One of the ways fabricators maintain a competitive edge is to be in a position to take advantage of the continuously advancing window technology. Particularly in regard to the new intricate shapes profiles now have incorporated in them. Most of the new PVC profiles being introduced, often called decorative profiles, have shapes that replicate the traditional timber windows.
Ovolo and Ogee mouldings extruded directly into the corners of the profiles. They are very difficult to clean by hand with a chisel or knife and achieving a consistent finish is almost impossible. Using chisels and knives also pose a big injury risk.
Watch out for Heath & Safety or Duty of Care claims. Accidents with knives happen all the time when used to clean the excess flash or sprue around a welded joint. The risk can be avoided.
The best solution is to install a cleaner that will automate the process and neutralise the danger of using knives. A Computer Numerically Controlled(CNC)cleaner is the answer but not just any machine. A machine for corners only - just won’t do because the transoms and cruciforms present the toughest challenge for cleaning. In spite of the fact that profiles are often supported during welding they may not have had their best support during cutting. As a result tolerances can appear and sometimes profiles roll causing a nightmare for cleaners to locate their start position correctly to clean a joint.
To achieve good, consistent cleaning results on these new shaped profiles the machines must be able to adapt automatically and find the right start position for the tools. Speed is often of the essence, so the more axis the machine has the shorter the cleaning cycle. Since most of the windows made today are internally glazed for the perceived higher level of security they offer. Welded cruciform joints are more often being produced from a combination of ‘T’ and ‘Z’ transom profiles as a result. Besides being time consuming to produce the finish it is sometimes spoilt by the mis-matching of the crossing grooves after cleaning. Generally this is because the common method of creating a cruciform joint is in at least two halves. You may indeed have had to start with a butt weld.
Take a good look at the huge of welding a cruciform in one single operation and cleaning as well in one single visit to the cleaner. For a combination window of opening and fixed frames a butt will require welding and cleaning followed by the first half of the transom being cut, welded and cleaned before the second half is cut, welded and cleaned. There’s also the repetitive walking & carrying back and forth from machine to machine that takes time and fatigues the operator. By utilising a cruciform all these operations are reduced to one and not only that, there’s no vee notching, so no constantly twitching the vee notch depth because the windows have turned out bowed. There’s also no butt welding, all four pieces are arrow heads. With less cutting and less welding fewer tolerances build and coupled with the cleaning of the cruciform in one operation the window will leave your factory in a far better shape.