Sunday, July 30, 2017

Machine Tool Improvement and Cutting Time Reduction

Machine Effort Industrial Engineering

Determination of optimum cutting parameters - Speed, Feed and Depth of Cut - Development of scientific machine work

Taylor described his project of improving a machine shop productivity and below is the work he had done on machines first.

By means of four quite elaborate slide-rules, which have been especially made for the purpose of determining the all-round capacity of metal-cutting machines, a careful analysis was made of every element of this machine in its relation to the work in hand. Its Pulling power at its various speeds, its feeding capacity, and its proper speeds were determined by means of the slide-rules, and changes were then made in the countershaft and driving pulleys so as to run it at its proper speed. Tools, made of high-speed steel, and of the proper shapes, were properly dressed, treated, and ground. (It should be understood, however, that in this case the high-speed steel which had heretofore been in general use in the shop was also used in our demonstration.) 

A large special slide-rule was then made, by means of which the exact speeds and feeds were indicated at which each kind of work could be done in the shortest possible time in this particular lathe. After preparing in this way so that the workman should work according to the new method, one after another, pieces of work were finished in the lathe, corresponding to the work which had been done in our preliminary trials, and the gain in time made through running the machine according to scientific principles ranged from two and one-half times the speed in the slowest instance to nine times the speed in the highest.

The change from rule-of-thumb management to scientific management involves, however, not only a study of what is the proper speed for doing the work and a remodeling of the tools and the implements in the shop (machine effort industrial engineering), but also a complete change in the movements made by operators to operate the machine.  The physical improvements in the machines are necessary to insure large gains. They are followed by improvement in the activities performed by people in combination with machines. 

It seems important to fully explain the reason why, with the aid of a slide-rule, and after having studied the art of cutting metals, it was possible for the scientifically equipped man, who had never before seen these particular jobs, and who had never worked on this machine, to do work from two and one-half to nine times as fast as it had been done before by a good mechanic who had spent his whole time for some ten to twelve years in doing this very work upon this particular machine. 

In a word, this was possible because the art of cutting metals involves a true science of no small magnitude, a science, in fact, so intricate that it is impossible for any machinist who is suited to running a lathe year in and year out either to understand it or to work according to its laws without the help of men who have made this their specialty. Men who are unfamiliar with machine-shop work are prone to look upon the manufacture of each piece as a special problem, independent of any other kind of machine-work. They are apt to think, for instance, that the problems connected with making the parts of an engine require the especial study, one may say almost the life study, of a set of engine-making mechanics, and that these problems are entirely different from those which would be met with in machining lathe or planer parts. In fact, however, a study of those elements which are peculiar either to engine parts or to lathe parts is trifling, compared with the great study of the art, or science, of cutting metals, upon a knowledge of which rests the ability to do really fast machine-work of all kinds.

The real problem is how to remove chips fast from a casting or a forging, and how to make the piece smooth and true in the shortest time, and it matters but little whether the piece being worked upon is part, say, of a marine engine, a printing-press, or an automobile. For this reason, the man with the slide rule, familiar with the science of cutting metals, who had never before seen this particular work, was able completely to distance the skilled mechanic who had made the parts of this machine his specialty for years.

It is true that whenever intelligent and educated men find that the responsibility for making progress in any of the mechanic arts rests with them, instead of upon the workmen who are actually laboring at the trade, that they almost invariably start on the road which leads to the development of a science where, in the past, has existed mere traditional or rule-of-thumb knowledge.

When men, whose education has given them the habit of generalizing and everywhere looking for laws, find themselves confronted with a multitude of problems, such as exist in every trade and which have a general similarity one to another, it is inevitable that they should try to gather these problems into certain logical groups, and then search for some general laws or rules to guide them in their solution.

Development of Science for Machine Elements

Two Important Questions regarding Machine Tools to be Answered through Scientific Research

All of these experiments were made to enable us to answer correctly the two questions which face every machinist each time that he does a piece of work in a metal-cutting machine, such as a lathe, planer, drill press, or milling machine. These two questions are:

In order to do the work in the quickest time,

1. At what cutting speed shall I run my machine? and

2. What feed shall I use?

They sound so simple that they would appear to call for merely the trained judgment of any good mechanic. In fact, however, after working 26 years, it has been found that the answer in every case involves the solution of an intricate mathematical problem, in which the effect of twelve independent variables must be determined.

