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Marine Boat Hulling and Deck Trimming

  • Marine - Boat Hull & Deck Trimming
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A boat's foundation is its hull. To enhance this foundation modern hull and deck design enjoy the benefits of new materials, methods and the new generation of 5 axis CNC boat hull and deck trimming machinery provided by CMS.




Marine - Boat Hull & Deck TrimmingMarine - Boat Hull & Deck Trimming

Hull and deck manufacturers now exploit materials that were unavailable until the advent of modern chemistry's technology from which has come epoxy, polyester, and vinyester resins; as well as fiber clothes such as fiberglass, Kevlar, Dynel and carbon fiber, which when used for composite hull manufacturing provide a high strength to weight ratio, approaching that of aluminum, while exploiting the strengths of a modified monocoque hull design, resulting in sleek, rugged, strong structures, with high performance handling in water.

Hulls and decks made from fiberglass, also called glass reinforced plastic (GRP), begin with the application of a gelcoat between 0.020" to 0.032" thick to the mold's surface, which provides the visible, high-quality finish on which the GRP composite material is applied. The process is generally called "cold mold" since the curing occurs at room temperature, with the materials typically being applied by hand, or using a newer methodology called "vacuum infusion", where the resin is pulled into the fiber by vacuum.

Though the resulting structures are strong, yet after their removal from the mold, and until the structures have been joined together, their form or shape will "move" somewhat from the true shape they held while in the mold. Preparing the hull to be joined correctly with the deck and other structural features, requires trimming and machining operations. Determining the location of these edges, openings, and holes when the hull's shape in space has shifted, and then executing the machining for them correctly, is the next phase, one which also benefits from modern CNC technology, laser scanning, and sophisticated manipulation of this data through CAM software.

CMS provides its world class 5-axis CNC machining center technology, capable of handling today's large boat hull and deck structures, combined with specialized supporting fixtures, laser scanning and data acquisition technology, and coupled with real time data manipulation to precisely and accurately machine each unique hull and deck structure based on its unique characteristics for a perfect, predictable, outcome in the assembly phase.

bridge CNC's

Poseidon - boat hull & deck trimmingPoseidon - boat hull & deck trimming

CMS' technological development for boatyard builders, supplying the needs for both composite hull, deck and component manufacturers, as well as large dimension mold and plug builders, is represented by an growing list of well known manufacturers from around the world.

CMS' Poseidon, moving bridge class CNC machining center, is at the forefront of this growth: providing the largest possible working envelops for boatyard manufacturers, composite cutting know-how, special aggregate technology, and advanced support for process software application.

Shown in the photo to the left, Poseidon has a large working envelop with free unobstructed access from both of its ends. To the right Poseidon is shown with a special pneumatically adjusted deck support holding fixture to provide for the deck's easy positioning, following which Poseidon executes a probing cycle, which is used to quickly update the CNC program's location of the part to be worked, data related to the actual edge and other features to be machined, and the correct orientation of the 5-axis working unit to this "real world" information.

CMS' combined CNC machining center technology for mold/plug preparation combined with its technical know-how in trimming hull, deck and other component parts, provides the following benefits:

  • parts and components with tight tolerances
  • high quality of finished parts
  • reduction of boat assembling time (higher productivity)
  • safer and cleaner working environment
  • support for holding and clamping fixtures
  • easy software interface
  • on board probing devices, making it possible to adapt the theoretical geometry to the real piece loaded in the machine, compensating for possible torsion or deflection. Critical to hull and deck processing operations is CMS' laser scanning and inspection system, which compared to a contact probe, provides a faster process and higher rate of point acquisition; and when used in the mold/plug making phase, combined with that of the component trimming phase provides: CNC verification of the mold's applied paste thickness, while not yet catalyzed, for adjustment as needed; and fast, automatic, updated rototranslation data for the part to be trimmed with its true position in space along and the component's true dimensions at that point for accurate trimming, regardless of its twist or distortion after leaving the mold. Poseidon's basic working envelop and working head characteristics are: Strokes:
  • From X axis 2.5 m to 41.0 m (8.2' to 134.5')
  • From Y axis 2.6 m to 8.5 m (8.5' to 27.9')
  • From Z axis 1.3 m to 4.0 m (4.3' to 13.1'), non-telescopic version standard and telescopic versions available where reduced height limitations exist Working units:
  • From PX5 working unit with 12 kW power (16.1 hp) at 12,000 rpm, maximum 24,000, liquid cooled, S1 rating, A axis +/- 120°, C axis +/- 270°
  • To KX5 working unit with 15 kW power (20.1 hp) at 12,000 rpm, maximum 24,000, liquid cooled, S1 rating, A axis +/- 120°, C axis +/- 270°
  • To KX5 working unit with 28 kW power (37.5 hp) at 4,300 rpm, maximum 24,000, liquid cooled, S1 rating, A axis +/- 120°, C axis +/- 270° 16 place tool changing magazine standard, with additional expansion possible


