WAAM - Manufacture of screws by means of cladding


Following the first tests with WAAM (Wire and Arc Additive Manufacturing), igm Robotersysteme AG has now successfully carried out a practical test welding for the 3D printing of screw geometries.

Robot program from CAD data

The robot programs are created directly from 3D CAD data using a slicing tool. The cross-section of the spiral to be generated is measured at certain intervals and broken down into individual layers according to an algorithm. These form the basis for generating the robot paths.

Parameters for generating the geometry

Essentially, the following, independent parameters are set:

  • Resolution of the cross-section in the direction of rotation
  • Vertical offset of the following layer
  • Lateral offset of the following bead

Target: flexible 3D printing of screw geometries

Screws with a constant cross section, with a variable cross section and twin screws were selected as test workpieces. The base body can be cylindrical or slightly conical.

The slicing software tool reduces robot programming to a minimum, which enables flexible individual part production. Post-processing of the components manufactured by WAAM by milling is necessary, but is reduced to a minimum by shaping close to the final geometry.

Advantages of WAAM compared to conventional methods

  • Basic body cheap to produce e.g. as a turned part
  • No risk of shrinkage cavity in the casting
  • Highly stressed parts can be manufactured from materials with increased mechanical quality values
  • Wear layer can also be applied