you that others may not see right away?
One thing that a (Competitor Machine) owner may like to know a little more about is explaining the difference in probing cycles. This hasn’t been that big of a deal to us, but might be to a different (Competitor Machine) owner looking to buy a Brother.

After spending literally tens of thousands of dollars replacing spindles on (Competitor Machines), the spindle on the Brother machine is definitely in a different class.

For additional information and specifications on the Brother SPEEDIO R450X1, click here.