To the big family of robotic applications developed by Roboticom, today we add a new one for surface finishing on ceramic sanitary ware, such as toilets, bidets, washbasins and shower trays. Sanitaryware is a very high potential market for Roboticom, as it has maintained artisanal finishing methods over the years, despite a certain level of industrial robotic automation widespread both upstream and downstream of this phase.
The flexibility of a robotic system such as SandRob allows, in fact, to automate processes on complex shapes which are usually performed by hand: with the use of SandRob, the staff employed can be redirected on less invasive and wearing tasks.
The surface finishing operations that SandRob carries out on sanitary ware can be performed in the different stages of the production process:
- finishing operations on greenware
- sanding and finishing on dried parts
- rectification on sprayed and fired parts
USING SANDROB FOR SANDING AND FINISHING ON DRIED PARTS
The automation of the finishing process on dried parts with SandRob is most requested application by sanitaryware manufacturers. Thanks to the best industrial robotic technology associated with a wide range of rotary and roto-orbital compensated tools specially developed by Roboticom and optimized for use in dusty environments, SandRob allows you to obtain repeatable and constant results in the most demanding, delicate and labor-intensive finishing operations.
Some typical operations on dried parts that can be automated with SandRob are:
- Finishing on various parts of WC and bidets, such as: external joins, internal dowels joins, external surface, basin surface, rim top, rim interior, sub-hybrid, rear siphon, rear surface, pit bottom, hole cleaning.
- Finishing on various parts of basins and shower trays, such as: external joins, casting entrance sign, internal and external vertical surfaces, external vertical surfaces internal floors, internal surfaces (bowls)
The advanced technological features that make SandRob so performing are:
- automatic sandpaper change system
- compact stores for end-effectors and sandpapers
- dust extraction system integrated on the robot wrist
- automatic re-alignment of the sanding process with a sensor (touch probe or laser)
- stand-alone system or integrated into a handling line
The SandRob multifunction system also permits the use of a compensated milling head for drilling anchoring points, small adjustments (rear area or inside pit), overflow holes and anchors.
USING SANDROB FOR FINISHING OPERATIONS ON GREENWARE
SandRob performs finishing operations on the “greenware”, that means on wet parts. For this kind of operations, the configuration of SandRob remains the same as previously described, with a wide range of rotary and non-rotary compensated tools and the addition of spatulas, blade, metal tools and even shaped sponges.
USING SANDROB FOR REPAIRING MINOR IMPERFECTIONS
SandRob can repair minor defects on sprayed and fired parts, like WC (thread cutting), sinks (taps drilling) and shower trays.
In this specific case, the configuration of SandRob has a more compact layout and workpiece loading/unloading in masked times.
ARPP®, THE ADDED VALUE OF SANDROB. A POWERFUL SOFTWARE, EASY TO LEARN
ARPP® is the off-line programming software in-house developed by Roboticom, which guides the user from the process of importing the external 3D file up to the three-dimensional graphic simulation of robot movements, passing through the automatic generation of tool paths and management of different end-effectors. It is precisely because of this powerful software that Roboticom guarantees the customer rapid learning and minimum start-up times, with specific functions for its sector. Robot programming is within the reach of any user.
THE INDUSTRIAL DISTRICT OF SANITARY WARE OF CIVITA CASTELLANA
It is no coincidence that the companies that first adopted SandRob technology to automate the surface finishing steps on ceramic sanitary ware are located within walking distance of each other in Italy. The ceramic production district of Civita Castellana is in fact a real international hub for the design and production of sanitary ware and bathroom furniture in ceramic: many of the international bathroom furniture trends were born here. In addition to creativity and design, another key point for these companies is industrial development. As early as the 1980s, they were investing in machine automation for some stages of the production process. This allowed to expand their markets to a global scale: a higher competition required automation to ensure high volume productivity and high-quality products to stand out. In addition, the geographic proximity of these companies’ locations, contributed to boost growth, to strengthen competitiveness and to create innovative production methods, until the introduction of robotics.