Poseidon K - trimming hull and deck components, reduced work envelopPoseidon K - trimming hull and deck components, reduced work envelop

Poseidon K, the monobloc version of the larger moving bridge Poseidon class CNC machining centers, provides the same benefits for composite fiberglass boat components as Poseidon, but with a reduced working envelop:

 X stroke 2600 mm (102.4") or 4000 mm (157.5")
 Y stroke 1500 mm (59.1"
 Z stroke 1300 mm (51.2")
 +/- 110° B axis
 +/- 300° C axis rotation
 pneumatic brakes on the B & C axes for increased rigidity when not interpolating Poseidon K is equipped with CMS':
 KX5 working unit with either 15 kW (20.1 hp) power spindle at 12,000 rpm, or 28 kW (37.5 hp) power spindle at 4,300 rpm, maximum 24,000 rpm, liquid cooled, S1 rating
 30 place tool changing magazine for storage of HSK63E toolholders
 optional linear and rotary scales
 FANUC 31i A5 controller - Full digital technology standard fixed steel work table with aluminum gridded vacuum surface and steel T-slots

ARES - more mid-range 5-axis working envelop optionsARES - more mid-range 5-axis working envelop options

ARES, CMS' moving bridge class CNC machining center, has an expanded mid-range of work envelop sizes for fiberglass, GRP, boat components, with a full, free-form 5-axis capability.

ARES strokes:

 X axis 3600 mm (141.7"), 4800 mm (188.9") or 6000 mm (236.2")
 Y axis 1800 mm (70.9") or 2600 mm (102.4")
 Z axis 1200 mm (47.2")
 +/- 120° B axis
 +/- 270° C axis ARES comes standard with CMS':
 PX5 working unit with 12 kW (16.1 hp) power spindle at 12,000 rpm, 24,000 rpm maximum, S1 rating, liquid cooled, or optionally equipped with 6 kW version (8 hp) power spindle at 18,000 rpm, 27,000 rpm maximum, S1 rating, liquid cooled
 standard steelwork flat table with threaded hole grid or optional phenolic multilayer or aluminum gridded vacuum table, as well as vacuum table with steel t-slots
 waste conveying chutes on the back and both sides of the table for easier cleanup central protection divider, for nonstop work cycles and independent control of vacuum and compressed air for either side


Boat deck and hull structuresBoat deck and hull structures

Boat deck and hull structures have edges, opening and holes requiring, accurate trimming before they're joined together. In this photo, CMS' Poseidon, large work envelop, CNC machining center with 5-axis working unit, has finished the trimming, routing and drilling work on this composite fiberglass deck, leaving it ready to be joined to the hull.


Boat hull and deck scanningBoat hull and deck scanning

Seen in this photo to the left, Poseidon, within its large 3D 5-axis working envelop, is equipped with a special pneumatically adjustable deck holding fixture, allowing it to be easily brought to it approximate working position, securely held for the scanning cycle, and then machined.

To the right, Poseidon is shown with a scanning device to quickly and efficiently survey the deck's 3D position, including the location of the features to be machined. Following which, the data regarding its 3D position, as well as the location of the various features to be machined, is used in a special CAM software to update the CNC program with these actual values. Since the manner in which each deck sets on the holding fixture varies slightly, coupled with the fact that it has some flexibility in its structure at that point, there will be some variation of its true position in space, as well as the actual distance from the edge on one side to be trimmed along with its holes to that of the other edge and holes on the other side, and the scanned data, which is sent in real time to the CAM software, will be used to update the CNC program, based upon each deck's specific and unique characteristic at that point, resulting in a perfect fit regardless of twist or distortion in the deck.

Boat hull and deck machining and trimming operationsBoat hull and deck machining and trimming operations

Following the scanning operation, Poseidon's CNC program has been updated with the deck's true position in space, as well as the location of its various features, and the machining work for edge trimming, routing of openings, and drilling of holes takes place. Even though the distance from one side to the other of the deck may vary from what it was in the mold, with the CNC program modified based on the actual scanned data, both for the deck's position and rotation in space, and the consequent adjustment of all the 5-axis moves of the working unit, a perfect job of machining is carried out on each deck.


Boat hull & deck trimming

Poseidon is shown trimming a fiberglass boat deck. The work includes the CNC controlled setup of the special holding fixture, scanning to obtain the deck's true position, data for features to be trimmed and update the CNC program with this information, followed by the machining operations of routing, drilling and trimming with a saw blade.


CMS and Bénéteau-Jeanneau group
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