Having already gone Under the Hood for the ARKU EdgeBreaker 4000, we returned to the company’s U.S. headquarters in Cincinnati, OH to explore the EdgeBreaker 3000. (We checked out the EcoMaster 30 leveler on the same day.) The EdgeBreaker 3000 is designed for punched and laser cut parts (plasma and oxyfuel cuts are better for the EdgeBreaker 4000).
On first glance, 3000 and 4000 models look very similar, using a similar layout and practically the same human machine interface (HMI)—the control panel on the upper right of the entry side. However, the heavy-duty abrasive cylinder included with the 4000 to take away slag and heavy burrs is replaced in the 3000 with another brush-based processing unit. The 3000 offers a double-sided grinding processing unit, and a double-sided rounding unit.
Using the EdgeBreaker 3000 is simple. An operator will get used to the control panel’s HMI in a few uses. The machine will do double-sided grinding and edge rounding in one pass, saving about 50 percent of the time compared to single-sided.
Two processing units give the operator some options. You can perform grinding and rounding on both sides. Or, you can perform one operation on one side, and the other operation on both sides. You can also perform each operation only on one side, by setting off either the top or bottom set of brushes so they do not contact the workpiece. You can do this in about five seconds using the control panel; it’s really just a matter entering a number (a negative number, to denote no contact with the workpiece).
The machine features automatic consumable wear calibration. As the deburring and rounding abrasive components wear, the EdgeBreaker 3000 adjusts the height so that there is optimal contact with the workpiece—not too much, not too little. The machine alerts you when it’s time to replace the brush blocks, but if they wear too far the machine will stop until the consumables are replaced.
The brush blocks that do the abrasive work require zero fasteners; they snap into place. To release them, you simply push down on the plastic top and pull. Here is ARKU’s Denis Weinfurtner to show us the inside of the EdgeBreaker 3000, including how these brush block components work:
Let’s get to work
Now that we’ve seen the inside, let’s take a look at two jobs running on the EdgeBreaker 3000. The first is a piece of mild steel plate with the company logo. It does not need grinding; it’s pretty clear of burrs or other surface abnormalities. What we want to do is make it safe and increase paint adhesion. We round the edges of the logo. Weinfurtner shows us how it’s done:
Next, we have a similar piece made of stainless steel. Even though it is laser cut, there are some burrs and we want to both grind the surface and round the edges of the cut. The double-sided nature of the machine means no flipping, a pain to do when you’re dealing with large, heavy plate stock. Additionally, because only one side needs grinding, you can set back the top or bottom brush blocks to avoid grinding one side. Again, Weinfurtner takes us through the process:
To summarize the flexibility of the EdgeBreaker 3000, you can:
- Perform double-sided grinding and rounding in a single pass;
- Perform one operation on one side and one on another (it doesn’t matter which you choose); and
- Perform only one operation on one side or on both sides.
The machine can handle a wide range of thicknesses from 0.8 (0.03 in.) to 80 mm (3.15 in.). The maximum working width is 1,300 mm (51 in.). The weight of the workpiece must be under 168 lbs. per linear foot, and available driven roller conveyors for entry and exit will accommodate extremely long workpieces.