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Why Digital Readout?
 
Manually controlled machines require an operator to directly position the workpiece or tool to carry out the machining process. A handwheel attached to a leadscrew is turned and the number of revolutions has to be counted by the operator to know how far the workpiece or tool has travelled.
 
Digital readout systems comprise a linear measuring scale, one for each slideway axis, usually two or three, and a digital display unit. When installed on a machine, the display will show the exact travel of the tool or workpiece. A direct digital display of position or travel will now assist the operator to produce parts up to 50% quicker, with fewer mistakes and therefore less scrapped parts. Accuracy is also improved as any mechanical errors in the leadscrew are eliminated, the displayed travel being the precise movement of the slide not revolutions of the leadscrew.
 
 
 
Are all Digital Readouts the same?
 
Many linear measurement systems are based on optical principles. A light source and photo-detector are guided along a glass scale to "read" the overlapping patterns of light, which shine through or reflected from the grating on the glass. This is a source of problems as this optical method is prone to suffer in the machine tool environment. Any machining process will cause a build-up of dirt, dust and grime carried by the oil and coolants. This same build-up can coat the glass grating and when this happens the measurement stops, production stops and with it goes your profitability!
 
So please consider this simple point and remember that with glass scales... if it doesn't see, it doesn't work!
 
 
The Sony solution
 
Unlike glass scales, the Sony patented magnetic scale technology doesn't have to "see" to provide precise linear measurement. That's because as the machine moves the Sony reader head "senses" precise magnetic graduations recorded on a metal rod or ribbon. So regardless of dirt, dust, grime, oil, coolant or swarf, any machine downtime due to failure of the DRO system is eliminated.
 
With Sony DRO there is no insistence to install sealed guards to keep your warranty intact nor over emphasis on the performance of the seals and wipers.
 
 
 
And further
 
Whilst glass and magnetic scales work on totally different principles, they are both guaranteed to provide the same scale accuracy. However, one of the most often overlooked sources of errors is the differing thermal expansion of workpiece, machine and DRO scales. Ideally, all three components should expand equally. With magnetic scales, they do! Glass scales can lag behind by almost 30%, so the scale can indicate a positioning error that may be quite significant over long lengths. Remember that a piece of steel one metre long will expand by 11 microns (half a thou) for every 1°C change in temperature.
 
Sony are not the only people manufacturing DRO's using non-optical technology. But while other manufacturers have now begun to recognise the advantages of using magnetic and inductive principles, their technology cannot deliver the accuracy.
 
Good enough to put on a Hardinge...
 
The detail
 
The Magnescale measuring technology comprises a magnetic scale and flux-responsive multigap head that detects linear or angular displacement. Permanent magnetic graduations of 0.2mm pitch are recorded on a rod or ribbon made from ferromagnetic alloy, the use of a special recording head and a laser measuring machine ensures these graduations are extremely accurate. The flux-responsive head detects the magnetised pattern on the scale as a signal corresponding to displacement.
 
 
The complete system
 
Sony offers a wide choice of displays, so whether you need one, two or three axes displayed or specific programming or interface features Sony has the right display.
 
 
Warranty
 
A Sony digital readout (DRO) system is one of the best investments you can make for reliability and guaranteed accuracy. We provide a 3 year parts and 1 year labour warranty.
 
 
Installation
 
Although some customers do prefer to install a DRO system themselves, we can provide an UK installation service which includes all fixings, brackets and display arms using our own approved engineers. Alternatively, we can supply and provide the DRO equipment via a network of approved regional resellers in UK and Ireland.
 
 
Quality at it's best
 
The Sony name is synonymous with products that everyone recognises as being of the highest quality and reliability. That's why so many Sony DRO systems installed today are to replace other scale systems that have either failed or are broken. This is the main reason for saying that a Sony digital readout system is not just another DRO!
 
 
Quote Back Service
 
Just phone, fax or email us with details of your machine. Tell us the manufacturer and type of machine, its model number, the travel lengths (stop-to-stop) involved and we will provide you with a competitive quote on the same working day.
 
Sony DRO Enquiry Form
 
 
The bottom line
 
Sony has the technology to provide a total package of accuracy, quality and reliability, at a competitive price.
 
If you are responsible for the running, efficiency and profitability of your machine workshop, then you owe it to yourself take a closer look at a Sony DRO system.
 
arrowNew Sony Digital Readout series SJ300/LH70/71 catalogue (PDF 1.2MB)
Sony Digital Readout System Catalogue (PDF 6MB)