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Pre-built Robots Streamline Automation for Simple Processes


As automation continues to transform manufacturing productivity, competitiveness often comes down to maintaining “lights out” processes and lowering engineering time and costs. While robotic systems can provide undeniable benefits like efficiency and labor savings, not every task is ideally suited for automation. Relatively simple tasks like moving parts between two positions, gluing or palletizing may not justify a complex and expensive robotic system. And it can be easy to lose sight of how much design time is involved with implementing a robotic system for routine jobs. When automating simple applications that are essential to a manufacturing process, a pre-built Cartesian system can be a wise choice.


Implementing Cartesian Systems

When it comes to Cartesian systems, companies have two options — a custom gantry-type or a pre-built Cartesian system like Motion Box from Rollon Corporation. Here’s how they compare:

  • Custom gantry systems. Even the simplest gantry-type system will involve as many as 300 components from various vendors. The engineering effort will involve a lengthy to-do list that includes researching the vendors, checking component compatibility, designing and building the mechanical portion of the system, designing and building an electrical box, creating the HMI, connecting the components, programming, testing and debugging. All told, the process can take 10 to 12 weeks and require 100 engineering hours. The total cost of the components and engineering time can range from $40,000 to $44,000.
  • Motion Box. With Motion Box, integrators buy just a single unit from a single vendor. Because the unit comes pre-built and pre-tested, setup requires just three engineering hours to unpack, mount, connect and program. Motion Box is guaranteed to handle payloads up to 110 pounds, and the total cost is from $39,000 to $46,500. Additional features and benefits include:
    • Ethernet/IP, DeviceNet, TCP/IP, CC-Link, Profibus and ProfiNet integration options.
    • Connectivity to company-specific networks and control architectures.
    • Mitsubishi Electric’s Q-Motion Controller with four-axis motion control, drivers, integrated I/O and network access and a clean, efficient HMI setup.
    • Rollon TH Series compact, pre-loaded, ball-screw-driven actuators.
    • User-friendly load and speed charts for easy setup.
    • Six-to-eight week lead time.

Motion Box is easier to program than a dedicated system, which allows for a more modular, changeable system. And the compact structure of the actuators helps provide long stroke lengths in a compact package.

Is a Pre-built Robot Right for Your Simple Task?

If your automated process calls for a Cartesian robot, be sure to consider a pre-engineered system. Rollon’s Motion Box can streamline integration so you can automate simple tasks to help make your operation more efficient and competitive.


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