Jan 8, 2013: Kirklees College, UK Adopts VISI and Edgecam to Train Students

0 comments, 08/01/2013, by , in Article, News


Jan 7, 2013: Kirklees
College recently started its second term after installing 35 seats of VISI
CAD/CAM software to ensure apprentices are fully trained on 5-axis machining –
which lecturers say is absolutely vital to the future of manufacturing in the

Based in the heart
of Yorkshire, the College is one of the largest in the country. Its School of
Engineering moved into new purpose-built £7.5m premises in the Summer of 2012
and also invested in more CNC machinery. They now have a total of 13 machines
from a variety of manufacturers including Johnford, Haas and Hurco, with
pride-of-place being a new Hurco 5-axis mill.

created on: 01/08/13

Realising they needed the
very latest technology to get the best from those machines they upgraded from
just using PEPS-Mill and Wire, and added VISI Machining 5-Axis, VISI Modelling,
VISI Machining 2D and 3D, and VISI’s sister software, Edgecam, all from the
Vero stable.

CNC lecturer Paul
Lindley says VISI’s advanced 5-axis milling solutions are essential for the
next phase of the College’s technical development. “We’ve had 4-axis machining
for a few years, and an adaptor for one machine, but this is the next step in
keeping up with the technology that’s becoming increasingly popular amongst
local companies to take their businesses to the next level and stay

How would he
describe the College’s move to take on a complete new software
suite?   “It’s massive. Because we used PEPS-Mill and Wire on every
course, we’ve had to rewrite everything we do on the syllabus.  It’s a
massive operation when a college takes on new software on this scale, but it’s
absolutely the right decision. We really are moving into a new era. I
anticipate the relationship between the College and Vero lasting for at least
30 years – I have every confidence it’ll see my career out.”

Design and
Manufacture Curriculum Team Leader Dave Nichols agrees: “We’re regarded as one
of the region’s best colleges for engineering, so we needed software which
would keep us at the forefront. Our experience in the world of CAD/CAM and CNC
manufacturing tells us the system we’ve now got is the best there is. The
students will gain tremendous benefit from it.”

Kirklees works with
apprentices from companies of all sizes. These include Cummings, who make turbo
chargers for Volvo Scania; David Brown, who manufacture gearing systems for the
military, railways and mining, along with energy applications including wind
turbines; Reliance Precision, a manufacturer of high precision medical and
surgical equipment; oil and gas industry valve maker Severn Unival; and Thomas
Broadbent, whose centrifuges for industrial processes are exported world-wide.

At any one time the
College has around 400 students undertaking a variety of courses such as an
advanced Level 3 apprenticeship and B-TECH, which leads on to HNC and a degree.
Currently there are 110 degree students from the University of Huddersfield on
the College’s Engineering Appreciation course. All students will be trained on
VISI and Edgecam starting in their second year – having first learned about
manual machining. Apprentices have one year full-time at the College, with day
release for two years. VISI and Edgecam also feature on CNC evening classes,
City and Guilds courses, and bespoke courses for companies who want to upksill
their workforce.

Dave Nichols says
the students’ assignments with VISI and Edgecam are geared towards helping them
understand machining processes and improve their programming abilities.
Starting with an Autocad drawing, they produce the solid model, manufacture it
on screen, then download the program to the CNC machine via a DNC link before
setting up the machine and producing the component. Amongst the items they
make: an air pump, a model lathe, and a gear knob. They start by working with
foam, before progressing to aluminium, brass and steel.

The ultimate aim is
to fully incorporate VISI’s modelling capabilities, giving a single solution
for all aspects of design and manufacture, moving seamlessly from modelling and
drawing to machining using just one software package.

 VISI Modelling provides students with a robust and powerful solid
modelling system with the flexibility to construct, edit and repair the most
complex 3D data.

 VISI Machining is a practical, intuitive and simple solution for CNC
programming, including 4 and 5 axis indexing. Knowledge-based feature
recognition automatically selects features directly on the solid geometry and
creates reliable milling and drill cycle toolpaths. With 5-axis machining
generally regarded as the best technology for the high precision requirements
of the aerospace and automotive industries, VISI Machining creates highly
efficient toolpaths with advanced collision control.

 VISI PEPS-Wire provides automatic feature recognition of wire features,
including tapered, variable taper and 4-axis, directly from solid geometry.
Features are easily machined creating reliable wire EDM toolpaths and proven NC
code for all wire EDM machine tools.

 The College’s Edgecam for Education package incorporates a wide variety
of milling, turning and mill-turn operations for production machining. Edgecam
is a market leading CAM solution for solids based manufacture with an emphasis
on ease-of-use and process automation.

“Using our suite of
VISI and Edgecam software means that when students go back to their companies
they’ll be able to write CNC programs and get the very best out of their
CAD/CAM software,” says Dave Nichols. “They’ll also be able to demonstrate the
benefits of using top quality software to their managers. It shows the College
is at the cutting edge of technology in the important task of educating young
engineers of the future, which is helping local industry by making businesses
more competitive.”

And he says having
VISI and Edgecam has another advantage: Hurco are now intending to use the
College as a training centre for their own customers.

College:               http://www.kirkleescollege.ac.uk/

VISI                                        http://www.visicadcam.com/

Edgecam:                            http://www.edgecam.com/


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