How BK Mikro Scanner TK7A/TK7RL Elevate Your Production Efficiency

Modern manufacturing facilities leverage a range of CNC machines and automated equipment to enhance production efficiency and increase profits. Despite their durable design, these machines may face interruptions due to broken tools. To address this, broken tool monitoring systems, such as BK Mikro, play a crucial role. With over 90,000 installations globally, BK Mikro scanners are recognized for ensuring top-tier reliability and safety in automated production environments, excelling even in the most challenging machining conditions.

BK Mikro offers tool monitoring scanners, including TK7A/RL, TK8A, TK91A, TK94A/RL, TK9LIN50, and TK96A/RL. Among these, the TK7 scanners are unique and offered in two variations. This post focuses on the TK7, their function, application, and more.

An Overview of BK Mikro TK7A/TK7RL

The BK Mikro TK7 scanner comes in two variations – TK7A and TK7RL. Both share typical features, differing only in their rotation capabilities.

  • TK7A: This scanner has an internal hard stop that provides a home position and is ideal for checking in one direction.
  • TK7RL: This scanner has no hard stop and is used for checking left and right for two tools that are next to each other in the machine.

Both variants of TK7 are designed for compact spaces where larger scanners may not fit. Many machining facilities use these tool monitoring systems in their multi-spindle heads or Swiss machines.

How Do TK7A and TK7RL Work?

TK7A is used for a single tool and TK7RL for two tool monitoring. Before proceeding into their operation, let’s understand their system. The complete TK7A/TK7RL system features:

  • Control unit
  • Scanner (motor) – TK7A or TK7RL
  • Mounting Bracket – BK7-8MB
  • Connection cable

BK Mikro TK7A

The location of the tool to be checked is programmed through a Teach/Learn. After being taught a 24VDC signal is sent to the Start Input on the controller to initiate the check. The wand rotates to the stored position, checking the tool tip. If broken, the wand passes the stored position, triggering a KO signal, stopping the part program so no further damage to the part or machine is done. If the tool is good, the controller sends an OK signal, allowing the machine cycle to continue. Since the TK7 utilizes a servo motor checking in a certain window for the tool position. If the wand were to stop prior to arriving at the tool due to chips or something in the way a fault would also occur.

BK Mikro TK7RL

The wand is placed between the two tools to be monitored. A 24VDC signal is supplied to the “Teach” terminal. The wand moves to the left until it touches the first tool and then to the right to touch the second tool. Next, the wand positions itself between the tools and this position is known as home position. If centering between the tool tools is not ideal due to some other object an offset can be set in the software to move the home position closer to one of the tools.

After learning the positions, a 24VDC signal is applied to the “Start” terminal, initiating the scanning cycle. The wand moves left and right to check the condition of both tools. If both tools are good, the unit outputs the “OK” signal. If either tool is broken, it displays the “KO” signal, prompting the machine to stop. The wand checks the tool position within the programmed tolerance in its controller.

6 Reasons Why BK Mikro TK7A/TK7RL Can Be an Asset to Your Facility

BK Mikro scanners TK7A/TK7RL are extensively used within machines due to the benefits they offer:

  • Systems maintain product and process quality by detecting tool performance deviations.
  • They provide insights into tool breakage.
  • Tool monitoring minimizes downtime and prevents disruptions in production.
  • Scanners use a servo motor for controlled movement allowing the detection of tools as small as 0.1mm
  • These systems signal operators about broken tools, ensuring optimum production.

When you are ready to implement broken tool detection, reach out to Techna-Tool. Since 1990, the company has supplied tool and process monitoring systems for various applications. Techna-Tool has successfully delivered and implemented both contact and non-contact monitoring systems for clients across OEM machine builders or retrofitting to end users in metal cutting, packaging machines, plastics and chemical engineering, wood processing, medical, and measuring industries. Feel free to contact the experts at the company to discuss your requirements.