Duplex Assembly & Test
This machine formed an integral part of a cylinder head production machining, Assembly & Test process that operated on a ‘no fault forward’ basis. The cylinder heads were supplied to the equipment by means of roller tracking, after which the equipment proceeded to apply sealant to bores, insert cup plugs and tighten injector sleeves prior to undertaking a leak test.
Whilst the facility required a certain degree of manual involvement, the operations relating to component retention/ sealing, sealant application, assembly head positioning and leak testing were all undertaken automatically.
The machine incorporated a HMI panel to provide the operator with a process sequence instruction facility.
This machine was manufactured to accommodate the production Assembly & Leak Testing requirements associated with 2 different Oil Pan variants. The equipment comprised of two separate operating stations, the first of which was dedicated to automatically tighten drain plugs and sensor fixing screws (3) followed by an Automatic Leak Test. The second fixture was utilised to position an internal baffle plate and undertake the tightening of auto fed baffle plate fixing screws. The initial operating fixture incorporated hydraulic clamping for component retention / sealing plus a twin axis positioning system for the sensor fixing screws tightening spindle. An intelligent integrated sensing system automatically detected which component variant was loaded and selected the relevant assembly tools and their associated positions accordingly..
This assembly and leak test machine automaticallyinserted a ‘top hat’shaped bush and an Avdel sealing rivet in to an aluminium cam cap component prior to undertaking three separate leak test operations.
All component parts were individually detected by means of optical sensors, which were connected to the machine controls to ensure all parts were evident before permitting the automatic assembly/test operations to proceed.
Included on the machine was a safety light curtain to negate the need for mechanical movement guarding. The machine also incorporated a pair of ‘interlocked ‘shuttered’ pass/ fail chutes through which the unloaded component part must be correctly discharged before any further assembly/ test cycles can be initiated.
This machine was utilised to undertake a series of both blockage and leak tests upon twodifferent aluminium water outlet connectors.
One fixture included an air driven assembly spindle for tightening a sealing plug to a specified torque, whilst both fixtures incorporated a pneumatic pass mark facility that automatically stamped the part(s) upon successful completion of all assembly and test operations. The machine also included an additional leak test option, which if selected, would raise a water tank to immerse the part(s) beneath water, whilst applying air internally to the component(s) to enable the location of any leak path to be detected by means of the traditional ‘air under water’ test method.
A facility that was one of a suite of machines supplied to undertake the production Assembly & Leak Testing of machined aluminium automotive ‘stiffner’ components.
Each machine incorporated 3 off operating stations through which the component part was sequentially processed, these being:-
1 : Load / Unload & Baffle Plate / Fixing Screw Assembly.
2 : Sealant Application, Thread Sensing & Feature Gauging.
3 : Cup Plug Insertion, Vacuum Leak Test & Pass Stamp.The equipment was programmed to prevent further progress of the component through the machine should a fault condition become evident at any of the Assembly / Test Stations and part removal prohibited until such a
status has been acknowledged.
The machine was guarded by means of a safety light guard system which halted any mechanical movement upon beam encroachment.