A new rugged portable hand-held programmable dot peen marking unit designed to place deep text, graphics, date codes and sequential numbering marks on pipe and tubing for the oil industry in now available from Columbia Marking Tools, Inc. The PM Micro™ dot peen marking head is only 5-1/2 x 7 x 7-inches in size and has a marking window of 2.35 x 1.59-inches. In this hand held design, the PM Micro unit is held between a rugged steel handle/framework that has adjustable “V” shaped steady rests to accommodate various pipe diameter sizes. Rubber tipped pneumatic suction nozzles positioned on each side of the marking unit hold the unit securely in place during the marking sequence, Fig. 1. The x-y-z CNC movement for the marking head is provided by high torque stepper motors and ballscrew drives that produces the fast 300 mm per second speed, which marks up to eight characters per second with good quality readability, Fig. 2. Character size for the pipe application are either 1/8 or 3/16-inches in height. The PM Micro’s speed is considerably higher than other competitive models and has the flexibility to inscribe many different materials including ferrous and non-ferrous metals. Up to 10 derivative digits can be marked as well as up to a full 17 characters. The marking pin assembly is protected by a shutter arrangement so application in harsh environments is possible. The CNC controller for the marking unit has a display window for viewing marks, serial and I/O interfaces and a software package designed for ease of integration. Andy Habedank, Columbia Marking Tools’ chief application engineer says, “This is a very fast and versatile peen marking unit. Because it’s so small, it is easy to integrate into a production system. With on-board I/O and serial interface, the unit can receive information two different ways, regardless of the type of PLC. It can be designed for automatic, semi-automatic or manual operation.” The hand-held PM Micro is provided with a complete package including a keyboard and controller, with user-friendly prompts for quick navigation thru programming. The standard unit interfaces with existing Windows® 95, 98, XP or NT systems, using the included SIGNUMERIC software. This allows the user to create intricate logos, special graphics, and 2D matrix codes with enhanced functionality. Data entered by the keyboard can be viewed and edited on the LCD display before any marking is performed. Text can be fixed or variable, numbering can be sequential, date coding can be set up to be automatic and character size can vary in 0.1mm steps. For increased flexibility, the penetration depth is easily adjustable through a pressure regulator. Columbia Marking Tools is a leading designer and manufacturer of metal and plastic marking equipment including stamps, roll marking dies, roll marking and impact marking machines, fully programmable laser, peen/scribe marking and UID/2D Square _ Dot® machines, numbering heads and special marking machines.
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