RobotWorx Converting Old Industrial Robot Arms into Positioners
‘Positioners fashioned in part from older robot bases cost 50% less than new.’
By Robotics Trends Staff - Filed May 20, 2011

A Motoman UP130 robot arm repurposed as a positioner.

Industrial robot integrator, RobotWorx, has found a new way to, “reduce, reuse, and recycle,” by repurposing robotic arms as servo positioners. This green solution allows the company to reuse more parts from older model industrial robots and provide customers with affordable work cell components.

“We’ve had success thus far retrofitting nearly a dozen positioners from robots,” RobotWorx President Jarrod Bichon said. “It benefits customers because the recycled positioners are half the cost of normal servo positioners and they provide the same performance capabilities.”

Such retrofitting is only possible with older robot arms. New robot models typically have a second axis that is cast as a single piece, while many older robot models (particularly the Motoman SK120 and FANUC S430) are constructed in segments, so that the top of the robot can be easily removed. The remaining robot base is cleaned, tested, and outfitted with a tabletop before being integrated with the robot controller.

Servo positioner tables serve an important purpose in robotic work cells. They are designed to bring parts within the robot’s work envelope. Not only do positioners play an important role in the working of a robotic cell, they also factor into the final price tag too. However, RobotWorx’ retrofitted servo positioners present a much more affordable option for those in the market for a robotic workcell. Positioners fashioned in part from older robot bases cost 50% less than new.

The older robots chosen for servo positioner retrofitting are often models that have been overloaded with tooling, especially spot welding guns that caused the center of mass to be located too far for the robot to handle. Other models may not have received appropriate preventive maintenance. Turning these robots into servo positioners extends their usability. RobotWorx inventories all remaining robot parts from the upper half of the arm.

About RobotWorx: 
RobotWorx is an integrator of industrial robotics located in Marion, Ohio. Founded in 1992, RobotWorx specializes in building custom robot systems for companies in a variety of industries including aerospace, automotive, consumer goods, and plastics. The company integrates complete robot work cells for a number of applications ranging from arc welding and milling to material handling and plasma cutting. RobotWorx is a FANUC Authorized System Integrator, Motoman Solution Provider, and KUKA Robotics Partner. Visit http://www.robots.com for more information about RobotWorx.

 

<< Return to story