Machinery : Breton Shapemill NCF

The machine in the spotlight this month is Breton’s Shapemill that was on show at the Marmomacc exhibition in Verona in October. It is a versatile five-axes machine for stone and marble working, including precise reproduction for conservation work

Main features of the Breton Shapemill NCF

General: The Breton Shapemill NCF comes in two versions, 1100/2T and the 1400/2T. They are made for workshops processing limestone, sandstone and marble as products such as baths from single blocks of stone, columns, bas-reliefs, capitals, banisters and sculptures. The Shapemill is a versatile piece of kit, which makes it particularly suitable for restoration work such as that pictured on the right of this page. It is a five-axes CNC milling centre with a fixed worked table. It is designed for contouring, cutting and turning. It has a gantry structure and moving crossbeam specially designed for high-speed 5-axis machining of workpieces. It is expected to appeal to traditional masonry companies such as existing Breton customers Albion Stone and CWO.

Capabilities: Shaping of blocks or slabs using a saw blade to obtain large size workpieces with complex shapes; shaping and creating recesses using milling tools; contouring using shaping tools; turning columns with shaped or fluted profiles or barley twists.

Physical configuration: Overall dimensions of the NCF are 6m wide x 7m front to back and 5m high to accommodate 1.2m movement in the ‘Z’ axis. The signifcant movement in the ‘Z’ axis allows the NCF to machine stone up to that thickness. A short beam and ball screws throughout ensure maximum rigidity and accuracy. The ‘C’ axis can rotate 270° in either direction while ‘A’ axis rotation is 0-110°. ‘X’ axis travel is 5.5m and ‘Y’ axis 3m. There is an 18-position tool store for automatic tool change with an optional two extra positions for saw blades.

Work surface: The table is aluminium, in line with the tables on all Breton CNC machines because aluminium copes well with the wet environment. The work area is 1.97m x 4.625m.

Motor: The high-frequency spindle of 31kW with top quality SKF bearings produces rapid material removal of as much as 40m per minute. It can carry saw blades of up to 1.2m in diameter.

Control: Like all Breton CNC workcentres, the NCF uses Alphacam 3D software modified specially for Breton. The NCF can be used with any computer-aided design system producing DXF files, including the Scantex laser scanning system that is particularly useful for reproducing stonework for restoration purposes.

Price: With the current fluctuations in exchange rates no sterling price is quoted, but Euro prices start at 7260,000.

More information: Breton’s agents in the UK are Ebor, based in Rochdale, Greater Manchester. Tel: 01706 863600. Fax: 01706 869860.