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5 axiz CNC v Robotic arm - Our company manufactures thermoformed polycarbonate windshields for various industries, Motorsport, forestry vehicles, Aircraft and we have been looking to purchase a typical gantry based 5 axis CNC for trimming the windows, for what we do we are lookig at a huge machine- It has been suggested to look at a robotic arm with a routing spindle and having a quick look has made me realise that a robotic arm would give us the flexibility that we have been struggling to get, My question (and i guess this may be a stupid question) - are they going to be as accurate as a gantry mounted CNC, and can they work from trimming small parts (size of a classic car headlamp cover) in 2mm polycarbonate up to large 2.5m x 1.3m x 12mm thick polycarbonate ?
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Paul, A robot will not be as accurate as a CNC machine, but it will likely be accurate enough for your trimming process at a fraction of the CNC cost. If I can help you further, let me know.
There is a some-what dated white paper published by RIA that will certainly offer insight on base-line considerations, you may already be aware - in-which-case, sorry to be redundant.. http://www.robotics.org/robotic-content.cfm?id=43