Reducing Cycle-Time With ActiveEdge Tooling


Do you spend valuable time each day undertaking the process of setting Boring Bars or Padded Reamer Tools?

Does time wasted setting tools impact on other critical duties?

This problem is becoming increasingly prominent for organisations in all industries that operate using hole boring activities. The process of accurately setting Boring Bars or Blade Style Reamers adds significant costs to manufacturing organisation that need to produce holes in parts with high accuracy and repeatability.

Organisations must find a simpler, quicker and more accurate alternative to setting boring tools- and there is, Introducing Rigibore’s ActiveEdge.

What is ActiveEdge?

Rigibore’s ActiveEdge is a fully automatically adjustable boring tool, providing organisations with unrivaled time saving capabilities, whilst maintaining tight tolerances on bored diameters. This sophisticated boring system allows micron-precise adjustments to be made to cutting edges, without the requirement for an operator’s intervention.

Specific statistical process control (SPC) macros set an upper and lower limit on tolerances, ensuring that bore sizes remain inside a set tolerance band. If bore sizes move out of this band, an automatic compensation request is sent directly to the tool via radio signal, subsequently the next machined bore is returned to nominal size.

Rigibore’s ActiveEdge tooling can be key in gaining a foothold in the market, its sophisticated solution allows organisations to create and sustain efficient operations that improve processes by reducing cycle times– This blog now details the strategic methods behind reducing cycle time. This blog now details the strategic methods behind reducing cycle times.

What is Cycle-Time?

Cycle time is best defined as the total time to complete one repetition of any manufacturing operation from ‘start to start’, in modern day hole boring-operations there has been increased reliance in improvement of cycle times. Long cycle times lead to a number of negative organisational consequences including high inventory, high costs and poor customer service to end users that need tooling within critical lead times.

The key to improving cycle time is to reduce the amount of non-productive time taken in operations- otherwise known as the time not directly associated with the boring operation. By keeping non-productive time to a minimum organisations can ensure that operations maximise efficiency and improve throughput. ActiveEdge tooling provides organisations with the capability to significantly reduce cycle time in operations, before exploring this topic further we must first outline the process of ActiveEdge.

Adjustments Made In the Carousel

Rigibore’s ActiveEdge creates huge reductions in operating time by applying auto-compensation technology, allowing cutting edges to be automatically adjusted without the need for an operator intervention. Unknown to most operators, boring process’ can be streamlined to increase production by thousands of parts per day using this revolutionary system.

These micron-accurate adjustments are made whilst the ActiveEdge Boring Bar is in the tool magazine. The ActiveEdge tool bores a hole at the start of the operation, subsequently a probe or gauging system  will then measure this bored diameter before other machine operations take place.

Whilst the ActiveEdge tool is idle in the carousel, SPC macros can determine whether bore sizes are between the upper and lower control limits. If required, an automatic compensation request is sent, and the cutting edge adjusts automatically with the tool still in the carousel.

This capability reduces spindle downtime during the operation, ensuring the production throughput is maximised with minimal non-productive time.  Organisations can design and develop machining programmes based around this unique ability, allowing streamlined and efficient machining of bores.

The process of ActiveEdge tooling is outlined in Figure.1, highlighting the stoppages in the process.


Cycle Time Diagram 2016


As outlined in the diagram, the tool spends a very small percentage of the operation in the machine spindle. Its ability to automatically adjust in the magazine means that only two occasions occur where the process must stop, both equating to a matter of just seconds. This creates huge productivity benefits, streamlining the manufacturing process dramatically.

Alternatively, Boring Bars and Reamers without automatic adjustment capabilities will experience significantly larger stoppages in production, whilst adjustments to the tool are made manually in the machine, adding on additional non-productive time . Not only will this slow down the process of this boring operation, but also negatively impinge on the other operations being conducted in the factory. The ActiveEdge system frees operators to conduct other shop floor duties, performing compensations automatically.

Multi-Feature Tooling

To conduct successful production actives, organisations seek to reduce the time designing, developing and manufacturing products. Rigibore’s unique capabilities allow organisations to create a more streamlined process through special tooling solutions.

Rigibore’s Advanced Design System (RADS) has been designed and developed in house at Rigibore, providing almost limitless solutions to customers tooling requirements. This capability allows organisations to create bespoke tooling with multiple cutting edges, meeting two or more critical diameters at the same pass.

Not only does the ActiveEdge allow multiple diameters to be cut on the same tool, but allows cartridges to be independently adjusted, meaning that any cartridge can be integrated into the bar. This function gives the customer unparalleled flexibility, performing vital functions simultaneously in operation.

For example, fitting an ISO cartridge allows the process counter-bore at the same time as the ActiveEdge tool bores. Alternatively, an angular cartridge can be integrated to chamfering whilst the ActiveEdge tool cuts to diameter. Performing these multiple tasks at the same time succeeds in speeding up the process, again reducing cycle time in operations

Developing multiple ActiveEdge cartridges into an ActiveEdge Tool allows for quick and simple adjustment using the sophisticated remote 3T adjuster. By simply entering the unique cartridge collaboration code, and the required diameter change into the remote, an automatic compensation request is sent via radio transmission. This innovative function ensures accuracy in adjustment, cutting the required diameter for the operation.

What are the Benefits of Reducing Cycle Time?

What are the benefits of reducing cycle time?


Reducing Cycle Time in operations plays a pivotal role in becoming more competitive and profitable in the manufacturing industry, reducing costs whilst creating and sustaining a streamlined and efficient process.

Learn more about ActiveEdge tooling by visiting the website.



One thought on “Reducing Cycle-Time With ActiveEdge Tooling

  1. Pingback: ActiveEdge Solutions – Rigibore

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