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What Makes A Wenzel A Wenzel (Part 2)

Wenzel recently celebrated it's 40th year. So what is it that makes a Wenzel a Wenzel? No compromises by Wenzel on materials; inherent precision; build quality and performance. That's what has helped Wenzel grow into one of the top CMM manufacturers in the world.

In part two of our profile on Wenzel we take a look at Wenzel's choice to not compromise on granite thickness.

Metrological and Physical Performance

Granite is an expensive raw material and expensive to process. It's also expensive to ship due to its weight and so over the years CMM manufacturers have used less granite in its CMM base plates to save both material and shipping costs. But at what cost to the customer?


Look at the granite base thickness on this 25+ year veteran Renault-Federal CMM that's still in daily use at a Wenzel customer location. The Renault designers obviously knew the role the granite plate has in creating a stable CMM platform. What Changed!

Weigh the Competition – They’ve Been on a Diet!

Compare the gross weight of a Wenzel LH CMM with the equivalent competitors size machine and you will surely notice the huge difference. Check it out!

Wenzel CMMs are engineered to last a lifetime with a significant dollars per Kg price ratio advantage. Do the math. If Granite is only 3% heavier than aluminum, as we mentioned before, what else are their CMMs missing?

Granite Bends?

The top surface of a CMM table is subjected to lights and other temperature influences while the underneath surface is protected by base covers and is generally in the dark. What influence does only a 0.5 °C temperature differential between top and bottom surface have on CMM accuracy?

  • The result depends on plate thickness.
  • From the above table we can see that even just a 0.5 degree plate temperature differential can cause a 5 micron deflection; while even Wenzel has had to comprise its plate thicknesses to remain competitive its granite plates remain the thickest in the industry.
  • Typically a Wenzel plate is 30% thicker than the competition.

First Among Equals

All CMM specification sheets state a maximum part weight; this is NOT the weight under which the plate will fracture but the maximum weight than can be supported with no CMM accuracy degradation.

We have witnessed the trend from some CMM manufacturers to reduce considerably their granite plate thickness over past years to reduce costs. So then how does one manufacturer with a thinner CMM plate have a higher quoted table loading than another with a thicker plate! Science or Marketing?

Let's apply a 6000Kg load to a 8.10.7 plate supported over 1000mm and look at the calculated bending moment.

From the above table we can see that the thickness of the plate is critical to minimizing the deflection due to table loading and that competitors claims are exaggerated by their marketing departments in the knowledge that most customers CMMs rarely measure components that come close to the quoted maximum part weight.

Wenzel is still producing CMMs that perform to quoted specification and have been designed for competitive manufacturing without compromising on the "hidden" performance factors.

To learn more about Wenzel CMMs, contact the team at Precision.



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