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What Can Spot Welding Robots Do for You?

What Can Spot Welding Robots Do for You?

Posted: 9/15/2021 1:08:46 PM by Josh Leath
Topics: Spot Welding

A proven weld method, robotic resistance welding (aka: spot welding) for high-volume parts is an ideal solution for increasing competitive edge. Popular for an array of industries including automotive, aerospace, furniture, electronics and more, the benefits of spot welding robots and their peripherals should not be overlooked.

Increase Production Output
Designed to deliver fast, accurate performance, straight-forward spot welding arms such as Yaskawa’s SP-series line of robots, feature integrated wire and utility harnesses, and exceptionally quick axis speeds and acceleration capabilities. This serves to reduce interference and air-cut time for faster cycle times and increased product throughput.

Maximize Floorspace Layout
A precious commodity, better floorspace utilization can make a world of difference on the shop floor. Highly flexible low-profile, seven-axis robots like the SP100B are easily positioned next to or under car bodies, and slim-profile six-axis robots such as the SP80 and SP165 are designed to be placed closer to workpieces, allowing products to be produced with fewer re-spot stations.

Along with this, pre-engineered workcells that combine a variety of robots, positioners, process equipment and safeguarding are now available to accommodate diverse production requirements. Easily adaptable for manufacturers in a large range of industries  – including automotive Tier suppliers, agriculture/construction equipment fabricators and medical equipment producers – space-saving systems equipped with cutting-edge technologies are helping to save time and valuable resources.

Improve Application Capability
A wide variety of robotic positioners exists to compliment work holding. From low-profile, two-axis positioners to three-motor trunnion positioners (and more), robust options that are easily customizable exist to enhance spot welding performance. All positioners use the same series of servo motors as our robots, and provide perfect coordinated motion between work pieces and the robot. Yaskawa’s patented MotoMount™ fixture mounting system also allows positioners to be lagged directly to the floor, eliminating the need for precision alignment and simplifying tool changeover.

Optimize Production Control
As the first company to develop coordinated motion of multiple robots and servo spot guns from one controller, Yaskawa knows what it takes to enable more than one robot to work within the same space without risk of one interfering with another. Moreover, this feature allows robots to easily manipulate larger parts for several process robots or work closely together without collisions. Complete motion control also extends to external servo axes in positioners and more, simplifying complex operations. Robust multi-tasking software facilitates easy programming of coordinated motion, delivering the highest application flexibility.

As an example, material handling robots are easily combined with spot welding robots to provide “toolless” processing of parts, resulting in greater flexibility and reducing tooling costs. Up to eight robots can be controlled from a single controller, and multiple robot control has been used to allow four robots on rails to pick up and transfer one car body at a time between process stations – even at a conveyor transition point.

Provide Efficient Production
High-performance robots equipped with comprehensive welding packages are ideal. Small yet capable, today’s servo spot guns – combined with robust software, an integrated spot gun harness and spot timer digital interface – help increase robot uptime, improve product quality and reduce cycle time. Even larger aluminum spot guns can be accommodated with through-arm spot harnesses on new Yaskawa SP-series hollow arm models.

Spot Welding Modifications
If spot welding robots are already being used on your shop floor, but there is room for improvement in any of these areas, it may be time for an upgrade. To stay highly competitive, manufacturers that have been using robotic spot welding for a while are starting to modify technologies and customize existing workspaces. These updates often include:

  • Adding more welding robots, or even material handling robots
  • Adding robot dress with guns and timers per OEM specification
  • Utilizing a collaborative robot for presenting parts to a pedestal welder
  • Modifying or adding positioners
  • Adding robot transporters
  • Integrating human machine interfaces (HMIs) or controls
  • Reworking robot layouts to accommodate new application requirements

Whether you are looking to add robots for the first time, or you are interested in gaining greater production flexibility, our experts are ready to help. Contact us today to learn more.

Josh Leath is a Senior Product Manager

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