Chip control is one of the key problems faced by companies looking for high production rates or high-quality machining. If chips are not produced or handled well, they can become entangled and result in reduced tool life, damaged product surfaces and even fire hazards. Previously this would be handled by complicated program steps, high-pressure coolant or slowing down the machining process to reduce the likelihood of swarf entanglement. With Citizen LFV technology turning your long swarf ribbons into beautiful little chips is as simple as a line of G-Code, even in hard-to-machine materials like stainless steel and plastics.
What is Citizen’s LFV (Low Frequency Vibration) technology?
LFV stands for Low Frequency Vibration cutting, a patented Citizen technology for breaking up chips during machining to eliminate long swarf ribbons. Citizen Machinery’s unique control technology synchronises the servo axis’s vibration with the main axis’s revolution. LFV technology improves the levels of surface finish and significantly improves chip control. It also enables more reliable operation, reducing the need for operator intervention. This makes Citizen’s LFV the most advanced chip control technology that can be applied to a wide range of cutting materials and geometries.
How does LFV work?
LFV works by vibrating the selected axis whilst synchronising the vibration to the spindle rotation. This creates an air gap between the cutter and the material at a user specified frequency. Every time the vibration creates an air gap between the cutter and material the swarf breaks. The speed at which this is done is the very special function of LFV. The graph below shows the LFV functioning on the Z axis during a cutting operation, it is vibrating so quickly it can break the swarf into two chips per spindle rotation. This addresses all the problems caused by entangled chips during difficult-to-cut material machining and deep-hole drilling. As you can appreciate a huge amount of engineering and development went into making this possible, including strengthening the machines themselves to be capable of such small and fast frequency of movement.
How to use LFV?
What makes LFV unique is that it is integral to the controller not a separate macro. Programming is done via a simple G code line. This allows the machine operator to select the mode type, rate of vibration which enlarges the amplitude and increases the air gap and frequency of vibration. This customises the chip length to your unique material and machining requirements. Here is an example programming of LFV:
Example programming: G165 P1 Q1.5 D1.5
- P1 – select mode – mode 1
- Q1.5 – vibration rate – size of air gap
- D1.5 – vibration frequency – length of chip
Key benefits of Citizen’s LFV technology:
- Easy to use and flexible control, it is a g code not a macro.
- Reduces or removes ‘built up edge’ on cutting face
- Increased quality of finish
- Reduces tool tip damage through reduced heat
- Reduces incidental tool damage by swarf
- Reduces the volume of chips
- Increased tool life and up time
- Increased reliability and safety for un-manned operation
- Reduces or removes the need for high pressure coolant
What materials is LFV best suited for?
LFV is a widely applicable cutting technology – able to handle a broad range of machining shapes and materials – is ideal for cutting difficult-to-cut materials like Inconel alloy, titanium, stainless steel, iron, copper, nylon, plastic, and among others. It is state-of-the-art and reduces risks associated with these materials, such as the nesting of chips and built-up edges. LFV greatly improves reliability in running unmanned with these difficult to machine materials.
Would you like to know more about Citizen’s LFV technology?
If you think a Citizen Lathe with LFV technology could fundamentally improve your product quality and machine output, contact one of our CNC sales experts today.