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About Caron Engineering

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Production Technology Center - Austin, TX

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Partners and Affiliations

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Industries Served

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Tool Monitoring Adaptive Control

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Tool Data Management System

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Automated Tool Wear Compensation Software

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CNC Sensor Analysis System

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Intuitive Status Light System

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Streamlined Process Automation

In addition, we are the official distributor of Blum-Novotest products in the greater Northeastern United States.

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In-Process Measuring Technology

Machining Runout Detection

Industry: Automotive
Machine: HMC
Material: Cast Aluminum
Tooling: 8.6mm Drill


This customer was specifically interested in how to reduce the machine tool setup time across 6 identical vertical machining centers running the same part where each machine has identical tooling. The biggest issue was operators moving tools from one machine to another (all machines are identical & making identical parts) which greatly extended the machine tool setup time. When the operators noticed that a tool from one machine was worn down, since the tool carousel is openly accessible they would simply pull an identical tool from another machine. In this highly inefficient process, there was little to no accountability for the tools and their requisite status across the six vertical machining centers.


In addition, the operators rarely take the necessary time to get the appropriate tool information from the previous machine to the new machine which introduces the possibility of errors throughout the process. Crucial information regarding the tool wear, geometry, and remaining tool life was not gathered and carried forward from machine to machine. In the rare cases when the operators did take the time to get the tool information, it caused significant machine downtime and was subject to fat-finger errors during the manual transcription of important data. Even the most minuscule errors in data input can have far-reaching and catastrophic impacts on component accuracy and quality. Ultimately, the challenge for this customer was how to reduce machine tool setup time among the 6 identical machining centers running the same part while improving the efficiency of the operators and the quality of machined components.


This company experienced first-hand how to reduce machine tool setup time through the implementation of Caron Engineering’s ToolConnect RFID system. After implementation, it was now impossible for the six independent VMCs to complete any cut if the incorrect tool was in the machine without updating the necessary tool parameters since the specific information travels with the tool. The ToolConnect system uses embedded RFID tags inside the tool holders. Each tag is written at the presetter and contains all the data for the specific tool, including geometry, wear, and tool life information. This information is automatically transferred to and from the CNC control via the RFID and is critical to reducing machine tool setup time. All vertical machining centers are equipped with real-time data on the requisite tooling and keep machining processes operating at optimal efficiency and performance levels.


Within the ToolConnect system is a file that defines the acceptable tolerances for each tool. ToolConnect will recognize if the wrong tool is in position and will not allow the process to continue. For this unique ToolConnect system, all of the transactions occur while the tool is in the spindle. Tools are read/written per the below (system overview) specifications after insertion and before removal from the spindle.


The tool is measured by a laser in the machine, and tool offsets are updated directly to the wear table in the CNC. ToolConnect reads the wear table and updates the tag the next time the tool is in the spindle position further reducing the machine tool setup time.


The entire process is automated. If tools are used across multiple machines, as they were for this customer, the required tool data is transferred with the tool.  No operator data entry is required and machine setup time is considerably reduced and optimized in comparison to the original procedure.


  • Eliminated scrap
  • Maximized machine uptime
  • Reduced inspection time (increased process confidence)