Each of the twelve following variables has an important effect upon the answer. The figures which are given with each of the variables represent the effect of this element upon the cutting speed.

For example, after the first variable (A) we quote,

"The proportion is as I in the case of semi-hardened steel or chilled iron to 100 in the case of a very soft, low-carbon steel." The meaning of this quotation is that soft steel can be cut 100 times as fast as the hard steel or chilled iron. The ratios which are given, then, after each of these elements, indicate the wide range of judgment which practically every machinist has been called upon to exercise in the past in determining the best speed at which to run the machine and the best feed to use.

(A) The quality of the metal which is to be cut; i.e., its hardness or other qualities which affect the cutting speed. The proportion is as 1 in the case of semi-hardened steel or chilled iron to 100 in the case of very soft, low-carbon steel.

(B) The chemical composition of the steel from which the tool is made, and the heat treatment of the tool. The proportion is as 1 in tools made from tempered carbon steel to 7 in the best high-speed tools.

(C) The thickness of the shaving, or, the thickness of the spiral strip or band of metal which is to be removed by the tool. The proportion is as 1 with thickness of shaving 3/16 of an inch to 3 1/2 with thickness of shaving 1/64 of an inch.

(D) The shape or contour of the cutting edge of the tool. The proportion is as 1 in a thread tool to 6 in a broad-nosed cutting tool.

(E) Whether a copious stream of water or other cooling medium is used on the tool. The proportion is as 1 for tool running dry to 1.41 for tool cooled by a copious stream of water.

(F) The depth of the cut. The proportion is as 1 with 1/2 inch depth of cut to 1.36 with 1/8 inch depth of cut.

(G) The duration of the cut, i.e., the time which a tool must last under pressure of the shaving without being reground. The proportion is as 1 when tool is to be ground every 1 1/2 hours to 1.20 when tool is to be
ground every 20 minutes.

(H) The lip and clearance angles of the tool. The proportion is as 1 with lip angle of 68 degrees to 1.023 with lip angle of 61 degrees.

(J) The elasticity of the work and of the tool on account of producing chatter. The proportion is as 1 with tool chattering to 1.15 with tool running smoothly.

(K) The diameter of the casting or forging which is being cut.

(L) The pressure of the chip or shaving upon the cutting surface of the

(M) The pulling power and the speed and feed changes of the machine.

It may seem preposterous to many people that it should have required a period of 26 years to investigate the effect of these twelve variables upon the cutting speed of metals. To those, however, who have had personal experience as experimenters, it will be appreciated that the great difficulty of the problem lies in the fact that it contains so many variable elements. 

And in fact the great length of time consumed in making each single experiment was caused by the difficulty of holding eleven variables constant and uniform throughout the experiment, while the effect of the twelfth variable was being investigated. Holding the eleven variables constant was far more difficult than the investigation of the twelfth element.

As, one after another, the effect upon the cutting speed of each of these variables was investigated, in order that practical use could be made of this knowledge, it was necessary to find a mathematical formula which expressed in concise form the laws which had been obtained. As examples of the twelve formulae which were developed, the three following are given:

        P = 45,000  D 14/15 F 3/4

        V = 90/T 1/8

        V = 11.9/ (F 0.665(48/3 D) 0.2373 + (2.4 / (18 + 24D))

After these laws had been investigated and the various formulae which mathematically expressed them had been determined, there still remained the difficult task of how to solve one of these complicated mathematical problems quickly enough to make this knowledge available for every-day use. If a good mathematician who had these formula before him were to attempt to get the proper answer (i.e., to get the correct cutting speed and feed by working in the ordinary way) it would take him from two to six hours, say, to solve a single problem; far longer to solve the mathematical problem than would be taken in most cases by the workmen in doing the whole job in his machine. Thus a task of considerable magnitude which faced us was that of finding a quick solution of this problem, and as we made progress in its solution, the whole problem was from time to time presented by the writer to one after another of the noted mathematicians in this country. They were offered any reasonable fee for a rapid, practical method to be used in its solution. Some of these men merely glanced at it; others, for the sake of being courteous, kept it before them for some two or three weeks. They all gave us practically the same answer: that in many cases it was possible to, solve mathematical problems which contained four variables, and in some cases problems with five or six variables, but that it was manifestly impossible to solve a problem containing twelve variables in any other way than by the slow process of "trial and error."

