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The CMM Retrofit as an Alternative to a New CMM Purchase

When your CNC CMM fails, how should the business decide whether it is worth considering a retrofit or whether a new CMM machine should be purchased?

What Is A Retrofit?

When a CMM measurement machine breaks down, there are usually two options available: to purchase a new CMM or recondition and upgrade the existing one by considering the retrofit of the existing CMM measurement machine.

Offering a retrofit to your CNC CMM regenerates both its hardware and software systems. It restores its original performance and allows addition of a whole range of functionalities: connecting new types of sensors, increasing overall precision and productivity, reducing measuring cycle time.

A retrofit generally refers to an upgrade by replacement of a CNC CMM’s electronic equipment, mainly its controller unit and associated components. Considering a software upgrade at the same time is not mandatory but is usually requested to get full benefits of the newly installed unit.

Purchasing New CMM

A customer’s measurement needs may have changed. If tighter tolerance levels are required and they lie outside of the capability of the current CMM, then a new CMM will need to be purchased as no amount of servicing will achieve the enhanced accuracy level required.

Before investing in a new CMM machine, it is worth isolating the problem by working through the following three areas to determine the most cost-effective path for the business.

Retrofitting a CMM Can Be Cost-Efficient Solution

Replacing parts provides a quick and easy solution to a fully functioning CMM measurement machine as it:

➤ Enhances performance

➤ Extends the life of a CMM

➤ Provides reliable and accurate measurements

➤ Becomes easy to use

➤ Ensures cost-effectiveness

CMM Software

Legacy software may have limitations. The opportunity to retrofit and upgrade to new software should:

➤ Get the best available features on the market

➤ It should be easy to use and program

➤ Be in a universal programming format

➤ Work across all brands of CMM (not tied to one specific brand)

➤ Allow the operator to work efficiently across machines

➤ Take data in any format and be able to use it

➤ Provide consistent results between devices

➤ Efficiently manage large data sets

➤ Show errors in measurements and show how errors can be corrected,

➤ Provide clear informative reports that can be pushed to other departments in the production process,

➤ Adapt to changing needs of the organization and its measurement requirements.

New software should not only replace old software on a CMM machine but also upgrade it; providing a new lease of life for the CMM by making the machine ready for the future by being faster and more efficient, at a fraction of the cost of a new machine.

Benefits of a CMM Retrofit?

There are quite a few benefits to be gained from a CMM retrofit:

➤ It enhances performance

➤ It extends the life of a CMM

➤ It provides reliable and accurate measurements

➤ It is easy to use

➤ It is a scalable machine

➤ It is cost effective

In conclusion, with a retrofit you are not only repairing, but also upgrading the CMM machine, effectively spending less to get a machine with improved performance and capabilities.

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