A quick solution was, however, so much of a necessity in our every-day work of running machine-shops, that in spite of the small encouragement  received from the mathematicians, we continued at irregular periods, through a term of fifteen years, to give a large amount of time searching for a simple solution. Four or five men at various periods gave practically their whole time to this work, and finally, while we were at the Bethlehem Steel Company, the slide-rule was developed which is illustrated on Folder No. 11 of the paper "On the Art of Cutting Metals," and is described in detail in the paper presented by Mr. Carl G. Barth to the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, entitled "Slide-rules for the Machine-shop, as a part of the Taylor System of Management" (Vol. XXV of The Transactions of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers). By means of this slide-rule, one of these intricate problems can be solved in less than a half minute by any good mechanics whether he understands anything about mathematics or not, thus making available for every-day, practical use the years of experimenting on the art of cutting metals. This is a good illustration of the fact that some way can always be found of making practical, everyday use of complicated scientific data, which appears to be beyond the experience and the range of the technical training of ordinary practical men. These slide-rules have been for years in constant daily use by machinists having no knowledge of mathematics.

A glance at the intricate mathematical formula which represent the laws of cutting metals should clearly show the reason why it is impossible for any machinist, without the aid of these laws, and who depends upon his personal experience, correctly to guess at the answer to the two questions,

    What speed shall I use?

    What feed shall I use?

even though he may repeat the same piece of work many times.

To return to the case of the machinist who had been working for ten to twelve years in machining the same pieces over and over again, there was but a remote chance in any of the various kinds of work which this man did that he should hit upon the one best method of doing each piece of work out of the hundreds of possible methods which lay before him. In considering this typical case, it must also be remembered that the metal-cutting machines throughout our machine-shops have practically all been speeded by their makers by guesswork, and without the knowledge obtained through a study of the art of cutting metals. In the machine-shops systematized by us we have found that there is not one machine in a hundred which is speeded by its makers at anywhere near the correct cutting speed. So that, in order to compete with the science of cutting metals, the machinist, before he could use proper speeds, would first have to put new pulleys on the countershaft of his machine, and also make in most cases changes in the shapes and treatment of his tools, etc. Many of these changes are matters entirely beyond his control, even if he knows what ought to be done.

If the reason is clear to the reader why the rule-of-thumb knowledge obtained by the machinist who is engaged on repeat work cannot possibly compete with the true science of cutting metals, it should be even more apparent why the high-class mechanic, who is called upon to do a great variety of work from day to day, is even less able to compete with this science. The high-class mechanic who does a different kind of work each day, in order to do each job in the quickest time, would need, in addition to a thorough knowledge of the art of cutting metals, a vast knowledge and experience in the quickest way of doing each kind of hand workAnd the reader, by calling to mind the gain which was made by Mr. Gilbreth through his motion and time study in laying bricks, will appreciate the great possibilities for quicker methods of doing all kinds of hand work which lie before every tradesman after he has the help which comes from a scientific motion and time study of his work.

For nearly thirty years past, time-study men connected with the management of machine-shops have been devoting their whole time to a scientific motion study, followed by accurate time study, with a stop-watch, of all of the elements connected with the machinist's work. When, therefore, the teachers, who form one section of the management, and who are cooperating with the working men, are in possession both of the science of cutting metals and of the equally elaborate motion-study and time-study science connected with this work, it is not difficult to appreciate why even the highest class mechanic is unable to do his best work without constant daily assistance from his teachers. And if this fact has been made clear to the reader, one of the important objects in writing this paper will have been realized.

It is hoped that the illustrations which have been given make it apparent why scientific management must inevitably in all cases produce overwhelmingly greater results, both for the company and its employees, than can be obtained with the management of "initiative and incentive." And it should also be clear that these results have been attained, not through a marked superiority in the mechanism of one type of management over the mechanism of another, but rather through the substitution of one set of underlying principles for a totally different set of principles, by the substitution of one philosophy for another philosophy in industrial management.

Many researchers follow the path initiated by Taylor to develop cutting speed optimization and cutting time reduction to develop better methods for various machine tools. Industrial engineers have to go through those papers and use proper cutting parameters and reduce the cutting time. Similar work needs to be carried on various other machine so that that work time is reduced to produce unit output, thereby increasing the productivity of machines.

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